Monday, February 13, 2012

Weapons Cleaning

A while ago I was reading over at Tam's blog about gun cleaning and it reminded me of some experiences I have had cleaning weapons. I remember in years past standing at a cleaning table and dis-assembling my M16 and cleaning it for hours with Q-Tips and a butt-stock cleaning kit.
 Weapons cleaning Al Asad airfield Iraq 2004, Awaiting C-130 to Kuwait

I did develop some other techniques though. Once (stateside) it was about 0100 in the morning, I had to turn in a clean weapon at 0600 and I needed sleep. I had learned break-free loosens carbon while you sleep and it was best to get it all off. I went around behind the chow hall, pulled the front pin on the upper and broke it in half. I then took the steam hose and cleaned the whole weapon, because the gun was now very hot it dried almost immediately, I gave it a light shot of
lube and put it away. the next morning I turned it in with no problems even though they use a Q-Tip to inspect it and probe any spot they think was missed.
In Iraq we took our weapons everywhere, even to the shower so I would routinely open it up in the shower and rinse all the red dust out, it was so arid it would dry quickly so I would oil it lightly, swab the barrel and it was good to go.
At home my quick clean consists of oiling them down thoroughly then blowing it out with a high pressure air hose, following it up with a swab down the barrel and wiping the outside with a lightly oiled rag. This seems to work well in between major cleanings.

Additional Note: Water will not hurt anything on an AR as long as you dry it. The places to watch would be the buffer spring and the bolt. They could be taken out if needed. Remember, they were designed to be used in jungle weather, rain and river crossings.

Interesting  footnote, This is the M16 A1 I carried in Iraq, it was a Vietnam era arsenal rework, It was issued to me right out of the crate from rework facility.  It  is marked Colt AR15, (not M16) Property of US Government. It's hard to see but  the selector switch has 'auto' on it. It did have the forward assist and the barrel was an upgrade.  Almost all Marines and Soldiers  had the 3 round burst and they found this 'full auto' one a novelty.

10 comments:

  1. Nice post, brings back some memories.

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    1. mmasse, thanks. It does bring back memories, some not so good.

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  2. Cool thanks for the tips, I almost hesitate to take my ARgery to the range due to how much of a pain in the arse it is to clean.

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    1. AR's are easy to clean (in my book) they were designed that way. There is nothing on a AR15 that water will hurt. You could spray cleaner in the lower and hose it out, dry it and spray lube it and be fine. The biggest thing in the upper is the bolt but it cleans easy if taken apart. The buffer spring can be wiped off with a rag. I could do a good field clean in 15 min. Just remember, if you use water, dry it good.

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  3. I just let my cat piss on mine...acid you know. Good post.

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    1. As long as it's rinsed off good, no problem. Thanks Bubba.

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  4. I just clean mine by shooting it more. ;)

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    1. Another good way, blast the carbon out. Thanks.

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  5. When I was unit armorer in the '90s, many of the 16s I took care of were marked XM16, with the A1 in a different font. Old rifles from when the A1 was still experimental. Mostly H & R or Colts. Miss those old A1s, after transitioning to A2s, then more recently M4s. There was something about ripping off a long burst to satisfy the soul.....

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    1. MauserMedic, Thanks for the input, I actually saw a few H&R's come out of our batch of weapons. I agree, I like the full auto for therapy purposes.

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