Methods, order and features of cleaning a sniper rifle, cleaning the bolt, chamber, barrel, lubrication after cleaning and corrosion protection.

To get started, do an external cleaning of the sniper rifle. Next, wipe the synthetic box with a damp cloth until it becomes clean. If it is necessary to use a detergent, rinse and also wipe dry. 

Methods, procedure and features for cleaning a sniper rifle, cleaning the bolt, chamber, barrel, lubrication after cleaning and corrosion protection.

Then remove the shutter. At least once a year, completely disassemble the shutter and clean all its components, then treat them with Smooth-Kote as an effective dry lubricant. If you have never taken your shutter apart, ask the gunsmith to tell you how to do this. This annual cleaning is important to prevent the shutter from getting longer due to dust and thickened grease..

During normal maintenance, wipe the shutter clean and pay special attention to its front, where sand and tiny pieces of brass can accumulate. Carefully inspect the extractor and use a toothbrush to get behind it..

Before cleaning the chamber and the bore, place the bedding rifle on epoxy so that the solvent does not leak down into the receiver. Then use a brush with a diameter of 11.43 mm, dipped in a powder deposit solvent, Hoppe No. 9 is ideally suited for cleaning the chamber. Rotate the brush to the sides, but not back and forth, eight or ten times. Do not forget to get to the grooves under the fighting stops in the chamber. Use flaps (patches) to remove solvent..

The order and features of cleaning the barrel of a sniper rifle.

Then insert the guide sleeve and begin cleaning the bore of the sniper rifle with a suitable copper knife mounted on a one-piece plastic, aluminum, or fiberglass ramrod. The main emphasis here is not to damage the pool entrance, the place where your bullet first meets rifling. Always insert the ramrod from the rear, through the guide sleeve. And always pour solvent onto the brush, rather than dipping it in a bottle of oil to avoid solvent contamination.

The US Marine Corps recommends 20 passes to clear the bore of the bore, adding more solvent if necessary. Make sure the brush comes out of the barrel completely before pulling it back with each pass. Now you are ready to stretch patches.

Now we are starting to trick. Skip patches only one way, from the chamber to the barrel — in the same direction the bullet moves — and each time the patch comes out of the barrel, remove the dirty patch, pull out the empty ramrod, put on a new patch, and repeat the process. Why? To ensure that all dirt, soot, and solvent are completely removed from the bore of the sniper rifle, while nothing spontaneously enters the chamber. Keep skipping fresh patches until they come out clean from the trunk.

In addition to high-tech lubricants containing molybdenum and patches (in the foreground), a sniper needs a copper cleaner, such as Sweet’s 7.62 (on the right).

Methods, order and features of cleaning a sniper rifle, cleaning the bolt, chamber, barrel, lubrication after cleaning and corrosion protection.

Although the bore seems clean, it still contains traces of copper from the shell of the bullet. Using a patch soaked in Sweet’s 7.62 or another copper solvent, treat the entire bore several times, then allow 10 minutes for the accumulated copper to dissolve. Now skip patches from the chamber to the barrel, as described previously. On these flaps you will see very small, almost microscopic pieces of copper or blurry green spots.

Keep skipping fresh patches until they come out clean. Finish the process by removing the ammonium patch containing Hoppe # 9, then another additional patch containing light oil, or Break Free.

Pay particular attention to copper solvents. Some athletes, as well as the creators of piece rifles, recommend cleaning copper after every five or 10 shots. To do this, you just need to skip the patch with a copper solvent several times, and then skip the clean patches until they come out clean, and one additional patch with Hoppe No. 9 to remove the ammonium residue. Follow this mode, and you will reach the peak of efficiency from your sniper rifle.

Complete the cleaning procedure by thoroughly cleaning the inside of the receiver, using patches with a powder deposit solvent or Break Free compound, and wipe until all the carbon has been removed. This is where the drifts and the toothbrush become comfortable, especially if the rifle is self-loading, with many nooks and crannies.

Sometimes it seems that the barrel of a sniper rifle resists cleaning, especially if it arrived from storage or was left without proper maintenance for a long time. This is the case when the three-day cleaning regimen adopted in the US Marine Corps is used, which consists in daily cleaning, in the sequence as described above.

Then the muzzle is corked and the rifle is left overnight with a powder deposit solvent leaking through the chamber. The trunk is getting as clean as it can be.

Lubrication of a sniper rifle after cleaning and its protection against corrosion.

The last time we looked at the barrel of our sniper rifle, its channel was completely clean, but dry. Now skip one last clean patch moistened with oil from the chamber to the barrel, leaving a thin layer of oil inside. This is necessary to protect against corrosion..

In fact, to add one final touch to consistency – especially for police snipers – when you are off to field training or arriving at the scene of a call, pull one extra dry patch through the barrel to remove any accumulated dust and ensure the uniformity of your shot from a cold barrel (first shot) of a rifle.

To treat the barrel with Smooth-Kote, start with a clean, dry bore. Next, remove the old grease from it by wiping the patches soaked in alcohol until they become clean. Apply Smooth-Kote Liquid to the patch, completely cover the bore, and then let it dry for two hours.

The manufacturer claims that this stable layer of molybdenum disulfide with a thickness of less than a micron will fill in the bumps, making the bore of your barrel so “smooth” that future cleaning will be much easier, with less buildup of copper residues. Although not quantified, there is usually a slight increase in accuracy..

I don’t think there is enough experience to provide reliable guidance on this issue, but the snipers who served in Iraq tell me that Smooth-Kote works great, although a few “experienced” people say that as a result of the reduction in pollution it encourages shooters not to clean their rifles often enough.

Features of lubrication of internal and external working surfaces of a sniper rifle.

To lubricate internal work surfaces, always use a minimum of oil, because it will attract dust like a magnet. Each contacting, sliding surface requires lubrication. To protect against rust, apply a thin layer of oil on all external metal surfaces. So thin that they don’t feel wet to the touch.

Or you can protect the outer surfaces of your sniper rifle with a Tuf-Cloth molybdenum-dampened cloth that dries in a few minutes. Follow these procedures and your rifle will not only work flawlessly, but will also remain accurate down to 10,000 shots.

Based on the book “The Perfect Sniper. Study Guide for Army and Police Snipers ».
Maj. John L. Plaster, USAR (Ret.)

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