Some time ago, I was asked how to clean a rifle. There are as many different ways to do this as there are to summon Beelzebub, and there is no single “correct” method.

Whatever works, works. Here, instead, are some general tips.

*Think of cleaning as a two-stage process. First you get out the powder fouling, then you get out the copper.

*For powder fouling, I use Shooters Choice solvent and phosphor-bronze brushes. When you’re finished with a brush, give it a toot from a can of Birchwood-Casey Gun Scrubber; this will get the dirt off the brush and will keep the Shooters Choice from eating the bronze bristles.

*For copper fouling, I use J-B Non Imbedding Bore Cleaner. Other copper-killers will not work on some barrels, or take forever, or will pit your bore if you leave them in too long. This stuff works fast, and will get all the copper out for sure.

*Keep your rods clean. That is why God invented paper towels. A dirty rod is an instrument of terrible destruction.

*Do not use slot-type patch holders, You do not want to drag dirty patches back and forth through the bore. Each patch gets one trip only.

*When you think you’re done, leave the bore wet with Shooters Choice for a couple of hours and then run a dry patch through. If it comes out with no green on it, you’re done. Then run a Rem-Oil patch through the bore and a dry one after it.

*Clean the chamber with a dry patch. You don’t want anything at all left in there.

*The source for all cleaning supplies is