One of the most important things you can do as a gun owner is clean and maintain your firearms. No matter what you’re using your gun for, from home defense and hunting to fun days at the range, if your rifle, handgun or shotgun isn’t properly maintained you’re going to run into problems down the line. It might not happen today. It might not happen tomorrow. But at some point your gun is going to jam. The accuracy will be off just enough to make a difference. You’ll wish you’d done a better job taking care of your gun and you’ll only have yourself to blame. Don’t let this happen. Be proactive in your gun cleaning.
There are a few questions about gun cleaning that come up from time to time even from experienced shooters. The first is, “How often should I clean my gun?” This is a good question, and it varies from gun to gun. Once upon a time you had to clean your gun constantly. The powder was so horrendously corrosive that it would ruin a gun in no time without vigilant care. Nowadays you can get away with fewer cleanings, and if you’re particularly casual in your gun use you might not need to clean quite so much. Note that even if you don’t shoot very often you should still clean your gun regularly. A lot of shooters around the office here at GearExpert by OpticsPlanet get so much enjoyment out of cleaning their guns that they do it all the time! This seems kinda crazy to those who view cleaning their firearms as a chore, but when you love guns as much as we do it’s hard to not want to spend a few more minutes taking your AR-15 apart and getting it in perfect working order.
Actually, cleaning your gun regularly is a good idea in large part because you will become so familiar with how the gun works that you’ll have a better idea of what’s going on in case of a problem.
We want you to have the greatest success with your firearms. From giving you the best scopes and gun accessories to the perfect holster for every conceivable activity, we give you the gear you need to succeed. But we take it a step further. One of the first posts ever on GearExpert was on Breaking in a Leather Holster. On OpticsPlanet we also have a whole How-To Section that gives you advice on everything from Choosing the Perfect Scope or Flashlight to the Differences between Golf and Hunting Rangefinders. The video above is of our Product Specialist Chase Bending running through how he cleans his AR-15. After years cleaning and maintaining guns in the Army, Chase has learned some of the best ways to keep his AR-15 working perfectly. As Chase says, there’s more than one way to clean a gun. While his is by no means the only way, it is certainly one of the better ways to clean a gun.
Chase uses a handful of different products when cleaning his gun, all of which are for sale on OpticsPlanet right now. The first is the Otis Technology M-16 Soft Pack Cleaning System. This is a great compact cleaning system that you can bring along in all sorts of gun cases to the range or just store away easily until you need it.
Next up, Chase has the Hoppe’s 9 Elite Gun Maintenance Kit, which comes with gun oil, gun cleaner, copper terminator and a foaming gun cleaner. Hoppe’s 9 is a legend in the gun cleaning biz, which is why every one from the most green to the most experienced shooters turn to their cleaners.
Finally, Chase uses the Vanguard Steady-Aim Bench Rest to keep his AR-15 firmly in place while he cleans it. This is very helpful for keeping yourself organized while cleaning your gun. You don’t want to take everything apart, clean each piece to perfection, and then find out you lost something.
Check out all of our Cleaning Kits. You may have a specialized gun that requires specific tools. We aim to give you those tools, and with our How-To Guides and Videos we also aim to help you learn how to use them.
Keep shooting, and keep your guns clean!