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Old April 19, 2006, 08:38 PM   #1
samoand
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please help: bore snake stuck in the barrel

no kidding. Folks, I did something very foolish: used a bigger patch on the end of a bore snake than my barrel could swallow. It's stuck at the very first inch - just far enough to be unreachable from the closer end. Stuck well, no amount of pulling force short of breaking the snake moves it.

any ideas what to do? Is there a solvent that would dissolve clothing yet not affect metal?

Thanks in advance, I feel desperate and stupid. If anyone feels like chastising me, don't bother: I'm doing my share on this end.
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Old April 19, 2006, 08:59 PM   #2
Dave R
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The only thing I can think of is to flood the bore with lubricant. Trying to pull the 'snake back out the other way might be bad. Breaking it might be bad. Adding a bunch of lube may reduce friction enough to make it through.

You might want to wait for a few more replies, though.

And thanks for the "what not to do"
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Old April 19, 2006, 09:22 PM   #3
DnPRK
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Bore snakes have a bronze brush imbedded in them. If its stuck at that point, you can soak with copper solvent to eat the brush away.
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Old April 19, 2006, 10:07 PM   #4
samoand
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Quote:
Bore snakes have a bronze brush imbedded in them. If its stuck at that point, you can soak with copper solvent to eat the brush away.
no, not copper. It's not even the snake itself, it's the clothing I added to it's loop at the end.
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Old April 19, 2006, 10:11 PM   #5
Harley Quinn
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What type of shooter is it

If you can come in from the other end add the lubricant,and push it back out the same way it came in, would be the best bet. Dowel about the same size as the barrel, smidgen smaller. Go to a welding shop and get a brass rod.

Patch is causing the problem and the amount of friction etc. pour in the oil and let it saturate.

If that does not work you can try the copper desolver, but that isn't something I would do. Only thing then is to cut off the rest and push thru with a dowel.

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Old April 19, 2006, 10:20 PM   #6
samoand
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it's an 26" A-bolt; can't use dowel from the other side: the snake is fully in, stuck by the end (loop). Already tried dowel, it won't go more than an inch due to the rest of the snake being in the barrel. Ouch.
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Old April 19, 2006, 10:27 PM   #7
Tim R
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I was cleaning my match tuned 308 Garand, getting it ready for long term storeage as I'm now shooting a AR. I took the rifle off the stock and decided to clean the gas cly which can not be removed. I lost a patch down by the gas hole. Nothing I did would remove the patch. I finaly got it out with a paper clip with a hook bent into it. While I was fooling with that, a buddy of mine was looking for his Black power bullet puller. This a screw assy which goes on the ram rod (normal cleaning rod thread size) and is screwed into the lead bullet so you can pull it out. I was thinking this set up might work in this case as well as long as you were careful. Bullet puller might need some work done to it so it would fit the bore.
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Old April 19, 2006, 10:28 PM   #8
Harley Quinn
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Don't shoot it

Sorry not funny!

Boy that is getting tougher to figure out. Call the maker "Hoppe" they might have a solution to your problem.


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Old April 19, 2006, 11:10 PM   #9
samoand
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more news: tried to use open fire inside the barrel, was quickly reminded that flow of oxigen is essential. REEEally don't want to resort to power tools or power chemicals, I like this rifle.

Let's see if leaving it soak with oil overnight help.

With thin part of the snake hanging off the muzzle, it now looks like a fancy whip.

Harley Quinn: that was exactly my first thought.

Any chemists out there, something that ruins fabric and doesn't affect metal? liquid plumber perhaps?
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Old April 20, 2006, 03:37 AM   #10
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might work

a strong caustic (sodium hydroxide) like a drain cleaner might work, if it does, besure to THOROUGHLY rinse with water afterwards. Then dry competely and oil. Take stock off first. Caustic will eat aluminium! be careful. Do not use an acid, acid will eat the steel. Of course, if you soak the patch with nitric acid, and then let it dry out, it will self ignite after a while.

A black powder patch worm (not thebullet puller screw) might work also, this thing looks like a pair of hooks that screws on the end of the cleaning rod. You may be able to dig into the cloth and pull it out, or tear pieces off until you can pull it out.

Good luck.
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Old April 20, 2006, 06:40 AM   #11
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samoand - I believe that if you just continually soak it w/ something like clp for the best portion of a day it'll be able to slowly & gently be "Tugged" at & out. Really, good luck w/ it. Also, call the manufacturer; it's not likely your the first to have made that mistake..!

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Old April 20, 2006, 08:57 AM   #12
Harley Quinn
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Nor the last

Just had to get it squeaky clean huh, LOL.

Give Hoppe a chance to tell you, in fact they had a cleaner that if you left it in a bore long enough it desolved the stuff we are talking about.

Any good chemist will have the answer.

There are some acids that won't hurt the gun out there, but I am not sure which would be the best. Regular bleach will eat it, the patch (cotton right?).

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Old April 20, 2006, 09:03 AM   #13
Mike in Michigan
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Snake stuck in bore...how to remove

Find or fit a wooden dowel that is snug in the bore. Remove stock, this gets messy. Fill the bore with oil. Fit the dowel to the bore and whack it with a hammer to hydraulically force the obstruction out. If the oil leaks past the obstruction, use thicker oil or axle lube.
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Old April 20, 2006, 10:10 AM   #14
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If all else fails, get a mild steel rod that will fit into a drill but is smaller than the bore. Take a piece of soft steel tubing that will just fit inside the bore and cut saw teeth in one end. Set the teeth when complete so they will face slightly inward and cannot easily touch the inside of the bore. Solder the "holesaw" to the end of the mild steel rod and chuck it up in a drill. File and sand the O.D. smooth and coat with grease.Saw on the cloth patch plug until it is ripped out. Remove pieces of cloth as they tear loose or they can jam the saw in the bore. Careful is as careful does. You might be able to saw the patch plug with a homemade brass saw made as described above, which would be safer in the bore. If all else fails, this will work. Tear out enough of the patch to let the boresnake pull out. You must be careful though, as sloppy usage can ruin the bore.
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Old April 20, 2006, 10:13 AM   #15
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This sounds like something I would do. I?m always trying to improve upon things to make them work better; most times I make it better, sometimes I get outcomes like this. Good luck!
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Old April 20, 2006, 10:55 AM   #16
Harry Bonar
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bore snake

Dear Shooter:
Understand your frustration but I do not like bore snakes!
The guys have told you about all the remedies there are but I prefer the bronze rod, after soaking the whole thing in oil so you don't get rust.
You may really have to give the rod a good smack to get this started and I would disdain any chemical solution!
At Douglass bbls, they use a stainless steel rod for each caliber and PUSH THROUGH cotton patches to clean bbls! If I use a bronze bristle brush I make sure there are no steel windings in the brush and PASS IT CLEAR THROUGH the bbl! Then you PULL it back through entirely and NEVER use a stainless steel brush on anything but a rusty military bbl!
The bore snake business is a sloppy, easy way to "clean" a bbl - however it does little cleaning. I use a soft brass wound bristle brush as described and patches opushed through when needed - bore snales if allowed to get damp can permenantly rust and ruin a bbl. - I don't own onw!
Harry B.
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Old April 20, 2006, 11:02 AM   #17
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before you go poring drain cleaner onto your gun, do you have access to an air compressor? a rubber tipped air chuck will form a tight seal at the barrel. 100psi (popbably won't need that much) will blow it right out the way it came in.
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Old April 20, 2006, 11:06 AM   #18
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Old April 20, 2006, 04:03 PM   #19
ConRich
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I like the method recomended by Hawken 50, it would be the least dammaging approach. Beg, borrow, or rent a small air compressor then find a blower tip, the kind used in an automotive shop to blast out carburators, fuel lines etc., if you can find one with a rubber tip all the better. Pull on the snake from one end while appying air pressure to the other end should work. Be sure to ware eye protection, all that oil and stuff you put in is going to come out all at once. Let us know how you make out.

Good luck,

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Old April 21, 2006, 05:49 AM   #20
hawken50
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i've used an air compressor to blow patched round balls out of my muzzle loader by blowing thru the touch hole. be warned, when it pops out it will be moving pretty fast. also, i'd try to blow it out the way it went in, just to avoid it getting stuck again halfway down the barrel.
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Old April 21, 2006, 10:21 AM   #21
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I doubt the air compressor will work in this case. If we assume his bore is half an inch, it will have an area of 0.159 in². Multiplied by 125 PSI you get not quite 20 pounds of force. Less if the bore is smaller. I am sure he has already pulled with 20 pounds of force on the cord, and it didn't work. The air is useful when you have no other way get hold of the stuck ball, but he has a hold, and it is no help.

Saturated lye solution would eventually eat out the patch if it is cotton. Maybe not if it is synthetic. It will gradually react with the metal unless it is stainless. It could take weeks on a tight patch. Concentrated sulfuric acid will also etch the metal, but will dissolve a plug much faster. Whether you get ahead on etching with the acid or the lye depends on the speed with which the plug is broken down as the chemical of choice takes hydrogen and oxygen out of its structure in the form of water. I don't think strong chemicals are the way to go? I wouldn't trust either one.

You could theoretically put the thing in an oven and, beyond 451°F, the cellulose in fiber will burn. Unfortunately, the synthetics in the Bore Snake will also be melting and/or burning. Think noxious fumes and charred plastic goo stuck to the bore and in need of methylene chloride or similar strong solvent to remove. Not a pretty picture.

My personal approach would be to go to the hobby shop and buy some of those telescoping brass tubes, and pick a set that fit the bore closely on the outside and leave a 1/8" hole inside. Get the 1 foot lengths, not 3 foot, or you will have to cut it. Also buy a 3 foot length of 1/8" music wire from the hobby shop. They sell it for landing gear struts. If the outer tube isn't snug in the bore, add tape to the outside. Insert it from the rear. Wrap the outside of the rear of the tubing enough paper to center it in the back of the receiver (the bolt is out for all this). Now heat the tip of the music wire to red heat with a propane torch, and quickly shove the hot end down through the brass tube and spin the cool end of it back and forth between your palms for a few seconds. Repeating this will gradually char the back of the patch and drill a burned hole down until you get to the loop in the Bore Snake. When the loop is burned through, the Snake will come out. The patch will now be thinned out and should push out with a rod.

I thought of substituting a long 1/8" electrician's drill for the hot wire drill, but I think it will get tangled in the patch fibers and you will end up with a drill stuck in there with everything else. The hot wire will not carry enough specific heat to warm the bore enough to affect barrel temper any more than hot propellant gas does. It will also tend to cool on its way down the brass tubing, so you have to be quick about it. It will likely take several applications of the hot wire just to dry enough oil out to start drilling. The oil will act as a phase change material and cool the rod until it is driven off. The oil vapor may be flammable, so don't get the propane torch too near the smoke.

Good luck with it,
Nick
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Old April 21, 2006, 11:46 AM   #22
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If I have this correctly, its stuck near the muzzle end?

If so, I would get a long sheet metal or wood screw and "screw" it into the patch, them grad screw with a pair of vise grips and pull it out.
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Old April 21, 2006, 12:04 PM   #23
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Take your time!

I had a similar experience with an AR15 and a wire cleaning kit. Set the rifle on end, and fill with Kano Labs "Kroil", the oil that creaps. Allow this to soak through everything. I used a pencil torch, tweezers, and time to fight that bastard out. Carefull of any fumes.
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Old April 21, 2006, 12:09 PM   #24
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I would chime in on the air compressor. Just soak the snake with oil and apply air to the far end. It will pop out of there pronto.
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Old April 21, 2006, 04:14 PM   #25
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Unclenick

If I ever have a problem with anything, I am going to e-mail you.

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