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Old April 8, 2013, 10:17 PM   #1
Sweet Shooter
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So easy to shoot. So hard to clean.

I don't want to clean it any more is that okay? 357 mag. Vaquero. Stainless Steel. I like the 38's in it but they leave a ring in the cylinder. I shoot it so often that cleaning is a chore and is kinda spoiling it for me. I did get a bit of cylinder/cone rub last time out, and I don't mind cleaning for that kind of function... but right now my cleaning method is down to bare steel with a mirror finish in the throats. I'm using an electric drill with the lead cloth wrapped around a bronze brush. I bet back in the day when these wheel guns were the technology of the day... I bet they never cleaned them this good. How clean is clean enough? I like the idea of just putting it on the night stand dirty.

Is my cleaning protocol too OCD? Say the right thing.
-SS-
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Old April 8, 2013, 10:21 PM   #2
James K
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I usually use a brass brush (not a bore brush) to clean most of the crud off, and a stainless steel one for the front of the cylinder. (The stainless steel brush is softer than the cylinder steel, so it is not going to scratch or wear out the cylinder.)

Those brushes can be found at gun shops, hardware stores, and gun shows. So far, you don't need a background check.

Jim
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Old April 8, 2013, 10:30 PM   #3
Sweet Shooter
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What about the throats. It's bad enough in a rifle cleaning one but now I have six! Maybe i should just use one and cycle it?
-SS-
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Old April 9, 2013, 03:05 AM   #4
roadrash
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I think you are way overdoing it,an electric drill?A few swipes in each chamber and barrel with a bronze bore brush dipped in Hoppes,followed by a clean patch.Then an oily patch,followed by a dry patch,has been my method for a long time with no problems.I stopped worrying about the burn rings on the front of stainless cylinders years ago,I use an old toothbrush and Hoppes to scrub the cylinder front,forcing cone area,and inside of the topstrap enough to remove the powder residue,wipe her down ,oil her up.
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Old April 9, 2013, 03:52 AM   #5
Sevens
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A shortcut: if you are a handloader, find a piece of .357 Magnum brass that you can live without. Run it in to your mouth flaring die and give it a BIG wide mouth flare.

Take that piece of brass and press it fully in to a chamber in your revolver and it'll scrape, cut & clean the .38 Special scuzz out of your way. Your single action has a very handy ejector rod that you can push that brass back out with -- so you can clean the next chamber the same way.
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Old April 9, 2013, 04:22 AM   #6
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+1 For Sevens method. It works great.
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Old April 9, 2013, 05:07 AM   #7
Zhillsauditor
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My advice is to just get rid of the gun immediately. I'll give you $300 for it.
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Old April 9, 2013, 08:44 AM   #8
Sweet Shooter
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Okay... I'll try the flared case trick... I haven't had any problems loading 357 on top of that 38 crud—yet.

Thanks for the advice all.

-SS-
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Old April 9, 2013, 09:11 AM   #9
jglsprings
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Quote:
Is my cleaning protocol too OCD? Say the right thing.
-SS-
I'm sorry, yes your cleaning is too OCD.

Quote:
It's bad enough in a rifle cleaning one
If you are treating your rifles this way, you are doing more damage to the accuracy than any amount of powder or bullet residue will.

Quote:
Okay... I'll try the flared case trick... I haven't had any problems loading 357 on top of that 38 crud—yet.
Why? If your current cleaning method is working why would you do this? I've never had to be that aggressive to clean the cylinder. As for the cylinder face - give it a rest. You don't need to polish it every time you clean it.

Get a reloading setup. If you need to channel your OCD start building match grade rifle ammunition. It will play to the voices in your head. You can spend days turning case necks. LOL!
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Last edited by jglsprings; April 9, 2013 at 09:21 AM.
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Old April 9, 2013, 09:25 AM   #10
Poindexter
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One thing I learned a few years ago and stuck with, when I have a revolver that needs cleaning I use a soaking penetrant oil like carb cleaner (been using a "P-Blaster" brand for a while now).

Just spray it down real good, put it down on a towel and go have dinner. After dinner, or even better tomorrow morning, the crud will lift right off.

I haven't tried it with other brands, but PBlaster doesn't do any identifiable harm to soft rubber grips either.

So for most of my guns I go this way, spray, soak, patches. Once I have mostly clean metal with no visible crud in the bore but maybe still a little gray/black on the patches, then dry patches, then a patch with a shot of gun oil on it. Wipe the outside dry, then go over the outside with the pily patch that has already been down the bore, done.
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Old April 9, 2013, 10:02 AM   #11
Robk
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I understand your need for a clean cylinder. But, why a .357 is you only shoot .38s? Not that it is a bad thing to have a multi-use pistol, but do you shoot .357s? And if you are a handloader, why not scale down your .357 loads to approximate the .38 spl.? Would be much easier to clean as you will not have that ring left in the cylinders from the shorter .38s. Now please do not get me wrong, I do own 2 .357s and yes I shoot .38 spls. out of them, but never to the point that I had to resort to a power drill. Bronze brush and Hoppes and a little elbow grease usally works fine for me. Hope this helps more than hinders with your issue.
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Old April 9, 2013, 10:27 AM   #12
Sweet Shooter
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@jglsprings:
"If you are treating your rifles this way, you are doing more damage "
No I'm not using a drill on my rifle chambers. LOL.

@jglsprings:
"Why? If your current cleaning method is working why would you do this?"
Because I'm fed up of cleaning it .

@Poindexter:
"... I use a soaking penetrant oil like carb cleaner..."
I've tried non chlorinated brake cleaner that works wonders on AR bolts, to no avail. Do you think the Carb cleaner would be better?

@Robk:
"But, why a .357 is you only shoot .38s?"
I shoot 357s in it too... but I can't hit as well with them yet.

The revolver is stainless. Brand new (not any more!) The throats have definite rotational tool marks which appear to anchor that crud well good. It looks like I could pick that stuff out with a dental tool but I don't want to put anything harder than a bronze brush in there.

The more I think on it the more I figure I'll run it dirty... as long as it functions right?

-SS-
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Old April 9, 2013, 10:33 AM   #13
rclark
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I do believe you are over doing it . What I do is run a patch(es) (tight fit) with Hoppes #9 down the barrel and in the chambers, Then if needed I run the bronze brush through. Then a couple clean patches and done. Same with the external areas and the base pin. Then a little oil on the base pin and it's ready to rock again. 10-15 minutes max for a normal cleaning.

Quote:
A shortcut: if you are a handloader, find a piece of .357 Magnum brass...
If you are a handloader, you deep six the .38 special brass and just load .357 brass to .38 power levels.... Eliminates all the hassle.
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Old April 9, 2013, 12:18 PM   #14
Zhillsauditor
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I'm a bit of a clean freak too, but I don't try to remove the carbon after every range trip. When it's time I normally remove the cylinder and put it in a small jar full of a solvant (ed's red or hoppes) and let it soak for a week or two. It won't get everything, but it does tend to loosen it up so a bore bush can take it out.

For SS guns, I use a lead remover cloth that does a dandy job on carbon, with very little effort. Not usable on blued guns, though, as it removes the bluing.

http://www.brownells.com/gun-cleanin...-prod4956.aspx
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Old April 9, 2013, 01:19 PM   #15
Sevens
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Quote:
If you are a handloader, you deep six the .38 special brass and just load .357 brass to .38 power levels.... Eliminates all the hassle.
Not from my corner.

I've got mountains of .38 Special brass (which is a good thing, because I shoot mountains of .38 Special) and I have never had the all-too-famous and seemingly overblown "colossal" problems associated with simply shooting .38s out of .357 Magnum revolvers.

I don't have near the supply of .357 Magnum brass and the .38 brass lasts forever. Three days ago, I burnt 573 rounds of .38 Special on a very good range day, so it makes perfect sense to stick with .38 Special brass for these loads.

Now running .44 Special loads in my .44 Mag revolver? There, I'm absolutely with you. But that's because I don't have .44 Special brass and it's not nearly as common as .38. I've been collecting .38 brass since 1988 so I'm constantly rotating a pretty large supply of it.
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Old April 9, 2013, 02:15 PM   #16
L_Killkenny
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You don't say how many rounds your shootin sessions go but in reality a quick wipe down and a few patches with a good oil or CLP will keep your gun happy for many rounds. If you're shooting enough to really build up the crud use some Hoppes (let it soak awhile) and a brush. Then the oil or CLP.

May take a drill and fancy cleaners to really make your gun shine but that extra work will have little to no bearing on how your gun functions or how well it is protected. Save the deep cleaning and elbow grease for picture takin day.

My after range cleaning sessions last all of about 5 minutes per gun, Maybe 10 if I run some Hoppes thru the bore and chambers.
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Old April 9, 2013, 03:13 PM   #17
Super Sneaky Steve
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I like my guns like I like my women, just a little bit dirty.

After 5-10 min it's clean enough for me.
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Old April 9, 2013, 03:22 PM   #18
Willihunt
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A little confused

The reason why my wheel gun is my favorite is that its very easy to clean. I look at it the same way I do motors. Good maintenance is crucial but fiddling around too much usually has negative results. Consider using a slightly better factory load if you don't want to reload. Some ammos shoot dirty. Too much oil residue contributes to that. I drag a piece of teflon cleaning wipe through every extended practice. clean it thoroughly every 500 rounds. No problems.
A fired gun will never be new again. Trying to fight it is just going to make you miserable and mess up a good gun.
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Old April 9, 2013, 03:57 PM   #19
Sweet Shooter
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All good views and advice. Thank you. I'm obviously a freak. I will try better to let it go. I will only check lights and locks twice before bed from now on too.
-SS-
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Old April 9, 2013, 05:09 PM   #20
rclark
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Quote:
I've got mountains of .38 Special brass
Okay your the exception ! I can see why you would shoot .38s! As for me, I never bought any .38 special cases, because all I had/have was/is .357 revolvers and reloaded for them to my liking from the very start (back in the very early 80s) . The only reason I have .44 Spec brass now is because I actually have dedicated .44Spec revolvers. If I had a .38 special revolver, then I'd get some .38 brass.
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Old April 9, 2013, 06:06 PM   #21
Kreyzhorse
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Quote:
Is my cleaning protocol too OCD? Say the right thing
Yes. You don't need an electric drill to adequately clean a gun.

Hoppes, a bronze brush, patches and gun oil.

Use the brush to get the build up out, run patches through it till they come out clean, run some oil through it and follow that with a dry patch and you are done.
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Old April 9, 2013, 06:31 PM   #22
GP100man
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I used to scrape trick with the case when I wanna use up some 38s or just shoot a 38.

But for cleanin here`s the cats MEOW !!!

PS: carry a magnet to the store with as most are copper coated steel)

Soak it with your favorite solvent , let it soak for as long as you wish ,but give it soak time !! let the chemicals do their thang.

Cut your copper pot scrubber into strips ya can wrap around an old brush .

Wrap it until it`s a snug fit , no drill needed.Works on chambers & bore.

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Old April 9, 2013, 06:52 PM   #23
rclark
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I use Choreboy method above too for leading problems. Just make sure the scrubber is pure COPPER.
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Old April 10, 2013, 11:06 AM   #24
newfrontier45
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Yes, you're overdoing it. I no more than wipe my sixguns down with an oil-damp rag after shooting. Chambers get swabbed only when necessary and the bores only get cleaned when leaded. Any more than that is unnecessary. At least, that's what 25yrs and three dozen sixguns has taught me.


Quote:
I'm using an electric drill with the lead cloth wrapped around a bronze brush.
Not a good idea at all. Despite the marketing claims, those lead removal cloths are abrasive and will alter dimensions over time. The reason they say not to use it on blued guns is because it removes metal. The only way to remove bluing mechanically is to remove metal. I wouldn't use them at all, for anything.
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Old April 10, 2013, 06:36 PM   #25
Old 454
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If you are OCD, then your probably not cleaning it enough.
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