Maintenance: Gun Cleaning - Kits or Piece by Piece?

There are a lot of great gun cleaning kits out there as a starting point for those who are new to firearms. Otis offers a large variety of cleaning kits in all shapes and sizes. Did you start with one of these universal-type cleaning kits? What did you like about them?

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What does your current cleaning kit include?


Ohhhh the cleaning tools are just about as big a controversy as How often do you clean your “pick a stick”

I will tell a tale.

In 1994 (or mebby 1991) I don’t remember which, I was at the Camp Perry National Matches on vendors row. As I was walking along I saw this guy with a steel ram rod and a hammer beating “something” down the barrel of a rifle. OK you have my interest, so I stopped. Once he got done beating on the object he pull’s out this little nylon covered cable with a brass weight on it and begins to tap/throw the cable down the bore at what ever it was he was beating down the bore as he pontificates on his wares. After about a minute or less something falls out of the rifle into a coffee can on the ground. The folks that were there prior to me responded with verbal “Holy &^%'s” and other terms of disbelief. He had just “tapped” out a stuck brandy NEW boolet from a rifle bore. For the princely sum of $19.00 I bought a kit. That was my introduction to Otis. I admit I am not fond of their fold the patch 3 times and drag it through the bore process but that bullet removal bit stuck with me and I used it several times during Boy Scout Camp when there were squib loads in .22 rifles.

IMHO if you only have one gun or one caliber or mebby a few calibers, get stuff that fit’s your gun. Spend less time scrubbing the bore and more time taking it apart and cleaning the internals and the important parts. Learn the gun.

That said if you shoot a .357 Mag or .44 Mag or similar and shoot “short rounds” scrub the snot out of your chamber/cylinder.

A bronze brush will have Zero to NO impact on your chamber or bore UNLESS you keep pushing that steel cleaning rod against the edge of the barrel.



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I use bore snakes on all my firearms to clean the barrel. Cleaner is brake cleaner and my choice lube is Slip 2000 EWL


Brake cleaner? Really?


Yes, it works great. You can see it on YouTube, there are a lot of videos about it.

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I’ve got that very Otis USCCA pistol cleaning kit. For long guns, I like bore snakes, and then just buy the pieces I need to clean the actions. For cleaner, hard to beat Hoppes products.


I personally found slip 2000 to work a lot better than hoppes lube

I have Glocks. So once a year I put them in the dishwasher.


You mean your mom doesn’t used comet and a brush and other cleaning supplies like in the movie stop or my mom will shoot? Lol


Have a real avid kit for long guns and for handguns also.

I have a small tackle box of remnants from kits, parts and pieces I have bought over the years. I envy my shooting buddy. He has a fully organized backpack of cleaning supplies, many gun tools, extra fiber rods, tons of stuff all neatly organized.

Me, I got a box with a bunch of stuff in it. :grinning: But I can usually find what I need.

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I agree, start with a kit, then replace pieces as needed.


I only have my 9mm so I picked up this guy off Amazon for $12