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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently bought a lightly used bolt action 7mm-08. I cleaned the bore and mounted a SWFA 10x42 scope in good rings and started loading for it. I couldn't get it to put 5 consecutive rounds in less than 1.5moa, which I thought it should do better than. I had been cleaning the bore with kroil on a boresnake after each shooting session. A friend suggested I not clean the bore for a while and see if things tightened up, and about 15 rounds later 5 shot group sizes shrank to .4 moa. This has me wondering how many rounds to shoot before bore cleaning. How often do you all clean your high power rifle bores?
 

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Before I store it away at the end of all hunting seasons, unless it got wet. Then I clean it right away and make sure to fire a fouling shot before I hunt with it again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Looks like fouling shots are in order if you want a cold zero shot to hit. At least for this rifle.
 

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I enjoy target shooting from the bench with an adjustable iron rest and wind flags. (ie; I'm anal about accuracy) I strive for 5 shot 1/4" groups and settle for nothing less then 1/2" at a minimum to be satisfied. What I have found is it takes a minimum of at least 3 fouler rounds to be sure a cleaned barrel is clear of contaminants and that subsequent rounds will have the same starting bore conditions. I use to shoot 2 fouler rounds but still experienced an occasional flyer from perfectly concentric ammo, and so 3 foulers is the number. Depending on the rifle I am shooting, I have found that my tightest 1/4" to 1/2" groups have a limit of somewhere between 28 to 38 or so fired rounds before accuracy starts to drop off. (I start to see subtle flyers occur.) One of my rifles seems to shoot better between the 20th and 35th shots fired. But most of my rifles like no more then about 27 rounds fired before they need cleaning, if I desire a 5 shot 1/4" group. My more informal 1" groups (no flags and fussing) allow me to fire up to say about 50 rounds or so before the rifle needs cleaning..... and that is with my less accurate AR rifles. ALSO; when seeking top accuracy, I will not fire anything over a 5 shot group on a warm day without allowing my barrel to cool off for about 10 minutes after having completed shooting that 5 round group. As you know, when the barrel heats up, the holes on the target can start to walk.
 

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I clean my rifle bore with mineral spirits, it will clean out most the carbon debris without stripping the copper out of the barrel's imperfections. I used to use a solvent that dissolved copper until the patches would no longer come out green. Then I'd go through the pattern of shooting a few rounds before the groups would tighten up. I think it is best not to remove the embedded copper from the barrel.
 

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I clean my rifle bore with mineral spirits, it will clean out most the carbon debris without stripping the copper out of the barrel's imperfections. I used to use a solvent that dissolved copper until the patches would no longer come out green. Then I'd go through the pattern of shooting a few rounds before the groups would tighten up. I think it is best not to remove the embedded copper from the barrel.
I agree, while I clean every rifle I own immediately after getting back from the range, there is cleaning, and there is CLEANING.

For my .308 Savage Scout, run a brass bore brush through it 3 times, flush with RemOil, then run a boresnake through it a few time, then run a patch through it. To date, have never used copper remover. It hits the 100 yard target inside the 7 ring consistently, from offhand, as good as I can hope for, for it's intended use.

Any rifle that shoots corrosive ammo, like my Mosins and back when I owned K-98's, get first flushed with water and white vinegar, to deactivate the salts in the primer, then brushed, then flushed, then brushed and swabbed. If I'm getting a heavy green tinge on the swab, will hit it with foam copper remover.

My Mauser 1890 in 7mm gets exclusively softpoint ammo shot through it, and will let it go a bit before cleaning, as said before, when I start getting fliers is time to clean it.
 
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I put 2 cases of ammo through my Colt 6920 before cleaning the barrel. I was shooing at steel targets. :drink:
 

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Boretech Eliminator is the magic sauce for copper fouling. That said, I’m a slob about keeping it squeaky clean. My Savage 12 FV shoots best when she’s a little dirty. Many days I just pull a bore snake through, and only do a deep clean every 50 to 100 rounds. With more break in time, you may find it takes on less copper and endures longer round counts before accuracy drops off a little.

Also, OP, most excellent choice on the SWFA. There is not a better bang for the buck. Sure some scopes have brighter glass, but you can’t touch the beefy mechanicals for under $1000. Dope the elevation back and forth all day and she’ll be dead on at the end of it.

FWIW, have achieved right at .5 MOA at 600 yards under perfect conditions with my dad’s hand loads. But .75 MOA can be consistently hit with Fed GMM ammo, all day every day. I’m plenty happy with that. Not bad for a $400 rifle with a $200 fiberglass Choate stock.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I have 3 of the SWFA 10x42s mounted on rifles, the others are mil dot/inch adjustment, and I generally use them by picking a zero and then using the reticle for windage and elevation adjustments. The farthest I shoot is about 450-500 yards. The new scope with the Mil-quad reticle and 1/10 mil turrets is really an improvement to my eye. Anyone who hasn't seen the new reticle can take a look here
https://www.swfa.com/swfa-ss-10x42m-tactical-30mm-riflescope-3.html?___SID=U
 

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I put 2 cases of ammo through my Colt 6920 before cleaning the barrel. I was shooing at steel targets. :drink:

Yep. Unlike my anal target shooting procedure I mentioned in post#5, this Colt 6920 is one of my designated SHTF weapons, and there's no "fouler" shots or cleaning the bore in between relays. I use my oldest brass for handloads with that brass left behind at the range. This rifle delivers 1" to 1.375" MOA at 100 yrds .... which is all I need.

Colt M4 .JPG
 
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