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Posted: 11/27/2007 7:58:37 PM EDT
I have read 2 schools of thought on this.

School A: If you shoot X # of rounds through your AR it will be filthy and let you down soon. You need to clean it if you want it to function.

School B: If you don't get sand/dirt/shoot corrosive or VERY dirty ammo, all you need to do is lube the thing if it gets dry and it will run reliably because when carbon builds up too much somewhere it will get blasted out/broken off by the normal action of the weapon.

I am curious, what merit do both viewpoints have? I am not looking to say "Dang, guess I don't need to clean this anymore!" I am just curious if the "DGI is dirty and unrealiable and it will choke on itself" crowd have any merit.
Link Posted: 11/27/2007 8:04:36 PM EDT
i'm a subscriber to #2 theory.


if the gun is lubed, and kept free of foreign objects, it will keep running. mine do
Link Posted: 11/27/2007 8:11:46 PM EDT
School B has been accurate from my experience with my AR-15. However, there's no reason to not clean your rifle.
Link Posted: 11/28/2007 8:50:59 AM EDT
When I was a student at the USMC Infantry Officers Course, we had a heated discussion on the very thing. I saw that most USMC rifles were being cleaned to the point that the finish was wearing off. We contacted Colt and they told us that some areas of the rifle are designed to hold carbon and should never be cleaned while others should be cleaned. The number one place NOT to clean was the flash hider. They also said that the groove inside the locking lugs between the barrel and barrel extension does not have to be clear of carbon. The bolt body should be cleaned and carbon build up should be removed. Same with the inside of the bolt carrier. They also told us that if you are using CLP properly, it should never be "Q-tip clean", has to do with the penetrative qualities of CLP. What has always worked for me is only using CLP on the rifle and mostly cleaning it to remove gross contamination and lightly lubing it. I have never had an M16 malfunction for me with issue ammo (blanks don't count) except for one time when I had a hammer spring break. That's my $.02.
Link Posted: 11/28/2007 9:01:57 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/3/2007 7:32:51 PM EDT by fishngrits]
I kinda clean it, but not white glove spotless. Nearly impossible, seeing as how the rifle is black, and all the nooks and crannies that carbon may get blown into that don't really affect function. I clean it up without being anal about it, lube it, and call it good to go. Works every time.
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 7:28:02 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Tom_in_Ohio:
When I was a student at the USMC Infantry Officers Course, we had a heated discussion on the very thing. I saw that most USMC rifles were being cleaned to the point that the finish was wearing off. We contacted Colt and they told us that some areas of the rifle are designed to hold carbon and should never be cleaned while others should be cleaned. The number one place NOT to clean was the flash hider. They also said that the groove inside the locking lugs between the barrel and barrel extension does not have to be clear of carbon. The bolt body should be cleaned and carbon build up should be removed. Same with the inside of the bolt carrier. They also told us that if you are using CLP properly, it should never be "Q-tip clean", has to do with the penetrative qualities of CLP. What has always worked for me is only using CLP on the rifle and mostly cleaning it to remove gross contamination and lightly lubing it. I have never had an M16 malfunction for me with issue ammo (blanks don't count) except for one time when I had a hammer spring break. That's my $.02.


What were the reasons for this?

Link Posted: 12/3/2007 7:58:28 PM EDT
Ok why would you clean the flash hider?
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 3:26:42 PM EDT

Originally Posted By spork:

What were the reasons for this?



I would guess that it's too easy to damage the barrel crown. After all, many barrels that are ruined are due to improper cleaning.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 5:50:16 PM EDT
When the M16 was first issued, the troops did not receive cleaning kits and were told that the rifle was self cleaning. (History Channel)
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 8:05:01 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ElyasWolff:
When the M16 was first issued, the troops did not receive cleaning kits and were told that the rifle was self cleaning. (History Channel)


If the right powder had been used would it have been to a large extent "as advertised"?
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