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How to Break-In A New Barrel

Tools and Parts

  • Your usual cleaning tools
    • Bore guide
    • Bench
    • Patches
    • Rod (nylon or carbon fiber)
    • Jag
    • Nylon brush
  • 30 to 50 rounds ammunition.

Before going to the range

  • Polish the chamber and the bore with a bore polish with a low abrasive component. Do 100 strokes in the chamber and 100 in the bore changing patches in between. Clean chamber and bore out with clean dry patches until patches are almost clean when they come out of the bore.

Breaking in the Barrel

  • Set up all of your equipment at the shooting range of your choice.
  • Make your first shot.
  • Clean out the barrel of your gun. The barrel does not need to be spotless; a very basic cleaning is enough.
    • Only clean out the barrel at the chamber, never from the shooting end.
  • Fire around 10 additional rounds. Clean the barrel after each round.
  • Start firing another 15 additional rounds. Clean your barrel after every three rounds.
  • Make five more shots, and clean the barrel of your gun.
  • Fire a foul shot.
    • A “foul shot” is a type of shot meant to get rid of excess solvent and oil remaining within the barrel of the gun.
  • Test your accuracy by shooting your remaining rounds (at least 4).
  • Enjoy your broken-in rifle!

Important Points

  • Wait for the barrel to cool between each set of rounds. This may take anywhere between five and 20 minutes, depending on the type of gun you are using. If you fail to let your barrel cool sufficiently, you risk causing damage to the gun. You will know the barrel is cool enough when you are able to comfortably touch it with your hand.
  • Cleaning out your barrel is still an important step, even after it has been broken in. Ideally, you should conduct another cleaning session for your barrel after shooting around 20 rounds, at minimum.
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