How To Maintain Your Firearm In The Off-Season
January 14, 2009 at 18:49
It’s still getting dark really early, making it hard to get to the
range or the duck blind after work, and most hunting seasons are over
with. That makes this time of year perfect for firearms maintenance,
that most of us seem to put off until the last minute. Doing this
during the “off season” will give you an opportunity to fix or discover
problems that may have cropped up this last season. It also prevents
frantic last minute phone calls to manufacturers for spare parts or
services right before hunting season, when it is too late.
A thorough cleaning is a great place to start. There’s a good chance
you’ll discover anything out of place, dinged, rusted or missing. For
me, I like to take my hunting rifle apart, separating the barreled
action from the stock and removing the bolt. I do this not only because
I want to make sure all the metal surfaces are clean and free of
moisture, but because it’s not uncommon to find bits of leaves or twigs
that may have found their way in between the stock and the barrel. If
you’ve “free floated” your barrel, that sort of thing defeats the
purpose. This is also a great time to check scope mounts, sling swivel
studs, bipods, and anything else you hang on your rifle or handgun.
After cleaning and fixing any problems, putting it all back together with a high quality lubricant and preservative
on all metal surfaces, I’m ready to go to the range or hunting at a
moment's notice. But more importantly, maintenance gives me confidence
in my equipment.