Cleaning the barrel is the most important job when caring for your gun. Burnt on powder residue is what affects accuracy the most. Over the years we have gained a great deal of experience in this area, which is why we would like to give you a few tips on how to remove powder fouling and tombac residue.
If you use your gun frequently, the easiest way to reduce the adverse effects to a minimum is by using Diamond Line. In our tests with the Diamond Line Bana, the bore did not show any significant traces of tombac deposits and still ensured high accuracy after 10,000 shots using caliber 6.5x55.
The best way to dissolve burnt on powder residue is with a good bronze brush of a suitable diameter and an effective cleaning oil. Before putting your gun away every time you shoot, you should use a brass brush and oil for cleaning to dissolve any powder slime. Then rub the bore dry with a soft cloth.
If the barrel has old, hard powder residue on it, wind a cloth round a worn brush and apply J-B bore cleaning compound, Gold Medallion or Remington Bore Cleaner to the cloth (see back).
Where powder residue is old and hard, repeat the procedure every 300 to 500 shots. The two soft pastes are not too abrasive and slowly liquefy as you use them, which means they do not damage the barrel.
Use a rod guide to ensure that the cleaning rod is centred and as little fluid as possible gets wasted. After cleaning, oil the bore with a gun oil to prevent deposits from forming as quickly.
Recommended bore cleaner Tombac solvent:
- Hoppe’s BR Sweet’s
- Shooter’s Choice Robla Solo
- Norma X-TEND NO 1 Shooter’s Copper Remover
- Hoppe’s No 9 Nitro Solvent
.22 LR and lead shot
If you shoot with .22 LR or lead shot, clean the barrel with a brass or steel brush soaked in a nitro solvent gun cleaner to dissolve the lead. Then wipe the bore dry and oil it with a gun oil.
Divide the barrel into three sections. You can place the barrel muzzle against a wall to prevent the brush from going beyond the muzzle. Then clean the barrel with a cleaning oil and soft cloths.
1/3 = 10 times
2/3 = 10 times
3/3 = 10 times
The enormous forces that build up in the barrel, cause severe wear to lands and grooves. Here you can see a close-up of the wear in three different barrels of 6.5x55 in front of the chamber after some 10,000 shots with Norma Diamond Line Bana, 3,700 with uncoated bullets, and 7,000 with Norma Diamond Line Fält.
Compare the results for yourself.
The barrel retains its accuracy more than twice as long when Norma Diamond Line is used from the outset. This is because Norma Diamond Line is coated with molybdenum disulphide and a protective layer of wax. Friction is reduced which means that the bullet travels further along the barrel before peak pressure is reached. The result is lower wear and improved accuracy.
Some years ago we had Norwegian gunsmithing students visiting. There aren't that many educations within this field, so we took the chance to ask them a few questions, to share with you.
1. For how long has your school/education been around? The civilian gunsmithing education started in 1997. Before then, the military had educations for both military and civilian gunsmiths.
Photo: Norma's files
2. How many students are there at your school? We have two classes, with 6-8 students in each class. After the first year, some of them get internships, so then we normally "lose" 2-4 students from the first to the second year.
3. How long is the education? It's called 2+2, which means the students choose a Mechanical Basic Year or Design and Craft. When they get into the Gunsmithing Class, they normally go a year, before their 2 year internship. As there are only a few internships in this business, a student ending up without, can get an offer to extend his/her education with one year at the school, before doing their graduation test.
Photo: Norma's files
4. What different subjects do you focus on - is it interior and exterior ballistics, wooden techniques, different materials, rifles twists, barrel designs, caliber history, etc? All of what you mention, and much more - for instance heat processing, forging, machine operating, surface treatments, etc.
5. Do you usually get a job in a shop or do you start your own business after this education? Both, or a combination of the two. There's not a job for everyone in this industry, so some get a mechanical job, or in the oil industry, for instance.
6. Do students apply from all over Norway? Yes, they do, and they normally need 5 as an average (1-6).
7. Are there more gunsmithing schools in Norway? We are the only one.
Photo: Norma's files
8. Is there an equivalent school in any of the other Nordic countries? Ikaalinen in Finland have a gunsmithing school. It is similar to ours.
9. Is there an internship built into the education? Those who can arrange with one, have 2-3 weeks a year.
10. Is it mostly students interested in hunting- and shooting who attend this school? Yes, there are some without this interest who start, but usually they do not graduate.
11. Can you build your own rifle during this education? Yes, there are some in-depth classes, where you can choose to build one.