Whether you own the trusty old AK-47 OR The notoriously jam-prone Glock 19,
Gun cleaning should be as regular and frequent as going to the range itself.
In the past, this meant using cumbersome and awkward cleaning rods, but there’s a new tool out there that’s changing the gun cleaning game for the better.
Bore snakes are adding a much needed flexibility to more efficiently clean your firearms.
What You Will Read Here:
Below are the 3 best bore snakes available in the market. Just check them out and pick the one according to your requirement and calibers…
You may have seen a bore snake before—either for sale at a gun shop or in the cleaning kit of a savvy shooter at your local range.
They resemble a braided rope with bristles and cleaning fabric at one end.
On other end, you will find a small attached weight that lets you easily lower the snake down the barrel of your firearm so you can then pull it all the way through for an easy cleaning.
Bore snakes are designed to fit snugly, giving the bristles solid friction and contact with the inside surface of the barrel.
Bore snakes are flexible enough to coil up in a bag and take with you on the road. Some are even small enough to fit into your pocket.
Their ease of portability means you can quickly accomplish a field cleaning without the fuss of long metal rods getting in the way.
We all know that one guy who always carries around too much gear, lugging around an entire Cabela’s worth of gadgets and dongles in an oversized, disorganized pack.
A bore snake helps you to not be that guy!
Instead of carrying around a bulky case full of different rods and attachments for each of your weapons, you can fit a bore snake with bristles for multiple calibers all in one small pouch.
In the past, cleaning out a firearm meant you had to use a cleaning rod. This meant grabbing a large case full of short, slim metal rods and screwing them together to make for one long pole.
Then, you would have to attach various cleaning attachments to the end of the rod and push the entire contraption up and down the barrel of your gun.
The whole process left you feeling like an 18th century soldier using a ram rod to load his musket. Also like that 18th century musket, cleaning your firearm felt like an outdated and inefficient ordeal.
Even worse, the scrubbing attachments one would use with their rod widely varied in effectiveness.
After several long minutes of pushing the rod back and forth endlessly, you would inspect your barrel with a grimace—finding that you might have to swap out attachments and scrub even longer to get a thorough clean.
So, you would unscrew one boondoggle for another and start the whole process over again.
This is why bore snakes are so useful…
First, their portability. Instead of having to use multiple rigid rods that screwed together that formed into an unwieldy, 1990s car antenna-like device, you can just have a small coiled bore snake that fits in the palm of your hand.
This allows for gun owners to more easily take their cleaning equipment with them to conduct quick—but thorough—on the spot cleanings. That means you can have a more streamlined pack while in the field or on the go.
Second, bore snakes are efficient. Cleaning rods require an endless supply of disposable cleaning pads and attachments and still have a hard time getting all the dirt and grime out from you barrel.
You could get a thorough cleaning with a rod, but it was sure tedious and took time.
Bore snakes, on the other hand, are thicker and usually have more cleaning surface. This means you’re removing more dirt and grime with every pull-through of your snake.
Instead of constantly pushing a cleaning rod back and forth for what feels like an eternity, you can simply pull the snake through three or four times to get your barrel looking pretty.
They are also washable when you are done so you can re-use them instead of having to carry around stacks and stacks of paper-thin cleaning pads—further slimming down your pack.
Bore snakes are one of the easiest tools to use when it comes to gun maintenance.
Once you have your weapon set and ready to clean, start by putting the weighted end of the snake into the barrel from the breech end of your gun.
Slowly feed the snake down the barrel until the weighted end is sticking out the front. Then, get a firm grip on the weighted end of the snake and slowly pull it through.
You should feel a little bit of resistance as the cleaning fabric wipes away the grime and residue on the inside of your barrel. Once you have the snake pulled all the way out, inspect the barrel.
If the inside is still dirty, simply clean off the snake with a gun cleaner solvent and repeat the process. It should only take a few cycles of this to get your weapon good as new.
Most bore snakes are machine washable, so you can follow whatever instructions are included in the product.
Just be sure not to wash them with your clothes, as gun cleaner, gunpowder, or other hazardous materials could transfer from the snake to your favorite shirt.
You can also hand wash your bore snake in the field with water and a little gun cleaner. Just scrub down on the bristles or cleaning cloth until most of the grime is off.
Using just plain soap and water to clean your bore snake is fine, just make sure to minimize the amount of water you get on your firearm and be sure to apply gun oil afterwards to prevent corrosion and rust.
When buying a bore snake, there are a few simple things to keep in mind to make sure you are getting one that fits your needs.
First is the caliber of gun
Bore snakes work best when they fit snugly inside your barrel. Too thick, and you will have no luck pulling it through.
If your snake is too thin, however, there won’t be enough contact to adequately clean things out.
Most bore snake brands will have attachments specifically designed for certain calibers, so finding the right size should be easy.
Other brands may have bristles that are permanently attached—in that case, make sure the snake is correctly sized.
Another thing to keep in mind is length
It’s rather embarrassing to be showing off your handy new cleaning tool to your friend, sliding the snake down the barrel only to find that it doesn’t quite reach long enough to come out the other side.
This is especially true if you have an aftermarket or extended barrel.
Make sure the snake is at least an inch or two longer than the barrel itself so you have plenty of material to solidly pull.
Lastly, the higher quality bore snakes are more durable
Cheaper, flimsier brands may fray or break while cleaning, which could leave parts of the snake stuck inside your barrel.
It is worth it to buy a higher quality snake—the last thing you want is for objects to get stuck inside your barrel without you noticing.
At The End Of The Day
Overall, bore snakes are a welcome replacement to cleaning rods for any gun enthusiast’s kit. They make gun cleaning quicker, more efficient, and easier all around.
Next time you swing by a gun shop, ask them what bore snakes they have in stock and what brands they recommend.
You’ll quickly find it to be one of the most useful and easy to use tools in helping you to maintain your weapons and keep them in reliable shape.
Marc is passionate about shooting and hunting. Besides camping and writing online he loves spending time with her cute little daughter. He also spend good deal of time on weekends to clean and maintain his firearm collection.