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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all. I have two M77’s (.270 and .300WinMag both tang safety models) and love them. I’m pretty meticulous about maintenance. I just inherited a 3rd in .338WinMag that I know pretty well in that it’s always been a great shooter (hand loads) and I also know the barrel has never or rarely been cleaned and the last time was at least 20 years ago. This gun likely has less than 500 rds through it but that’s about as good a guess a I have. What do y’all think I can expect when I try to clean the barrel? I’ll do my best then take it to a gunsmith for a proper bore scope but I’m kinda dreading the cleaning process on this rifle.
 

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TomRich, start with a good copper remover of your choice, (I use Butches), then go at it with some JB non-embedding bore cleaner. The JB will gitter clean.

Welcome to the forum.
 

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Thanks Mark. I use Butch’s too and I sed to mix it with a little Kroil as I heard long ago it’s even better that way... I know modern gun powders are “non-corrosive “ but it’s possible this barrel was never cleaned, at least with a copper solvent and experienced as I am, I have no experience with 29 years of non-cleaning so I have my doubts. Further info on this rifle is that I’m not sure it’s been shot more than a half dozen times in the past 10’years. know I should just do it and find out but this rifle belonged to my best friend of 40 years. hunting partners of 30 years as the past 10 I’ve lived in another state. .If I thought chances were good that the barrel is in bad shape, I would just leave it and put it on the wall. There’s a lot of emotion involved with this and I guess I’m trying to avoid adding disappointment to the grief.
 

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With a barrel like that I go a Hoppes #9 really wet, a brass scrub and a dry patch and then look at what I'm dealing with
I use KG12 for copper fouling, or Hoppes bench rest 9, then regular #9 at the end dry it out and finish with a G96 gun treatment spray through the barrel and patch and a wipe over the outside.

You might gets some pitting but that won't mean the gun is stuffed, there is a little pitting at the end of my Mark 1's barrel probably from being stored like yours but the pencil thin barrel still shoots well under an inch at 100m.

If you find there are deposits, I've cleaned a few at my LGS like that from estates, seal the muzzle, spray the barrel with G96 or a foaming cleaner and store muzzle down for 20-30min before scrubbing to really soak in and loosen up any deposits
 

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Welcome and good luck.

I always finish up with some Hoppes because I like the smell.:p
 

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If the JB doesn’t do it I’d ratchet it up a notch and hit with some Iosso, (a little more abrasive).
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks guys. I really appreciate the input. I’m going to use several of your suggestions.
 

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Start off with some good ol' CLP and patches just to see what you are up against. It may not be as bad as you think.
 

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If it’s bad, just be patient. Like Mark204, I am a fan of Butch’s, but it’s not the most aggressive on hard copper. So patch and brush, patch and brush. Once you are down to the hard copper fouling, I switch to a more aggressive copper cleaner like Montana or Sweets, among others.


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As Bozz48 indicated above, Until you run a normal cleaning regimen on it you have no idea what it is like.

I have received rifles that stood in a corner for over 50 years that came out pristine with a few swipes.
 

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I've heard good reports on Hoppe's Foaming Bore Cleaner. Figured I'd give it a try. Spray it in and let is sit for a few hours and then see what the patches look like.
 

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I used Hoppes Foaming bore cleaner on a Terni Arsenal Carcano that a few Giovanni's failed to clean properly. The cleaner helped but I have a long long way to go with that one.


I agree with the consensus here - slow patient cleaning. Pick one thing and keep using it.

Save the aggressive measures, like electrolysis, as a "last ditch" measure. They tend to remove steel too. You don't want that.
 
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