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Bolt Disassembly to clean frequency?

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Rebel92 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rebel92 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Bolt Disassembly to clean frequency?
    Posted: Oct 12 2021 at 8:57pm
I’m back with (another) question:

I searched for this question on this forum but didn’t find where it had been asked before 

How often should the bolt be disassembled and deep cleaned (soaked in hoppes)?
I shoot it about every weekend (either at turtles taking over my pond or Mr Wiggles slithering by my house) or at my homemade redneck range. Probably 150 rounds a month. I have a bolt tool and it’s a breeze to disassemble. Does it hurt anything by taking it apart so frequently? Is it not necessary but doesn’t cause any damage?

Thanks y’all for the continued help. 
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Smokpole View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Smokpole Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 12 2021 at 10:36pm
Complete disassembly isn't needed very often. You can just drop it in some solvent and let it soak over night. After that, just brush the surface and shake the excess solvent out and you're ready to rumble. I only take mine apart every thousand rounds or so. Since I have 10 of them, they get a complete tear down cleaning an average once each year and I shoot them a lot. YMMV.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DonFlynn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 12:09am
Originally posted by Smokpole Smokpole wrote:

Complete disassembly isn't needed very often. You can just drop it in some solvent and let it soak over night. After that, just brush the surface and shake the excess solvent out and you're ready to rumble. I only take mine apart every thousand rounds or so. Since I have 10 of them, they get a complete tear down cleaning an average once each year and I shoot them a lot. YMMV.

Every 1000 rounds, yikes....am I behind on a couple Big smile

I'm planning on breaking down my "shooters" over the Xmas holidays, just got a bolt tool from Fulton armory (I hope it ain't Chinesuim). I figure the once a year routine after that Big smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote floydthecat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 6:53am
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it….almost. One can check the function and feel of bolt components by pressing the extractor and ejector with a punch or screwdriver. You are not likely taking the gun to war. Contrary to ones army-day habits and beliefs, the gun does not have to be spotless to work. Dirty grease is just fine as long as things are not gritty. Stripping removes all the lubricant that protects movin’ parts and it takes a while for fresh slick stuff to get back to where it belongs.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JohnnyDollar Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 7:12am
Originally posted by floydthecat floydthecat wrote:

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it….almost. One can check the function and feel of bolt components by pressing the extractor and ejector with a punch or screwdriver. You are not likely taking the gun to war. Contrary to ones army-day habits and beliefs, the gun does not have to be spotless to work. Dirty grease is just fine as long as things are not gritty. Stripping removes all the lubricant that protects movin’ parts and it takes a while for fresh slick stuff to get back to where it belongs.
I agree with the cat.
Americans (myself included) generally clean our firearms too much. LOL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GotSnlB28 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 8:02am
I'll usually take apart the bolt on any new acquisition to check for parts markings and condition, and I'll clean it if needed at that point. Rifles that were in long term storage can get really gunked up with dried grease or cosmoline. But after that, I just clean the bolt face and under the rim of the extractor as needed after shooting. I can't recall having a problem because the internals were dirty. I have had to replace an ejector spring or chipped extractor before, but that wasn't caused by the cleanliness of the bolt.
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Rebel92 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rebel92 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 8:36am
thanks Floyd. I kinda figured I was going overboard with cleaning it. I do make sure I keep it greased up  I probably go a little overboard with it. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GotSnlB28 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 8:50am
Originally posted by Rebel92 Rebel92 wrote:

thanks Floyd. I kinda figured I was going overboard with cleaning it. I do make sure I keep it greased up  I probably go a little overboard with it. 


I would not grease the bolt internals. No need to. It will just collect dirt and grime where there are parts that fit closely together. I lightly apply grease to the slide cam area, left bolt recess, slide track.
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Rebel92 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rebel92 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 8:57am
oh no I do not grease the bolt internals. I put a drop of oil where firing pin slides in. I grease the sh*t outta my bolt lugs however. 
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Matt_X View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt_X Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 9:37am
Seems to me grease on the bolt lugs will be fine, especially in wet conditions. 

The guidance in the 1944 field manual was to generally use light, low viscosity oils on the carbine, with grease and 'medium oil' reserved for wet conditions.

Rifle Grease -
Has excellent resistance to water but "used sparingly to avoid the collection of dust and sand and then only.." when "exposure to rain or sea water may cause the bolt to fail open."
The surfaces to be lightly covered with grease are:
- The camming surfaces inside the operating slide (where the bolt lug rides)
- Locking recesses in the receiver (where the bolt lugs lock in during firing)
- Under receiver top lip (above back of bolt)
- Bolt camming lug on the hammer.

Medium preservative lubricating oil -
Compared to the light oils it has "superior" resistance to salt-water atmospheres. It forms a relatively heavy film.  It should be used prior to landings or other instances where there will be exposure to salt-water in the air.    Otherwise the light oils should be used.

Special preservative lubricating oil -
Is for low temperatures.  It does all the same as the Light Oil.  Special Oil will replace Light Oil when stocks of the latter are depleted. 

Above info is from the 1944 April 23 edition of the
FM23-7 U.S. Carbine Caliber .30 M1 and M1A1

My takeaways from this were that the carbines run best with lower viscosity oils, but also need to be protected from rain, dust and sand as best possible.  Some newer lubes may cover a wider range of temperatures and conditions but the info from the early field manuals is probably a good baseline.

Edit
The guys here with more experience and knowledge can add to or dispute this with more modern oils, but the same Field Manual says that it very important the bolt face and firing pin recess be clean of oil before firing.
On page 39 is the warning to clean the firing pin and recess because contminants can cause a failure to fire in normal temperatures and especially low temperatures.  The concern is the contaminants or rust inhibitors will cause any oil to "congeal or frost on the mechanism"

On page 33 under instruction 15. Before Firing. Caution. Do not oil face or underside of bolt as oil may get into the chamber of the barrel.





Edited by Matt_X - Oct 13 2021 at 9:56am
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Rebel92 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rebel92 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 9:58am
that makes since about the oil congealing in cold environments. But where I’m at, it is “cold” (lows in the 30-40’s) for maybe a month. My temperatures are still pushing 90 degrees this time of year so I don’t have to worry about that
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Rebel92 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rebel92 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 9:59am
we do have extreme humidity here though. Floyd can attest to that ha
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote floydthecat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 10:12am
Yep…..get wet around here just walking to the mail box. I have stepped across the line a bit and all the guns I routinely use are stainless or polymer in so far as possible. I tried a stainless steel carbine but IJ got so sloppy with what they turned out in the latter days that it was a total mess and the Universals are gen-3 or 4.

I only grease rails and lugs, little light oil on everything else where it belongs. 

I actually know shooters that will not lube at all to prevent dust and dirt attraction. They seem to prefer horrible triggers and rubbing actions as opposed to a little maintenance.
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Rebel92 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rebel92 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 1:42pm
Why did you cross over to SS? 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote floydthecat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 3:11pm
Sort of that I could I guess.😁 I sought-out an IJ because they made the only mil-spec in stainless. Turns out a lot of their stuff is not quite mil-spec. Extremely sloppy in assembly and head space toward the end. The thing head spaced around 1.312 and had rarely been fired. I found a bolt to pull it back into around 1.308. I got better when I got rid of it. 
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Rebel92 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rebel92 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 3:31pm
I dont own any of the commercial carbines, but I did hear that the IJ and Plainfields were about the only good ones, but will avoid them altogether now. My mini 14 is like a modern carbine so that will work to fill that niche to me. 

Well, I am currently waiting on my second USGI carbine to arrive. Looks to be a fine example QHMC with the correct rock-ola barrel. Will detail strip it and take lots of pictures when it arrives friday evening. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote floydthecat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 4:17pm
Plainfield’s get good press, but the early ones. I think most of the early commercials get good marks. As time passed and manufacturers attempted to gain efficiency and became inventive on the way to bankruptcy, things went down hill. IJ had purchased Plainfield and Universal left-overs and you might find any of those parts in a late IJ carbine, some of which were never designed to fit.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Smokpole Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 13 2021 at 8:43pm
I have to be a little more circumspect about oil and grease here. For about 3 month out of the years sub freezing temps are to be expected; often for many days in a row. Sub-zero days are not uncommon. Under those conditions, even very light oils can turn to goo. I've seen days when the slide on my 45 would creep back into battery so slowly that I had to wait til I could fire another round! Yes, I still go to the range on days like that. I can't imagine what its like in places like Alaska!
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