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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just bought my first shotgun, a Beretta al391 Urika field gun. Now I want to keep it clean, lubed and shootable for the rest of my life. I have read some information on the internet regarding shotgun cleaning, but wonder if you folks could elaborate on it a bit. Here are some questions that come to mind:

1) What do I need to clean (if anything) on this gun before I shoot it?

2) I have read recomendations to shoot the al391 "wet" with CLP, does this mean that I get a can of CLP and spray the moving parts of the gun? What parts do I spray?

3) Do you use a bore cleaner to clean the barrel? If so, what is the best brand? Is a bore snake cleaner the device to use for this? If so, do you put cleaner on the bore snake - & how much? If you use a bore cleaner, do you finish up with an oil or preservative? how do you apply it?

4) I've read much about Break Free CLP, would you recommend that I use it to clean my gun? How does it compare with FP-10 or Casey's Sheath?

5) One of the reasons that I went for the 391 is the fact that cleaning is necessary after every use. That said, what basic cleaning or wipe down procedures do I need to do after, say, a morning dove hunt during which I shot a box of shells?

6) This gun comes with a molded plastic case and the lid is foam lined. The gun must be broken down to store it in this case. I don't have a gun safe (and don't have the clout on the home front to aquire one on the heels of this purchase). How would you store this gun? I could spring for a cheap case, if necessary.

7) Is there any other cleaning/protecting that I need to do, even if I may not shoot the gun for two to three months at a time?

8) How should I lock up my gun? I have kids in the house and want to be extra safe in this area.

I know these are basic questions but I did not grow up around guns and have a lot of things to learn. I appreciate your input.

Brady
 

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1> Read your manual front to back and keep it around for references. If you don't have one, download it from Beretta, print it out and read it front to back. The tools I use are:
BoreSnake in the appropriate gauge http://www.gunaccessories.com/hoppes/
Toothbrush http://shop.store.yahoo.com/physlabs/010609.html
long cotton swabs with long handles http://www.valcoelectronics.com/Merchan ... _Code=000E
BreakFree CLP http://www.break-free.com
The Inhibitor Oil http://www.theinhibitor.com
The Inhibitor Plugs for storage.
Birchwood Casey Gun Cloth www.birchwoodcasey.com

If you want to get really uptight get a dental cleaning kit for the trigger group.

2>Go easy on the wet. It will keep you from having to scrub off carbon from your magazine tube. If you clean the piston real well with BreakFree there is generally enough left over from that to keep the mag tube "wet".

3> I run the Bore-Snake through every time I shoot the gun. Whether it's one or 1000 rounds. I generally use a very light oiling on the 2nd pass (i mean very light). Alot of people don't clean their bores out very often...I have to with my upbringing and 6 years of military, if I don't I can't sleep.

4>Break-Free is the best I've found. Type it into our search engine or a web one. nuff said.

5>You don't have to clean it every time. I generally clean the bore and action every time but I'm weird about that. I clean the trigger group about every 500 rounds or so. I also have my guns sent to the gunsmith once a year to take apart, clean and repair any worn parts (it generally costs me around 50 bucks).

6>The guncase is fine I have some of those dehumidifier things under the foam (like you find in clothing look like salt packets) and also make sure my Inhibitor plug is installed in the gun. That foam can hold moisture which can cause rust, but another problem is any oil left in the gun will accumulate and sometimes can cause wood problems down the road. After cleaning at night store your gun barrel down and then put it in the case in the morning.

7>My regimen is a little uptight but I wouldn't have a problem leaving my guns (some of which do) stored for a long time. Moisture is bad. Put it in a cool, dry place and it's fine. I say this only if you use the Inhibitor. If you're worried about the kids, lock the ammo seperate from the weapons and get a triggerlock. http://www.triggerlock.com
 

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Hi BradyB--

Nothing much to add to JLP's excellent advice. I too am a creature of training (by my father), so I clean my guns every time I shoot them. You don't need to overdo the oiling. In fact, I would tell you to put a minimal amount of breakfree, inhibitor, etc. on there and slowly add more only if you feel you really must. The two big errors in gun cleaning are: 1)not doing it enough and 2) slopping on too much oil, which usually turns into a glob of wierd goo if you leave the gun stored for any length of time. I have soft cases, but I don't store my guns in them-- I stand the guns in my gun safe bore down (the idea of this "bore down" practice is that you don't want oil from the receiver seeping down into the stock over the years, causing the wood to weaken--if you don't use too much oil, it won't happen anyway, but I do it just as a fail-safe).

I like your remark about keeping the shotgun for a life time--you're a man after my own heart. Welcome to Shotgunworld, and I hope you'll stick around and let us know how it all goes :)

Jeff23
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the info.! -- now a couple of follow-up questions:

The each section of the gun came wrapped in a piece of bubble wrap. Would you suggest throwing that out and just laying the gun in the hard plastic molded pockets? For some reason, I want to wrap each section with an old cotton t-shirt or rag.

Where do I place the Inhibitor Plug(s)? Does placement vary if I store it broken down vs. assembled? Do I need one for each end of the barrel?

Where do you put the small amount of oil on the second pass with the bore snake? -- on the snake itself? How much oil-- are we talking about a few drops?

What do you use the long cotton swabs for?

I live in the Dallas area and would eventually like to go to a skeet range and get an hour or two of lessons. Any ranges or teachers that you would recommend?

Thank you both for taking the time to educate me.

Brady
 

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I'd have to see the hard case. Is there no foam in it. I wouldn't put the bubble wrap back on it. In the house it may cause condensation.

For the Inhibitor plug, 1 in one of the barrels is fine for the entire gun either broken down in the case or assembled in a gun cabinet. They also make a soft case for storage that has the product impregnated in the padding.

For the small amount of oil you can spray some directly into the barrel, wipe some in with a clean old t-shirt or spray it directly onto the last 1/3'rd of the bore snake just a few drops will do. I'll even put some on my finger and coat the inside of the barrel then run the snake thru.

Those cotton swaps come in handy to get grit out of the trigger mechinism. Its not for the length it's the rigidity of the wood.

Range and Teachers - Jennie Almond (972) 556-0103
She is at Elm Fork Shooting Park at Luna and NW Hwy http://www.elmfork.com
Although the range is a little on the expensive side (I didn't know this until someone did a little poll out here) it's worth every penny and it's only a few minutes from Downtown, Las Colinas or 35/635 Area.

Jennie's lessons are not very expensive and she is a fine teacher, look no further than her son Scott Robertson, this years ESPN Outdoor Games Shotgun Champion, for a reference.
 

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BradyB,

I have a 391 field, too. My O/U is my main clays gun, but whenever I pull out the 391 for a round or two, it always puts a grin on my face. That gun always felt like it grew right out of my shoulder :)

The other guys gave you solid advice on cleaning. Have you already tried removing and reassembling the bolt assembly yet? There's a trick to getting the bolt back in that all 391 owners have to learn through trial and error. The only advice I can give you is don't get frustrated - it will go back in. When you do get it to slide in, try to remember exactly how you had it situated and try to do the same thing every time.

So now the big question - how does it shoot for you?? :D Is this for hunting, clays, or both?
 
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