How to Break in a Rifle Barrel

Larry Potterfield • July 24, 2023

If you've got a new rifle, properly breaking in the barrel can improve the accuracy and make it easier to clean. Hi, I'm Larry Potterfield with MidwayUSA. Step out the range with me, we'll see how this is done.

The first step before firing any new rifle is to clean the bore. In addition to a cleaning rod, you'll need a brass bore brush, jag, cleaning solvent, and some tight-fitting cotton patches.

Using a bore guide to protect the bore, start by running the brush down the bore. Followed by a patch with a little solvent. A dry patch finishes the job.

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Once you've cleaned the bore you're ready to take your first shot. Now clean the bore again using the same process. Let the barrel cool and fire another shot.

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Repeat this process of cleaning after each shot for a total of five shots. The rest of the break in process is done shooting five shot groups, cleaning after each group, until you've shot 50 rounds.

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So that's one more variable in rifle accuracy, properly breaking in the barrel.

--Larry Potterfield