Any hunting enthusiast will agree on the excellent quality of the Thompson Center Black Diamond hunting rifle. For example, it has an outstanding aiming accuracy that makes the hunting swifter.
However, the performance can be severely hampered if the rifle is not cleaned properly after every shooting session. So, is there any easy way to clean this firearm?
Though the full cleaning process is a bit time-consuming, you can easily clean the rifle by rubbing it with a clean piece of cloth. However, for a deeper cleaning, you have to disassemble it and follow the process we have described below.
That said, follow through our step-by-step instructions on how to clean a Thompson Center Black Diamond Muzzleloaderand you’ll be ready for your next shooting session.
Before jumping into the cleaning procedure it’ll be better to know about the necessary equipment, don’t you think? Basically, you’ll be cleaning the barrel of a muzzleloader for the most part. In that case, the fundamental equipment is a liquid to clean the barrel with. So, let’s talk about it.
Now you’re wondering which liquid is best to clean the black powder rust in the barrel, right? Well, to put it simply, there are a variety of liquid options to clean your muzzleloader with. But here are two most effective and widely used liquids to clean the black powder rust-
- Murphy’s oil soap ammonia-free glass cleaner, and
- Boiled water.
I know it might sound like a bad idea to put water into your rifle, but hot water neutralizes black powder residue. And take my word for it that you need to neutralize it fast.
But if you don’t feel comfortable with liquids, then you can use a pre-saturated patch to clean the barrel. It works pretty well too!
To tell the truth, there‘re just too many ways and techniques to clean a muzzleloader. And different peoples are comfortable with different methods. Whatever method you or someone you know employs and finds to be effective, by all means, go for it!
However, you may wish to reevaluate your cleaning methods if your final cleaning patch still shows rust or fouling or if you have hang-fires and misfires.
Nonetheless, among the wide variety of methods, we chose the easiest and the most effective one. Let’s see the step-by-step procedure below-
Step 1 – Cleaning the Barrel
To begin the cleaning process, start with your muzzleloader’s barrel. You’ve to clean the black powder residues that pile up here. Clean your barrel using pre-saturated cleaning patches.
Use short strokes working the ramrod down the barrel. The first six inches above the breech plug is the dirtiest area to clean.
Make sure this area is cleaned properly. You should continue using the pre-saturated patches until the barrel is clean. Once it’s clean, the patches won’t come out dirty. That when you’ll know to stop.
Step 2 – Drying the Barrel
Once all powder residue is gone, run a dry patch through the barrel to absorb any remaining salt.
Step 3 – Seasoning the Barrel
Now, run a seasoning patch down your muzzleloader’s barrel. This seasoning process will condition the barrel to prevent rust and any corrosion.
Step 4 – Cleaning the Barrel’s Rear-End
With the barrel clean and protected, now it’s time to clean the breech plug. Start by removing the breech plug instead of the stock. Now wrap a pre-saturated clean patch over the breech plug and, using a twisting motion, thoroughly clean the threads inside the barrel.
Step 5 – Cleaning the Barrel’s Thread
Inspect the threads for any residue or debris. If there is any residue left, then repeat step 4 again. But if it’s clean, then we are ready to move to the next part.
Step 6 – Cleaning the Breech Plug
Now it’s time for cleaning the most important part of your muzzleloader, the Breech Plug. Just submerge the breech plug into a Parts Soaker solution, and after a few shakes, remove the breech plug from your cleaner and wipe it with a rag and scrub away any stubborn residue.
Step 7 – Cleaning the Fire Channel
The breech plug is clean, but the fire channel in the plug is not. Carefully clean the fire channel with a fire channel brush. And then submerge the plug into the plug cleaner once again. Shake the container to fully coat the breech plug. Now remove and wipe clean the breach plug. As a finishing touch, apply some anti-seize grease on both the plug and barrel’s thread, and you are good to go.
Step 8 – Reassembling the Rifle
As for the last step, reassemble the breech plug and wipe your muzzleloader with a lightly oiled gun cloth.
Now, you’re ready for the next hunting session!
Word of Advice
When cleaning a muzzleloader, always keep the muzzle pointing in a safe direction. Make sure that your muzzle is unloaded, uncharged, and unprimed before cleaning or performing maintenance.
Never attempt to clean a loaded, charged, or primed muzzleloader. An accidental discharge can cause severe injury and even death to the user or the bystanders. You must use safety glasses while assembling or disassembling your muzzleloader for cleaning or maintenance.
Muzzleloaders are wonderful guns for hunting. However, the performance can decrease dramatically when left uncleaned for even a short period of time. So, it’s wise to clean your muzzleloader as quickly as you can after each shooting session.
It’s better to clean your muzzleloader after each time you fire it. This is due to the fact that a corrosive effect of powder fouling can be seen. Along with being hygroscopic, excrement is another factor.
As a result, it takes in moisture from the surrounding air. So, if you don’t want your muzzleloader to turn into a scarred mass of rust, clean it as quickly as possible after firing.
Apart from the cleaning procedure we described earlier, there are tons of options to clean your muzzleloader. You can clean the muzzleloader even without any dedicated cleaning equipment. Here is one-
With Dawn dish soap and hot water. The firearm should be disassembled and sanitized with soap and hot water. The bore should be scrubbed for several minutes with the pumping action of a ramrod and tight-fitting swab. Place the barrel’s muzzle end in a pail of hot, soapy water.If you don’t have one, you can follow the steps of cleaning a rifle without a bore guide to get it done.
Rinse the pieces in hot, boiling water until every last bit of powder has been removed. As soon as you remove all the soap, dry the sections and then lightly oil each one as soon as possible. Apply the oil liberally enough to prevent rust from forming, but not so much that it harms the ignition system.
Firearms are complex machines that require extensive care. So that they can give you the desired performance. Even the best of guns can get dull if they don’t get proper care and maintenance.
So, cleaning your firearms routinely is more vital than you might think. Otherwise, they can cause malfunctioning, and your shooting experience can be severely hampered.
In this article, we tried to instruct you step by step on cleaning your muzzleloader to give you the optimal shooting experience. Hope it comes to your use. Have a great shooting session with your favorite muzzleloader!