No offense, but the common misperception that the AR system is fragile and needs constant attention is about as bad as the AK is an inaccurate platform.
To see if I could, for starters; I wanted to see if there was something to the myth that AR's are fragile beasts, and must be pampered. What I learned proved it to be just that--a myth.
And as far as I could tell, there was no adverse effect on accuracy, or on relaibility down the line, either (thousands more rounds have gone through 'em both after the test as well). Neither of the rifles were harmed.
A rifle (an AR in this case) is a machine.
There is no benefit to the reliability of any machine by not lubricating and occasionally cleaning.
AR's have been stopped by excessive fouling (typically combined with a lack of lube). It can and occasionally does happen. To me, cleaning and lubing after reasonable intervals just flat out makes sense.
It makes the same kind of sense changing the oil in your car does. If a rifle is relegated to paper-punching duty exclusively, then I wouldn't care as much. Paper doesn't shoot back if my gun doesn't go "bang".
However, for me, I view my AR's and other weapons as having a potentially defensive role....as in defending me and my family. That being the case, proper field striping, cleaning and lubing is a nonnegotiable....and doing so in a manner that the machine in question (an AR15) benefits from in terms of reliability. Cleaning and lubing is also a good opportunity to see if there is any excessive wear, or a potential weakness in a component. All machines can and do wear/break and taking a good look occasionally can prevent one from learning of this weakness while engaged on the 2-way range.
AR's can handle a LOT of shooting, so is it likely the average shooter is really stressing their guns to a huge extent? Probably not. I'm also lot real likely to get in to a car accident this afternoon, however, if I were to, I'm looking for as close to 100% possibility my seat belt and airbag work. The higher the stakes, the more reliability matters.
Not everyone feels the same about their guns. Some go bonkers if their gun gets a tiny scratch on it. Some will shoot their guns in to the dirt. Some guys collect and target shoot, others have guns that include defensive response options. In the case of the later, cleaning and lubing appropriately is little more than common sense and an extremely small price to pay for as much assurance of reliability as possible.
Regular intervals is fine, but what intervals is that? To me, it's about every 1,000 rounds at a minimum. I lube before each day of shooting. Never had a gun become anything more than sluggish due to fouling. A little lube fixed that immediately. It won't affect function or accuracy. Getting hot will affect accuracy though to an extent.
Currently, I'm making a living off of my ARs, so it's somewhat important to me that they work. They are also defensive rifles as I always have one close by and in my car, so again, it's somewhat important to me that they work. I see my rifles work past 1,000 rounds without cleaning sometimes a couple times a month and sometimes more than one of them.
I'm all for guys that like a clean gun, but know why you're cleaning them. Some believe it will fail because that's what they were taught. Some are using cheaper guns with out of spec chambers or weak extractors that will gunk up and possibly fail. Others do it because they're OCD and just don't want to put it away for three or four months filthy. We just all need to recognize that a quality AR will not fail within a couple thousand rounds or even FAR more as long as it's lubed correctly.
I've found that maybe 4 out of 5 AR shooters (not just owners) that I know, still believe some sort of old time myth and it affects the way they do things. The other 1 out 5 decided to try it for themselves and figured out it was nothing more than BS.
So, for anyone that repeats all these myths, my question is, how many times have our personally had a failure due to not cleaning that was absolutely without a doubt due to not cleaning but was still lubed properly? My guess is none or the gun in question was a problem to begin with. This isn't directed at anyone here, just so something I would ask anyone repeating these myths as I'd suspect 99% just hear it and pass it on without ever attempting to see if it's true or not.
But then I've also seen AR's fail. I remember one cold & nasty day when we were out at the range. Heavy rain, cold rain, pounding rain....and sand. Lots of wet, adherent sand that found it's way into everything after a good crawl through it. I'd guess that at least 40% of the trigger pullers had their weapons fail that day, especially after mag changes. Maybe more than 40%. These were USA M4's made by some company called Colt.
I kept my M4 shooting, but that's what happens when one is OCD about cleaning his or her weapon and magazines. :image035:
Have not read the responses as I am supposed to be cleaning up from cooking a big messy curry, but I can't stand that saying assault rifle. Isn't your pinky finger something you can assault with?
Now to my messy stove.
Robar's Firearm Finishes and see for yourself. I'll more than likely have other guns given this treatment.
Alas, that AR was gone when I went back for it. Darn.
No doubt NP3 and similar finishes are a fine choice. The other thing we have going that many overlook or don't truly understand is now have options beyond CLP. Choices like Slip EWL and Froglube will separate and lift the dirt and grime off of the surface while CLP will mix with it. These things can make a huge difference.
Nothing wrong with a quick wipe down after shooting if you feel you need to. Like I said, I keep my work guns clean, for the most part. My range guns I don't worry about that much.