Do you guys clean extractor channels?

Do you guys clean extractor channels?

This is a discussion on Do you guys clean extractor channels? within the Firearm Cleaning & Maintenance forums, part of the General Firearm Discussion category; I bought an old beater Colt 1911 a while back to just have fun with, and I've been shooting it quite a bit lately. I ...

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Thread: Do you guys clean extractor channels?

  1. #1
    Member Array sideKahr's Avatar
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    Do you guys clean extractor channels?

    I bought an old beater Colt 1911 a while back to just have fun with, and I've been shooting it quite a bit lately.

    I decided to learn how to completely disassemble the pistol, and the first thing I tried (beyond normal field stripping) was to remove the firing pin and extractor. Holy smokes, it was filthy in there! So dirty, I'm surprised these parts were functioning.

    How often do you guys clean these areas? Are there any other parts I'm ignoring and should be disassembling after shooting? (Note: I DO disassemble magazines.)

    Thanks.
    It isnít the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog.


  2. #2
    JD
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    YES! Funny thing is that I just wrote a blog entry on this very same subject.

    Failure to keep the extractor clean can result in massive issues, like not removing the spent case.

    On average I clean out the extractor channel and check the extractor for wear about every 1000 rounds.

    I've also found that if it's really, really bad in there, that a .17 bore brush will fit in there rather nicely.

    Regarding other parts, I do a full detail strip, again about every thousand rounds or so, some go longer, some go less.

    Pending on what 1911 you have, there are different parts I would check for cleanliness and serviceability.

    If it a Kimber or other 1911 with the Swartz safety, I will check the "lifter" for damage.

    If it's got the "Series 80 Firing Pin Safety"



    I will clean and check those parts.

    IMHO, about every 1000 rounds, you should do a full strip, clean, inspect, and properly lube what needs lubing.

    Some will say that 1000 is too many, some will say it's too few.

    It really depends on how much shooting you do, what you shoot, and how you care for your gun, 1K is not gospel, but it's a nice average number in my opinion.

  3. #3
    Member Array sideKahr's Avatar
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    Thanks, man. I had no idea there were blogs on this site.
    It isnít the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog.

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    JD
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    Quote Originally Posted by sideKahr View Post
    Thanks, man. I had no idea there were blogs on this site.
    It's a newer feature.

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    Member Array Dieselnut's Avatar
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    I'm assuming this applies to handguns in general, not just 1911s? So, if one is a relative newbie and field stripping is as much as one knows... how would one go about further disassembly for the purpose of cleaning? Do manufacturers prefer you don't mess around with the more delicate parts?
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    JD
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dieselnut View Post
    I'm assuming this applies to handguns in general, not just 1911s?
    Yes and no, some guns require more cleaning than others.


    So, if one is a relative newbie and field stripping is as much as one knows... how would one go about further disassembly for the purpose of cleaning?
    One would locate instructions on go to disassemble the gun further in order to clean all the parts.


    Do manufacturers prefer you don't mess around with the more delicate parts?
    Generally, they prefer you to follow the steps in the book. That usually ends up with someone taking a dirty gun to a gunsmith if things stop working due to crud build up, and the smith cleans the gun, but if one knows or learns the proper way to do things, it's generally not an issue.

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    VIP Member Array cphilip's Avatar
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    Most times I do

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    Member Array Dieselnut's Avatar
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    I have a tendency to disassemble things I shouldn't, which is why I ask

    I'll have to investigate the matter a little further, I'd like to be able to give the gun a really detailed cleaning every so often. Thank you for clarifying things for me.
    Don't ever underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

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    Member Array spooter66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dieselnut View Post
    I have a tendency to disassemble things I shouldn't, which is why I ask

    I'll have to investigate the matter a little further, I'd like to be able to give the gun a really detailed cleaning every so often. Thank you for clarifying things for me.
    There are several very good videos on YouTube on how to completely break down and reassemble a 1911.
    "I like pigs. Dogs look up to us. Cats look down on us. Pigs treat us as equals." - Sir Winston Churchill


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    Distinguished Member Array GWRedDragon's Avatar
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    I shot 10,000 rounds through my Glock before I ever decided to detail strip it to clean it (in a way the manual wouldn't like me to). The extractor was completely caked, only the little tip that does the work was clear. I kinda got the impression that it was designed so that the tip would clean itself as it extracts, but I cleaned it anyway. Took a good amount of Hoppes and wire brush.

    As an aside, I also removed quite a lot of grime from the firing pin channel...so despite what Glock says, I really do now believe that detail stripping is a good idea and the only reason they tell you not to is so some moron doesn't fill the firing pin channel with grease.
    "Trust in God with hand on sword" -Inscription on my family's coat of arms from medieval England
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  11. #11
    jfl
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    Quote Originally Posted by GWRedDragon View Post
    I shot 10,000 rounds through my Glock before I ever decided to detail strip it to clean it (in a way the manual wouldn't like me to). The extractor was completely caked, only the little tip that does the work was clear. I kinda got the impression that it was designed so that the tip would clean itself as it extracts, but I cleaned it anyway. Took a good amount of Hoppes and wire brush.

    As an aside, I also removed quite a lot of grime from the firing pin channel...so despite what Glock says, I really do now believe that detail stripping is a good idea and the only reason they tell you not to is so some moron doesn't fill the firing pin channel with grease.
    Glocks ??? I thought you could just throw them in the dishwasher with a "pots and pans" cycle...





    Disclaimer: Do not try this at home (or anywhere else); it is a long standing joke about Glock pistols.
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