The barrel of the gun is what accounts for most of your accuracy. And if the barrel of your firearm is dirty, naturally, it would impact your aim. As it turns out, compared to other parts of your weapon, the barrel gets dirty most often. So naturally, you would have to clean it if you want to aim true.
But how do you clean the barrel of a shotgun or a rifle? If you opted for a complete gun care kit, you might think you have everything you need to get started. But the truth is, the cleaning rods that come with those complete kits often fall short of expectations. Sometimes they do more harm than good.
A better alternative is to invest in the best gun cleaning rod if you truly care about the health of your firearm. There are a couple of great options out there, and that is what I want to talk about in this article.
Top 7 Best Gun Cleaning Rod Reviews
Here is a quick roundup of some of the finest cleaning rods that you can use to clean your firearms.
1. Tipton 1-Piece Deluxe Cleaning Rods
When it comes to brands that specialize in gun cleaning rods, Tipton is one of the top ones. So naturally, my mind jumped to the 1-Piece Deluxe Cleaning Rods by them when I was making this list. If you want the best one piece cleaning rod on the market, this is a no-brainer.
This cleaning rod features a carbon fiber construction along with ball bearings, so you will not have to worry about scratching the insides of your firearms when you are using them. As you well know, brass or copper rods can often ruin your weapons when you use them to clean your guns. With this option, however, this will not be something you have to worry about.
The ball bearings are extremely smooth in this device, allowing you to move it around with ease. If you try it out once, you will see that a lot of thought went into its production. You can apply just the right amount of force without feeling any fatigue weighing you down when you are using it.
You can use this cleaning rod with just about any type of firearm out there as long as you know which size to pick. This 1-piece cleaning rod comes in five different sizes; 12 inches, 26 inches, 36 inches, 40 inches, and 44 inches. So, pick out the one that fits your requirements best.
- Features a carbon fiber construction
- Smooth, dual-action ball bearings
- Available in multiple sizes
- Not very affordable
2. Hoppe’s No. 9 Gun Cleaning Aluminum Rod
If you have done any gun care in the past, you have definitely heard of the legendary No. 9 line of gun cleaning products by Hoppe’s. Well, as it turns out, you can find the three-piece cleaning rod that they include with their complete kit as a standalone product if that is all you need to complete your gun care collection.
Most gunsmiths agree that carbon fiber cleaning rods are the best if you want to protect the rifling of the bore. But if you don’t have the option, going with an aluminum cleaning rod, such as this one, works just as fine. And since it is much lighter than copper or brass rods, you will be able to handle it a lot easier.
To make it easier on the user, the cleaning rod comes with a ball bearing swivel handle on one end. This allows you to clean all the nooks and crannies and apply optimal force without over-turning the rod and scratching the inner finish of the bore.
Since it is a three-piece unit, you will be able to break it down for easier storage. This cleaning rod also features a universal design as long as you are sticking with a rifle. So, if you plan on cleaning a pistol or a shotgun, this might not be the best pick. However, for rifles, this is one of the finest options out there.
- Three-piece cleaning rod
- Works on all caliber rifles
- Lightweight, aluminum construction
- Does not work with all types of firearms
3. Dewey 1-Piece Cleaning Rod
For my next pick, I decided to go with the 1-piece Cleaning Rod by Dewey. Now before you get all worked up that I went with a brass cleaning rod, hear me out. While they are known to have scratched the insides of a weapon on occasion, if you have a steady hand, they are a great addition to your gun cleaning arsenal.
And, of course, brass cleaning rods, as you are aware, are a lot cheaper than their aluminum or carbon fiber alternatives. So, if you are on a budget and know exactly how to handle your cleaning rod, then even a brass cleaning rod such as this one can be a great pick-up.
Apart from its brass construction, the cleaning rod comes with a swivel handle to make things easier to handle. The swivel itself is made out of plastic, but it does not have any rough edges. So, you do not have to worry about hurting your hand when you are using it.
You also get a brass jag and an adapter to attach your brush with your purchase. This unit is available in multiple sizes and can handle any type of weapon you have, including a shotgun. For handguns or pistols, though, I would recommend going with the 12-inch model as you do not want to use an oversized cleaning rod for a small firearm.
- Comfortable, user-friendly design
- Comes with brass jags and a brush adapter
- Available in multiple sizes
- It might scratch the rifling if you are not careful
4. TuffMan Tools 1 Piece Carbon Fiber Cleaning Rod
If you are a fan of carbon fiber cleaning rods, you are not the only one. Most people, at least the beginners, find it a lot easier to work with carbon fiber cleaning rods as there are fewer chances of them scratching the bore of their favorite weapon. Brass or synthetic metal cleaning rods require a steadier hand to use properly.
This 1 piece carbon fiber cleaning rod by TuffMan is a fantastic choice in that case. Needless to say, it boasts a carbon fiber construction. In addition, the material has just a hint of flex in it, making it much easier to clean the insides of the firearm without damaging the finish.
I absolutely adore the handle design of this particular cleaning rod. It’s large, it’s comfy, and it also has a hanging hole at the bottom for easier storage once you are done with your work. The handle also comes with swivel ball bearings to make it easier to rotate.
The cleaning rod comes with a threaded brass tip where you can attach any of your attachments without worrying about stability. So, if you are a newcomer to gun care and want to go with a cleaning rod that makes things as easy as possible for you, this is your best bet.
- User-friendly design
- Carbon fiber construction
- Comes with a hanging hole for storage
- Not suitable for pistols and handguns
5. Birchwood Casey Coated Cleaning Rod -Rifle Cleaning Rod
For those on the market for a shotgun cleaning rod, this Birchwood Casey Coated Cleaning Rod is a good one. It comes at an affordable price and has a clever design making it a great pick-up for both professional gunsmiths and a beginner. Let me run you through its features.
First off, it is made with synthetic metal. Now some people may already hate it for it, but most gunsmiths who have had years of experience in the field agree that a synthetic metal cleaning rod can work just as well as a top-tier carbon fiber rod. It’s all in how you handle it.
And handling this tool is extremely easy thanks to the screwdriver-style swivel handle that it comes with. So, you will be able to apply the exact amount of force you need while being able to turn it with ease. As the handling of this cleaning rod is so good, you should not have to worry about damaging your firearm while cleaning.
This cleaning tool is suitable only for larger weapons like shotguns and rifles, though. Since it is a one-piece unit and has a decent bit of length to it, using it to clean smaller weapons can be tricky. As a cherry on top, you also get a handy transparent storage tube with your purchase.
- Excellent build quality
- Comes with a storage tube
- Perfect for larger firearms
- Requires a steady hand
6. Raiseek Gun Cleaning Rod One Piece Carbon Fiber
The One Piece Gun Cleaning Rod by Raiseek is one of the finest cleaning rods out there. When it comes to the best carbon fiber cleaning rod, seasoned gunsmiths often juggle between this one or the one-piece Deluxe Cleaning Rod by Tipton. Since I have already talked about the Tipton Cleaning Rod, it is time I addressed this one.
Firstly, this one is made of carbon fiber, and you already know what that means; there is absolutely zero chance of you scratching or damaging the inner riflings in the bore of your firearm. So even if you are a newbie, you will not damage your weapon in any way trying to clean it.
The swivel handle design of this device is one of the finest that I have seen. It is a bit larger than what you find in most cleaning rods which gives you a better grip and stability as you are using it. And since it is powered by dual ball bearings, it is extremely smooth and should not inhibit your arm motion.
This unit is available in three diameters, but the overall length is 36 inches. Some people do say that the Tipton or the Hoppe’s cleaning rod feels better in the hands, but that’s subject to personal opinion. I recommend trying it out for yourself before you discard it right away.
- Carbon fiber construction
- The oversized handle offers better control
- Available in three different diameters
- Some people don’t like the larger handle
7. Outers 41605 3pc Brass Cleaning Rod
Let me wrap up my list with a product from Outers. After all, they are still one of the largest companies when it comes to gun care products, and the 41605 from them still holds high esteem among gun collectors and enthusiasts who regularly cater to their firearms well-being.
This is a three-piece unit that you can break apart for easier storage. Since it is made of brass, I would advise caution when you use it, however, as an unsteady hand can easily scratch the inside of your gun. That’s just about the only drawback to this cleaning rod.
The cleaning rod is perfect for covering larger firearms such as shotguns or rifles, as it can fully cover the length of your weapon. You can easily break down the pieces to suit the size of your firearm, and its large handle allows you to grip it steadily as you work.
The attachment tips are well-designed and should be able to comfortably house any nylon jugs or brushes without any issues. It comes at a pretty reasonable price considering the performance that it offers. So, if you do not mind its construction material, it can make a good addition to your toolkit.
- Excellent build quality
- Compatible with any firearms
- Large, comfortable handle
- Some people might not like its brass construction
The Bottom Line
In my gun cleaning rods review, I tried to cover most of the popular options out there. Of course, there are some other options that you might find interesting, but if you are a beginner at this, I would recommend sticking to this list until you understand a bit more about these devices.
Hopefully, my review of the best gun cleaning rods could help you figure out which product best suits your needs. Good luck!
Larry, who is a family man and a gun enthusiast, enjoys keeping his collection in pristine condition. He also likes to take his kids shooting as often as possible.