Mil-Spec cleaning kits

Over the years, I have put together a giant collection of cleaning kits, rods, and accessories ranging from old Springfield Armory-made ramrods from the 1800s to rugged Mosin-Nagant Tula-marked kits from the Tsar’s era to German HK G3 pull-throughs. I often find this old military gear to be the best in terms of durability and sheer ingenious design, as it is designed to be compact for stowage and “soldier-proof.”

Keep in mind that, overseas in most Third World areas, most guns are cleaned with diesel fuel and lubed with motor oil. The only cleaning “kit” is a rag.

Case in point, I remember being heralded as a magician of sorts when I pointed out, while on an overseas contract amongst contract troops from Latin America several years ago, that their grungy FN FALs usually had a perfectly good cleaning kit hidden inside the pistol grip. Abracadabra! Then, pointing out that a cartridge could be used to remove the gas plug and firing pin, Hocus Pocus!

With that in mind, should you be curious as to who makes the current U.S. military kits, it seems like Otis continues to get the nod. I have to agree, I do like their “Rip-cord” for use with pistol barrels and much easier than rods, swabs, and patches. I’ve seen it used extensively in the gun industry on factory tours in test-fire rooms.

From DOD:

Otis Products Inc.,* Lyons Falls, New York, has been awarded a maximum $33,688,736 firm-fixed-price contract for gun cleaning kits. This was a competitive acquisition with two offers received. This is a three-year base contract with two one-year option periods. Location of performance is New York, with a Feb. 6, 2023, performance completion date. Using military services are Army, Navy and Marine Corps. Type of appropriation is fiscal 2020 through 2023 defense working capital funds. The contracting activity is Defense Logistics Agency Land and Maritime, Columbus, Ohio (SPE7LX-20-D-0076).

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