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so i took out the gas piston after about 400 rounds, and the manual says no lubricants, just wipe it off with a cloth, yeah right!!! so i did and i know it can be a hell of alot cleaner, what are some of the better ways to really clean the piston and housing, and how often?? thx! housing being gas block
 

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I soak my piston in solvent overnight, pull it out and scrub it with a GI nylon "toothbrush" wipe it down with a lint free cloth and viola!

I only soak it just in case there is crud in my gas ring I can't see


I use a Glock nylon cleaning rod/brush for the gas cylinder with the same solvent and then blow it out with compressed air.


I don't actually think this level of detail is needed but I can't help but want to clean it and that's the only part of the system with any appreciable amount of dirt the rest of the weapon is just a wipe down/regrease/reassemble sort of affair.

Just make sure whatever solvent you use is residue/oil free so it doesn't cause your gas system to coke up and stick your piston(same deal as an M240 MG).
 

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You can use a scar carbon scraper or use solvent then wipe it clean before reassembly. If you want to follow the instruction to the t and don't want to risk leaving any trace of lubricant then I recommend frog lube cleaner; not sure what's in it but it's a water like substance that loosen carbon really well without being greasy. And unlike most of the solvent out there it doesn't lubricate or leave any grease behind (dries like water too).

Personally I clean it with fireclean and leave the film of grease on so the next clean up is easier.
 

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I will do what I usually do with my AK piston : I put the wire wheel brush on my bench drill press and I start cleaning it with it . it will eat out the carbon , powder residue , etc . Since the piston is made of high grade carbon steel , the wire brush would not do anything to it . It Is just like cleaning the valves of an engine . After that , spray some brake cleaner to eliminate any oil , dry it with a clean cloth ... you are done.
 

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FN made a scraper tool to get into some of the nooks and crannies to get out carbon, However these were not generally available to the public, and the odd ones that make it out into the wild go for about $200 on ebay. I make a replica for half that price which is available on my website. Either of these will get off the lumps, but you need scotchbrite or a wire brush to really get down to clean metal.
 

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