I don’t get hot and bothered about accessories often, but I have been waiting on these two products since December of last year. Why, pray tell, is old Captain No Maintenance excited for cleaning tools?
Mostly, because I live in the North West. When it gets Idaho-level cold outside, cleaning your guns after you take them out is no longer optional. The hot/cold cycle of shooting in extreme temperatures, then bringing your toys back indoors, creates serious moisture problems.
In the USMC, we cleaned guns three days in a row after extremely cold outings. That may have been a way of keeping us from having idle hands in retrospect, but the reason given was to prevent rust.
Either way, snow crams in some strange places and a little bit of labor is a small price to pay to keep your very expensive toys clean and operational. AK fanboys can now move on to the next article.
First up is the Tipton Max Force Cleaning Rod. This may surprise you, but I have broken a few cleaning rods in my day. It really chaps my behind when I buy the expensive ones (that seem to get pricier by the inch) and snap one in half ramming a patch down my 30-inch .17 HMR barrel.
Tipton Max Force Cleaning Rod Features:
- Allows you to quickly and easily position handle at any point along the rod with just the press of your thumb. This allows Maximum Force to be applied without fear of bending or breaking cleaning rod
- Patent Pending clamp mechanism instantly clamps handle to rod at any location and still allows the rod to spin freely on ball bearings
- 40” usable rod length coupled with the adjustable handle allows cleaning of small pistols all the way up to long-barreled magnum rifles
- Ergonomic handle positions your hand for maximum force on the cleaning rod
- Highly durable design is lightweight and fully solvent-resistant
- Two versions: 17/20 Caliber (w/ 5-40 threads) and 22-45 Caliber (w/ 8-32 threads)
- MSRP: $64.99
The hardest part of rifle cleaning is getting the patch in and moving it down through the barrel. God help you if it gets stuck halfway. Tipton recognized this problem and devised a unique solution.
The handle of the Max Force Rod actually moves, until you clamp it down. Then the rod still spins, but you can apply force where it needs to be applied. I am guessing the rotating feature is voodoo and black magic, but it works!
This is the best cleaning rod I have seen in a long while and it is in the running for accessory-of-the-year in my opinion. The rod is coated, not some cheap aluminum job, with brass hardware. One rod covers 22-45 calibers, while another does 17/20 calibers. The MSRP is $64.99.
The Tipton Ultra Gun Vise is an outstanding addition to your gunsmithing workbench. This thing has every attachment you can imagine and covers you for muzzleloaders, ARs, compound bows, and everything else under the sun.
I initially commented on the quality of the build at SHOT 2017, and having a production model in my hands doesn’t change that. Everything locks up tight, every adjustment works as advertised, and the weight is just right.
Tipton Ultra Gun Vise Features
- Rigid Steel Frame
- Modular chassis design
- Different modules can be quickly moved, rearranged or removed anywhere along the rail
- Over molded rubber contact pads throughout the device prevent damage to firearm
- Ball and socket articulating clamp pads allow for the pads to adapt to any surface
- Leveling feet on all corners makes scope leveling easier
- Dual Clamp Technology rigidly holds any gun shape in place
- Tube frame structure allows for complete access to your rifle
- Fast-Turn knobs, for quick clamping
- AR Vise Block module included for working on and cleaning AR-15s
- Front and Rear clamps are both height and length adjustable
- Modular system allows you to clamp components like AR Upper assemblies without needing to have them attached to the lowers.
- Works with break action firearms. You can clamp the forward/barrel while leaving the rear to swing open
- Works with Pistols allowing you to mount optics or clean efficiently
- 2 re-arrangeable or removable accessory trays
- Engineered Glass Filled Nylon construction provides a high level of rigidity while preventing damage to your firearm
- Stainless Steel reinforcing plates throughout the design provide reinforcement and rigidity
- Solvent-resistant materials stand up to years of hard use
- MSRP $179.99
There is something to be said for some heft in a gun vise, but you don’t want to slip a disk trying to move it. The Ultra Gun Vise toes this line perfectly. You don’t feel like it is going to tip over if you put an AR-10 in it, and the feet are rubberized to further reduce slipping.
The adjustments are endless and the features are plentiful. One of my favorite parts? The AR lower receiver block includes a flip-up hammer buffer, so you can dry fire during your trigger swap to your heart’s content.
The Ultra Gun Vise is awesome for cleaning, and next week we are going to use it again for a lesson in mounting scopes. The MSRP is $179.99.