7 Best Bore Snakes in 2021 (Reviews and Buying Guide)
So, maybe you are through with your practice session or a little contest with your friends, and now it is time to clean your gun. There is a possibility that you might find that chore quite tedious.
Not just that, carrying your cleaning rod around is not the most efficient solution due to its size. Furthermore, there is a slight possibility that using a rod might cause your gun to sustain some damage over time.
Well, the best solution to solve these issues is as simple as finding some of the best bore snakes. Unlike a traditional cleaning rod, they are flexible, much more comfortable to store and carry, and not harmful in any way to the gun’s barrel.
Now then, how do we choose the best product for you and your needs? The first step to the choosing process is finding out the right measurements, primarily matching your barrel’s size.
Afterward, we will move on to other features like weight, length, and so on. We have compiled some of the most impressive bore snakes, along with the answers to some FAQs.
A proper solution to regularly clean your gun’s barrel is to have one of these essential tools in hand. Below are the snakes that perform very well.
01. Ultimate Rifle Build Bore Cleaner
The first snake bore we have for you is an excellent option if you want to clean your .410 shotgun.
Design and Efficiency
One of the most vital portions of a bore snake is its compact design. What makes this product one of the best bore snakes is the lightweight design, which is also surprisingly quick to clean your gun’s barrel.
This bit is just as crucial, of course. The fabric that this snake uses is quite impressive in quality, and it is solvent-safe. Therefore, you can use solvent as a cleaning agent again and again without any worries. Furthermore, it is safe to wash this product in a washing machine.
This snake bore is well-suited for the smallest caliber shotgun shell that you can typically find – the .410 bore. The snake is slightly larger to ensure a snug fit and clean all the residues.
This snake brushes and scrubs the barrel, and you can even apply lubricant on it to lube your gun. Plus, it can do it in a single pass. Moreover, it is machine washable and reusable, ensuring superb value.
- Clamshell packaging
- Solvent safe
- Lightweight and small design
- Does the job in one pass
- You can wash it in a machine
- Stitching could be better
- The pull cord feels somewhat weak
02. Hoppe’s BoreSnake with Den
When it comes to cleaning tools for guns, Hoppe’s is one of the industry’s veterans.
Size and Compatibility
This product is best-suited for .40 or .41 caliber guns. You probably already know this, but the caliber refers to a gun’s barrel’s internal diameter. That means this snake is suitable for a range of pistols or revolvers like the Remington Magnum or Sig P320.
Hoppe’s bore snake does a superb job of cleaning, thanks to its unique design. Firstly, it has a built-in bronze brush. This part helps to scrub out any residues and carbon fouling. Moreover, the slightly larger tail takes out all the debris inside the barrel.
Construction and Materials
When it comes to this snake’s build quality, we’re more than impressed in those terms. Firstly, the snake comes with a tightly stitched fabric that does not come loose even after extended usage. Its reusability is excellent too.
This addition deserves our praise for numerous reasons. Firstly, it doubles as a pull handle for the snake while acting as a compact carrying case that makes storage much more manageable. Furthermore, you can use its lid as a T-handle.
- Supports numerous guns
- Comfortable carrying with the den
- Quality materials
- Bronze brush
- Impressive longevity
- Cleaning isn’t flawless
- Might cost slightly more than some
03. Hoppe’s Boresnake Viper
Here, we have another product from Hoppe’s that does your cleaning in a flash.
In terms of compatibility with your gun, this snake supports .22 - .225 caliber weapons. That includes guns that use the well-known .22 LR bullets or compact pocket pistols and mini-revolvers. Among the .225 ones, there is also the classic Winchester and many more.
This snake features a compact and lightweight design that you can even carry in your pocket with ease. What makes it even more improved is the inclusion of a bronze brush and the tail end that is slightly larger than the barrel and cleans up residues.
When it comes to speed, this bore snake is one of the fastest ones that you can find. Going through with your barrel’s cleaning can take as little as 10 seconds. Even if you use something like a lubricant or cleaning agent, it takes little time.
The price of this product stays between the standard price range of most quality bore snakes. Not just that, but it also is easy to wash. Therefore, you can wash it hundreds of times, which only increases its value.
- Works well with or without cleaning agents
- You can carry it in your pocket
- Efficient and quick cleaning
- Easy to wash
- Leaves no residue
- Packaging needs improvement
- Quality control is average
04. Hoppe’s Shotgun Bore Cleaner
If you have the bigger brother of a .410 shotgun, then this pick is for you.
As mentioned earlier, this snake is for the decently-powered 20 gauge shotguns. That means it can clean products like the well-known Winchester Defender series to the Benelli or Mossberg shotguns. And its design is optimized well for the size.
Speed and Efficiency
Hoppe’s is renowned for bore snakes that are surprisingly quick at doing their job – this one is no different. It features a three-step bore shine that can often get your job done with as little as a single pass (more on that below).
Cleaning and Durability
The snake you choose must be easy to clean up and sustain its form over multiple washes. Thankfully, this one is just that. Furthermore, you can use it with powerful cleaning agents such as solvents without worrying about any degradation.
This part is what impresses us the most. Firstly, it comes with a brass weight with the size etched on it. Then comes the bronze brush that scrubs everything efficiently. Lastly, the oversized swab takes every bit of residue along with it.
- Brass weight
- One-piece design
- Quick three-step bore shine
- Fine with cleaning agents
- Efficient swab and brush
- Results may vary between guns
- It might require a cleaning agent
05. Otis One Pass Bore Cleaner
At this point, we have one of the best 9mm bore snakes for you.
When it comes to durability and resistance, this snake is almost unbeatable. Firstly, it is heat resistant up to 700 degrees Fahrenheit. And the molded rubber core and Nomex surface enhance its resistance to cleaning agents and machine washes.
It has three core elements regarding the design: the Nomex surface, the molded rubber core, and the Memory-Flex cable. The unique rubber core ensures that you get a 360-degree cleaning, while the cable provides easy and quick feeding through the barrel.
One of the most impressive portions about this is that the Nomex fibers act both as a brush and patch. It first loosens the particles and then captures them with efficiency. Moreover, the brass-end cable makes cleaning much quicker.
This bore snake supports a wide range of standard weapons – .38 inches, 9mm, and even 358 caliber pistols. As you can guess, these all measure around the same diameter; therefore, all of them get a thorough cleaning without an issue.
- Standard 9mm support
- Heat resistance of 700-degrees Fahrenheit
- Helix shaped rubber core
- It supports other Otis components
- Quality Nomex fiber design
- Slightly more costly
- The ripcord might not suffice for long barrels
06. Funanasun Gun Bore Brush
It doesn’t matter whether you want the best rated rifle bore snakes or pistol snakes. The sixth pick is a collection of all you might need.
What makes this one unique is the various sizes. Firstly, you get the 22Cal or 5.56mm one. Then, there are the 38Cal or 9mm, 7.62mm, and even a 12 gauge shotgun snake. As you can imagine, it’s amazingly versatile and works for a variety of guns.
Price and Value
It’s obvious how this collection of snakes shines when it comes to an excellent value for money deal. The products are all reusable and machine washable, have brass weights and quality fabric that provide you with excellent value for your money.
Durability and Cleaning Agents
As we already said above, these products are fine with hundreds of washes. However, compatibility with cleaning agents is another issue. These snakes are okay with strong cleaning solvents as well as other agents.
You get a unique one-pass cleaning system with these products. The heavy brass weight ensures easy feeding, and then the embedded brush scrubs everything. Lastly, the extended floss area takes everything out.
- Embedded bore brush
- Large floss area
- Solvent compatible
- Support for various calibers
- Quick cleaning process
- .22 snake might face compatibility issues
- Quality control isn’t consistent
07. Real Avid Bore Cleaning System
As our last snake, we have a unique product from Real Avid. This product can clean the standard 9mm weapons with ease.
However, while the other ones don’t support longer barreled guns, this one does. You can clean 9mm carbine guns with longer barrels without any issue in this case.
Firstly, it features a flex-case handle for easier storage – a design that is unusual and effective. It also acts as a handle to the bore. But what makes it even better is the fact that it’s self-storing, which makes things much quicker and efficient.
As expected, this product comes with a superb single-pass cleaning process. Regardless of your gun’s barrel size, you only need to put the weighted end through the barrel, and the 32” cable gets all the gunk and debris out.
Some of the other features that this product provides deserve some praise. For instance, the storage has a label with the caliber. Moreover, you don’t have to tie and untie it at all. Lastly, the ergonomic gripping aspect makes cleaning much quicker.
- It can clean 9mm carbine guns
- 32” long cable
- Braided mop and phosphor bronze brush
- Self-storing design
- Caliber labeling for convenience
- Polycarbonate’s quality could be better
- Somewhat awkward to use with handguns
FAQs of The Best Bore Snakes
01. What is the best bore snake?
As the answer to that question is subjective, you need to understand what makes a bore snake a worthy choice. Firstly, a bore snake (also known as a cleaning cord) is essentially an alternative to a cleaning rod. That means after usage, you can clean the barrel of your gun with this product.
You can often use cleaning solutions such as solvents to make the cleaning process much more efficient. The biggest pro is that these snakes are flexible (if it wasn’t apparent enough from the naming). They have a weighted end with a thin string or fabric that you put in through the back end of your gun’s barrel.
That end then comes out of the muzzle end of the barrel, all thanks to gravity. And once you have that end on your hand, pulling the snake further makes it clean the barrel, with or without a cleaning solution.
The best bore snake, in that case, has to be something with quality fabric for proper cleaning and reusability. Moreover, the snake’s width has to be slightly higher than the barrel’s available space for better cleaning along with a weighted end.
02. Is a bore snake worth the money?
In our opinion, yes. You might even find that a bore snake might cost a bit more when compared to a cleaning rod in some cases. But there are a few things like the long-term reusability and compactness that make this product worth it.
Moreover, the usage of a bore snake ensures that there is no damage to your barrel, even with extended use. And given that a large portion of them is machine-washable, the product’s value increases even further.
03. Are bore snakes better than rods?
The debate between cleaning rods and bore snakes has been going on for quite a while, but both of them have their advantages. For instance, a cleaning rod is usually cheaper, and it is comparatively better valued as you can use it for longer.
However, carrying a bore snake is much more comfortable, along with the fact that it is washable and reusable. Furthermore, it does not damage the inside of your barrel, which might be plausible with a cleaning rod.
04. Do bore snakes hurt barrels?
As you will use a bore snake many times, it must be safe for your gun’s barrel. Thankfully, as it uses soft, washable fabric, there is little possibility that a snake can harm your barrel. So, your barrel should be alright, even with frequent use.
05. Should you oil the inside of a gun barrel?
Whether you should oil your gun’s barrel or not is a question that many people have, and the answer is both yes and no. The yes part is because having a very light coat of oil applied with a slightly-oiled patch can be useful for the barrel.
However, you should avoid putting in too much oil, as that might not bode well in the long run. Moreover, you need not go through the oiling process too frequently either. Less is certainly more in this case, so be wary of how much you use.
06. Can you clean a gun without taking it apart?
It is possible to clean your gun to an impressive degree without having to disassemble it all the way. Many people use some spray cleaning agent, wipe things off, and oil them. Some can go as far as only taking the grips and cylinder off.
Of course, it is quite simple to disassemble most modern guns, which gives you a better way of cleaning. But if you do not want to go through the whole process, it is, indeed, possible to clean the gun without taking off the parts.
Cleaning a gun is essential to ensure that it performs well and does so with no damage or corrosion, even after years of use. And to ensure that, a bore snake is one of the most straightforward and efficient solutions.
The ones we have reviewed above are some of the best bore snakes. Choose one according to your gun’s barrel size and measurements, your budget, and personal preference in cleaning overall. Lastly, use them safely and stay safe yourself.