Best Gun Cleaning Rod

Best Gun Cleaning Rod

To increase the service life of our barrel, you need to clean it as regularly as you use it.

And to maintain the consistency of your gun’s barrel, minimize bore erosion and prevent damage, you need a high-quality cleaning rod.

And a quality rod is one that is rigid and will not cause damage to your bore.



Cleaning rods are either made of brass, steel, or aluminum. Brass and aluminum cleaning rods are not the best because they are not rigid enough.

Steel rods are rigid but not ideal for cleaning a bore. Most gun barrels are made of steel. And when you use a steel rod to clean a steel bore, the steel to steel contact may cause some damage.

What you need is a steel cleaning rod that is coated with plastic or a different type of soft coating to prevent damage.

You may find that some cleaning kits don’t have these types of rods or the rods are not rigid enough. So if you need to buy one separately, if it’s a steel rod ensure its coated and rigid.

While we don’t discourage any gun owners from buying a gun cleaning kit, many of the cleaning rods that come with these kits are not supreme. So it doesn’t hurt to add another cleaning rod to your collection.  

But before you go out shopping for a cleaning rod, you have to know what to look for and we have discussed that in this review. We have also selected and reviewed 5 of the best gun cleaning rods that you may want to consider buying.


Top Pick

Hoppe's RC22P Elite

Hoppe’s RC22P Elite

  • Ergonomic Handle
  • Smooth Rotation
  • Carbon Fiber Rod

Gun Cleaning Rods Comparison Chart


Hoppe's RC22P Elite

Hoppe's RC22P EliteLength: 8 inches
Material Rod: Carbon Fiber
Male Thread: 8 x 32
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Tipton Deluxe

Tipton DeluxeLength: Varying Sizes
Material Rod: Carbon Fiber
Male Thread: 8 x 32
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Dewey Rods 22C30

Dewey Rods 22C30Length: 30 inches
Material Rod: Nylon Coated
Male Thread: 8 x 36
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Outers 41642

Outers 41642Length: 33 inches
Material Rod: Coated Steel
Male Thread: n/a
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Tipton 658539 Max Force

Tipton 658539 Max ForceLength: 40 inches
Material Rod: Carbon Fiber
Male Thread: 8 x 32
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5 Best Gun Cleaning Rods (as of June, 2023):

1. Hoppe’s RC22P Elite Gun Cleaning Rod Review

Hoppe's RC22P Elite

The Hoppe’s RC22P Elite carbon fiber cleaning rod is a popular pick due to its design and carbon fiber make.

Hoppe’s is one of the leading producers of gun accessories globally.

Its products range from cleaning solvents, lubricants to cleaning tools.

And many gun owners love this brand because it delivers quality products at decent prices.

The Elite cleaning rod is made from carbon fiber, which is a strong, lightweight material that is resistant to chemicals, heat, and corrosion. Which makes it the perfect material for gun cleaning.

The Elite is a one-piece cleaning rod and it’s very rigid and sturdy. So there is a less possible chance of it breaking even after many uses. The rigidity of the rod makes it hard for it to bend even after a few uses. It’s a tool you can rely on and depend on every time. 

Hoppe's RC22P Elite Review, Pros and Cons

The rod comes with ball bearings to provide a smooth rotation action as you push it through the bore. It is not flexible, so it is not going to touch the sides of your bore causing damage, which is one of the most important aspects of a good cleaning rod.

So overall, its a solid cleaning rod that you can rely on to clean your gun without causing any damage. It does cost a little bit more than other similar models. But it’s worth every penny. 

Main Features

  • Advanced Quality For Better Cleaning
  • One Piece Rod
  • Carbon Fiber
  • Smooth Rotation
  • Ergonomic Handle
  • Premium Double Ball Bearings


  • It is rigid and sturdy
  • Comes with ball bearings for easy cleaning
  • Smooth rotation
  • Ergonomic handle
  • The rod is 8 inches long
  • One-piece cleaning rod


  • Some users might find it expensive

2. Tipton Deluxe Gun Cleaning Rod Review

Tipton Deluxe

Tipton produces some of the most superior cleaning tools on the market and it has been doing so for years.

And the Tipton Deluxe Gun cleaning rods are made of the highest standards to help you keep your gun in top condition.

These one-piece rods are made of carbon fiber, a material that is strong, tough, and resistant to high temperatures and chemicals.

The rods are not flexible, which is what you want in any good rod as this lack of flexibility assures you that the rod won’t touch the sides of your bore.

Plus carbon fiber does not hold onto foreign material that could potentially scratch or damage your gun’s bore.

It’s for these reasons that Tipton uses carbon fiber to make their cleaning rods. What’s more, the rod’s handle comes with ball bearings to ensure the smooth rotation of the cleaning action.

Tipton Deluxe Review, Pros and Cons

The balls allow the rod to rotate easily down the bore, and by doing this, the rod follows the rifling as it cleans making the cleaning process easy and simple.    

The Tipton rod comes in varying sizes. So if you need to clean a rifle, shotgun, or handgun, there is a size for every bore size.

Main Features

  • Two Sets of High Quality Bearings
  • Hanging hole For Easy Storage
  • Excellent For Working Tight Patches
  • Comfortable Ergonomic Handle
  • Stainless Steel Carbon Fiber Rods
  • Heat & Corrosion-Resistant Material
  • Smoothly Follows the Rifling Even While Under Pressure


  • Extremely rigid
  • Sturdy and tough
  • Made from heat and corrosion-resistant material
  • Comes with balls bearings for easy cleaning
  • Comes in varying sizes
  • Durable construction
  • It is easy to use


  • It is expensive

3. Dewey Rods 22C30 Gun Cleaning Rod Review

Dewey Rods 22C30

J Dewey is a family business that has produced gun cleaning tools and equipment for decades.

So if you have never heard of this company, we are proud to be the first one to introduce you to it and tell you about its gun cleaning rod.

J Dewey has been in operation since 1975 and they make gun cleaning products.

Since they have been doing this for years, they have perfected the art of making gun cleaning products that exceed any user expectations or standards.

The Dewey Rods 22C30 one-piece cleaning rod is no exception. It is made with the highest of standards to ensure that it meets your gun cleaning needs.

The rod is made of aluminum, a material known for its tough but lightweight structure. It is coated with a nylon coating and its handle is shaped like a screwdriver which comes with a one ball bearing.

We would like to say that many gun owners frown upon aluminum rods because they are not very rigid. But you can use a bore guide with this rod to prevent flexing when applying additional pressure during the cleaning process.

Dewey Rods 22C30 Review, Pros and Cons

The Dewey rod comes with a brass jag and brush adapter. And it has  8 by 32 threads that allow you to screw in brushes and jags from other brands other than those from Dewey. All in all, it a simple, affordable cleaner that you can use for light-duty cleaning.

Main Features

  • Ideal For AR15 Rifles
  • One-Piece Rod
  • Ball Bearing Handle
  • Nylon Coating
  • Smooth Rotation
  • 8/36 Male Threads
  • Comes with 22J Brass Jag
  • SMBA Brush Adapter


  • Nylon coating to prevent damage during the cleaning process
  • Simple design
  • Comes with a brush adapter and brass jag
  • Ideal for AR15 rifles
  • The handle rotates easily
  • It has a smooth rotation
  • It is affordable


  • Suitable for only a few rifles and guns

4. Outers 41642 Review

Outers 41642

Outers is a company that produces quality gun cleaning tools and accessories and sells them at super affordable prices.

Most of their products don’t come with hefty price tags and that’s why they are ideal for beginners who don’t spend much on their first cleaning kits.

So among the cleaning accessories the company makes are cleaning rods.

This Outers 41642 model is made of steel and it is 33 inches long. It is designed to clean .22 caliber rifles and larger. 

The rod is a one-piece rod, so its rigid, strong, and sturdy. Not flexing problems you get with threaded rods.

It comes with a T-shaped handled designed to fit snugly and comfortably in your palm.

Since it not flexible, it won’t bend or snap when pressure is asserted on it. The handle comes with ball bearings which provide a smooth rotation as you pass through the bore.  

Outers 41642 Review, Pros and Cons

The coated steel material protects the rod from corrosion and rusting. So it works well in any temperature condition.

Main Features

  • Made of the Highest Quality Materials
  • One-Piece Design
  • Full-Size Rod Covers Full Length of Bore
  • No Annoying Loose Sections While in Use
  • Strong, Long-Lasting Coated Steel
  • Caliber-Specific Sizing Assures a Proper Fit
  • Nylon Jags & Nylon Loops
  • Rod Adaptor


  • One-piece design
  • Rigid and strong construction
  • Steel coating to prevent rusting and corrosion
  • Great handle with ball bearing for smooth rotation
  • Extremely affordable
  • Comes with nylon loops, nylon jags, and rod adapter


  • Steel coating chip off with time

5. Tipton 658539 Max Force Review

Tipton 658539 Max Force

We have added another Tipton product on this list because let’s face it, their products are awesome.

They have very high ratings and numerous positive user feedback and that’s because people have good things to say about their products.

Tipton never seems to disappoint.

The quality of their gun cleaning tools seems to be unmatched. This is why we decided to add the Tipton 658539 Max Force cleaning rod to this list.

And the Tipton Max Forces cleaning rod is like no other. First, its made of carbon fiber, so you already know that it’s a great product because this material is quite strong and sturdy.

You can use the rod to clean different types of shotguns, rifles, and pistols. So it’s extremely versatile.

The rod is 40 inches in length, so you can clean guns with long barrels without a problem.

It comes with a handle that is adjustable. You can move the handle up and down the rod and it moves with ease. There is a clip that allows you to secure the handle in place once you get to the length you want. 

Tipton 658539 Max Force Review, Pros and Cons

This simple yet effective mechanism allows you to clean handguns and rifles because you can adjust the rod length to suit that of your gun’s barrel.

So this is a pretty innovative cleaning rod that every gun owner should own, particularly if you have a large gun collection.

Main Features

  • Highly Durable Lightweight Design
  • One-Piece Carbon Fiber Rod
  • 40″ Usable Rod Length
  • Patent Pending Clamp Mechanism
  • Rod Rotates Freely On Ball Bearings
  • Ergonomic & Adjustable Handle
  • Fully Solvent-Resistant


  • Durable and lightweight
  • Extremely versatile
  • Adjustable handle
  • Can clean almost all types of firearms
  • One-piece rod
  • Made of carbon fiber for strength and durability


  • It is bulky

Buyer’s Guide

It doesn’t matter what type of cleaning rod you buy, if it’s used improperly it may cause damage to your gun’s bore.

Bores are sensitive as a baby’s bottom. If you use a rod that bumps on the sides of the bore, it may cause damage.

That said, buying the right cleaning rod for your bore is important to prevent damage. So let us check out some key elements that you need to consider when buying a gun cleaning rod.

A Single Piece or Screw-together Type of Rod

You want a rod that is rigid and many cleaning kits come with gun cleaning rods that are pretty flimsy. The rods tend to break easily after one or two uses and you are forced to buy another one.

So avoid the cheap screw-together type of rods because they are not very rigid. They tend to start bending after a few uses.

Single-piece rods are more rigid and last longer than that those that are screwed together. 


Cleaning rods are made of rigid plastic, carbon fiber, brass, aluminum, or steel. Aluminum, carbon fiber, brass, and plastic rods are less likely to cause damage to your gun’s bore than steel rods. For the reason that they are less abrasive than steel.

But aluminum, brass, plastic rods also not very rigid and they pick up abrasive residue that can scratch up the bore.

Steel rods that are not coated are also not ideal for cleaning the inside of your gun’s barrel unless they are coated with a soft material like plastic.

Coated steel rods help prevent damage to the bore as you run the rod through it during the cleaning process.

So choosing the material to go with is entirely up to you. Each material has its pros and cons.

You can choose to go with an aluminum rod, but the problem with such rods is that they may leave small deposits of aluminum as you pass the rod through the bore.

And the last thing you want is different kinds of metal shavings in your bore because that could cause some serious problems the next time you shoot your gun.

When there is foreign material in your bore, this material may weaken the steel cause it to crack and chip more quickly.

Brass rods are expensive than coated steel rods or aluminum rods, but they can cause damage to the bore of your gun over time. 

Ultimately, the decision lies with you on what type of rod to buy. We recommend that you do your research, and ask gun experts which type of rod is suitable for your needs.

We also recommend that you don’t use the same rod for too long. Cleaning rods are not expensive compared to gun barrels. 

Size of Caliber

The size of your bore determines the size and thickness of the rod to use. Some gun cleaning kits come with two rods that have to be screwed together to clean gun bores that vary in length.

Some come with single-piece rods that are specific to a particular caliber size. 

You can get custom rods for custom calibers. And you can also get rods that can clean a range of handguns and rods than can clean different rifles. Just ensure that whatever cleaning rod you buy is suitable for your gun’s caliber.  

Length of the Rod

Cleaning rods come in varying lengths because gun barrels also come in varying lengths.

Cleaning rods designed to clean rifle bores cannot be used to clean handgun rods because they are longer and thicker.


The rigidity of a cleaning rod is extremely essential. And this depends on the material used to make the rod. Steel rods are the most rigid, which makes them more ideal for gun cleaning than other types of rods.

But because they are abrasive, most gun owners prefer to use coated steel rods, aluminum, carbon fiber, or brass rods.

The problem with materials like aluminum, brass, and carbon fiber is that they are much softer than steel, which makes them flexible. And flexible cleaning rods are not the best because they bend after a few uses.

And it would be a grievous mistake to use a bent cleaning rod to clean your gun’s bore because for sure it will touch the sides of the bore causing damage. 


Brass rods and carbon fibers usually cost more than aluminum or steel rods. But we would not recommend you put much focus on the price. Steel coated rods do a better job than brass or aluminum rods.

In as much as you might be on a budget, focus more on the quality of the rod and its ability to meet your needs. But at the same time, don’t buy a cleaning rod because it is super cheap. It might be more harmful than helpful. 


If you own one or more guns, you know why it’s important to clean them. And you also know that using quality cleaning materials is essential.

So when you go out shopping for a cleaning rod, even if you are on a budget, get the best quality rod you possibly can for your budget.

If you end up buying the wrong rod, it can cause great damage to your gun barrel. You would rather buy a new cleaning rod than a new barrel because they are extremely affordable.

If you own more than one or two guns, the Tipton Max Force gun cleaning rod would be the best option. It’s versatile and you can adjust the rod length to suit any barrel length.

If you are a beginner, stick with a simple rod such as the Dewey one-piece rod. It has a simple design and its fairly easy to use. With that said, we hope you have enjoyed reading this review and we hope that it was helpful.

Best Gun Cleaning Rod

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