When you purchase a new rifle or have your rifle re barreled, like many many machines, there is an important run in or break in period. After mounting your scope you need to sight in the rifle. Use this opportunity to run in the barrel. It is a little extra trouble but it pays dividends later on. Regardless of how smooth your new barrel looks, there is microscopic roughness that needs to be worked smooth. This roughness will collect copper or lead fouling every time the rifle is fired. Removing this will ensure the best chance of getting the best accuracy potential from that barrel.
Cleanliness is next to Godlinessis an old saying that is applied to many things. It also applies to the internals of an accurate rifle, particularly the state of the barrel. Washing your dishes is easy if you have a sink or better still a dishwasher. Cleaning your rifle barrel can be made easier with the right equipment. A clever shooting mate developed a system that I refined to suit my situation. The following pics illustrate what has been developed.
I obtained an old ironing board, modified and mounted a clamp for gripping the butt of the rifle.
Shaped and joined some boards to support the fore end.
There is a trigger rest to help support the rifle when clamped vertically (muzzle down).
SUGGESTED CLEANING TECHNIQUE
Draw a bass wire brush through the barrel, breach to muzzle, a number of times to loosen the fouling. Follow with a cloth patch or mop.
Invert the rifle and draw a solvent soaked patch up the barrel, muzzle to breach. (Apply solvent only in the barrel.) Allow the solvent to dissolve the fouling for 30 minutes or as directed on the label.
Remove all solvent with clean cloth patches. Repeat if necessary, then lightly oil.
To shoot a fox at any distance with any rifle, the first three things you need to know are;
What distance the rifle is sighted in (zeroed) at.
Where the bullet will hit, higher or lower than the cross hair in the scope, at various distances within the effective range of the caliber you are using.
What distance the target is from your firing location, therefore knowing where the point of aim is for bullet placement for a quick humane kill. Therefore knowing the amount of hold under or hold over required.
The illustration below is a clip taken of an interactive website that allows you to understand the trajectory and wind effect on your shot. It could be argued that the .243 Win is an effective caliber on foxes out to 350 yards if the above 3 points are established.
You have shot a fox, and you might wonder if this is a young fox or have you nailed that cunning old rascal that has been stealing your chooks and lambs. The included photos will give you some idea of age.
To capture some of the action when busting foxes, I use a Contour GPS Action Camera mounted on Rover. It has fixed focus, automatic light adjustment and no zoom. The YouTube clip below is action captured on this camera.