Friday, December 19, 2014

Everyday Carry (EDC) Cleaning

What do you carry every day? A gun? A knife? A cell phone? I actually carry all of these things and more. This is not an article about what to carry, but to clean what you carry.
I won’t talk about cleaning your gun for that has more involved than I can put in this article. That will be an article by itself.
After using your knife, it is a good practice to clean and dry your knife (the entire knife, not just the blade). Even for blades that are made with corrosion-resistant stainless steel, prolonged exposure to the elements can cause the steel's surface to oxidize. Folding knives should be kept clean of debris, particularly the locking device on lock-blade knives.
As an alternative, chemical solvents such as Acetone, nail polish remover, MEK, alcohol or paint thinner may be used to clean your blade. Use care with these solvents, as some, such as acetone, nail polish remover, white gas, or brake fluid may damage some knife handles. Avoid harsh detergents that contain Chlorine (mostly powders, including some for washing dishes and clothes), which can accelerate corrosion of the blade steel.
Avoid prolonged immersion in liquids (water, solvents, etc.). This can have a detrimental effect on not only the metal parts, but handles made of wood or other porous materials as well. Before using your knife on food items, wipe clean with alcohol, or wash with hot soapy water and rinse clean. Remember to re-clean and lubricate your knife after the food job is done.
Periodically, and always after cleaning, apply a small amount of lubricant to the working parts of the knife, particularly the pivot points of a folding knife. Then apply a thin film of lubricant to the entire surface of the blade. This will help prevent surface oxidation and corrosion from moisture.
Periodically clean the open end of the battery compartment, the battery compartment threads and O-ring with a clean lint-free cloth lightly moistened with isopropyl alcohol. Apply a coat of
non-conductive silicon or petroleum grease to these surfaces. Replace the battery compartment O-ring if it becomes worn or damaged.
The recessed electrical contacts and interior threads in the head
can be cleaned using a lint-free swab lightly moistened with isopropyl alcohol. Recessed contacts and threads should be cleaned in a counter-clockwise direction to prevent snagging the swab in the threads. Be sure to remove any particles or fibers that may be left behind. Apply a coat of non-conductive silicon or petroleum grease to the interior threads and contacts.
The exterior can be cleaned with a mild soap and water. Rinse well and dry with a soft cotton cloth.

Para cord (A hank or in bracelet form)
You can wash the paracord right in your washing machine -- cold water setting, regular laundry detergent, no fabric softener. Wash with like colors. Then set the bracelet out to air dry on a clean towel. Do not machine dry.
I have an old toothbrush I keep in the shower. When I shower I take the paracord with me, soap it up, scrub a little with the brush, then rinse. Just let it air dry.
Tactical pen
I clean my tactical pen similar to my flashlight. My pen has an “O” ring so I clean it all with alcohol and a q-tip.
My case is a Nite Ize case that I love. It is made of cordura.
Pretreat any stains by spraying a laundry-stain remover or dry-cleaning solvent on the stain. Allow it to soak into the fabric for at least an hour.
Combine 8 oz. of warm water with chlorine-free laundry detergent in a spray bottle. Swirl the bottle to mix.
Spray the cleaning solution onto the Cordura item. Use a soft- to medium-bristled cleaning brush to work the cleaning solution into the fabric.
Dampen a soft cloth with cool water. Squeeze to remove excess moisture. Wipe down the item to remove soap residue.
Air dry the Cordura item.
Home, car, and other keys get a build up of pocket lint and other gunk in the crevices. I can only imagine how much additional dirt makes it into my ignition or house lock.
Grab a cotton ball and some rubbing alcohol or vinegar and wipe down your car keys every couple months.
I would suggest a little graphite in all the locks on your car keys at least once a year too.

These are just examples of some EDC that you may have and how to clean it all. Rubbing alcohol is good on most metal or plastic surfaces. Soap and water on material. Be careful cleaning electronics with liquids.
I don’t think you need to do this type of cleaning more than maybe every 3 months. A 6 month cleaning would probably suffice. Sometimes I’m lucky to do it annually! (Except the gun!)

Semper Paratus
Check 6