Bren Gas / receiver Cleaing Rod Question
Hello, newby here, and I am grateful to find such a knowledgable community to learn from. I am hoping to make my own gas tube cleaning rod for the bren and was wondering about dimensions. I believe it to be about 17" long, but I haven't been able to track down the width of the original rod. I am guessing it to be 3/8", 7/16" or 1/2" in width. Any info would be appreciated.
08-22-2012 02:18 PM
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There were two sorts (but MANY variations.....) The first, the Mk1 was pretty much a standard shotgun type cleaning rod with brass ferrule end threaded to take the different brushes. It was rubbish, didn't last long and was soon replaced. The Mk2 was a length of wood with two lognitudinal inserts that held the shanks of the brushes. These shanks were held in place by a sliding ferrule
What sort are you after details of?
"What sort are you after details of?"
Thank you for the reply, I'm hoping to copy the second, later style, and I am needing to know what size of wooden rod I should use, I will just be using some off-the-shelf wooden dowel from the home improvement store. I'm not sure what size of rod the originals were constructed from.
Before I start, I'm absolutely SURE that these things are readily available, off the shelf in the US. Can anyone point YB in the right direction as it's not just the rod you need but the brushes and sliding ferrule too........ and without the sliding ferrule that keeps it all in place, don't even bother starting the job
Really Senior Member
I've got some of these, somewhere in the garage. I'll have to look it up.
There's also a 'universal' one that takes the early brush on one end and and the later one on the other.
Are you going to photograph it with a tape next to it Mk7 of shall I just quote the measurements - unless Brian at BDL has a gash spare o0ne to sell. But they ain't rare
Measurements or a photo w/ tape would be great. I'm pretty handy in the shop and I have a lot of odd tubing sizes to work with so this shouldn't be a tough project for me. The brushes are readily available for a decent price, but the handle and ferrule is a little harder and higher price to find over here.
READY................., here we go. The rod is 17" long x .5" in diameter. If you have a Bren gun transit chest, the rod fits into thetwo fittings at the front right hand end (as you're looking in) and is secured by the little 1" x 2" or so rotating chock. I learned many years ago that the rods were made from hickory but the one I'm holding in my hand certainly isn't........, it looks like a bit of plane or boxwood to me. Certainly the ones we used as apprentices were a hard hickory type wood because we used to use them to 'bone' the rifle woodwork we'd just repaired as test pieces...
1-7/8" from the end of the rod is a hole .1" in diameter drilled diagonally through. From this/these holes for 1-78" forward is a groove to take the shank of the cleaning brush you are using.
To keep the shanks and the cleaning brush in place, a 2" long steel ferrule with a .5" I/d slides back and forth. The legs/arms/shank of the brush sort of holding it in place.
If you want the REAL truth about these rods - and - and the brushes - and the originals.......... As every squaddy and Bren gun crewman will tell you, they were pure crap! They will look good in the Bren transit chest but that's all. because this is what we in the Armourers shops used to use..........
On operations in Malaya we had Savage shotguns and they came with a comprehensive big bore cleaning kit. The 12G shotgun steel wire 'christmas tree' bore scrubber was better than anything else in existance for scrubbing Bren gas cylinders especially if you screwed it onto a cut-short standard issue cleaning rod and put the rod into the electric drill chuck.
Off at a tangent........ I seem to remember that the threads for the shotgun cleaning kit differed from the UNF threads of our UK rods so you had to make a little adaptor/connector on the lathe but it was simple enough. But when you had loads of Savages and Brens........... Every little helped as they say!
Really Senior Member
Bren Gas Cyl Cleaning Rod
If I remember correctly, werent' these rods reissued later with the 21mm Sub Calibre
adaptor for the 6mm LAW? They just had the addition of steel wire bristle brush for cleaning the bore of the adaptor.
When I was at 27 Command, we had to make a 'Gauge' that was basicaly a straightness of bore gauge.
You cleaned the bore by scrubbing it out & the gauge MUST run through without binding.
it was discovered that you could clean the bore & it looked ok.
But SOME of the 66's when fired. Got the 'Projectile' stuck in the bore & it was pulled out of
the Poor Firers hands!
Often resulting in a torn ear as well!..Very Nasty!
It was also discovered, that even though the bores of the adpator had been scrubbed & oiled. they would STILL rust when sat on the Armourey shelf!
This was because of the corrosive effects of the propellant charge used.
We found the ONLY way around this, was to clean oil & then store them in a 50 Gallon Oil drum full of oil! The oil prevented too much oxygen oxidising the bores & the oil kept them clean! A large container taking up a fair bit of space. But there was really no other option as they got fired so frequently!
Really Senior Member
Early (Mk.1/1) cylinder rod [BE9204] with threaded brass ferrule on one end, probably modified later for the clip-on type brushes:-
This one is 17" long. The steel sleeve, which appears to be seamless tubing, is nominal 1/2" bore and and about 10 thou thickness, with nominal 2" length (variable). Note the three annular rings, 1" separation, for grasping.
---------- Post added at 06:29 PM ---------- Previous post was at 06:21 PM ----------
Two Mk.2 rods [BE4199]. One is 23 3/4" long, the other 17".
---------- Post added at 06:36 PM ---------- Previous post was at 06:29 PM ----------
drawing D.D.(E) 1924 shows the Mk.1 rod as being two 17" sections; the handle one being broadly as BE9204, the other section being with two brass ferrules threaded male and female.
Last edited by Mk VII; 08-29-2012 at 01:26 PM.