I keep my cleaning rags next to my gun vise. It has occured to me that this may be an accident waiting to happen. Has anyone had gun cleaning rags ignite due to spontaneous combustion. What precautions do you use. jack
The answer to your question depends on what solvents or other materials are on your cleaning rags. Rags left in a pile with the 'wrong' solvent on them is a definite hazard.
If the rags are hung up or spread out, fumes and any potential heat will dissipate. That's good as it applies to the heat but depending on the type of fumes, probably bad for you.
Airtight metal rag storage containers are made for this very purpose. Commonly used in automotive garages and other places where cleaning rags are used with flammable solvents, these containers eliminate oxygen and confine the fumes. They functionally eliminate any chance of fire or fire damage.
I was staining the deck on my house . When I finished for the day I threw the rag ( one rag ) that I was using to wipe off excess - over the side until I could go down and put them in the trash can . I waited about 20 minutes & when Iwent to pick them up they were already smoking . The next day I did it again to see if I may have had something else on the raag & the same thing happened .
Made a believer out of me !! Be careful with used rags .