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Thread: cold barrel reblueing

  1. #1

    cold barrel reblueing

    has anyone tried reblueing there barrel with this method if so good results, bad results,
    or any feed back, comments, or advise please.

  2. #2
    Its value very much depends on what you want to re-blue.

    My experience is that results can be acceptable (if the gun isn't too valuable) when touching up small rust spots, usually unsatisfactory on thickening worn blueing, and unacceptable for re-blueing from scratch. Problems are normally poor colour density and consistency, and poor durability.

    If I have no alternative, I use Birchwood Casey Super Blue for preference, wear disposable gloves (to protect my hands and keep skin oils off the workpiece), clean the area very very thoroughly with isopropyl alcohol (about 14 for a decent size tin from Maplins), follow the directions exactly, and don't have too high an expectation.

    However, if at all possible, I use the old technique of rust blueing (since I have plenty of time) to completely re-blue. There are plenty of online tutorials explaining how to do this ancient process - it takes a while but the end result can be stunning. My only additional tip for this is to use De-Ox to completely remove the old blue (and all the other surface gunk) before starting.

    Best of all (and not that expensive) is to take it to your local gunsmith and get him to hot blue it for virtually guaranteed excellent results from a competent and experienced person.

  3. #3
    Cold blues have not been particularly worthwhile in my experience.
    Hot caustic black is the 'normal' black see a gunsmith if you want this or diy if you know what to do!
    (The best 'touch up for' a Caustic black is a permanent marker).
    The Rust blue mentioned above (Knottaclu) is worth the effort but one caveat;
    it will not give you a polished finish if that is what you desire - It will give a nice satin
    finish because it will etch the metal (no need to try for a high polish).
    Think of the satin shotgun barrel.

    Just for elucidation, one common rust blue;

    If you know a Chemist It is better for them to mix this for you!

    Nitric Acid 70% Conc 70g
    Hydrochloric Acid 30% Conc 57g
    Iron Filings 28g
    Distilled Water 850ml

    Mix acids together then add iron filings slowly (the reaction is quite energetic).
    Remove precipitate.
    Add to water (Remember Always Add Acid)

    Totally degrease parts you wish to black and then never handle with bare hands again until job is finished.
    Cheap and simple degreasing can be achieved by washing in hot water with household washing powder and washing soda.

    Apply the acid to the metal (preferably with the parts being warm) using plain cotton wool pads in even strokes -
    there is no need to swamp the parts - a thin even coat is required.
    Set metalwork aside and let the acid do its stuff.
    A humid atmosphere is needed so that the rust forms.
    Hopefully next day you will have a lump of metal covered in a fine rust!

    The part(s) now need to be boiled in water - probably best to use distilled water here -
    (I use distilled as the water here is so hard you can sharpen a knife with it).

    Within a few minutes of boiling in water you will see the rust begin to turn black give it 10 or so minutes then remove from water.
    Now you need to 'card' off the fine black rust this is done with a carding wheel (see Brownells USA) or some really fine steel wool
    Note: the wheel or wool need to be totally free of oil or grease.
    As the parts are nice and hot you can dry them quickly and re apply some more acid...
    Basically repeat until the desired depth of black is achieved!
    Once your black is finished seal with oil etc.
    Jobs done!

    There are a few torrents out there from the American Gunsmithing Institute that are worth downloading showing all of the blacking methods.
    They will de-mystify the whole game and teach you things that 'gunsmiths' generally consider to be 'secret' information!

    R H Angier's
    book - well worth a read even if it needs translating into modern English!!!!

    Hope this helps!

  4. #4
    ill have a go & see what happens with the super blue as it;s only a bit the size of a five pence piece worn on the bottom barrel of my shotgun

  5. #5
    I have used caseys gun blu on a few shotguns and have found that if you follow the instructions ! on the leaflet thats supplied with the kit,then the finish is very good and long lasting with NO patchey bits and it should be buffed to finish.

    Buy the kit,follow the instructions and no one will ever know its been re-blued.

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