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Do-it-yourself reblue?

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by dolphin77, Aug 24, 2010.

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  1. dolphin77

    dolphin77 Member

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    Has anyone had any success or experience at doing rebluing? I'm not talking about restoration where rust removal, dents etc. is concerned, but just a basic reblue of parts of a gun. I have a model 12 that has about 40% of the bluing worn off on the sides and bottom of receiver, no rust, pittings, etc.just needs bluing. I would send it off but I don't want to wait 6-12 weeks for the job to get done...any ideas, experience, etc...Thanks WC
     
  2. grntitan

    grntitan Well-Known Member

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    Its like fixing a dent in your car with duck tape. Its a bad idea in my opinion.
     
  3. southjblue

    southjblue Active Member

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    I did a Fox Sterlingworth many yrs ago and followed all directions---The gun came out like new and still looks greeat---It can be done---SJB---
     
  4. superxjeff

    superxjeff Active Member

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    Opinions are like.. Well... I think you know. All depends on how good of a blue job you want. I have seen lots of them poorly done and a few tjat were just ok. Bottom line? If you are ok with however it turns out then do it. If you want it to be done nice, send it out and be without for a few weeks. Done right the job takes a long time unless you have all the right tools. I would never do it. Jeff
     
  5. grntitan

    grntitan Well-Known Member

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    SuperXJeff---I noticed you didn't hesitate to give your opinion though. LOL he asked right?
     
  6. Unknown1

    Unknown1 Well-Known Member

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    The only barrel I ever tried to blue myself turned out looking like urban camouflage: blue, black, white, gray....

    MK
     
  7. hmb

    hmb Well-Known Member

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    I have had good results using instant blue applied with a pad of 0000 steel wool. Cleaning and degreasing the metal is very important. Also removing any oxidation is important, the steel wool pad helps do that. also if the metal is kept warm during the process the results are better. HMB
     
  8. phirel

    phirel TS Member

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    There are ways you can get a reasonably good blue job yourself but it takes some work. Step one is remove all existing bluing and polish the metal with care. Polishing the metal flat with a round wheel does take a bit of practice. After that is done, write to me for step two. Of course, after step one is done, and done well, anyone who does hot bluing will finish the job cheap.

    Pat Ireland
     
  9. ljutic73

    ljutic73 Well-Known Member

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    I agree with HMB...prep is everything...and remember that you're using water to rinse the part...so complete dissasembly may be in order. Just take your time...I've used Birchwood-Casey's product with good results...
     
  10. dcb_wvu

    dcb_wvu Member

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    Brownells makes a number of products that now come in creme form. They are excellent but as all above have said, it is the metal prep work that makes for a good bluing regardless of the process/product used to blue it. If you've got the paintence, time and skill, give it a try, you can always take it to a professional if you really screw it up.
     
  11. teddy34

    teddy34 TS Member

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    I "rust blued a Baker sideXside. You start with fairly course sand paper
    and work up to 300 grit (which is not real fine, but provides needed tooth
    for good adhesion). I found a Dremel Contour Sander with attachments.
    One of the attachments is half moon shaped and works perfectly on the
    barrels. Get Browning solution fron Brownell's and follow directions-
    apply solutioh let sit in a humid area, when rust forms dip parts in
    boiling distilled water. Card off (steel wool or .002 brush wire wheel)
    (Brownell's) the now black rust=reapply solution, repeat. Took 11 coats,
    but all who have seen are impressed. With sander it is much easier
    than it sounds. Absolutely no damage to serial # or letters. Good luck, Gary Owen
     
  12. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Some of the old formulas for rust blueing give excellent results. If you're not in a hurry and like lots of work, and don't mind playing with acids. A good job will take longer than 6 weeks, though. But the finish will be superior to modern cold blueing and most hot blueing. The old rust blue was deep and wore like iron.
     
  13. sliverbulletexpress

    sliverbulletexpress TS Member

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    Brownells hot water blue, never seen anything else as good but it takes lots of work and patience. I don't have the patience, my bud does so I know how good it can look but if I mowed yards I could make enough to pay for a real blue job in a couple of weekends easy and be a lot more happy. I've seen lots of Birchwood Casey reblues at the gunshow, look like sh@t and smell just as bad and leave that stink on your hands if you picked it up. Lets face it most people want something they can rub on the gun and in 15 min top have a nice blue job, aint no way. Some things are better left to the pro while you spend your time doing what your good at. I'm getting on a rant here but I'd rather see a gun with honest wear and patiner than some crappy do it to yourself home blue kit. What's next a do it yourself embalming kit?
     
  14. trapman69

    trapman69 Member

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    Location:
    Warrenton Mo
    http://www.hotflashrefinishing.com/ They have averaged about 10 working days to reblue the 3 guns I've sent them 2 were model 12's and they did a real nice job. Tom R
     
  15. Lobo

    Lobo TS Member

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    Let the pros do it. Most home blues don't last and I have seen some BAD jobs. dished screw holes, etc. Prep is 90% of the job. Be a shame to ruin a Model 12. Buffing wheels and a blue tank do not a good bluer make.
     
  16. Big Az Al

    Big Az Al Well-Known Member

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    near Tucson Trap
    I will admitt that I am jaded, growing up in a shop that did/does hot blue.

    The little bit I have used for a quick touch up of a screw or small part, show no promise of ever matching what hot blue does

    Some of the cold blues, when being followed, have done more damage to the surface, just making it have a color then the wear or rust ever did in creating the need for refinishing! the acid compoment in the cold product etchs the finish in, if it stops looking good, and most do! the next finish in order to look good, someone has to remove enough metal to get beneath it. Can you say nearly destroyed?

    Then there are the people that show up with something that looks like it was stored in salt water for a couple years, saying I only did this last month and look what happened!

    There are, some products that will make the steel look black, that to my eye has a painted look.

    My shop has a 3 week (or less) turn time.

    Does hot bluing,

    I have worked with polising since a was 8 or 9 years old, and am soon to be 50.

    sow's ears rarely make silk purses, but sometimes they come pretty close!

    Al Lingham
    Kelso Gunsmithing
    Tucson, AZ
    520-235-1374

    So as I started, I don't like cold blue products,

    And unless you are somewhat OCD or AR and will spend days and months on the project, not just an hour or so every now and then.

    In the words of the old fram ad, "pay now, or pay me later".
     
  17. ou.3200

    ou.3200 Well-Known Member

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    The old Herter's Belgian Blue did a good job if the directions were precisely followed. I think someone is still marketing the formula and Brownell's may carry it. You need a tank big enough to immerse the parts and heat source sufficient to bring water to a rolling boil. The Belgian Blue was very durable and attractive.
     
  18. JerryP

    JerryP Active Member

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    Cold blue will not hold up to use, no matter how well done. To use it on an area where the original blue has worn off is a waste of time.
     
  19. wm rike

    wm rike Member

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    Jul 19, 2007
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    To do a proper job requires a "tool guy" level of ability and a big dose of time and patience. There are no shortcuts. Next you have to determine how good a job you want done.

    If you want a good job and your M12 hasn't been reblued before, then I would suggest a rust blue (beautiful and durable) over hand polished steel - no power buffing. Now we're talking money and time, yours or someone else's. First-time rust bluing something large like a whole gun is not for those faint of heart, hurried, or easily discouraged.

    If it's just a shooter and you just want a single color (black or blue/black), then you can take your chances with a power buff and finish it with a good hot blue.

    As noted above, cold blues tend to be a grab-bag of results and are not especially durable.

    Personally, I would invest the time in a careful hand polish to about 320 grit and let a professional rust blue or hot dip it. Doug Turnbull puts out a nice DVD on metal prep.
     
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