So, you wantto do the entire barrel and parts… Ok… Here we go………..!!!! When I do a whole gun I disassemble theentire gun, take the barrel off the receiver when possible and start my prepwork. The small parts are examined forrust and finish. If they need it I willbead blast, buff or polish to removecorrosion and clean them up. If they don’tneed all that I will reblue over the existing blue. The barrel is put on my lathe and sanded downto bare metal. Depending on the finalfinish I am going for depends on how far I go with sanding and polishing. Remember, the final finish after bluing isdependent on how you want it to look, coarse sanded, fine sanded, polished, etc….(If you don’t have a lathe you can do it by hand. I find using 3M pad work well,very well. You can find them at Lowes, Home depot, cabinet supply shops oronline. Fine, Super fine and Ultra fine.)
Once thebarrel is stripped all the parts are soaked in degreaser solution overnight. To tell the truth, any degreaserconcentrate mixed with water at 10% or 20% will do fine. Heating the solution will help some too. Iusually heat the solution, place the parts in and let it sit and cool overnight. ( I don’t always plug the ends of the barrelas the degreaser will not hurt the barrel, actually it will help clean it andit will be getting oil/clp after the process is done)
(Aninexpensive way to make soaking tub is the old rain gutter. Cut a piece toapprox 36” apply the end caps and use copious amounts of gutter glue/sealer onthe ends. I use two inexpensive single burners, place the gutter tank on themand warm the water to around 120/140 deg. The sealer will hold up fine. Oryou can fill a big pot with water and heat it up and pour it in the tank)
The next steps are done wearing Nitrile examgloves. ***From this point on you do notwant to touch the metal with bare hands!!!***
After the parts have soaked I take them out,rinse them well with water and dry with a clean towel. Wipe the parts withLacquer thinner and let dry. The partsare then set aside in a clean grease free area.
I usuallystart with the small parts. I use a heatgun but in most cases a good hair dryer will do the trick. Heat the parts until they are almost too hotto touch. Using a clean pair of small long nose pliers I drop the pieces in atub of product, Oxpho or Arts Belgian and take them right out and let them dryor blow them off with an air chuck. Itake the steel wool and start rubbing until they start to shine. You can expect the parts to dry with a lightrust effect the first few times they come out of the tub. After the second orthird time you won’t see that as much. Repeat the process until the parts arethe color you desire or they just aren’t getting any darker. I then take the parts and soak them in hotwater for about an hour, take them out and dry them, do a quick rebuffing withsteel wool then drop them in a tub of oil over night. Light gun oil, motor oil, it doesn’t reallymatter. The next day the parts are takenout of the oil and wiped with a clean towel (I like baby diapers as they leaveno link). The part will have darkened abit more after the oil bath.
Now for thebarrel…. The barrel gets the sametreatment after the degreaser bath. Iuse the heat gun to warm the barrel until it is almost too hot to touch. (you can also soak it in a hot bath, aka raingutter with heated water to warm the barrel) I then use cotton balls and either Oxpho Cream or Arts Belgian. (Note – Arts Belgian will work slower, takemore coats to get a deep blue/black look. Oxpho Cream works faster but I feel the Arts gives a better deepercolor. I also use Arts to brown a barrel, but that is another topic for anotherday.) Dab the cotton ball in thesolution and apply liberally starting at the top/bottom and work around thebarrel and all the way up/down until it is completely covered. Then with adamp/wet cotton swab run it completely up and down smoothing out theapplication. (use one cotton ball for every application, do not re use) Yes youwill get the same rusting after the barrel is dried. Sometimes I use the heat gut to speed up thedrying. Let the solution sit on thebarrel for about a minute or two then wipe off with a clean towel then lightlybuff with steel wool. Repeat the processuntil you get the color you want. OxphoCream takes about 4 to 10 applications and the Arts will take anywhere from 6to 20 coats. After you have achieved thecolor you want, place the barrel in hot water for about an hour, dry it offrebuff with steel wool and either place the barrel in a tank of oil or wipe thebarrel down with a generous amount of oil with a clean rag. Either hang/suspendor place it where there is little contact with anything that will take the oiloff the barrel. (setting it on a couple of pencils does the job). Let it sitover night and the next day wipe the oil leaving a fine sheen on thebarrel.
Now reassemblethe gun, test fire and it is good to go…
Good luck with your efforts. I hope this helps some of you out and you getthe same result as I do. (Note – when Iam working on a barrel and I am getting a spot that is not taking the bluing, Istop the process and start over taking the barrel back to the lathe but do amodified degreasing. This usually doesthe trick as I spend most of the prep on the area not taking the bluing. If you have any questions feel free to sendme a PM.)
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