Thursday, May 23, 2013

group bluing

The chemicals for bluing in a tank as large as mine dictate that you blue more than one gun at a time. I took on several projects.

The first is a Ruger Mark I that belongs to a guy I work with, something got spilled on the gun and it removed a bunch of the finish

here are the before pictures:

After stripping the old finish, I decided to go with a super high gloss, there were few holes or sharp edges to worry about, so I went at it with the buffer.

I also taped off the area on the top between the front & rear sights and sand blasted it, this prevents glare from the sun, and also gives it a nice custom look.  

Here is the gun after bluing:

Here is a before and after comparison

At the time I blued the Mark I, I also blued 4 other guns, this Steyr 9mm, was in sorry shape, lots of pitting near the roll marks, the gun was 100 years old, so I was careful not to ruin the stampings. the owner tried to get the rust and pits out using a dremel, he left some deep gouges that I had to sand out

Here it is before:

 This is what it looked like when he brought it to me

Here it is after many hours of sanding & polishing:
and finished

I also took on a sweet model 29 Smith & Wesson 44 Mag. This had a factory ported barrel. This gun suffered the same fate as the Ruger Mark I, something, not friendly to bluing was put on the gun and took the bluing off. Here it is before

 You can see the missing finish from the front strap forward onto the barrel. I was a little nervous, this is perhaps the most expensive gun I have worked on and I wanted it to look good.

It didn't take much polishing as the metal was near perfect to begin with

I did not get an individual picture of it before bluing, I did 5 guns at once and I forgot to capture all of them on film

Here it is finished though

I also took on this little Star BM 9mm, the customer wanted a two tone finish like the Norinco 1911 I did earlier. it had some pitting and the import roll mark had to be sacrificed during the sanding. Here it is before

I stripped it with Naval Jelly 

Then used the wire wheel to get it ready for polishing:

This is after the first pass on the buffer:

  next I polished the flats to a mirror finish and taped off the areas to be left shiny so I could sand blast the rest

I also took the time to restore the screws, they were mangled by using a tapered screw driver, rather than a "hollow ground" style.

I drilled a hole in a piece of metal slightly larger than the screws. I then wrapped the threads in tape to protect them and put them in the vice:

I then peened the metal back into position

Next I used a skinny file to clean up the slots (no pic, sorry), then I chucked the screws into a drill and using sand paper and a piece of pine I polished the heads:

Here is what they looked like after

 Here is the gun after bluing

 The 5th gun I reblued on this round was my own Ruger Super Blackhawk. I picked it up at the gun show for a bargain and decided to give it a high polish blue job;

Here is what it looked like before, the bluing was decent, but it had a scratch on the frame and some muzzle wear.

I 1st de-greased the gun applied some naval jelly

next I stripped the old finish and cleaned up the metal on the wire wheel

The satin finish left by the wire wheel is actually decent enough to get a good looking bluing job, but I wanted this thing to shine, so on to the polishing:
1st pass on the buffer:

Some of you may notice the ejector rod housing is missing from these photos. For some reason mine had an aluminum housing, I ordered a new blued steel one from Ruger. I also added a nice pair of rose wood grips

Here is the gun after bluing, it is times like these I wish I could take better pictures, this thing looks phenomenal!

close up

Updated picture showing the frame has turned a plum color

Here is a picture of all 5 guns prepped just before bluing:

and here they are after bluing and soaking in oil