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Old March 24, 2013, 07:53 AM   #1
s3779m
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Self Blueing

Any experience good or bad on cold blueing yourself?
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Old March 24, 2013, 08:24 AM   #2
Aguila Blanca
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I have done several touch-ups and a couple of complete pistols using Brownells' Oxpho-Blue (liquid, not paste) product. It's easy to work with and the resulting finish seems to be fairly durable and resistant to wear. My only dislike is that it's not as deep and black as the classic bluing on old Colt and S&W firearms. But I've tried other cold blue products and the results were disastrous.
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Old March 24, 2013, 08:40 AM   #3
s3779m
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Thanks, I always ask whats the worst that can happen. The answer can sometimes scare you. Thanks again.
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Old March 25, 2013, 06:04 AM   #4
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Research rust bluing, it is easy to do and you will never consider cold bluing a complete firearm again. I keep cold blue around for tiny touchups, but rust blue is the way to go for the home gunsmith to get a top quality result with no special equipment.
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Old March 25, 2013, 12:29 PM   #5
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If you just gotta cold blue, use Brownells' Dicropan or Oxphoblue. I have seen a few cold blue jobs that looked ok, but most look lousy.

If you have someone local who does hot tank bluing, you can often have them just dip the parts for $35-$50 if you strip and polish them. You're going to have to strip and polish the gun anyway to get a half-way decent cold blue job, so you might as well just do it right. It's false economy to put all the work into the job and then try to shortcut on the final finish.
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Old March 25, 2013, 10:34 PM   #6
4V50 Gary
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Like Scorch suggested, look into express bluing. Degrease, boil, apply blue, then boil again, then apply blue, boil, apply blue, card and boil. Then oil.
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Old March 25, 2013, 10:42 PM   #7
James K
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But note that rust bluing is NOT cold bluing and requires different chemicals.

Rust bluing, done right, is beautiful and durable. All those pre-1930's Mausers and Lugers we like so much were rust blued, as were most of the commercial rifles of that era.

But cold blue, even used with heating or hot water, is NOT durable and no matter how good it looks when first applied, will wear off rapidly and look spotty and ugly.

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Old March 26, 2013, 08:11 AM   #8
Rifleman1776
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I have long used Oxpho Blue for touch ups. It works but is not durable. I get a deeper finish if I apply with 0000 steel wool. Something about the reaction with the steel does it.
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Old March 26, 2013, 05:37 PM   #9
s3779m
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One more question, did the cold blueing stop it from rusting? I have a taurus 1911 with a bad blueing. Carrying it on a summer day means sweat and rust spots, or I should say rust sections.
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Old March 29, 2013, 07:16 AM   #10
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"One more question, did the cold blueing stop it from rusting? I have a taurus 1911 with a bad blueing. Carrying it on a summer day means sweat and rust spots, or I should say rust sections."

Sweating on a steel firearm finish is universally a bad thing - promotes rust like crazy. That is nothing unusual. Sweat will even help promote rust on the newer "nitron" finishes used on many guns today as an alternative to bluing.


Bluing, regardless of the type or process, does not STOP rusting. It only will SLOW IT DOWN, so to speak. All blued finishes need a regular thin coat of oil, to prevent rusting. In fact, I know of no practical finish for steel that will ever stop the possibility of rust, 100 %.
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Old March 29, 2013, 08:07 AM   #11
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Blueing does not stop rust. Blueing is a rust.
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