View Full Version : Worth Refinshing?

January 5, 2008, 03:20 PM
My uncle recently found me an aging bolt action Stevens 12. ga. at an estate sale. It wasnt well cared for at all, the stock is good condition and the bolt assembly is in working order, but the finish on the barrel is rusted off and the front sight is missing. The model number escapes me at the moment but I have a few questions?

1. Does it actually need a front sight? (sorry i dont have a model # at the time of posting)

2. Is it worth refinishing?

3.Would an aftermarket reblueing kit used by myself suffice or should I have professionally repaired?

January 6, 2008, 10:01 AM
1. No - You do not need a front sight on a shotgun.

2. No - You will spend more money refinishing than the gun will ever be worth. The only way it would be "worth" refinishing is if it had sentimental value.

3a. No - If the barrel is pitted a home blue kit will only make it look worse. If you are concerned about the finish check out a local powder coater. See if he can add it into another run of parts to get it done cheaply

3b. No - If there is something mechanically deficient have a gunsmith give you an estimate on repair. You will then have to decide if it is worth it.

Your best bet may be wait until a local law enforcement agency has a gun turn in program in effect. Usually they will give you a $50 -$100 gift certificate to a local store or cash, no questions asked.

January 6, 2008, 09:56 PM
Well, I don't know if I would get rid of the thing... You have something that is fun to shoot and tinker with. Even if the stock isn't in bad shape- it's a great educational tool to learn some of your own refinishing techniques- or cold blueing methods. You can even try your hand at installing or building various stock mounted recoil reducers. Or- just keep the thing like it is. Having an old beaterr around isn't a bad idea if you ever end up with a friend or family member that wants to go hunting or shooting and needs to borrow a shootin iron.

About the front bead (sight). Different folks have different sighting, leading, and/or pointing styles. I don't know, but it seems like I've run across more folks over the age of 40 who ditch the bead. I haven't seen many younger folks do that- but, it's not all that uncommon.

And, don't let anybody poke fun at your bolt gun. Those can be shot as well as any $300 - $10,000 shotgun. It's not about how much is spent- it's about how well the guy behind the trigger can swing it. I won a whole slew of summer sausages at turkey shoots back when I was in high school. (never did win a friggin turkey or a new shotgun!) But, I shot my dad's old 16ga bolt action, and more than held my own against more than a few spoiled rich boys.

January 6, 2008, 11:37 PM
Yeah buddy, you make a good point. I have no intentions of getting rid of the thing (t'was a gift) and it has come in handy. I am the resident gun enthusiast in my neighborhood and I've already used it as a teaching device for some of the younger "brothers" in my old Boy Scout troop (I made Eagle :cool:).

I took it have way out of the case and asked one of my "students" "What do you think this is?", He said "A 30'06?" I pulled it all the way out and told him it was a 12 gauge. He was in awe. I then said "Dont let the type of action decieve you."

It is a fun little conversation piece and who knows, I might actually fix it later.

January 7, 2008, 07:05 PM
Does it have a 2 3/4" or 3" chamber? One of those baked on finishes might turn out pretty snappy. That would be a good winter-time project... along with your own handiwork on a hand rubbed oil finish on the stock.

Just a thought.

January 8, 2008, 10:15 AM
If you decide to refinish the old gun, midway sells a blueing kit made by BLUE WONDER. I used this product when it first came on the market and it is great. However it says its a cold blue, dont pay any attention to that, The inventer of the stuff is a friend of mine and it is really a hot blue (marketed as cold due to liability ) Actually all you need is a good Hair dryer to do the job with it..

January 8, 2008, 01:25 PM
Classic095, No offence intended here, but you really need to find out the difference between cold bluing, hot bluing, rust bluing.:)

January 8, 2008, 02:59 PM
Ray: I know the freakin difference between hot, cold and rust blue.. Blue Wonder advertises their gun blue kit as a cold blue, What I said was the inventor told me it was better used as HOT but didnt advertise it that way because of Liability such as McDonalds and their Hot coffee. If someone burned themselves they might get sued..

Dont presume that someone doesnt know something.. I am a gun smith for your information and I do all the blueing,, just giving some advise to someone asking about a cheap blue job for an old gun..

Nice of you to butt in though THANKS>>

January 8, 2008, 06:16 PM
No, problem, you're the one who seems to be offended, but that is not not bluing. However I was unaware of your expertise and experience. I for one appreciate it when I stick my foot in my mouth and someone politely corrects me. I'm well aware that there are a lot of things I don't know and will never live long enough to learn. I learn more and more every day. It's always a pleasure to converse with someone who does know it all and is a gentleman as well. Vaya con Dios. :)

January 8, 2008, 07:56 PM
I would give the man my formula that I have used for the last 35 years but I doubt he could buy all the chemicals,, so for what he wants, the BLUE wonder BLUEING system is about the best for an amature..I am sure he doesnt want to build heating tanks and go to the expense of the proper chemicals to do a professional job.. :D He could probably Use several other Blueing products such as Birchwood Casey cold blue or 44/40 instant blue from Brownells..

Anyway here is my (along with many other gunsmiths) formula for hot water blueing.

1/4 oz potassium nitrate
1/4 oz sodium nitrate
1/2 oz of bichloride mercury---this is hard to get
1/2 oz of potassium chlorate.

Mix with 10 oz of Hot 150 degree water..

January 8, 2008, 08:43 PM
classic095, I went back to edit my reply but too late, the tone of my reply was uncalled for and unprofessional . Didn't mean to offend you or slight your experience or expertise, after reading my first response I can understand how it might be misinterpreted. Your choice of words ( Hot Bluing ) was my hang up. Again I apologize for my ungentlemanly response. Vaya con Dios RJay

January 8, 2008, 09:05 PM
No problem JRAY , a little jousting just loosens up the thinker a bit.. :)