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Old September 3, 2017, 07:52 PM   #26
James K
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I have not seen any revolvers that are plated with stainless steel. SS guns are made from SS; a matte finish is achieved in the polishing/finishing process if desired.

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Old September 3, 2017, 08:15 PM   #27
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You can find some stainless steel guns with a finish on them, but they're not common and the ones I'm aware of don't look like a matte steel.

Ruger has (or had) a few stainless revolvers that came with a dull gray "passivated" (I think that's the term they used) stainless steel finish.

I think Kahr makes a few of their stainless guns with a black "DLC" coating.

Taurus does not (and has not), to my knowledge, made any stainless steel guns with a coating or finish applied over the stainless steel. The appearance of stainless steel varies considerably based on how the final surface is prepared. Some common surface preparations for stainless steel are a bead blasted finish which results in a uniform matte finish, a brushed matte finish, or a polished finish. Any of those finishes can be finer or coarser depending on how the manufacture chooses to implement them.

Any stainless finish can be polished until it is mirror-like if you have the time and inclination.
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Old September 3, 2017, 09:07 PM   #28
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black stainless

All of my handguns are stainless. The SP101 is somewhat shiny but not a mirror finish. The S&W 986 is matte. The M&P and Kahr pistols are black stainless.

The Kahr website describes the PM9 finish: "matte blackened stainless steel slide (PM9094)".

S&W website describes the M&P as follows:

The striker-fire, semi-automatic polymer pistol is available in matte black or FDE – Flat Dark Earth – finishes
• Armornite® durable corrosion resistant finish.
Barrel Material: Stainless Steel - Armornite® Finish

How do they make the stainless black?
I found this on the S&W forum:
deadduck357:
So when I was checking out S&W's website I notice they don't refer to the barrel as being Melonite anymore, just corrosion resistant. When I bought mine it stated Melonite. At some point I have even seen them refer QPQ.
So today I called S&W and got directed to technical and when asked what was this corrosion resistant finish he said it was Armornite, a sprayed on nitrocarburizing finish. He also said they couldn't use the word Melonite because it was trademarked. I told him it couldn't be nitrocarburizing because that process is not sprayed on, it is a case hardening treatment to the metal. He said all he knew was that Armornite was sprayed on and heat treated.
psjoe:
Yes, it's a Nitride based interior and exterior finish that changes the properties of the metal, making it harder and more durable. (Previously referred to as Melonite). The process is the same, only the name has changed.
The catalog does have ref. to Armornite on Pg 29 for 15-22:
"Armornite® finish is a hardened nitride finish that provides:
Enhanced corrosion resistance, greatly improved wear resistance,
decreased surface roughness, reduced light refl ection and increased
surface lubricity. Armornite is used on many S&W and M&P products
imparting a high level of protection internally and externally where applied."

Last edited by Reader850; September 3, 2017 at 09:28 PM.
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Old September 3, 2017, 10:56 PM   #29
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Not sure what all models Taurus offered in a coated stainless.. but I know they had a black stainless 738.. and I think also a 709.

Beretta also had the 92 cajun, actually a bit of a rarity.
Stainless slide with buriniton black on top er or however your spell that.

I don't really know why they charge more for stainless guns.
Sure the material might cost a bit more then carbon but there is rarely any paint applied to it.. just clean the surface of the metal up and out the door it goes.
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Old September 4, 2017, 12:29 AM   #30
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So my question to you is, it is possible to achieve this kind of finish by hand on a modern, mass produced "Matte Stainless" handgun or rifle?
It absolutely is possible. In fact, polishing by hand is about the only way you can get a finish like that. It takes time! Time = money. Money paid to workers = higher prices to the consumer. Higher prices to the consumer = lower sales. Lower sales = BAD. So, no time to polish, just bead blast it and away it goes. Let Marketing convince consumers that matte finished guns are better!
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Old September 4, 2017, 01:32 AM   #31
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...I know they had a black stainless 738...
Interesting. The Taurus website shows a picture of the 738 with "Black Stainless" stamped on the slide--but the specs say the finish is "Blued Steel".
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Old September 4, 2017, 07:59 AM   #32
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OK, I'm confused...

What's the point of powder coating a matte finish onto a stainless steel gun?
No handguns (as yet), but I've bead blasted SS rifle barrels for customers that wanted a matte finish rather than bright polished. My personal taste lies there as well.
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Old September 4, 2017, 08:08 AM   #33
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John it's probably a misprint.
A lot of mfg's will call a black gun blue even though its' not bluing.
I don't even think Taurus blues any guns anymore.

I know the 85 I just got the black model use to be polished blued, but is now some sort of black parkerized or something, It's ugly as sin, I prefer stainless anyway so that's what I went with.

@tobnpr
It's just a personal preference I like all stainless finishes I'd say I like polished best but it's not a sticking point for me and I don't bother polishing up guns that aren't.
If I was a hunter or something I can see how a bright light reflecting barrel would be bad..

But in such cases I'd just hit it with a can of flat black krylon, or high temp bbq/engine paint, could remove it later if you change your mind a lot easier to having it bead blasted.. but that's just me.
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Old September 4, 2017, 11:37 AM   #34
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The type of stainless I'm talking about is NOT the good kind of stainless, such as the blade of a Victorinox Swiss Army knife. This "stainless" is some kind of dull, matte, powdered coating. This would have to removed in order to get to the real stainless steel underneath. This seems a bit more complex then simply polishing up an existing finish by hand.

I've never attempted to do this only using Mother's and hand rags, but I would like to try it on my Taurus 905 if it were possible to achieve these results.
Huge misconceptions here. In this context, stainless is stainless. There is no good or bad and what you're seeing is not a coating or plating. This is all about how the metal is finished. What you're seeing is merely a bead blasted matte finished stainless steel. It is done to either reduce glare or to cut costs. What you're probably referring to is a brushed finish which is nothing more than a medium grade of polish, about 600 to 800 grit. You can certainly take any bead blasted gun and polish it out to a brushed finish but it takes a lot of work and skill to do it right. To me this would be way more work than a Taurus is worth.




Quote:
John it's probably a misprint.
A lot of mfg's will call a black gun blue even though its' not bluing.
I don't even think Taurus blues any guns anymore.

I know the 85 I just got the black model use to be polished blued, but is now some sort of black parkerized or something, It's ugly as sin, I prefer stainless anyway so that's what I went with.

@tobnpr
It's just a personal preference I like all stainless finishes I'd say I like polished best but it's not a sticking point for me and I don't bother polishing up guns that aren't.
If I was a hunter or something I can see how a bright light reflecting barrel would be bad..

But in such cases I'd just hit it with a can of flat black krylon, or high temp bbq/engine paint, could remove it later if you change your mind a lot easier to having it bead blasted.. but that's just me.
This is probably another case of mistaking metal prep for finish work.
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Old September 5, 2017, 06:25 AM   #35
Mike Irwin
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"No handguns (as yet), but I've bead blasted SS rifle barrels for customers that wanted a matte finish rather than bright polished. My personal taste lies there as well."

Exactly. Bead blasting will give a matte finish without having to apply another finish over top of the base stainless.

That simply doesn't make sense.

I believe S&W has also supplied some firearms with stainless components that have been blackened.
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Old September 5, 2017, 10:16 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by Concerned Citizen View Post
A member at another forum posted his collection of Taurus revolvers. As most of you know, what passes for "Stainless Steel" these days is little more then a crappy matte gray finish that almost looks like someone spray painted it on. According to him, this is a newer model gun that used to have one of those crappy matte "stainless" finishes.

If I understood him correctly, he claimed he was able to achieve this by removing the matte gray finish to reveal the real stainless underneath by hand simply using shop rags with Mother's polish and a lot of time and elbow grease. No buffers, machines, etc.
There's nothing "sprayed on" or removed. The stainless steel was very slightly rough when it left the factory, which gave it a matte finish. The poster didn't "remove" the matte finish to "reveal" the stainless underneath, he just made it smoother which gave it a more polished look.
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Old September 6, 2017, 09:44 AM   #37
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Quote:
Concerned Citizen wrote:
As most of you know, what passes for "Stainless Steel" these days...
A "stainless steel" is any steel with a chromium content of 10.5% or greater that exhibits passivization in oxidizing environments, it is not a paint, plating or coating. It can be finished by polishing or buffing any degree of shine desired.
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Old September 6, 2017, 05:34 PM   #38
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Originally stainless steel had 12% Cr. Sometimes we metallurgists refer to certain steels as ' semi-stainless. Actual performance involves HT, other alloying elements and environment. Chinese steels ? You never know as they invent strange compositions that no one ever heard of.
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Old September 6, 2017, 06:08 PM   #39
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Chinese steels ? You never know as they invent strange compositions that no one ever heard of.
They are not bound by SAE or AISI standards.
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Old September 6, 2017, 11:41 PM   #40
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Quote:
Interesting. The Taurus website shows a picture of the 738 with "Black Stainless" stamped on the slide--but the specs say the finish is "Blued Steel".
It may just be a marketing / plain speak type of thing.

The S&W "Midnight Black" 686s (blackened stainless) had some ads describing them as "blued".
Ruger has also had a few less-than-stellar descriptions for the LCRs (blackened stainless) in various ad formats.


I hate Taurus, but I won't hold that one against them.
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Old September 7, 2017, 05:26 PM   #41
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There are companies that have marketed "stainless" finishes that were actually paint/epoxy/ceramic pray on finishes that were matte stainless colored. I don't think Taurus has done this with revolvers. If this was a coating or plating and he took it off the gun is now "in the white" and will likely rust very quickly as it is probably not stainless.

If it is stainless throughout you can absolutely polish a matte/bead finish to the polish. I have done it with flit and a rag and also done it on a VERY heavily worn police revolver. As in must have been ground into pavement worn.
I just kept the guns with a bottle of flitz and rag by the TV. whenever I watched TV I polished. Lots of hours, but easy to do.
Of course it did not remove the deep scratches in the revolver, but once I was finished a friend who had seen it raw and laughed wanted to buy it for quite a bit more than I payed. I didn't sell it then, but when I sold it later got a bit more than I payed.
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