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Old October 6, 2012, 02:29 PM   #1
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Join Date: November 11, 2010
Location: Phoenix area
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Best bluing product/process

I read on another forum that if you mix hydrogen peroxide and vinegar 50/50 I works really well to clean the bore of old guns. So I tried it on my MN 91/30.... I messed up....

I didn't have a cork or rubber stopper so I taped some plastic on the end. Well it ended up over my front sight and some of the mixture of course got all over the outside of the barrel.

Apparently that mixture also does real good at eating the finish off of the barrel as well.

So now I'm gonna have to strip it and reblue the barrel. That wasn't really part of my original plans. Now that I have to, what is the best product you have used for it? And some tips you may have.

I was planning on putting the barrel/receiver in a PVC pipe and filling it with that same solution to strip the rest of the blue. Any reason why I shouldn't?

Couldn't decide if this goes in the smith section or C&R, please forgive me if I chose incorrectly.
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Old October 6, 2012, 02:47 PM   #2
Bill DeShivs
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Join Date: April 7, 2006
Posts: 9,094
First, don't even try any of the cold bluing solutions. The package will tell you they are the perfect thing for refinishing your gun. They aren't!
www.brownells,com sells several rust bluing solutions. These require a little work, and they require you to boil the barrel, but the bluing is nice, and very durable.
If you don't want to rust blue, then one of the gun paints is probably your best bet.
Bill DeShivs, Master Cutler
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Old October 6, 2012, 02:52 PM   #3
Join Date: August 8, 2005
Posts: 66
Acids usually do a good job of removing blue. Vinegar is a weak solution of acetic acid. The vinegar/H2O2 mixture is some times recommended for removing leading from a barrel, but many think it is a bit too aggressive for even this application. Unless you have been firing cast bullets through your M-N, an ammonia based bore cleaner would probably work better, or a session with J-B bore paste. Discretion is advised in either case.

As far as re-bluing goes, I recommend staying away from the cold blue. A hot salt blue requires a lot of equipment, dangerous chemicals, and dangerous temperatures, so I don't recommend it either. (Yes, I know lots of people do it at home, please be careful).

That leaves rust blue, (heat blue is a possibility for some gun parts, but not barrels of center fire rifles). Rust blue is easily accomplished at home, but is very labor intensive. Your M-N, if it is old enough, may be rust blued.

Good luck.
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Old October 6, 2012, 11:05 PM   #4
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Long post with a bunch of questions... (please help..)

Ok so from what you have both said the rust blue is the better way to go. I saw a picture on line that was showing after one coat of the rust blue and then up to 12 coats. That one with the 12 coats looks absolutely beautiful.

I don't think I want to go with the gun paint. When you say gun paint you mean like Duracoat right? Yeah, I don't really have any desire to Duracoat anything I own, just not my style.

This is the product that is being suggested, correct?

Here is a video that I found on it that I have some questions on.

Do I have to have that cabinet? If so how, any suggestions on how I would make it? Its getting cooler (relatively) here in Phoenix so that will figure into my process.

Any suggestions on how to boil the rifle? Maybe a metal pipe capped on one end and stood on end on a camp stove? I was thinking of using the 50/50 solution to strip the current finish by putting it in a pipe capped on one end. So I could use this pipe for multiple steps in this process.

Would I be able to take the barrel off of the receiver in my garage? If so I would have to check the headspace when I put it back on right? I am thinking taking the barrel off would be the best way to ensure that everything is done evenly.

I should probably completely strip the receiver before doing this, right?

I was also thinking about cutting it down a couple inches and re-crowning it. When measuring the barrel length I have heard you use a dowel down the bore to measure it. But, do you put that dowel on the bolt face or on the tip of a round that has been chambered (of course being stupid careful not to fire the round)? What would you recommend for the barrel length? I don't want it too short to where I would lose accuracy or velocity, but still easier to handle.

My Dad also has a MN so I was thinking that we could split the cost of some of the tools, but he is concerned that any cuts to the barrel would significantly decrease its accuracy. Do you guys think that is really an issue?

On the re-crowning what type of crown do you recommend or have tried?

If you re-crown the barrel you can still thread it and put a muzzle break on it, right? I was thinking of putting a break on it, would you recommend for or against this?

I know these things are a little blasphemous as far as some will think with it being a milsurp historic rifle. But, by accidentally ruining the finish already the whole collector/originality of it is ruined. So... why the heck not make it my personal project.

I am really wanting to do this myself in my garage to both try to save money and mainly because I want to do it myself for personal satisfaction. So..... I could really use any suggestions/firsthand knowledge.

Thanks a lot guys (and any gals).
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