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Kutter,
I was told the German solution I use can also be used to brown barrels by carding without boiling and after the color is satisfactory stop the rusting with oil. I haven't tried it though and don't know the formula. I hope it is not as bad as Agent Orange.
Mike

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A good quote from Angier:

"Apart from a few exceptions -- mentioned hereafter -- the appearance of the finished parts corresponds to that of the un- browned surface: highly-polished surface thus retain a brilliant finish, dull ones a correspondingly non-reflecting coating. The mechanical preparation (polishing, etc.) of the pieces thus postulates the necessary attention: the greater the care taken in this respect the better the final result." p. 4-5

Last edited by Woodreaux; 03/07/24 01:06 PM.

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Originally Posted by Der Ami
Woodreaux,
As noted above, I believe damascus and I use different processes to blue the barrels. I use the slow rust or cold rust process with a German solution. I clean the polished barrels with acetone and after cleaning am careful to avoid touching the barrels with my skin. I apply the solution with fine steel wool (also cleaned with acetone) dipped into a small amount in the cap of the bottle. After evenly covering the barrel, pour any leftover solution out of the cap, but not back into the bottle. Then put the barrels aside to rust. The amount of time for rust to form depends on the temperature, humidity, type steel, and degree of polishing. Since you can't time it, just watch it. The first application will take a while and will be pretty light in color. After a layer of rust forms boil it in plain water to kill the rust, and card the rust off with steel wool cleaned with acetone. I learned to card the rust with a wire wheel in Germany, but I wasn't able to find one here that was fine enough to card without damaging the surface, consequently the steel wool substitute. Boil the barrels long enough to heat the steel so it will dry when removed from the tank and gently shaken. The rust will stop quickly but I usually let the barrels cook 15 minutes. If I don't have time for another cycle, I don't card them until the next day. Never let the barrels rust overnight. They will be ok overnight if boiled but will pit overnight if not boiled. I leave the bead in and if there is a weep hole, I leave it plugged. If water leaks, it will be obvious without looking closely. Rust boil and card as many cycles as necessary until you are satisfied. I polish with worn out 320 grit cloth after 180 and 220 backed with files (mostly Barret or Pilar files or old files ground to fit into close places). The solution I use will work on small areas that couldn't be polished and the color will still be even, and partial areas can be rusted and carded to even out missed areas. When you are satisfied, oil the barrels with regular oil and clean the bores. To finish, polish the barrel flats and side of the locking lugs, the extractor and rear barrel face, as well as the end of the muzzle bright, with worn 320 grit cloth.
I learned to use cleaned steel wool to apply the solution because it may remove any contaminates in the air (oil droplets) that find their way to the surface. This process leaves microscopic pits in the surface and color inside the pits, so it takes extreme wear to remove the color, also extremely fine polishing is not necessary and depending on the hardness of the steel the solution may not "bite" and the part may have to be re-polished with a coarser grit.
I don't have experience with the process damascus uses, so I can't answer to it.
Mike

Der Ami;

Willi Barthold (Von Ingenieur und Buchsenmachermeister) in his German text book on gunsmithing JAGDWAFFENKUNDE on page 144 quotes his blacking solution in 1 liter of distilled water as:

30 g Eisen (II)-sulfat FeSO4--7 H20
15 g Eisen (II)-chlorid FeCl2-- 4 H2O
12 g Kupfersulfat CuSO4--5 H2O
50 g Alkolhol (absolut)

He says that smaller amounts of the solution can be made by reducing such as 10 percent.

Barthold's blacking solution is the practically the same solution as Angiers quote on page 88 (C.17. Swiss black (Beutel. Is your German solution similar?

I have used Barthold's solution in the past with success. It was also a favorite solution of the late Jack Rowe.

Stephen Howell

Last edited by bushveld; 03/07/24 03:05 PM.
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bushveld,
Thanks for the information. The solution I use is a commercial product that I brought back from Germany when I moved back. As a commercial product the specific formula would be a trade secret. The next time I go downstairs to my shop I will check the bottle to see if general contents are listed.
Mike

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Originally Posted by SKB
I have done many, many rib repairs. I do not seem to have near the problems you have Karen. Less gobs of solder, more time prepping and the proper heat envelope and the vast majority of time a rib repair can be performed cleanly and successfully.

As always, what a pleasure for you to share the depth of your experience with us.

All my best,
Steve

I looked through this entire Thread Stevie, and did not see anyone named Karen who mentioned having the kinds of problems doing rib repairs that you mention. It looks very much like you are once again doing all you can to Troll and to disrupt Woodreaux's thread. Nothing new there. Or maybe you were just hitting the bong a little early today, and didn't comprehend what you were reading.

I did say that I had no problem doing the only loose rib repair I have needed to do so far. Kutter did say that it was a rarity to find barrels with perfect soldering joints, and not have leaks to contend with during bluing. Mike obviously recognized that fluxing and tinning is a necessary part of soldering. I did accurately note that attempting to solder a contaminated joint would result in having solder roll off and not stick. I think most of us have probably seen old guns that had rib or forend lug repairs that looked like gobs of gray bubblegum.

I did have problems with soldering a couple times while doing solder repairs on old dirty truck and tractor radiators. Poor cleaning or fluxing will cause leaks and other problems when soldering pipes and tubing, or anything else. But as anyone who has actually done any amount of soldering knows, once I got the area clean enough and used the right flux, the solder flowed like magic. I tried four different brands of flux before I struck gold when repairing a hole punched in the radiator of my old Ford tractor.

As far as your comment about sharing depth of experience goes, you showed me that you probably don't have much actual experience when you posted that you were doing a 45 second Damascus etching dunk in a 14.5% ferric chloride solution at mid 60's temperature. Those who have actually blued or browned Damascus will immediately be amused by your comment. Others were "surprised" by it and commented on that insane etch dwell time. You later said you were dropping your etch time to under 10 seconds, and cutting the concentration considerably. You revealed a lot about actual "depth of experience" there. Here's your post #76837, and a link to the whole Thread where you changed your story. Too funny, but a lot of people seem to have some pathetic need to act like experts on the internet:

Originally Posted by SKB
Chuck,
we have been using a 14% solution for our dip, immersing the cupon for about 45 seconds. More to follow, hopefully with pics.
Steve

https://www.doublegunshop.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=77129&page=1

I'm still always open to learning more about things like rust bluing, etc. But I also learn a lot about people here. Some just can't be trusted.


A true sign of mental illness is any gun owner who would vote for an Anti-Gunner like Joe Biden.

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Karen,
I found there to be a learning curve when I developed my browning and etching process, what has your experience been?

These days I do not etch much, very little really, and rarely finish damascus as it just does not fit into my shop schedule. On the rare occasion that I do brown barrels, I use a modified browning formula out of Angier's and a 29% Ferric Chloride solution reduced 9:1, not dipped but applied with a brush and washed off immediately.

How do you etch your barrels Peaches?

Did the process you tried the first time end up becoming your final one?

In 2008 I had an apprentice in my shop, great guy, no secret there. Manito Lara was his name and he did outstanding barrel browning, he no longer works for me so after 2014 I had to work out the process on my own. It took a bit to figure out, I can do it but it is usually not worth my time to offer browning services.

One point of correction though Karen, Manito Lara did all of the browning in my shop while he was employed with me, I did and always have done my own rust blue. You are lying in the other thread about me asking Doug to blue for me, never happened, I did not like Doug.

Here is a gun I completely restored, including the browning. That was a great rifle....





[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

A close up of the browning and a bench made front sight, all done in house by me except Charles Lee inlaid the Gold bead.

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

A set of shotgun barrels that I browned.

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]


If you ever get the courage, I'm sure I'm not the only one who would enjoy seeing the work of an expert such as yourself. Maybe you could take the time and offer us some advice from your extensive experience. Stockbending maybe? wink

All my best to the biggest princess on the board.
Steve


http://www.bertramandco.com/
Booking African hunts, firearms import services

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A handy tool for rib work, tight fitting copper plugs, heat them with acetylene and then insert in the bores. It allows you to put the heat where you want it and keep the flame away from your rosin flux which is flammable.

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]


http://www.bertramandco.com/
Booking African hunts, firearms import services

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Back to the OP's original question. After boiling I take a syringe and squirt alcohol in the weep holes, alcohol absorbs water, I do that a few times then squirt LPS 3 in there.

It's a technique.

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Originally Posted by Mike Hunter
I take a syringe and squirt alcohol in the weep holes.... then squirt LPS 3 in there.

That makes sense to me. I had wondered about flooding the space with alcohol or acetone or another evaporative solution like that.

I have never used LPS 3, but I guess that is along the lines of the water displacement bath that was mentioned earlier.

Thanks for the input.


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I'm not a big fan of WD 40 for metal protection, Its great for machining aluminum, and will cut through dried oil/ grease crud. I suspect It's mostly kerosene with some light oil and stuff to make it smell pretty.

LPS3 is a very light oil (water thin) that is designed for corrosion protection.

On double barrels, I spray carb cleaner in the weep holes, get all that old crap out, followed by boiling in a TSP solution. Barrels then cleaned with greased lightning and Dawn soap.

After that double barrels are boiled in clean water to see how much oil comes off of them, if nothing comes out
Start your rust bluing process, if oil keeps weaping out..start over with TSP boil.

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