plateing on a revolver


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Tolly
January 24, 2010, 11:33 PM
I have a old army colt revolver that is plated. How do you tell the difference between nickel silver and chrome plateing.

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owlhoot
January 25, 2010, 03:25 AM
There is a slight difference in color, but never mind that. All older plated guns and most newer ones are nickel. Hard industrial chrome is a desirable finish for hard use weapons or weapons used in a high humidity enviroment, but it has been used extensively only in the past thirty years or so. However it looks more like dull stainless than nickel. Very few makers offer guns finished in bright chrome.

bannockburn
January 25, 2010, 06:16 AM
Tolly

If the Colt in question is really old (19th century), chances are it is nickel plated. Some custom order guns might also be silver plated, but typically that was used on engraved presentation pieces. Nickel plate was applied on top of a thin layer of copper plate, as the nickel would not bond directly with the metal surface of the gun. If your Colt is a more modern revolver then it may have been bright chrome plated after it left the factory, or it may be an electroless nickel finish, as this was used by Colt for a number of years before they went to stainless steel.
Generally speaking, at least to my untrained eye, nickel plate is not as shiny as chrome plate, having somewhat of a slight golden cast to it. Chrome plate appears to be shinier, with a silvery, almost mirror-like finish to it. Hope this helps.

Tolly
January 25, 2010, 10:16 AM
Thanks guys for the information. I should have stated that it is a first generation colt made in 1889 engraved. The way it sounds it is nickel plated.

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