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Refinishing Blued Rifle

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Mantua, Aug 5, 2007.

  1. Mantua

    Mantua Well-Known Member

    I have a Mini-14 that I'm looking to use as a project gun for the next couple of months, and I'm wondering about refinishing it. The bluing is pretty much done for, and I need to wipe the rust off every two weeks or so.
    Should I re-blue, Krylon or Duracoat? I'm not a fan of bluing, so I'm leaning towards spraying it.
    What do you think, guys?
    I'm hoping to do something as classy as this to it:
  2. asknight

    asknight Well-Known Member

    Uh, that's classy? Not in my opinion. I'll just take the high road and leave it at that.

    Why ruin the value of a serviceable weapon by spraying it with crap not even as durable as the original finish (krylon)?

    If the Mini was cleaned and lubed regularly, it wouldn't rust. Not even if it was missing all of it's original bluing. Any of the thousands of firearms cleaning/lubricating products out there will work, if they're used.
  3. The Deer Hunter

    The Deer Hunter Well-Known Member

    You might want to look into getting it parkerized. I know you aren't doing it yourself, but self bluing doesn't turn out as good and Duracoat has to be sprayed on with an airbrush, so if you don't have one the whole ordeal might be a PITA.

    IIRC Duracoat also has some spraycans, that you bake on. Its not the same duracoat and it has a limited selection of colors buts DIY.
  4. geojap

    geojap Well-Known Member

    Oxpho-Blue from Brownells is an excellent cold blueing solution. People saythat the paste gets a deeper blue than the liquid, I've only used the liquid however. You will need to use some fine steel wool to remove the rust, clean the area with alcohol and let it dry. Apply the Oxpho several times, buffing in between applications. Keep it oiled and maintained afterwards and you're good to go.
  5. eliphalet

    eliphalet Well-Known Member

    Yep, remove rust and when finished use a quality gun oil or product like CLP and others, your rusting should stop.
  6. Sunray

    Sunray Well-Known Member

    "...need to wipe the rust off every..." Not surprising for Central Florida. I'd be looking at industrial hard chrome. Hard durable finish that can be had in a non-reflective, light grey.
    If you really want pink, you're looking at Duracoat. You'll get over the pointing and laughing eventually. Snicker.
  7. Mantua

    Mantua Well-Known Member

    Just kiddin' about the pink, guys. Sometimes I just can't help myself. And I don't have an airbrush, I was hoping for something out of a shaker-can. Thanks for the tip on the Oxpho-Blue, I just might do that.
  8. Mantua

    Mantua Well-Known Member

    So, I finally got around to bluing this rifle. I'm using Birchwood Casey Perma Blue, but having some issues.
    After bringing it down to the steel with steel wool and applying the blue with a scrap of cloth, it was still... grey-ish. So I followed the directions on the bottle, lightly polished it with the wool and applied the blue again. Still grey. Well, the bottle says lather, rinse, repeat until you get the shade you want so I ended up with 4 coats of blue on this rifle.
    It was still pretty grey, and I thought it was because it was dull and un-oiled. Oiled her up and let her sit overnight, and in the sunlight it still looks grey :(

    Is the problem the product, the way I'm applying or what? Can anyone offer any insight into this?
  9. Fburgtx

    Fburgtx Well-Known Member

    Spend the money and get the thing parkerized!!! This is a $400-$500 gun!!! Would you get an Earl Scheib or Maaco paint job for a Mercedes?? Save the cold blue for your Marlin 60 or for touch-up.
  10. SigfanUSAF

    SigfanUSAF Well-Known Member

    Agreed. You have no idea how many online firearms I pass up because they're "painted", whether it be the stock, or whole weapon. If you're gonna paint it, knock 50% off the blue book value when you sell it.

    Fbutg you hit the nail on the head. You will be almost as unhappy with the cold blued look as you are with the worn finish look. Plus, cold blue comes off easily, and some smell pretty funky too.
  11. Mantua

    Mantua Well-Known Member

    Actually, to me... it's a $200 gun. I got it in trade for a couple hundred dollars worth of work. But that's neither here nor there- the reason I'm home-bluing it is because the rusting is killing me! I live a block from the beach, and we suffer 98% humidity 10 months out of the year.
    I'm moving to VT in '08, and can't afford a pro to parkerize it.:eek: So I'm doing the amateur job so the rifle doesn't get ruined in the mean time :/

    It's not so much the look I'm concerned with. The way I figure, it's grey because something is wrong with the application process so it isn't protected from the elements. I can always go and get it done by a pro when I can afford it.
  12. Mantua, did you use denatured alcohol to clean the gun after you used the steel wool? You need to use the alcohol to make sure you get all the oil off or the bluing will not take.

    Did you just actually compare a Mini-14 to a Mercedes?
  13. Mantua

    Mantua Well-Known Member

    I used a heavy-duty concentrated degreaser. It is what is suggested as an alternative to alcohol. It takes the finish off of aluminum, so I'm sure it'll take off the Rem Oil.

    And regarding the Mercedes analogy... Think of this particular Mini as an '84 Merc with next to no paint, an engine knock and only 3 wheels.

    The bolt wouldn't move when I got this rifle, so It's in the best shape it's seen in the past 10 years.
  14. JesseL

    JesseL Well-Known Member

    I would (and do) use use one of the spray-and-bake finishes. In my experience this has been a simple and durable solution. I'm partial to Norell's Moly-Resin, but I don't know that it's any better than the others.

    All you absolutely need is a cheap craft store airbrush and an oven big enough to hold the barreled action. Getting the metal lightly sandblasted first helps but isn't strictly required.
  15. NY'er

    NY'er Well-Known Member

    Have you considered sending it back to Ruger to have them reblue it? They offer that service for less than $100 and I'd imagine they'd do a much better job than anyone else...
  16. Mantua

    Mantua Well-Known Member

    I didn't know Ruger did that! I might end up doing just that. Does it matter if I tried and failed to blue it myself, or will they do it anyway?
  17. SigfanUSAF

    SigfanUSAF Well-Known Member

    No. They'll chemically strip and prep the metal regardless of what finish is applied. The only "wrenches in the works" would be rust, pitting, or any other damage to the metal.

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