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Engrave, Punch or Electro-Chemical Etching

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing and Repairs' started by Select Guns, Oct 18, 2011.

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  1. Select Guns

    Select Guns Member

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    I need to put some markings on some firearms I am customizing and would like feedback from everyone as to what they think is the best approach. I have looked at engraving, using a lettered punch and electro chemical etching. I will be doing low volumes, less than 100 firearms per year and I need to meet the .003" ATF requirement.
     
  2. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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  3. olyeller

    olyeller Member

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    Marking methods 300.
     
  4. Norton Commando

    Norton Commando Member

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    What does "0.003" ATF requirement" mean?

    I assume it means that the marking method must produce uniform indentions in the metal that are 0.003" deep? If this is the case, then I would think that most forms of chemical etching are not viable. So now you're choices are primarily limited to engraving or steel stamping. If I had to pick between the two, I would choose engraving; it's easy to do neatly and professionally with a template.

    I hope this helps.

    Jason
     
  5. Bubbles

    Bubbles Member

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    The problem with punches is the possibility, however slight, of deforming the receiver unless it's very well supported.

    Chemical/Laser doesn't always go deep enough.

    FWIW we bought the bullet and purchased a used CNC engraver. We charge a flat $25 for standard "SBR/SBS" engraving (name, city, state) and give discounts for more than 5 units. PM if you're interested.
     
  6. Select Guns

    Select Guns Member

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    My thanks to everyone for their responses to date. When I find a method I like I will leave an update.
     
  7. AlexanderA
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    AlexanderA Member

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    When D. L. Oefinger imported a bunch of Browning machine guns (without the right sideplates) back around 1980, he photographed the markings on the original sideplates before they were destroyed, and then photo-etched the markings back onto the new replacement sideplates that he manufactured. (At least that's what he told me.) I still have one of his guns, and the depth of the markings seems plenty adequate to me.

    I wish I knew how feasible this process is on a small volume (and who would do it), because I have a display Thompson I would like to do this on. (Some of Philadelphia Ordnance's engraved markings are a far cry from the originals.) The problem is that it's hard to replicate the font, size, and spacing of the original markings unless you use some sort of photographic process.
     
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