hour and a half cold blue

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The Beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains NC
I thought I was working quick but the missus informed me I was in the basement for an hour and half. Still pretty good I think. Got this repro musket at a pawn shop for $500 missing the slider for the rear sight but that should be in the mail shortly IMG_20240510_202634763.jpg IMG_20240510_214813470.jpg
 

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What compound did you use, and what technique?
I had the Birchwood Casey blue paste that comes in a tube and an old wife beater shirt the way my old man taught me lol idk what you'd call it. Somebody had scratched all the finish off and let it get surface rust. Left scratches too. Had to polish it a lot with steel wool always in a circular motion
 
I had the Birchwood Casey blue paste that comes in a tube and an old wife beater shirt the way my old man taught me lol idk what you'd call it. Somebody had scratched all the finish off and let it get surface rust. Left scratches too. Had to polish it a lot with steel wool always in a circular motion

I've liked Brownells Oxpho-blue for small parts. Warm the metal before applying, then oil them afterward. Gives a good, blackish finish with just one application. Not sure for larger parts, like your barrel, as the Oxpho can be hard to get a uniform color, esp. for something large like a barrel. Did you rub-in multiple coats?
And you burnished off the rust with mere steel wool? No sandpaper?

I've also tried Birchwood Casey Bluing paste, and Brownells 44/40 liquid bluing. Neither of these worked as well for me as the Oxpho paste, but I'm interested in how you got such a uniform color with the BC blue paste.
 
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The gunsmith who refurbished my stuff's smoke and water damage has his own technique with Oxpho, which is not what Brownells shows. I don't know all the details but it seemed to involve a spray bottle and coarse brown paper towels. I haven't put any heavy use on the guns thus refinished but they LOOK good and hold up well as "range guns."
 
Nice job with the cold bluing.

The original finish on these Enfield muskets was blue, but many of the soldiers to whom they were issued in the American Civil War liked to polish them bright. (The mindset was to match the bright finish of the Springfields.) This practice is also popular among reenactors. Accordingly, some vendors are offering bright Enfields at a premium price.

So, you really have two viable options: to restore the blued finish, or to remove it entirely.
 
The gunsmith who refurbished my stuff's smoke and water damage has his own technique with Oxpho, which is not what Brownells shows. I don't know all the details but it seemed to involve a spray bottle and coarse brown paper towels. I haven't put any heavy use on the guns thus refinished but they LOOK good and hold up well as "range guns."

I've heard of rubbing with crumpled brown paper, from bags, to refinish/polish stocks, because it acts as a very mild abrasive. Maybe he sprays liquid Oxpho and works it in, rubbing with the crumpled paper. That's my guess.
 
I've liked Brownells Oxpho-blue for small parts. Warm the metal before applying, then oil them afterward. Gives a good, blackish finish with just one application. Not sure for larger parts, like your barrel, as the Oxpho can be hard to get a uniform color, esp. for something large like a barrel. Did you rub-in multiple coats?
And you burnished off the rust with mere steel wool? No sandpaper?

I've also tried Birchwood Casey Bluing paste, and Brownells 44/40 liquid bluing. Neither of these worked as well for me as the Oxpho paste, but I'm interested in how you got such a uniform color with the BC blue paste.
I'm really not that knowledgeable just winged it like my old man always did. No sandpaper didn't even think of it. Used many many coats
 
For cold blue I’m impressed. It looks nice. Remember, those guns sometimes had their finish scrubbed off so they were bright white metal. It all depends on the unit.
 
For cold blue I’m impressed. It looks nice. Remember, those guns sometimes had their finish scrubbed off so they were bright white metal. It all depends on the unit.
Yea I think that's what the previous owner was going for. I just couldn't stand the surface rust and I'm a skirmisher not a reenactor. If I wanted to be super historical accurate I think I should have an 1862 Richmond rifle since my skirmish company is Buncombe Rifles who were in the 1st NC volunteers
 
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