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Old 11-27-2018, 11:59 AM
5strinpiker

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Rebluing rust blue or Hot salts blue



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I Have a pre A Model 52 Winchester with a 4 digit serial #. I purchased the rifle many years ago. The previous owner had removed all the blue on all the metal parts. All markings are clear and not buffed. I would like to blue the gun to protect the metal. Question is to blue it by rust bluing or hot caustic bluing or to leave it as is. I would like others opinions before doing anything. Thanks
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Old 11-27-2018, 12:35 PM
wmrike

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1) I prefer the warmer look of a rust blue, and 2) An inattentive moment at the buffing wheel can remove a lot of metal in a hurry.

I deal mostly with shotguns. Do you guys know if, on a rifle, the barrel needs to be taken off the receiver for a reblue?
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Old 11-27-2018, 01:12 PM
Egriv

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Rust blueing can be done at home. I use an old 2 burner propane stove for my tank. It heats it up just fine. The process is time consuming and you don't dare let the parts "rust" to long or you will be repolishing everything. I've had very good results with about 8 applications being the minimum. Brownells sells a very good rust blueing solution. Follow the directions closely!
Either method of blueing will be fine for your 52, if you are a do it your selfer try the rust blueing. If it seems a bit intimidating do your metal prep and have it hot blued. DO NOT let anyone use a buffing wheel on it. Hand polishing is the only way to polish gun metal !!!!

As far as hot blueing a barreled action, I have done many with the barrel on the receiver. I let them sit with oil on them for a few days after blueing and then boil them in clean water. This gets any remaining salts out of the threads so they don't leach in the future. I then spray a good penetrating oil around the barrel receiver junction. There is more than one way around the barn and this is what I do, others may have different methods.... This has worked for me for many years.

Erin

Last edited by Egriv; 11-27-2018 at 01:17 PM.
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  #4  
Old 11-27-2018, 03:37 PM
2152hq

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Winchester didn't start using Hot Salt bluing till around 1938/39.
DuLite bluing salts were then began to be used in their hot salt blue operations.

Prior to that bbls were rust blued. Most recv'rs and small parts were blued by the Carbona Blue/rotary gas furnace proprietary method.
But not all.
Some frames and trigger groups were still blued with the rust blue method.
The first production M61s for example.

Personally I'd slow rust blue the parts.
I'd remove the bbl in doing it as I usually do. Old oil and grease in the threads has a way of weeping to the surface due to the heat of the boiling water the parts go thru in the process. Any oil/grease spoils the blue at that area and and otherwise nice job.
There may be no problem whatsoever in not removing the bbl. But I've had too many that have to do that much work only to have it spoiled in that way.

Hot salt blue is caustic in itself and can remove some of that oil. The problem of bluing salts getting trapped in those threads and others is something to watch for. Careful handling & rinsing as stated above can avoid problems.
Sloppy work nearly always comes back to bite you.

Either one done right along with careful prep will give you a beautiful finish.
Over polishing, rounded corners and smeared lettering is a head shaker on a reblue job no matter how blue and shiny it ends up being.
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