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Thread: Color case hardening finish .vs Boiling...

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  1. #11
    Contributing Member ssgross's Avatar
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    some blues...and an interesting technique...

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    A Collector's View - The SMLE Short Magazine Lee Enfield 1903-1989. It is 300 8.5x11 inch pages with 1,000+ photo’s, most in color, and each book is serial-numbered.  Covering the SMLE from 1903 to the end of production in India in 1989 it looks at how each model differs and manufacturer differences from a collecting point of view along with the major accessories that could be attached to the rifle. For the record this is not a moneymaker, I hope just to break even, eventually, at $80/book plus shipping.  In the USA shipping is $5.00 for media mail.  I will accept PayPal, Zelle, MO and good old checks (and cash if you want to stop by for a tour!).  CLICK BANNER to send me a PM for International pricing and shipping. Manufacturer of various vintage rifle scopes for the 1903 such as our M73G4 (reproduction of the Weaver 330C) and Malcolm 8X Gen II (Unertl reproduction). Several of our scopes are used in the CMP Vintage Sniper competition on top of 1903 rifles. Brian Dick ... BDL Ltd. - Specializing in British and Commonwealth weapons Chuck in Denver ... Buy-Sell-Trade .. Guns, Cars Motorcycles Your source for the finest in High Power Competition Gear. Here at T-bones Shipwrighting we specialise in vintage service rifle: re-barrelling, bedding, repairs, modifications and accurizing. We also provide importation services for firearms, parts and weapons, for both private or commercial businesses.
     

  4. #12
    Contributing Member usabaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RCS View Post
    Some years ago I converted a South American issue Remington rolling block to 22 rim fire, did alot of custom work and found an advertisement in the old Shotgun News for color case hardening from a man in South Dakota, It cost me just under $100.00 including shipping, while not the color pattern Remington used, it looks good to me.
    She's a looker for sure!... I've been looking around and everything so far looks to be 250.00+ I have been reading a bit on the subject and it doesn't look to be too hard of a process but the heating source would be the big hurdle. I'm mulling it over, the Savage 220A is not an overly rare or valuable shotgun, I just bought it because I remember using one as a kid. Now the question is, how much do I want to invest in her, just might since I have no intention of selling her anyhow. I have to do something though to kill the surface oxidation so while I figure out her future, she's going to end up in the boil.

    ---------- Post added at 07:44 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:42 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Doco overboard View Post
    Somewhere I have some information that indicates cyanide as a possible element
    The old gunsmith books I have discussed using cyanide, I think I will keep my distance on that one LOL

    ---------- Post added at 07:49 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:44 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by ssgross View Post
    bone black or charcoal mix, heat in an electric furncace to a specific temp for specific time, then pull out and quickly water quench. Also, it's worth noting that the colors only develop in an oxygen depleted environmen
    I been looking at the process. I have a friend that makes knives and has a forge. I've not seen it so have no clue how big it is but I gonna give him a shout. Brownell carries the supplies I would need. They even have a kit, but I would need more then this old shotgun to justify the price.

    ---------- Post added at 07:56 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:49 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Eaglelord17 View Post
    I have a book on gunsmithing written in the 1930s ('Advanced Gunsmithing' by W.F. Vickery).
    Yup, that's one if the books, that and Clide Bakers book

    ---------- Post added at 08:04 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:56 PM ----------

    But.. Y'all answered my initial question in that I will lose the case color when I boil and card. Not much of it left anyhow I suppose so no really hard loss. Thank you guys!
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    Legacy Member butlersrangers's Avatar
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    IMHO - The metal of the OP's Steven's/Savage actually looks rather good. The 'case-color' on these shotguns was never very deep even when factory new.
    Any surface rust or dried crud on the 'blued' barrel and the case-colored receiver could easily be removed with #0000 steel wool soaked with Hoppe's #9. Use just a very light pressure on any surface spots and wipe with dry paper towel to review progress.

    The nice examples of case-color on guns, that others have provided, is not how Stevens-Savage budget shotguns appeared, even when factory new.

    I think greater blemishes on the OP's shotgun are the loss of black enamel paint on the 'Die-Cast' trigger-guard, what looks to be an incorrect replacement guard-screw, the slight 'tilt' in the forearm 'bracket', and possible cracks in the butt-stock wrist area.

    The trigger-guard could appear 'factory new', if removed and repainted with black spray enamel.
    The rear guard-screw could be replaced with (or recontoured to) a countersunk oval-head screw.

    The forearm bracket could be properly seated in the wood to eliminate the odd 'tilt'.
    If there are cracks in the stock wrist, these can be repaired and strengthened with epoxy bedding.

    Just saying, I don't think there is much wrong with original metal colors!


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    Contributing Member usabaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by butlersrangers View Post
    Any surface rust or dried crud on the 'blued' barrel and the case-colored receiver could easily be removed with #0000 steel wool soaked with Hoppe's #9. Use just a very light pressure on any surface spots and wipe with dry paper towel to review progress. ... I think greater blemishes on the OP's shotgun are the loss of black enamel paint on the 'Die-Cast' trigger-guard, what looks to be an incorrect replacement guard-screw, the slight 'tilt' in the forearm 'bracket', and possible cracks in the butt-stock wrist area. ... The forearm bracket could be properly seated in the wood to eliminate the odd 'tilt'. If there are cracks in the stock wrist, these can be repaired and strengthened with epoxy bedding.
    The pictures do not really show the extent of the oxidation, the other side, top of the receiver, and various spots on the barrel have oxidation the hoppe's/oil and steelwool would leave those spots as white metal, and would not really "kill" the oxidation, only retard it. Thinking about your ideas and options, I could attempt spot steeming and light steelwooling as an alternative to a boil.

    I'm ahead of you on the trigger guard and screw I have a replacement coming. while looking for the correct trigger guard screw I found a person selling all original trigger guard with front and rear screws, I'm only hoping that the person who put the machine screw in did not rethread the receiver otherwise I'll have an additional repair to make.

    The stock has been repaired on both sides and filled on one. I haven't taken off the stock yet to really survey the repair, But do know at minimum from what I can see that the side filled, will need to be reworked. The forearm bracket (forend head piviot metal) does not look to be the one that came with the rifle and is loose. It needs to be peened back into the correct shape and as you said needs to be properly inletted to sit in the correct position when tightened down.

    Thank you for all the help and advice. She's not a collectible shotgun by any means but it's still something that I will enjoy working on and preserving for my kids to enjoy.

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    Legacy Member Riter's Avatar
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    The only thing you do to a case hardened surface is to lightly clean & oil.

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    Legacy Member bombdoc's Avatar
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    I have done colour case hardening a few times now.. The Rifle Shoppe recommends case hardening their steel castings rather than just plain hardening and tempering as you lose less carbon in the process. I have case hardened just using crushed BBQ briquettes and, provided you keep things really clean, you can sometimes get colours, but you really need to use bone char and/or charred leather and something like salt and soda bicarb to get deeper colours. You also need to use soft or distilled water for the quench and run an air hose through it.

    Boiling old colour case hardened items should not strip the colouring, although it will not restore any lost colour. If there is any rust, boiling will convert it to blue.

    Cyanide hardening is/was a form of case hardening that used molten Potassium Cyanide to add carbon to the surface of steel. It was much quicker than charcoal casing although it produced a thinner case. It was and is a very dangerous process for obvious reasons.

  12. #17
    Legacy Member martins8589's Avatar
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    There is a youtube video on color case hardening finnish with a liquid blue somewhere. He gets a great looking finish from it.

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