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Coating on the aluminum parts of a blued gun?

This is a discussion on Coating on the aluminum parts of a blued gun? within the Gunsmithing forums, part of the Firearm Forum category; I have a Blackhawk and I am doing a bit of refurbishing. The grip frame appears to be an aluminum alloy. The color is the ...


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Old May 13th, 2009, 11:43 AM   #1
 
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Coating on the aluminum parts of a blued gun?

I have a Blackhawk and I am doing a bit of refurbishing. The grip frame appears to be an aluminum alloy. The color is the same as the blued parts of the gun.

Does anyone know what the coating on the aluminum alloy parts is and how to repair it.

JRB



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Old May 13th, 2009, 12:22 PM   #2
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jim85255, All grip frame are anodized. This process electroplates a thin layer of hard aluminum alloy on top of the fairly soft aluminum grip frame. The older BHs had black dye applied during the anodization process which closely matched the blued steel. Later, Ruger changed to a "powder coat" but it didn't hold up very well nor did it match the bluing very well. Now, grip frames are painted after being anodized. This seems to hold up better than the old dye and powder coat processes.

I've refinished several grip frames with flat black high temperature engine paint. It closely matches the factory finish and holds up quite well. The engine paint is available at most automotive supply stores (O'Riley's in our area). I used to use flat black epoxy paint but I can't find it locally.
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Old May 13th, 2009, 01:39 PM   #3
 
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Iowegan,

Thanks for the advice. I will give it a try.

We are very lucky to have you as an active member of this forum!

JRB
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Old May 13th, 2009, 10:47 PM   #4
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I've used the Birchwood Casey Aluminum Black to touch up the grip frame of my Old Army. Works well, but I'm not sure how durable it will be.
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Old May 15th, 2009, 10:53 AM   #5
 
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firescout,

I forgot about that. I may give that a try as well

Thanks

JRB
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Old June 5th, 2009, 09:32 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iowegan View Post
I've refinished several grip frames with flat black high temperature engine paint. It closely matches the factory finish and holds up quite well. The engine paint is available at most automotive supply stores (O'Riley's in our area). I used to use flat black epoxy paint but I can't find it locally.
[SIZE="3"]Most of these spray paints will hold up better if they are baked on. I suspend them from the oven rack on wire and bake 3 hours at 325°. Allow an hour to cool and for the stink to get out of the house before the wife gets home. [/SIZE]
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Old June 14th, 2009, 01:17 PM   #7
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iowegan View Post
...I've refinished several grip frames with flat black high temperature engine paint. It closely matches the factory finish and holds up quite well. The engine paint is available at most automotive supply stores (O'Riley's in our area). I used to use flat black epoxy paint but I can't find it locally.
+1 on the high temp automotive paint, I've used the DupliColor 1200 degree Ceramic paint and been very pleased with it (does require baking).
Here's a Single Six fame done with it:

Regards,
Greg
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Old November 14th, 2009, 07:18 AM   #8
 
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What's the best way to remove the old finish, preparatory to applying new finish, with out removing the protective anodizing?
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Old November 14th, 2009, 10:58 AM   #9
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dachshund, The anodizing layer is typically about .005" thick. A light sanding with 400 grit sandpaper should get the scratches out without removing the hard anodized layer. Make sure you degrease before painting. Dawn dish washing detergent works well, followed by a hot water rinse.

I've use Birchwood Casey Aluminum Black for minor touch-ups but as an actual finish, it sucks ... not durable and not the right color. The hi-temp paint I use does not require baking, although it does make it cure much faster. Without baking, it takes a couple weeks to cure (dry to touch in an hour). Using edlmann's method, the paint is cured in a few hours. Once cured, the paint is very resistant to wear, normal gun oils, and solvents .... but not brake cleaner or other non-gun solvents.
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Old January 19th, 2013, 12:24 PM   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iowegan View Post
jim85255, All grip frame are anodized. This process electroplates a thin layer of hard aluminum alloy on top of the fairly soft aluminum grip frame. The older BHs had black dye applied during the anodization process which closely matched the blued steel. Later, Ruger changed to a "powder coat" but it didn't hold up very well nor did it match the bluing very well. Now, grip frames are painted after being anodized. This seems to hold up better than the old dye and powder coat processes.

I've refinished several grip frames with flat black high temperature engine paint. It closely matches the factory finish and holds up quite well. The engine paint is available at most automotive supply stores (O'Riley's in our area). I used to use flat black epoxy paint but I can't find it locally.
Hi. Do i have to bake the flat black high temperature engine paint, I want to use it on the mini-14, at the end of the bl.Thanks.guns54 .Have a safe night.

Last edited by guns54; January 19th, 2013 at 12:38 PM.
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Old January 19th, 2013, 12:58 PM   #11
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guns54, No ... it will cure at room temperature but it takes a couple weeks to reach the same durability as an hour in the oven. If you do paint your barrel with the above hi-temp engine paint, it will be dry to the touch in a few minutes ... safe to put in a gun case in a few hours ... overnight is best. Worst case ... if you get solvents on the paint before it cures, it will come off. The good news is ... you can just apply another coat.
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Old June 3rd, 2014, 11:31 AM   #12
 
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Thumbs up Mini- 14-tip of barrle

Quote:
Originally Posted by Iowegan View Post
guns54, No ... it will cure at room temperature but it takes a couple weeks to reach the same durability as an hour in the oven. If you do paint your barrel with the above hi-temp engine paint, it will be dry to the touch in a few minutes ... safe to put in a gun case in a few hours ... overnight is best. Worst case ... if you get solvents on the paint before it cures, it will come off. The good news is ... you can just apply another coat.
Hi. Are we talking about the blue alloy paint for the barrle.Have a safe day.Chris from ohio.
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Old June 4th, 2014, 09:58 AM   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iowegan View Post
guns54, No ... it will cure at room temperature but it takes a couple weeks to reach the same durability as an hour in the oven. If you do paint your barrel with the above hi-temp engine paint, it will be dry to the touch in a few minutes ... safe to put in a gun case in a few hours ... overnight is best. Worst case ... if you get solvents on the paint before it cures, it will come off. The good news is ... you can just apply another coat.
Thank you Sir. You have alway been a lot of help to us. Have a safe day. chris.
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Old June 4th, 2014, 10:01 AM   #14
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gb6491 View Post
+1 on the high temp automotive paint, I've used the DupliColor 1200 degree Ceramic paint and been very pleased with it (does require baking).
Here's a Single Six fame done with it:

Regards,
Greg
Hi. You did a very nice job on your gun. Chris.
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