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Trial and Error Opperator
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I’ve had people ask questions about gun barrels. I am not a gun smith and know very little about the finishing Guns. Some of the questions I was scratching my head.
Here are some people asked me: (Blasting on the outside only)
They want it powder coated, what is a good finish to start with?
I assumed using Fine glass?
Wanted to have the barrel cleaned of very light rust so they could have it camouflaged?
I think they have it dipped in a wrapping of some sort? Would you use soda or glass?
Does the blasting with soda hurt the blueing on the barrel?
Does Blasting with Glass change the structure or performance?

I did a GO GREEN Show a while back, just for a prop I took an old .22 and blasted one side with soda and the other with med glass.
I got all kinds of feedback, from good to really bad!
I got myself into a position that I couldn’t answer some of these questions. I could not BS some of the guys, as they knew what they were talking about (and I didn’t!)
This is just another thing to know how people finish a job before you start one.
 

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Mobile Sandblasting
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672 Posts
I would find out what they are going to do first.. Dip, spray paint or tape? I would do glass IMO for the light textured feel. Most new guns that are dipped have that kind of rough finish anyway. Make sure you don't touch the rifling in the barrel. Heat should not be a problem due to the fact gun barrels get hot when shooting anyway.
 

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Glen
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1,504 Posts
Just a note on heating the gun barrel. While it's true they get quite hot when fired it is evenly heated where as blasting involves heating only one portion at a time. I don't think it would turn in to a boomarang but I imagine the slightest degree of change could render it usless. I would hit the old disclaimer for that one for sure.
 

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Trial and Error Opperator
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2,018 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
see Glen, Thats the type of thinking that was at the show.
One guy was saying that they heat the barrel evenly to harded it, I don't think that a quick go over with glass would change the hardness as the barrels are quit thick. But the guy says how do you know that?

Is the blueing of the barrel the heating of it?

I was asked if the soda would change the Blueing?

I've got to hit a gun shop to see what these guys know...
 

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Registered
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I have blasted many gun barrels, I have used glass beads, Aluminum oxide and silica sand.

It sounds like if there is minor rust/pitting already present you should go with a little coarser aluminum oxide to blend away the pitting if there is any.

Normally when a firearm is to be blued or parkerized (military type flat black or grey finish) it is degreased, blasted and immediately placed into the bluing solution.
 

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MHIC licensed contractor
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154 Posts
I have blasted many gun barrels, I have used glass beads, Aluminum oxide and silica sand.

It sounds like if there is minor rust/pitting already present you should go with a little coarser aluminum oxide to blend away the pitting if there is any.

Normally when a firearm is to be blued or parkerized (military type flat black or grey finish) it is degreased, blasted and immediately placed into the bluing solution.
Good advice. I've done my fair share of refinishing firearms, involving blasting as a prep step.

As prep for powdercoat, i would go with the al ox, 80 or finer, and a light touch. Its what i use as prep for parkerizing (phosphate coating), and other paint on finishes like guncoat, duracoat, or ceramics. You want a slightly rough finish for the powdercoat to bite into, but the powder coat or moly paints are thick enough to fill the micro voids and leave a smooth finish.

To just remove blue or factory paints, as prep to reblue or polish, use the glass bead.

Blasting wont have any effect on hardness or temper.




Be careful with getting advice at a gunshop. Its a well known fact that everyone that works at a gunshop is full of sh**.

Look at weaponeer.net
homegunsmith.com
brownells.com (tech section)
midwayusa.com (tech section, and their videos on youtube)
and here:
http://www.ar15.com/forums/forum.html?b=6&f=19
 

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Glen
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1,504 Posts
Well we have a couple of guys here that have experience with this so it seems they don't bend out of shape from light blasting, thanks for the help Pat and xpatriotex.

I had two concerns. That it could bend, even if the hardness of the steel didn't change.
Or that the pitting combined with the heat of powder coating could make them unsafe, like they could shatter and hurt somone when they were fired. I wouldn't want it comming back to me that I said it would be safe. But I havn't heard of any one having a problem with it. I heard things like that about aluminum wheels too. Some people say the pitting can start cracks in the wheel, but I did a lot of aluminum wheels and never had a problem.

I have a guy wants me to blast some gun powder paste off of a hydrgen tank, should I use fine or medium glass?
 
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