Bluing Gun Parts

Back around 1980, I built this custom bluing tank setup in my garage.

      This is the frame I made (on casters) for my bluing tanks.   It hooked up to my gas hot water heater with a quick-connect fitting, and when not in use, I just wheeled it under a large wall-mounted cabinet.   I soon found that there's a lot more to bluing than most people think.   If you've ever tried your hand at bluing, you know what I mean.   The first thing I had to learn was patience in getting the ideal temperature for the bluing solution.   The only way the solution gets hot enough is to keep adding more salt.   If the bluing solution doesn't get hot enough, it will not leave a deep dark finish.   If the temperature gets too hot (with some types of steel), your parts might come out purple and that looks really weird.

      I learned a lot of ways to NOT blue gun parts, but I finally discovered how to get it exactly right.   I also learned many tricks of the trade along the way.   However, unless you enjoy spending countless hours of meticulous polishing and waiting forever for your bluing salts to reach the ideal temperature, it's far better for most of us to have this job done by a "skilled" professional . . . . if you can find one.   Polishing the parts correctly is real artwork, and this is where most bluing companies screw it up.   After about 2 years, I decided that top quality bluing required way too much of my time.   Before deciding on someone to do your bluing, be sure to see SEVERAL guns that they have done.

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