How To Remove Bluing From Steel click here
Underneath is my barrel, how can i remove the factory blueing, then polish to a chrome to mirror finish? I think the barrel is stainless steel. I am a beginner, and am looking for help. Thanks in advanced.
Really didn't need to start a new thread.Watch the vinegar gig,it likes to eat on barrels.It'll clean a bore well just as ammonia but if it sits very long it starts eating-if you get a leak in the bore and it's in there a while your barrel will magically start fouling more.Get a little bottle of blueing remover from Birchwood Casey or the like,do it by hand,then start sanding.2000 grit is fine on paint,polishing paper on steel.If you use anything below 1200 you're going to remove metal fast so remember not to play with lockup areas and ruin it.
It's safer.If you get a leak into the bore with vinegar early on it will start etching the bore,hence fouling will increase.Carbon steel is worse but it will attack stainless also,that could be backwards because it's been quite a while since I've been on this topic.The blueing remover is controllable,just wipe it where you want it,let it do it's thing per the instructions,remove and nuetralize it.Once you're done stripping it start polishing.Relying on memory ammonia and vinegar only have about 15 minutes tops to stay on the surface before damage starts,tops.Vinegar is one trick knife makers use to patina demascus blades to make them resemble the old original damascus (or Wootz) steels used centuries ago.Some of the cheaper damascus gets really eaten up and the layers are quite pronounced in sight and even feel.
Just remember to not alter the barrel block and muzzle where lockup occurs,a few swipes with 1500 to surface polish will be fine.If you want the barrel block flats nice that's cool to mirror up if you want it.One thing you'll find is flats aren't always flat.I use a perfectly flat surface to lay the paper on and work the part over,and you'll see highs and lows.On critical areas,you don't level it out because you'll be lowering edges,which is part of your lockup engagement like the front of your barrel block (or chamber block).Doing the outside of the slide is no big deal because by the time you level out the stampings and block out the lows,you only removed a few thousandths of metal in a non critical area.It's also quite labor intensive.I partly cleaned up the flats on my Commander slide and drew it over a file first to get most of the stamping mushrooms and highs out and went to 320.It still isn't flat but I finished off with 500 and it looks like the original brushed finish.Just that was well over an hours work.
I used a bluffing wheel on my dremel tool with some polish. I was able to remove all the blue this way. I would stop from time to time and let the barrel cool back down before continuing. It does take some time, but it almost looks like a chrome finish now.
I converted my bench grinder to a polisher using some wheels and compounds I bought from Caswell Plating. Takes about and hour per barrel to get a true mirror finish. My first barrel I used a dremel and assorted polish wheels but it took about 4 hours and never really got that mirror shine that I wanted
I guess I should elaborate a bit. I started with some 800 grit wet paper, then moved up and thru 1000, 1500, 2000 and 3000. Then I hit the buffer. It takes a little longer that way but it will enable you to really smooth our the machining marks if there are any and it will remove almost all of the Melonite (Black) from the barrel. About an hour of sanding total and then another hour on the buffer using three separate stainless steel compounds. The first was black SS compound which has some bite to, moving it against the turn of the wheel, on a harder 6" hard sewn wheel, then green SS compound on a separate 6" sisal against the turn of the wheel to remove any remaining blemishes. A further step was to take white SS compound on yet another sisal wheel, with the turn of the wheel to give it the final mirror polish. In all that took about an hour of work. So really two hours per barrel then.
How about posting some pictures of the locking lugs.
I always used Naval Jelly to remove the blueing under a hot water faucet. Then use a tampico wheel on a buffer, then go to a muslin polishing wheel. Stop when it looks like ya want it to. Don't round off the locking lugs on the barrel!