Gun Blue Instructions
Instructions, Tips, Hints, and
This product contains acids keep off skin. Avoid contact with
skin, eyes, and clothing. See cautions on label. Use according to
directions. Keep out of reach of children. We recommend you wear vinyl/nitrile
gloves to keep off the skin.
OF THIS PRODUCT – Necessary to succeed:
The purpose of this
product is to be rugged and not magic, so it needs to react with the steel. So
the surface atoms individually need to be available and on top of that reactive
(not reacted already) is key, so penetration into the steel surface not
powdered on the outside. Failure in any major respect will be failure to get
the metal to cooperate with the rugged gun blue mixture. This product is about
performance. For shiny end-result, make the metal shiny first.
Always wear gloves to
protect the metal from reacting with your fingerprint contamination.
Degrease: This is step # 1.
No oil or grease. The product in the kit is Alkaline.
mechanically is best and not contaminate in its process, oxide or rust. Metal Prep 1 and 2: chemistry for all
steel with clear oxide, rust, and metal with mill scale. Mechanical prep by
removal is the best e.g. abrasively scrub for all even the most brilliant
polished Rockwell hardened steel. If Prep 1 is used where not needed, or
incorrect time, the result will be gray and must be wet sanded off. In that
case prevents full blue. Metal Prep # 2 is different, but only for
brightly polished hardest steel. Metal Prep # 1 is designed as a chemical
alternative to create a thicker black coating. Also to black immediately up
to 1 hour for the surface to not have lost the prep. Make sure to use a
non-phosphorus not-chlorine degreaser ahead of bluing, as if the degreaser or
rust converter reacts with the metal after sanding, Metal Prep 1 or 2 when not
needed, the resulting color wet will be as bad as light gray, not black.
of the bluing including putter available online, ShooterSolutions.com/video.html
FIRST DEGREASE Oil
and Grease Before Working on the metal: If this isn’t Alkaline
isn’t enough, then make
sure to degrease with the best petroleum solvents like lacquer thinner,
nonchlorinated brake cleaner, clear PVC pipe cleaner, M.E.K., Acetone. Protective
chlorinated grease and oil are tough to remove, and may require abrasive pad or
sand blasting together with eat-the-oil degreasing. For rust in pits, a
shinning stainless steel wheel on a “Dremel” or equivalent tool. You DON’T
need to go to bare steel everywhere, no bluing remover needed. Just clean
rust and contaminants including reacted polymers, Teflonä, etc, and don’t let react longer than
necessary. If there imperfections, then proper preparation before and after
degreasing will be needed, as will not blue in pits or scratches without
sanding them out stainless steel wheel high speed tool as Metal Prep of some
sort. Caution: with contaminate that is the steel you will get silver or gray
not black. NEVER long soaks in Isopropyl alcohol (it saturates with water.)
BLUING: Note: It will
only work on carbon steel, hardened steel, iron, and most alloys, but only if
electrically active, not for stainless. See tips. It does not fill in scratches.
After your piece of metal is thoroughly degreased and completely clean (Includes
cold water overflow rinsing non-completely removed degreasers leaving soap and
powder behind), apply Bluing solution (2.5X Concentrate). Best to SOAK
or by applying by something not contaminated. Example: brush. (Not Cotton
Swabs, paper towels and cloth will react with bluing. Pour a small amount of
the Shooter Solutions’ into a separate container to avoid contaminating the bottle.
You can add up to 1.5X (60%) distilled water and it will still work. Hint: for
using it as a dip do not dilute is more forgiving of contaminant even of metal,
for commercial use diluted is “OK”. You want to blue the base metal, not on
top. See tips below. Dip brush or into the bluing or using spray keep area to
be blued wet for 2-5 minutes for results or 10-15 minutes for best
penetration. Increase time if diluted: twice as long 1.5X to 1. While you
should see the coating start instantly, up to 10-15 minutes or more on top of
the above may be required when bluing through residual contaminate. Do not let
it react longer than 30 minutes or so at full strength or the shine will be
dulled and the metal will become dull. Grease for example. It will be done
within the time it is not able to soak in any more any will start to overreact.
With perfect preparation it will get black immediately through the liquid and
then set-in over time. Note: moving metal or solution is required also. To
do scratches, pits, and indentations, first file away protrusions and using a
wire wheel or brush and/or the synthetic steel wool and water clean the inside,
also old metal a course wire wheel followed by finer. But if it needs to become
smooth, the metal around it must be removed instead. Brilliant wet sanded with
water polished metal, bead blast, and sand blasted get the blackest. Also, If
it is not at the same level of shine, it will not work. Because the result
looks best like a natural oxide (fine grain), the metal to be blued will
not get darker than hot blue, see note. Do not remove existing factory blue or
black-oxide on old stuff, since this can naturally match modern ones exactly,
if the metal is in the same condition as original blue or black-oxide. Also,
you need not be concerned with creating “ghost rings” and rust rings
around the area. hint: the gentlest if you make it even more gentle
acid-to-finish if you dilute it 1.5X to 1 to raise the pH. For restoration,
steel wooling can be done after bluing to remove bluing. It removes bluing and metal
though. When your metal is dark enough – note the liquid work combination
should have movement if there is any residual metal requiring a longer time –
to be strong, then remove the acid with water, an airless bottom-force-fed room-temp
cold water pail is ideal for the same amount of time as bluing and then pat dry
and immediately either force dry with hot air or safe oven or use a dewatering
oil on it to displace the water and immediately prevent rust. If you are not
going to clear coat or carnauba wax then Shooter Solutions dewatering oil is an
excellent choice. If you want a marbled brown/blue look, like is very popular
in construction, then rinse only the heavy acid off, as like 1 minute of rinse,
and then shake the excess water off, and let it dry on its own horizontal to a
degree of rust, and when it is bright orange enough, as it is not rustproof yet.
Any wet-looking product including oil, wax, combination thereof or Clear
acrylic will make it look black gun-blue look, exactly as the metal, with no
tolerance change. Or just wipe down with a good gun oil or machine oil after
the water is dried. Some oils may be incompatible with the finish, like 3-in-1
oil. Flat acrylic may look different from satin. You can finish the bluing with
either standard oil for guns and machine shop. For architectural, indoor and
outdoor art, golf, indoor
hardware and patio, abrasive
if required, hot water or sponge rinse, pat dry, then top after completely
dried out (if necessary) with Spray Lacquer. Satin Clear Coat looks like oiled.
Also for protecting the blued/blackened/gun metal surface for long-term against
the elements. NEITHER HEAT THE BLUING NOR METAL AND
DILUTE 1.5:1 for soft
and prepared steel to keep from creating black from breaking down!
A thin coat of
quality wax or enamel clear coat will protect even from saltwater contact! It
is tough enough to stand up to 100º saltwater and even fresh blood. Take a
small amount of Automotive paste carnauba wax (a small amount goes a long ways)
and buff onto your metal: do not allow automotive carnauba on wood finishes.
Allow the wax to haze up and then buff off the haze with a soft cloth for
shine. A damp cloth should provide dull for hunting. Checkering and engraving:
brush with a toothbrush, since a cloth won’t get into the sharp crevices.
That’s all there is to it. When taking a weapon into the field, apply another
light coat to ensure the wax is performing at its peak. MolyFusionä is another product, details after
instructions. For bigger items, or items not finished in oil, you can sponge
excess bluing with water or steel wool, dry the water off and finish with as
& TIPS (REQUIRED READING):
User results will vary depending on the metal
and if mechanical work is required. Let me explain. Heating the metal up luke
warm (as with a hair dryer) will speed up the bluing process with some
blues, but it is best to first try to make the metal surface reactive, since
uniform color will NOT be possible. Commercial, in that it works the way it is
supposed to: If agitation of clear oxide is not done when necessary the
result of the job will be gray. If too much time lapses between
preparation and bluing – that is, in some environments minutes of time – the
result will be gray. Therefore for a production process it should never be
used if it is never needed: some metal doesn’t like “cold” blue. Parts, even
long ones may be dipped as opposed to soaking on. If reusing, run the liquid
through a coffee or similar filter to clean it and store in HDPE only, like
rinsed Windshield wiper gallons that held the “blue” stuff, never rinsed LDPE
water or milk jugs: too thin a plastic.
This bluing reacts to high ferrous (iron) metal
only. It will not work on aluminum, powdered metals without the
mentioned prep, and any surface that can’t rust brown, some alloys without the
prep, any electrically inactive metal, contaminated. Muriatic HCl acid
and blue remover prep will leave a surface that may need to be course wire
wheeled for the bluing to react to the metal to become proper.
shows: Sandblast = dull. Pre-converted = gray; Glass beaded = satin (Like
parkerizing) Smooth = shiny
achieved by progressive steps from less polished to super--polished = master
blue look. Note after sanding it is critical to scrub away all residual metal
as making that converted and gluing will NOT BE PART OF THE STEEL.
not use “Break Free” or metal polishes over any gun blue. They remove both
metal and bluing. Bluing may be buffed with a piece of fine steel wool to
brighten (# 0000) if Nec. Better is Synthetic Steel Wool of final finish is a
new tip for finer polish and bluing since Synthetic won’t react to the bluing.
Keep in mind the conversion coating while incredibly strong is incredibly thin.
for larger round items: this is what was done for the large Restaurant
furniture: getting it on by using a trigger sprayer and keeping it wet, but it
does not bead up on non-oily metal. For flat objects, brushing can be
considered. – the construction of the brush and short length of bristles not
like applying paint being important. (Cut Acid brush for smaller than
toothbrush use.) or with gloves, patches may work better than any brush,
or (careful for eyes) with a sprayer.
Or for large jobs – again,
use cold only, you can mist spray with use of a soft brush for keeping an area
wet for 2-5 minutes of the metal prep and 10-15 minutes for the bluing. Extra: If
10-15 minutes is not long enough to be deep enough, depending on concentration go
for more time or use hot water pre-rinse to get the metal to room temperature
or warm, important to also rotate and move the piece(s) in the bluing like
in the Scotty Cameron Putter Video so the bluing is uniform. A soft brush
in the blue is handy to remove sanded residue. You will notice moving in the
Gun Bluing the Putter video online. Don’t attack it immediately like under a
faucet: it will become stronger over time. Flowing into the bottom and
out over the top of the container water rinses as a commercial process in
between and after especially should be the same time to remove the excess acid
to prevent acid salts. A separate set of directions will give the dark brown
color on top of the bluing technique: as in a “warm marbled very rustic look or
hot-rolled steel look.” These directions supplement bottle directions but don’t
take the place of them. There must be a complete and thorough rinse of
water between any reactive degreaser or metal prep and the Bluing: the
supplied degreaser, anything that reacts to acids but not to metal – caution
before anything overly reactive to the metal might need to be sanded away – and
nothing oil like lighter fluid or mineral spirits. For rinsing an overflow as
you can see illustrated in the putter video for 5-10 minutes not mentioned,
(overflowing, as if bottom fed with a clamped garden hose in container of
water). One video at ShooterSolutions.com/gunblue.html Do not contaminate any
water-based chemical with any other chemical, even by accident, as in dragging chemistry,
even degreaser. Feel free to call.
Ideas: Especially with the
45 degree tip, Very economical long-barrel trays would be a
wallpaper tray, and/or using a pair of tin snips and making a plastic rain
gutter to length for dipping and rinsing. For shorter barrel the red drywall
mud tray or other plastic containers: Such as like Hardware, Home Centers,
Paint/Wallpaper Stores. Don’t ever use aluminum or aluminum content
(because it’s deadly when “gassing”).
Dipping Container Non-Brown
Related: To avoid the
easy-to-get “Warm Brown effect” special, Rinsing the liquid blue off of
the metal via immersion bottom-fed rinsing tank to get the contamination
removed so it won’t be in the oil by accident, and not put on in layers for
acid to be underneath, following not letting any acid OR water dry on its own
before heat and clear coat or de-watering then oil or wax, then don’t do it.
Parkerizing: Not another in a
line of “home brew” formulas, does not shrink the parts as a normal rule of operation.
Black and rugged. To meet the most modern Spec, a free pre-reacting to the
metal product included as a matter-of-course, for old restoration, water is the
For Stainless Steel: DIY for both 300 and 400 series Stainless steel but
Telephone help: 360-988-6583
Tips, Hints, and Suggestions Including
Warm Brown Effect
WARNING: This product is
an electrical phosphate conversion coating.
SO YOU WANT TO BLUE
CAR BATTERY ILLUSTRATION
to any conversion coating.
A brand new
fully charged battery if installed using corrosion-on-cable-connectors, while
it might allow the clock and headlights to run, will not be able to start the
car. Not due to the chemistry, but due to the corrosion not removed.
This is the
way it is with this very chemistry too: If the metal is well degreased, not
grease or oil on it, but there remains an oxide layer that was not removed or
is irremovable, while it may react to gray, it will not react enough to be
If you have
handled the metal surface with bare hands while prepping the surface, your
hands leave evidence of your very prints etched into the metal which will
produce at least at first a mottled look, when you sand the bluing off to
remove the prints with more than one piece of 600 grit sandpaper, and down to
400 grit if necessary, your finger prints (or someone else’s) may show up as
how good the chemistry is, just like the connector illustration, the surface of
the metal needs to be conductive, as a circuit must be connected with all of
the metal to produce a full-black conversion coating.
imagine if batteries, like all the coating gun blues were so powerful they were
designed to (try to) work either work through corrosion or instantaneously. Too
much! When installed in a non-corroded terminal, they would blow out the light
bulb. Far fetched? Here is my justification: All chemistry takes time. All
conversion coating taking minutes rather than seconds will be stronger due to a
tighter grain. If there is so much energy, you MUST stay between the lines to
keep from turning existing black oxide brown, it is going to be much harder to
use than this one that does not require that. Too much acid is not a good
thing, as that overpowers the circuit. So not only must the chemistry be
correct, but all in the correct proportions for clean electrically active
metal. The others mentioned are designed around instant rather than clean,
electrically active metal. Instant is not as elegant as designed around
non-damaging, any more than an over-voltage battery VS good.
COLOR – GRAY & BLACK & the pH
Paper illustration to the metal surface:
of the surface to the gun blue is like a strip of pH Paper to water. Let me
explain. If we sold you pH paper I would not guarantee it will turn a
particular color when you put a piece with any Swimming Pool water, even if
you think you are adding acid first, for if you do not add enough, or it is not
working, the pH paper will just tell the truth like the metal will with respect
to color. And throwing the whole roll into the pool or heating up the paper
won’t help, any more than using up all the bluing when a drop will do. It
takes two to tango. It the metal is not reacting the result will not be
black - when wet that is. Heating up the bluing will not help. If the metal is
not acting like metal it will not blue black. The result will be gray or almost
black but not black. This occurs if a perfect job preparing the metal was done
in the past: days before the bluing arrives, and has already reacted with the
air. Or if an existing oxide was never removed, even if it was polished silver.
Clear oxide is still oxide and will not blue. I mean gray or silver when wet or
oiled, not when dry. The color of the coating this produces is NEVER black but
ALWAYS gray, BUT when wet is BLACK, when it produces a dense gray coating. If
only nearly all of the metal has reacted the result will not become black. I
guarantee you this rugged gun blue is not magic, but is to create a commercial
surface not a consumer surface.
BUILD UP OR LACK OF
TOLERANCE CHANGE THEREOF:
It builds into the
metal as opposed to on top, so tolerances are not affected. It can build up as
deep into the metal as hot gun bluing can do: it does it via metal acids as
opposed to a very high temperature caustic.
CHEMICAL MAKE UP COMPARISON
VS BLACK-OXIDE (HOT BLUEING):
AND it is technically
a well-refined COPPER-Phosphate-Nitrate Electric Conversion Surface that has
wetting agents built-in so air is displaced by the wetting agent. As opposed to
Oxide (Rust) of Iron, and therefore more corrosion resistant than black oxide,
and has shown to take as many hours to sand off as black oxide.
COMPARISON TO ‘HOT’
and MORE ROBUST SHOOTERSOLUTIONS’:
chemically different than black oxide, because they are both so ridiculously
rugged, it is NOT recommended to sand off black-oxide where it is not necessary
to sand off, as there is no net gain in ruggedness or color improvement: black
and rugged is black and rugged. In other words it is not MORE RUGGED than at
least the old factory blues!
however, not nearly as strong as to-black Shooter Solutions™’ Industrial
Manganese Nickel Parkerizing, since the metals in it are insanely better than
copper. This, as a true conversion coating also requires the metal to be
It is also
not nearly as strong as Moly-Fusion™ Extreme and Moly-Fusion™ Extreme Black,
also nonstick a drawback in many cases, but a Molybdenum to nonstick electrical
conversion coating, Molybdenum being much harder than Parkerizing and has been
shown over the years to provide bullet rubbing resistance inside the barrel of
a firearm and fouling reduction when a gray coating is achieved – but not in
the chamber of high power centerfire, as full friction is needed in all power
- Remember to wear glove to protect the
metal from your hands, not just your hands from the bluing.
- When removing oxide from metal, whether
it is sandblasting for bluing (to look like Parkerizing – color-wise) or
Parkerizing, or Moly-Fusion™, or fine bead blast for a satin finish for
bluing, or 600 grit wet sanded for that look, to keep fingers off and
react with the bluing, etc within an hour if possible as metal immediately
– what it does – is reacting with oxygen and water vapor immediately: iron
is that way.
- When viewing videos on the bluing
process remember to check out the Scotty Cameron Video too, and the full
length version of the video on the gun bluing the Ruger 10/22 barrel as
referenced below, as it will include tips on which direction to sand (with
the worked grain of the metal) getting all of the rust out of the inside
of the pitting – I do this as reducing the thickness of the barrel
presents something that is no longer factory, and the robustness of the
design to blow up has been reduced.
- Don’t expect a single quart to do
the work of a gallon! If you dilute it, it will do less metal
than full strength. To make a dip last longer do not keep adding dilute,
but keep recharging with full concentrate if possible, How long it will
last will be determined if the excess metal and grease is cleaned off
first. It has only so much active chemistry available to react.
interesting effect Extra Separate Use and Direction for warm black/brown marbled look
like black/brown leather, or orange/black.
use full strength for most fool-proof results or mix the Gun Blue 1.5
volume distilled water to 1 volume Blue for a soak. Use it in the sprayer
or better yet an airless sprayer like the insecticide variety for quickest
results. A much more dilute version might be needed depending on the
results desired. Note: Metal Prep generally helps and hinders: helps for
hot-rolled (Or you can grind it all off instead), hinders for cold-rolled and others. Therefore mechanical
means of removing oxide is the most effective!
from quart spray bottles with trigger variable sprayer tops, set at
misting for odd shaped items and convenience. Protect eyes though.
the metal to a sandblast finish just before first spray.
hot rolled steel spray first with Gun Blue Metal Prep keeping wet with
misting spray for 1 minute plus or minus.
only an area of surface that can be kept continuously wet like horizontal
with tap water for same amount of time.
the diluted “gun blue” material onto the metal and keep wet for the
water from a hose to eliminate the bulk of the acid, but lightly enough so
there is still weak acid in the surface. Let dry on its own until rust is
there, and if heated, draw brown up through the blue by patting with vinyl
gloved finger to get dried soft brown on the blue. For maximum rust, let it
the orange content while dry or accelerate its effect by transferring
loose rust from a rusted non-oiled metal: water-rinsed to get debris off
first, by rubbing loose wet rust off and daubing onto the rust to brown
further, let dry, and this will hopefully add 3-dimensional quality so it
will present a warm mottled brown through flat clear-coat or lacquer –
flat for maximum brown color but to enhance the black. You will note the
brown is set in place when dry.
insufficient results anywhere, sand to 150 grit or so and go back to step four
the above cannot produce enough brown contrast, some rust may need to be
transferred directly to the thin, wet, lacquer. Also the orange may be
less affected in light with completely flat clear coat – or less sheen.
sure the brown is protected enough to not rub off via rubbing action.
cautions as to eye, skin, clothing protection, since no acid should ever
contact eyes and skin, or be breathed in.
bottles should be kept upright when using, to allow use and keep them
from leaking liquid from the spray head.
For this, spray bottles, and sprayers are
included, and a sample steel done per the directions above. Metal degreased
before blasting. It is in the stage of the second daubing rust onto the metal
surface, and times are estimates only based on this sample of hot-rolled steel,
but it was sanded and not blasted. Only most of one surface was done, and the
rest kept intact to show before sanding to 80 grit sandpaper followed by 150
grit for a while was hot-mill scale. Results will vary, but it should be possible
to get great results with great artistry. Return digital pictures to e-mail address at bottom of every page. subject: pictures,
of results with feedback/testimonials will be appreciated.
more help, MSDS, etc. call: 360-988-6583
style='font-size:12.0pt;font-family:"Arial","sans-serif"'>. – This update, 3-12-2012