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win 1887 rescue

skicatskicat Member Posts: 14,431
edited May 2015 in Ask the Experts
One of the firearms I recently acquired is a Win 1887. It has light rust over much of the gun. It doesn't appear to be the kind leaving deep pits. The bore cleaned up with a few passes of a brass brush and gives me some hope. The only parts missing are the front sight bead,magazine spring, and follower. The left side carrier screw is not original.

It has a 4 digit serial number so I believe it is a first year production. My main goal is I don't want to make matters worse. I suspect very little bluing remains under the rust but i'd like to preserve what little might be left.

I don't have the ability to post pics at present so I'm not looking for precise valuations. What I want to know is if a gun like this warrants hiring a pro. Not looking to do a restoration or reblue. Just want to stop the deterioration and preserve the firearm as best as I can.

I have done this with lesser firearms but this one would be my oldest firearm at almost 130 years. Just being cautious.

Thanks for suggestions.


  • navc130navc130 Member Posts: 1,019 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Big 45 Frontier Metal Cleaner $5 postpaid. I wouldn't be without it for cleaning up old guns. Look at their website. Fine steel wool and a solvent will work, but steel wool always leaves scratches, even if microscopic.
  • skicatskicat Member Posts: 14,431
    edited November -1
    I already use big45. I love the way it works and haven't damaged anything with it yet. I am just not sure if this gun is worth special treatment by a pro. I'd like to do it myself but just want to be cautious.
  • 62fuelie62fuelie Member Posts: 1,068 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Never ever use steel wool!! If you need to use a "wool" find some brass or bronze wool and use it with oil. Many collectors would tell you to stabilize it "as is" by wrapping the metal parts in paper towels soaked in Kroil for 48-72 hours then rubbing the surface with burlap. Once this is done, remove the Kroil with something like brake-cleaner and oil the entire gun. As an alternative to oiling the outer surfaces some prefer to use a high quality carnuba wax, such as Renaissance Museum Grade paste wax.
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