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matte blueing finish

joesjoes Member Posts: 484 ✭✭✭
edited August 2008 in Ask the Experts
Can a matte blue finish on a barrel and action be polished to high gloss finish or will it require refinishing by sanding and reblueing. Thank you, Joe.

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    11b6r11b6r Member Posts: 16,584 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Bluing only colors the upper layer of metal in whatever shape the metal is in. Matt blued is matt blued because of the polish of the metal, If you polish a matt blued gun, you will remove the bluing that is there already. Polish it (usually using a cloth wheel with rouge, or extremely fine polishing paper), and then reblue.
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    nononsensenononsense Member Posts: 10,928 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    joes,

    "Can a matte blue finish on a barrel and action be polished to high gloss finish"

    Yes.

    "will it require refinishing by sanding and reblueing"

    Yes.

    The commercial process for making a matte finish on firearms is to put the parts in a large vibratory tumbler that contains ceramic media of a particular size, shape and formulation. These parts are tumbled for a period of time in which the media impinges on the parts creating the matte finish. Different ingredients can be added to achieve different surface textures.

    ceramictumblingmediavo7.jpg

    This is comparable to a bead blast or sand blast finish that smaller shops use. Under magnification, this appears to look like craters or hills and valleys in the surface of the metal. The degree of dullness on the surface is controlled by the depth, width and separation of the craters. The smaller and further apart the imperfections get, the shinier the metal will look.

    Creating a high polish on a matte surface will involve sanding with progressively finer media in order to physically remove the craters. Getting from a dull, matte surface to a high polish such as we see on a Weatherby will require a great deal of work and elbow grease in order to have the surface quality need to achieve the high degree of reflection. Polishing with a cloth wheel and rouge is the final step after all of the imperfections have been removed by the progressive sanding. Care has to exercised when polishing to avoid ripples and streaks in the surface of the metal. The higher the polish, the more apparent the imperfections become.

    Best.
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