Thanks for the info. Nothing says the barrel is - or isn't - blued. Though if he files then sands the barrel it will surely need it again.
Cold Bluing looks easy enough. Anyone have any favorite types?
Arguably, the best cold blue is Blue Wonder.
What ever brand you decide, be sure and follow directions carefully.
Warming the metal up also improves the depth and result of cold bluing.
To be period correct, the barrel should be browned rather than blued. There are a couple of manufacturers, Birchwood Casey Plum Brown is one.
I would also recommend the Birchwood Casey Tru-Oil stock finish products for a good finish on the wood. The sealer & filler, Tru-Oil and stock wax produce a very good finish. The wax is a good protectant for the whole gun, it is a mixture of beeswax & silicone.
We filed the inlaid brass side plate today so it is flush with the stock. It had been pressed in so hard we couldn't get it off - there was nothing to grab it by.
We draw-filed it with a fine cut file - now it is ready for steel wool.
pictures of progress would have been really nice tony. . . . but at least get a couple of it finished. . .
My son has taken a few though none before the first sanding. I'm sure he won't mind me posting some.
It's still apart and unfinished. Right now he's contemplating the finish. A period firearm would have been varnished I'm sure. Maybe we'll use a surface finish. He says he doesn't want it shiny. Given this pistol will never be in a museum, it could be a matt polyurethane is best as it is impervious and easy.
The next part of the project is to figure out how to buff the 'thimbles,' Which are the cast brass widgets that the ramrod slides into for storage. Their shape is not file friendly. We don't have a buffing wheel.
The barrel has tool marks in it. They don't make the gun less functional. I am not sure if he's going to remove the sights and file the barrel. I would, but I'm anal that way. The sights seem to be slid into dovetails. I don't know what's holding them in unless it is friction.
(More To Come)
Last edited by tony ennis; 07-27-2009 at 11:52 PM.
Here are some pics. We're putting an oil finish on it now. I think he's going to follow it with polyurethane. Aw c'mon, if the ancients had had it, they would have loved it.
Last edited by tony ennis; 07-29-2009 at 08:53 PM.
You may want to re-think poly over oil. Most of the time you won't get a good bond between the two, and may get peeling.
Flint era pistols have been observed in brown, blue or in the white, polished. All are original finishes, though the brown and blue used would have been rust brown, or rust brown boiled to convert the surface to a hard black. You're best off not polishing past 400 grit on the steel if you'll be using any of the cold blues or heat activated browns. Too bright a surface, and the blue will not wear well, and the brown may not take.
One thing led to another, and we just now got to the chance to fire the weapon. We found a group of enthusiasts who took us in...
lame blog post
You're really trying to force me to buy one, aren't you?
That came out great and it looks like you and your son had a good time firing it.
About how many hours do you figure it took to finish? Maybe 20? 10?