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Case hardening a receiver

Discussion in 'Maintenance & Gunsmithing' started by jordanka16, Nov 24, 2009.

  1. jordanka16

    jordanka16 Albany, OR Active Member

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    Is it possible to case harden a receiver that was originally blued? I'm getting a gun that is blued, but would look really nice if it was color case hardened.
     
  2. madcratebuilder

    madcratebuilder Ardenwald, OR Well-Known Member

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    There are a couple of smiths in the mid west that provide that service, spendy.
     
  3. deadeye

    deadeye Albany,OR. Moderator Staff Member

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    know anybody with a pottery kiln? I used a furnace myself but a pottery kiln should work.You need to get the gun up around 1400 deg F in some bone charcoal,then dump directly into some used motor oil for a great color. You would want to practice the cooling process because air at this point is not your friend.I did this in school years ago when they actually taught skills and you could bring guns to school.

    You could try Koonce in Salem 503-364-0100.
     
  4. Gunner3456

    Gunner3456 Salem Well-Known Member

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    Case hardening refers to hardening the surface of a piece without hardening it through and through. (Hardening the "case.") This is often done to make the surface hard while leaving the main piece flexible rather than brittle (hardened.) Some knife manufacturers do that to knife blades so that the blade will hold an edge on the surface but remain flexible and not break.

    I'd be scared to do that myself to a critical gun part. I might make that whole receiver hard and brittle and...

    Crafts outlets sell chemicals that can be applied to clean metals and then heated with a propane torch to permanently color the metal. I don't know how durable that is. They have chemicals for copper which will make it look greenish and 100 years old in seconds. They have others for other metals for a variety of effects.

    Heating steel to red hot means it's bordering on molten. When in that state the molecular structure of the metal changes. Quenching locks the molecular structure into that altered state, making it hard. Too hard is brittle.

    Gun manufacturers carefully set a balance of hardness for wear, and flexibility for safety into the metal. I'd want to know a lot more about that process...

    $.02
     
  5. jordanka16

    jordanka16 Albany, OR Active Member

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    I guess what I'm actually asking is if anyone has actually had their blued gun case hardened.

    I have a forge so I could do it myself if I wanted, but I'd much rather have an accomplished gunsmith do it. The gun in question is a .45-70, so there's a lot of pressure to be messing around with.

    I will give Koonce a call deadeye.
     
  6. SWCR

    SWCR Sedro-Woolley, WA Member

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