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Blueing - Why do some Dan Wessons go purple and others stay true blue?
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February 28, 2015 - 6:28 pm
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I have a Norwich First Issue 22 and the only thing with a little plum to it is the cylinder. Is the material or process different for the frame and the cylinder. This is the only one I have ever seen like this.

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SCORPIO
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March 1, 2015 - 2:40 pm
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Usually frames show the 'Barney' more than other parts but I have a Norwich with a Barney cylinder, and a Palmer with a Barney shroud and a few Monson's with Barney frames. I was told that high silica content in molds can cause reaction with the nitre salts used in the bluing process.  I'm no metalurgist, so I'm guessing that certain elements in the alloy composition of the steels reacts chemically with the bluing chemicals and produces the more 'rusted' form of bluing.

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Dustoff1970
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April 13, 2016 - 12:27 am
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Heckler & Koch P7 squeeze cocker pistols are notorious for having the frames and slides turn plum colored. Especially the older PSP models from the 80s. They had many discussions over this on the HK board. From what I remember, it was finally resolved that it was due to the slight differences in the steel composition used in the 80s in combination with the length of time (chemical strength) the bluing salts were used before being replaced. I have a P7 PSP from 1986 that has a beautiful (?) plum colored slide.

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middlecalf
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April 13, 2016 - 11:58 am
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Steve
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April 13, 2016 - 9:21 pm
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SCORPIO said
Usually frames show the 'Barney' more than other parts but I have a Norwich with a Barney cylinder, and a Palmer with a Barney shroud and a few Monson's with Barney frames. I was told that high silica content in molds can cause reaction with the nitre salts used in the bluing process.  I'm no metalurgist, so I'm guessing that certain elements in the alloy composition of the steels reacts chemically with the bluing chemicals and produces the more 'rusted' form of bluing.

This is the most common explanation I have seen.

Pure Speculation: Over the course of time, manufacturing locations, changes in ownership, production procedures, etc., WHO KNOWS?

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dogtrialerguy
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April 28, 2016 - 10:37 am
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I have a 44 mag Dan Wesson that turned pure purple found a guy who claimed he could reblue it and it would stay black sure enough 5 yrs later and still as black as when he blued it

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April 28, 2016 - 4:57 pm
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dogtrialerguy said
I had a 44 mag Dan Wesson that turned pure purple

I would have bought it from you .. I like the purple hues.

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weaselguys
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December 1, 2016 - 7:07 am
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I have blued several guns using the blueing salts that were sold by Brownell's and I believe it is simply the different type of alloys used in the different parts and how long and how hot the person doing the blueing that day cooked the parts , I have seen shotgun actions done with a fast blue job come out with a beautiful lite blue like you might get form a old style cold blue and deep black barrels and actions when they are cooked longer . The side plates , frames and barrel just being a different steel take the blueing different and may look ok out of the tank but show the effects of to short of a time in the salts later on.

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July 4, 2019 - 1:00 am
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weaselguys said
I have blued several guns using the blueing salts that were sold by Brownell's and I believe it is simply the different type of alloys used in the different parts and how long and how hot the person doing the blueing that day cooked the parts , I have seen shotgun actions done with a fast blue job come out with a beautiful lite blue like you might get form a old style cold blue and deep black barrels and actions when they are cooked longer . The side plates , frames and barrel just being a different steel take the blueing different and may look ok out of the tank but show the effects of to short of a time in the salts later on.  

^^^ This

I also blue guns and have had DWs and Rugers frames turn plum, while the other parts remain black, all parts were blued at the same time, same temp, same duration. It is the alloy in the steel, not the sunlight, age or temperature of the solution.

There are special bluing salts available that will help prevent the plum color, I am guessing the manufacturers use that stuff today.

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Ole Dog
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July 4, 2019 - 6:58 am
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I have never blued guns but I have stayed in a Holiday Inn Express. I do read and retain information at a prodigious rate. What I have come across tells me that it is the different steels, the different amount of time in the salts perhaps, how long the salts had been used AND a chemical reaction of the salts and the silicon from the investment casting mold made of clay that is used that impregnates the surface of the  steel. That is why a reblued Barney frame will turn plum over time again. The fact that even the frame of a  gun that appears to not have Barney will have a different hue than the barrel, cylinder and sideplate when studied in daylight makes me believe it is also the different steels too. However, Holiday Inn Express not withstanding, opinions are like you know what. laughing

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July 4, 2019 - 8:40 am
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mrerick
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November 2, 2020 - 3:00 pm
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I also collect Lugers and P.38 pistols. 

The plum results from the alloy nickle content interacting with certain bluing salts. 

My own DW 15-2 frame shows a significant shift in color. 

DWPlumns.jpgImage Enlarger

b

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EddieM
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December 13, 2020 - 6:29 pm
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Hey fellows,

So is this "Barney" issue only for Monsons? The Barney made them rare and may more desirable?

Be safe

Eddie =)

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605Dart
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December 13, 2020 - 9:15 pm
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I have a few of the early 1911's that have shifted to the plum color. I don't mind it at all.

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Ole Dog
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December 13, 2020 - 9:43 pm
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Palmer and Norwich guns also Barney on occasion. I have a very early Serva Era Major C with a Barney slide. I love it. It is always with 2 feet of me when I am in my usual place in the house. On a magnet under the coffee table. 

  I have seen an occasional Barney cylinder but it may have been exposed to chemicals. Never have I seen a barney shroud or sideplate. Large frame trigger groups Barney though. 

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stingray230sx
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February 28, 2021 - 2:25 pm
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i have a 14-2 snub, that has the purplely issues, more brown like

i got it in a trade, was told it was a toolbox gun and re-blued poorly so .........

i would like to find a really good shop to re finish it and possibly machine it for/install an adjustable sight if thats even possible.

 

**edit** i tried to upload the pics but even though they were in the attachement box they did not come over? maybe it's a post count issue?

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DA....64
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February 28, 2021 - 4:35 pm
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DA....64 said
Check out this website for refinishing:  https://fordsguns.com/

  

thank you

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June 20, 2022 - 7:21 pm
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I have a S&W Chiefs Special that has a plumb barrel and cylinder (2" revolver in back of photo)

I originally thought it was re-blued, but it is not, as it had the original box and no turn lines. 1959 model.

 

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