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black oxide looks verry splotchy

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  • black oxide looks verry splotchy

    black oxide--- i tried this gun twice. i even electrocleaned it and heated both the chemicles and the gun and it is still coming out splotchy and looks like my little sister did it- it looks terrible. any suggestions other than throw this in the garbage?

  • #2
    If you are expecting the totally even, deep uniform color that caustic hot blueing provides, you're going to be disappointed. I don't believe that's possible with anything less than caustic hot blueing. That said, you can improve things substantially by applying your black oxide in multiple thin coats, rubbing it into the steel with thoroughly degreased (mandatory) extra fine steel wool. Heat the steel with a hot air gun to about 125 deg. F. before each application. This also assumes the steel really is totally free of any grease or oil, and all of the rust is removed. Figure on 5-10 coats.


    • #3
      black oxide looks very splotchy

      Thank you Fibergeek for your detailed response. yes, blending in with steel wool in between steps definatly helps but am still not happy with the finish nor will i put my name on somthing that comes out looking like this. I have nickel plated 14 hand guns and 12 shotguns and rifles in the last year and a half and some clients want guns re-blued so i thought I would give this black oxide a try and I am very disapointed. I have been reading this forum for over a year now and just joined it for help on this so I guess that is why I have this "newbee" title? Well forum, i got you newbee RIGHT HERE!!! ha ha, just kidding. Call me what you want, lable me what you will, but thanks for the help to everyone! Back to this caustic hot blueing, Fibergeek. Is this something that you do? Because i am really interested in giving my clients what they deserve, and if you have any info on this as far as where to purchase and what all it entails that would really help as far as your input as well. Thanks again! Zolch with Extreme Plating.


      • #4
        Our Black oxide system will provide results as effective as any hot system. A blotchy result can only be down to surface prep.

        I'd suggest you bead blast the part, after degreasing it, and try again.
        Mike Caswell
        Caswell Inc
        Need Support? Visit our online support section at


        • #5
          OK. For your purposes, only hot caustic blueing will do the job.

          Since you can handle the nuances of nickel plating on firearms, you can learn to do this without excessive difficulty and get professional results. I have, and I have never plated anything (but I do know a little about anodizing).

          Basically, hot caustic blueing (HCB) has two general classes; a matte finish that looks black (not blue) and an ornate, labor intensive high luster blue-black finish. Like in plating, the polishing job and prep will make or break you, no exceptions.

          The matte finish that you see on most newly made firearms today is HCB, the metal prep is little more than beadblasting, thus it the easiest to get good results with, and is where you should start. The finish is still vastly superior in looks and durability to any lesser oxide process, or any kind of paint in existance. This is probably what most of your clients will want.

          The high luster variant of HCB can be shiny black to an intense blue to blue-black mirror finish, the latter seen now days on presentation grade firearms only. I have learned to do this, the labor it requires is a killer; about 150 hours in polishing and prep alone before an elaborate 15 coat HCB blueing cycle. I did this on a scratch built, totally custom, "retro-racegun" 9x23mm longslide Colt 1911 (not 1911A1) pistol I built for myself. I don't know if I'd ever go through that again, but you should see and shoot it, it looks and shoots like something the Colt custom shop built on special order in the 1930's, for kings and presidents (no kidding). A finish like this is a $10K-$15K job on a 1911, because of the labor required.

          Anyway, start by looking at the FAQs on
 or info on do your homework and you will see what you need to do it.

          I don't see Caswell offering this; it complicated, and potentially much more dangerous than even hard chrome plating. You must have your wits about you, or you can be seriously injured.


          • #6
            black oxide

            Thank you, Fibergeek for your input as well as the info. It sounds like this Colt 1911 pistol is something to see. Do you have any pics on the forum? As far as surface prep issue from forum moderator, I took this Winchester 12 guage shot gun down to bear metal and buffed to mirror finish using Caswell's compounds and wheels, blast cabinet with poly abrasive which is a plastic to remove any oxidation and it will not satin the surface. degreesed and electrocleaned twice and distilled water rinse. heated both gun and oxide and had same results twice. This surface was preped better than when i'm plating, but thanks for your input as well,-------Zolch


            • #7
              i heated my parts at 400 degrees for 25 minutes to burn out any oils and moisture and let cool completely before using the cold oxide kit and had extremely good results.. i also tried parts from the same batch without burning out the unseen oils and had very spotty and non uniform results , looks terrible.. may not be your problem but it made all the difference with my parts..


              • #8
                Clean the metal with MEK.. Methyl Ethyl Keytone, you can get it at Home Depot, Lowes, Ace. etc etc.. Will clean off all oils, paints, etc.. then try it.
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