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Unread 10-11-2017, 10:12 AM   #1
milesc2
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Default DWM Shooter Refresh

Wanted to show the progress I have made refreshing my mixed numbers 1916 DWM shooter.

It was completely dip blued at one point. I have stripped most of the parts that should be in the white with the exception of the S-link and toggle pin. (I tried the drill press method but still can't get the pins out)

I am considering sending it to Ted to have it refinished but I am not sure if the buffing damage is reparable for a reasonable cost.

Can someone explain how the trigger springs are re fire blued on restored guns? I have no problems with the screws but I am afraid if I try to heat the spring it will destroy the temper.

If a new spring must be purchased does anyone know where I could locate a correct fire blued one?

Thanks,
-Miles
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Unread 10-11-2017, 01:20 PM   #2
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Default

I think it looks fine.
You really can't put "back" metal removed in buffing.

Re-heat the spring-
polish it white, then heat just to achieve the blue, quench immediately. Don't go any farther and you won't change the spring's "springiness". But be very careful, the thin spring will go from white to straw and past blue in an instant- really should be done in a controlled oven/furnace- your kitchen stove won't get hot enough.
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Unread 10-11-2017, 06:01 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonVoigt View Post
I think it looks fine.
You really can't put "back" metal removed in buffing.

Re-heat the spring-
polish it white, then heat just to achieve the blue, quench immediately. Don't go any farther and you won't change the spring's "springiness". But be very careful, the thin spring will go from white to straw and past blue in an instant- really should be done in a controlled oven/furnace- your kitchen stove won't get hot enough.
How I do fire blue and straw is by using a toaster oven. You'll need to calibrate it and put a reference mark on the temp. dial if you want to repeat the process without hunting for the proper setting all over again. The secret is to use a metal container of sand, in which the parts are immersed, and temper the sand on a trial setting for about 45 minutes-an hr. It will act as a buffer to prevent over-temping the thin portions of the parts, all of which are heated to the temperature of the sand and no higher. For straw, start out around 350 degrees (because the scale is relative/nominal) on the dial. Check the color of the parts after about 20 min.-half hr. If not hot enough, bump the setting on the dial, re-temper the sand, and heat the parts in it again. In the event you go too far, simply re-polish and try again at a lower setting. For fire blue, the temp may be closer to the max on the dial, but still not hot enough to draw springs down and change the temper.
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Unread 10-11-2017, 02:48 PM   #4
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I agree this pistol looks fine as is for a shooter. The fundamental issue we all face on restoring pistols is, the restoration expense can drive the total investment beyond what a good to very good original would cost.

In fire bluing parts, I have found the trick is to heat them slowly. There are some useful youtube videos that explain it, many people including me use brass shavings or a brass fixture (bar) to help apply heat slowly and evenly. If I go too fast heating the part, I speed through the bright fire blue color before I can quench the item.

If you overheat a part, cool it, sand off the dark finish and then try again. Be very careful when handling a greatly overheated part as they can be be quite brittle. By definition if you achieve the fire blue color you have achieved the proper temper.

On those tight pins, when the press doesn't work try starter punches (Brownells et al). Personally when I use starter punches I typically also build a fixture from hardwood scrap to hold the part while I am beating the pin with a hammer.

You might consider applying Renaissance Wax, I've found it makes old re-blues look a bit more original. It can be removed if you don't like the look.
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Unread 10-11-2017, 04:28 PM   #5
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Just ordered some Renaissance Wax thanks for the suggestion.
I will try to punch out the pins with a starter punch. If that dosen't work I may just leave it be.
Maybe Tom H would tear it down if I mailed it to him?
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Unread 10-12-2017, 10:50 PM   #6
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Miles,

Excellent job - it looks great!
I assume you did the straw yourself? Looks amazing and original.

Is that the original rust blue finish we are seeing now?
How did you get the old dip blue off?

- Geo
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Unread 10-14-2017, 09:49 AM   #7
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I didnít do anything fancy, just used some Birchwood Casey Blue and Rust Remover then polished the parts with semi chrome polish and put them in the oven at 450 for 20 minuets.
I did make a rack to hold the parts because I was getting a color gradient from the cookie sheet method.
Iím sure the sand and toster oven method works the best, just havenít tried it yet.
I donít think the finish your looking at is original.
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Unread 10-14-2017, 12:18 PM   #8
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Default Only one little problem?

Hi Miles, great job! Only that the safety bar is either left gray, or polished white?...... I think the part you're missing is the ejector? Which would be the fifth straw part normally found... best to you, til...lat'r...GT
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Unread 10-14-2017, 05:27 PM   #9
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I strawed the ejector after the parts pictured were done. I was nervous to remove it as I’ve snapped one in the past.
I will remove the straw on the safety bar as you suggested.
Thanks for the tip!
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Unread 10-14-2017, 06:30 PM   #10
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Default safety bar

Hi Miles, on the safety bar, and also the coupling link and also the firing pin retainer, you might get the grayish look you want with a little surface prep and maybe some very dilute muriatic acid, (pool acid?) I use it only because it is available everywhere, but, never the less, remember the golden rule,.... AAA (ALWAYS ADD ACID!) to water to dilute... NEVER EVER add water to acid!!!! OOOOhhhh, oh crap! this will never heal! type of burn if you get it wrong.... best to you, til...latr'...GT.....
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Unread 10-14-2017, 06:55 PM   #11
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The blue remover I have been using contains acid and does the effect you described. I’ll tear down my original DWM and see if I can get my shooter parts to match.

On another note do you have any nice original DWM barrels? I would like to get a price on replacing mine as it appears to be an aftermarket replacement.

Thanks!
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Unread 10-14-2017, 10:03 PM   #12
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Default barrels

Hi Miles, on the barrel quest, I can give you a kind of loose order of quality and also the chance of availability?
1) best quality 4" replacement is a WW2 armorers spare, either Steyr or Mauser accepted.. Except for a single and usually very small and nearly polished out acceptance stamp, are un-marked and fit, index and headspace perfectly! Dark salt blue, exceptionally nice... going to cost you somewhere in the $175.00 to $200.00 range...
2) Post war manufacture, marked MADE IN GERMANY they are 98% of what the armorers spares are, but need more attention to headspace correctly, and may or may not index at the correct torque?... Might have to relieve the flange a bit, and that is like starting over each and every time?... $125.00 to $175.00?
3) Lugermans barrels, I have found are on par with the "made in Germany" barrels, and I have installed several, actually all I can get?... The look nice and shoot well, only problem is Eugene is plenty busy with the .45 project, and chances of getting one are slim?... probably around $150.00 a pop I should think?
4) Made in Austria, often marked Bohler (sp.?) steel.. Over buffed and strange profile? Usually very shiny salt blue... Lot'sa work to make fit... I have a few, I hate'em you might love'em...
probably $100.00 to $125.00...
5) Then there is a hodge podge of shade tree barrels, on and off again form the big parts suppliers? Some great quality, some horrible? You can tell until you crank them on?.... SARCO has probably sold more Luger barrels then all of the above put together?...
6) Take off originals, WW1 and/or WW2, they are around, it would be a matter of finding one with excellent bore, and then cleaning up the outside and re-bluing? but not too bad to reinstall? Again, overall, still lot'sa work?... Best to all, til....lat'r....GT...
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Unread 10-16-2017, 03:45 PM   #13
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Thanks for the detailed information sir. I will be on the lookout for an original.
The bore on mine is very good so there is no rush.

-Miles
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Unread 11-10-2017, 09:20 AM   #14
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Update:

Got fire bluing done then installed a set of Nill-Griffe grips. I also used a more accurate color for the GESICHERT repaint and refinished the safety bar as GT suggested. I think it looks much better now overall.

I was able to purchase the grips from another member who had Hugh cut the checkering on them some time ago but never used them.

Canít get over the quality and fitment of these grips. No sanding or fitment of any kind was required they just snapped in very tightly.
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Unread 11-10-2017, 09:49 AM   #15
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What paint did you use for refreshing Gesichert?
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Unread 11-10-2017, 09:57 AM   #16
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I just mixed some Testors Model Master Light Ivory 2709 and Model Master Insignia Yellow 33538 until I got the color I wanted.

It's not perfect but pretty darn close. Closer match than I expected to be honest.
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Unread 11-10-2017, 01:58 PM   #17
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I have always wondered just how well the Nill-Griffe Luger grips actually fit up. They have a wonderful reputation, and a price tag to match!! One usually has to pay for quality......the old "cry once" thing. Were those grips originally smooth, and then checkered by Hugh? You have produced a most handsome Luger that most anyone would be proud to own.....good job!!
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Unread 11-10-2017, 02:08 PM   #18
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Thanks for the kind words!

Yes, they were originally smooth and Hugh hand cut the checkering.
I believe they are cut at 20 or 21 LPI.
It really looks identical to the checkering on my original 1917 DWM.

As far as the price goes there just seems to be no other option. I bough 5 or 6 sets of cheaper reproductions and all had MAJOR flaws. I couldn't believe these just fit without any modification at all.
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Unread 11-10-2017, 03:14 PM   #19
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Default looks great!

Hi Miles, you did a great job and it looks as if it sat in a drawer for the last 100 years! One more little tip? Don't clean the area you just applied the enamel paint to, at least for awhile? it takes a few months to cure rock solid.... and cleaning oil will lift it prior to a long cure period.. after that, you can't hardly get it out! Best to you, til...lat'r....GT...
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Unread 11-10-2017, 09:32 PM   #20
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Also made the sides of the extractor ďin the whiteĒ to be correct.
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