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Carding, and boiling at the end
Old 04-11-2017, 10:40 AM   #1
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Default Carding, and boiling at the end

Deep into the reading material on refinishing damascus, and wanted to ask what folks use to card and why they use it. I've heard about the use of heavier steel wool, Scotchbrite pads, baking soda and finger tips, etc.

I'm also trying to sort out the iterations of rusting, carding, boiling, etching:

Seems that some blue the barrels to the desired color, boiling each cycle, and only then do they start to etch. Others seem to brown, then etch, and save the boil until the end to get their contrast.

Simply trying to learn and would appreciate insight into this. Is this a "to each his own" stylistic process?
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Old 04-11-2017, 01:00 PM   #2
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For the most consistent results you should get Dr. Oscar Gaddy's method of restoring Damascus barrels to original appearance.





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Old 04-12-2017, 10:50 AM   #3
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I've been looking at "Tom Flanigan's Damascus Restoration Tutorial" which I understand to be an adaptation of Dr. Gaddy's method, and it mentions carding with wet baking soda.

Also, the document directs the audience to drill a second weep hole in the rib. Do you folks do this, and how far from the muzzle is recommended?
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Old 04-12-2017, 02:12 PM   #4
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Bill,

I spoke with Mr. Dale Edmonds at length about the process he uses. He told me that Dr. Gaddy's instructions left a lot of unanswered questions, and he learned it by trial and error, and even today he has different results depending upon the metal in the barrels. Of course he is finishing up his work and is retiring, and he found no one to apprentice under him.

I tried it and gave up. I can do rust bluing with no problem but Damascus was too much of a match for me. I can tell you that Mr. Edmonds does not drill a hole or additional hole in the under rib behind the forearm on the barrels he has done for me. I anxiously await my last set for a DH that he is doing.

Early Parkers don't have a weep hole to start with. But if when the barrels go in the boiling tank and you see bubbles coming from the ribs, then water is going to get in there. Thus I am sure the recommendation for the weep hole(s).
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Old 04-12-2017, 02:19 PM   #5
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Thank you.

I'm giving it a try with a Grade 1 Smith, that does have an existing weep hole right next to the forend hook, muzzle side. Getting etching solution in there seems a bad idea, so I plugged it, but I imagine that there are still voids along the ribs that fluid could penetrate.

I'm using steam to convert rust instead of boiling, so there's no submersion there, but there is with the etchant dip. Maybe that's why some brush on the etchant; to keep that stuff out of the weep hole.
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Old 04-12-2017, 03:29 PM   #6
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If it has one, a second one makes it easier to remove all moisture, drilled back towards the breech. But don't dill into the barrels. When it is put in water displacing oil and you use air, it gets most everything out after several times. Mr. Edmonds heated the barrels with a heat gun to get rid of anything between the ribs from what I remember he told me.
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Old 04-12-2017, 05:23 PM   #7
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Bill Graham, Tom Flanigan did not perfect his Damascus refinishing methods. He apparently is retired from his attempts. Too bad, because he is a wonderful person and loves setters. Personal tragedies apparently ended his efforts.
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Old 04-13-2017, 07:22 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Graham View Post
I've been looking at "Tom Flanigan's Damascus Restoration Tutorial" which I understand to be an adaptation of Dr. Gaddy's method, and it mentions carding with wet baking soda.

Also, Dr. Gaddy's document directs the audience to drill a second weep hole in the rib. Do you folks do this, and how far from the muzzle is recommended?


Baking soda would be a neutralizer. Not for carding.

Do NOT drill weep holes. You are altering the barrels from their original state and they cause more problems than they prevent.



Have you actually used steam in regular rust bluing with good results? I tried it and found it very difficult to avoid spotting and getting a good outcome. If you have not used it before, i recommend a trial run to see if you can make it work for you.
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Old 04-13-2017, 07:44 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Dudley View Post
Do NOT drill weep holes. You are altering the barrels from their original state and they cause more problems than they prevent.

I couldn't agree more with this statement.





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Not because I think they're better than the other breeds,
but because I'm a romantic - stuck on tradition - and to me,
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Old 04-13-2017, 09:19 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Dudley View Post
Baking soda would be a neutralizer. Not for carding.
Flanigan cites using it to neutralize, and to use as a slurry for light fingertip carding.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Dudley View Post
Do NOT drill weep holes. You are altering the barrels from their original state and they cause more problems than they prevent.
Understood. I ask here to validate what is said elsewhere.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Dudley View Post
Have you actually used steam in regular rust bluing with good results? I tried it and found it very difficult to avoid spotting and getting a good outcome. If you have not used it before, i recommend a trial run to see if you can make it work for you.
Yes, repeatedly. You were kind enough to give one a thumbs-up comment on one I did last year. It's gone very well thus far. A couple of keys is to hang the barrels muzzle up, and for the boil to be intense. I'm sure I'd be happy with boiling as well; I simply don't have the equipment or space. I had the PVC components, canning pot, and camp stove on hand.
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