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Old 04-21-2018, 03:34 PM   #41
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Tom Flanigan
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I do use rubber stoppers but moisture can still get in around the rubber so the barrels need to be protected. Rubber stoppers can come out from the pressure that builds up in the barrels. I put a small pipe through the center of them and bend it upward to keep water from coming in. This works great.

Rubber stoppers are mandatory, but I believe coating the bores is also to be safe.
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Old Yesterday, 09:48 AM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Romig View Post
Why not just use rubber stoppers like so many others do?
Some advise using both. Personally, I've not used a bore coating as of yet, and stoppers seem fine, although when I'm carding under water after etching, they've been known to be knocked out. Since it's just water, not so much of a big deal.

One fellow I talked about this along the way, doesn't use anything for the bores. His etches sounded brief, and he said it cleans out the bores. In his process he scrubs the bores during each cycle, so I suppose nothing potentially harmful is allowed access to the metal for long enough to be an issue.

I appreciate when we work together sorting this out. There's more than enough work to go around, and we're all the better for it when we collaborate. This process has such a high degree of variability due to materials and environment, all of those doing it have their own tweaks, and some are competitive about their secrets. Sharing is better. Thanks to all for contributing to the discussion.
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Old Yesterday, 11:40 AM   #43
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I really enjoy these “conversations” Bill. Collaboration is great and will help us to get to the point where we can do any barrel with the same method and get consistent results. That’s the goal. Dale obviously got there and I know we can too.

The higher grade Damascus is the most difficult to do consistently, in my experience, with the exception of Bernard. I have a 20 bore set that I have tried to do three times an never got what I was looking for. I put the barrels away for years. But when I feel that I am where I need to be, I’ll try those barrels again. That will be my test.

I don’t have a lot of time to experiment with the process now since I am still working. But I am planning to retire in June and then I am going to devote a lot of my time to Damascus. I’m moving back to the family home in Pawling, NY and will have my grouse and woodduck hunting minutes away. I am so looking forward to that.

The first gun I am going to work on when I retire is a hammer Parker that was given to me by Austin Hogan. He was a friend and a great man with incredible knowledge. I am going to recut the checkering with mullered borders (I have been checkering since I was fourteen years old) and then refinish the stock and do the twist barrels. I call the gun my Austin gun. I’ll hunt ducks with that gun and think of Austin.
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Old Yesterday, 02:42 PM   #44
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I use Laurel Mountain Forge degreaser and browner. I bought a pint of it years ago. I have used Pilkington also, but I don't believe the rusting agent used has much if any effect on the final results. They all work well.

I went to Laurel Mountain Forge because it is more forgiving if you manage to touch the barrels with a bare hand by mistake. They call it a degreaser but I wouldn't depend on that. All barrels need to be carefully degreased regardless of what rusting agent you are using. But Laurel Mountain is a bit more forgiving than the other rusting agents.
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Old Yesterday, 02:58 PM   #45
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Likewise, Laurel Mtn. Forge in use here as well. I've also tried a number of solutions from Rustblue.com They work well, but the price is more of a premium.

Like you, I have a day job as well, so my time to experiment is limited. I do barrels for myself, and for friends, as barter or as favor. My workspace is not very suitable for any of it, which is why I steam vertically for the bluing process, and etch vertically. I have to etch and rinse outside, so that work is limited to daylight hours.

Keep at your tweaks, Sir. I wish you great success.
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Old Yesterday, 03:04 PM   #46
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I have a restoration room with sink in my basement in Mt. Airy so things are a bit easier for me. When I move to Pawling I will convert the canning room in the basement to a restoration room and have a sink installed. Having a sink available is a great time saver.
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