Knives or guns, I love to restore old and neglected tools and to try new methods/techniques/products.
I acquired a Mossberg Model 185 D-C made in 1958. It is in very bad shape and missing the magazine but I know a source for a factory replacement. I plan to make a project out of restoring it. It is not a particularly valuable gun but I like a challenge. I do not intend to create a show piece but rather a functional and usable hunting gun.
There is no finish at all remaining on the wooden stock and it has some stains.
The bolt is pretty rusty.
And there is a good deal of rust on the outside of all the metal parts..
I would have thrown the gun away if it were not for the bore. I was surprised to find it shiny and in great condition.
I stripped the whole gun down and began the process of removing the rust and bluing.
I have never tried this product before but It was on closeout sale at Walmart for $2 a bottle so I picked up three of them.
It smells awful (sort of like rotten eggs and vinegar) and is a thick and sticky liquid once it touches the metal. I was surprised at how well it removed the bluing but it had little effect on the deep rust. I applied it with 000 steel wool.
I did the entire barrel and then used 400 grit wet/dry sandpaper to knock down the rust. The pitting was pretty deep but the rust remover worked deeper than I could get with the sandpaper.
It's hard to see but the pitting is visible.
I am a long way from being able to re-blue the gun but I couldn't help myself and wanted to see what it will look like finished so I did a small portion of the barrel. I don't think I will use this brand of bluing but rather something a little better from Brownells but I was curious to see what the metal would look like.
When finished with the test, I used the blue remover again and some steel wool to take off the temporary blue.
I am becoming more impressed with the blue and rust remover. I apply it with a tooth brush and keep the area wetted for about 10 minutes. I don't scrub the part but rather I just keep it wet.
Here is the base plate that covers the magazine opening. I only applied it to one portion to show the effect.
I also did one of the large fasteners.
Here are the results.
I then did the trigger and after I polished it, I applied blueing.
This was again, the Birchwood Casey Bluing but I will buy a higher quality bluing from Brownells and hopefully get a better color and coverage.
I took all the remaining small parts and put them in a Ziplock bag and poured the blue remover in and sealed it up. While that had time to work, I began to work the wooden stock. With the finish gone and the stains, I could not tell what sort of wood I am dealing with.
I used 100 grit and then 220 in my palm sander and as soon as I started sanding, I knew exactly what kind wood it was just by the smell. It's good old American Walnut.
I dipped my finger in a can of varnish and touched the wood to see what I can expect for a finish color. I think this stock will be nicer looking than I had hoped.
I then went back to the metal parts and scrubbed them and sanded away all the rusty spots. I degreased the metal frame that goes around the magazine opening and then blued it.
There are lots of little parts to clean and blue and I need to order the replacement magazine.
I spent about a day removing bluing and rust from the many parts of the shotgun. After I would soak the parts in a ziploc bag of bluing remover, I would wash them and then sand away all the rust and then go over them with fine steel wool. I would then wash the parts down with Acetone and then blue them with Dicropan T4.
I ordered a bottle of Dicropan and a can or gun part baking lacquer from Brownells because I wanted a better grade of blue.
After bluing each part once, I would go over them with fine steel wool and wash them again in acetone and then give them a second bluing. the most rusty part was the bolt. I followed above steps with the bolt and here are some pictures.
Not only is there a lot of rust but it is deeply pitted.
This is after the soak in the bluing remover and a clean up with 400 grit and steel wool.
This is after the 2nd bluing.
I think all the parts will be well protected with the double bluing but I decided to give the parts additional protection by spraying the baking lacquer over the bluing. The instructions call for 3 light dustings and then an hour at 300F. Here are the parts going in the oven in the man room.
The instructions on the can of baking lacquer say that over spray can be cleaned up with acetone but once the coating is baked on that it can only be removed with sand blasting. I would expect that it has to be pretty durable to stand up to gun cleaning solvents and oil. We shall see but even if the coating does wear off over time, the metal below will have been blued.
Here are the parts after the hour at 300F
The adjustable choke.
Magazine retention clip.
That rusty old bolt.
With all the small part finished, I could focus on the barrel. It took a long time to get rid of all the old bluing and the rust but in order to get a good finish on the metal, it was time well spent.
I then double blued the barrel and rubbed it down with steel wool after the 2nd bluing
I was so impressed, I took a few extra pictures of the barrel.