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Old 09-02-2021, 03:24 PM
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Default Nickel removal

Can a nickel finish be completely removed?
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Old 09-02-2021, 03:55 PM
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I once cleaned a nickel barrel with white vinegar/peroxide and the liquid came out orange.
Maybe you could soak it in that.
I'm not responsible for any damage.
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Old 09-02-2021, 04:52 PM
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Yes. I once had a Colt 1909 Army that had been plated. I sent it to a refinish shop that did nickel. They removed it and blued it.
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Old 09-02-2021, 11:25 PM
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Pretty much any shop that can do nickel electroplating can remove nickel. It is just a matter of reversing the polarity to drive the nickel atoms off the base metal into the solution, rather than attracting them to the base metal from the solution. Shouldn't be much different than the cost of re-nickeling.
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Old 09-02-2021, 11:38 PM
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You didn't tell us what gun you are talking about. If its a really nice gun you can have the nickel removed and a real color cast hardening, rust bluing, charcoal bluing and more applied to your gun by the Turnbull Refinishing Company.

Turnbull Restoration Company, Inc.

If the gun is just a shooter it's probably not worth the prices charged by Turnbull.
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Old 09-02-2021, 11:44 PM
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Brownell's use to make a nickel remover. Don't know if they still have it. It worked very removing the nickel from a German Luger that some G.I. had nickeled after WW II.
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Old 09-03-2021, 10:18 AM
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The Brownells cold nickel strip works well.
Don't know if they still sell it.
It comes (came) in 2 separate bottles that were mixed together along with a prescribed amt of distilled water. The whole thing made about 5qts of 'stripper soln'.

You simply put the cleaned parts into it and left them for a few hrs. The stuff was reusable.
It does eventually deplete itself and then it's disposed of. I imagine there's some special disposal method for it now with all the EPA regs around.

It has a strong ammonia smell to it. MSDS says it a chemical called
ETHYLENE DIAMINE ,,way beyond anything I can figure out what it is and how it works.

The nickel strip soln stuff I have in my own shop was gifted to me by an other gunsmith I used to do work for.
I have an idea it's probably the same stuff and something that 'smith mixed up himself as he fancied himself as a chemist. He mixed his own blueing salts and things like that.
That nickle stripper is black as tar, but water thin. It just sits in a couple glass jars with metal screw caps and has been like that for 40 yrs or so.
Same ammonia smell.

Wire up the plated piece and let it sit in the stuff for a while.
Unlike the Brownells stripper that says it's soln will work in about 1 to 4 hrs,,this stuff I have may take a couple days to completely strip a part.

The plated part comes out with a jet black shiney coating on it that rubs right off with a touch of the finger. The bare steel is obvious underneath it.
I rinse the part and that's it. All done.
The stuff I have will strip nickel, chrome, gold and silver.

The Brownells will not strip the other metals from my experience using it in other shops I've worked in. Maybe they just didn't leave it in long enough,,always in a hurry.

I just used the mystery soln I have to strip chrome from an old single shot Savage .22 bolt assembly. Took about 4 days to work but took it down clean and the stuff never etches or damages the base steel.
Don't know what's in it,,still have my finger tips in tact from handling it.
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Old 09-03-2021, 11:33 AM
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I just ordered some B9 nickel stripper from Caswell plating. It was recommended by a fellow forum member. If you do a search, I started a thread about stripping a pre-27 with a bubba plating job. Lots of great responses and Ill update it with my progress.

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Old 09-05-2021, 09:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tlawler View Post
I just ordered some B9 nickel stripper from Caswell plating . . .
I have used MetalX B929 from Caswell for stripping hammers & triggers from two 38 M&Ps and the end result was perfect. Getting there was not. You need to maintain heat in the range from 120 to 150 for the whole process time, while agitating the solution. Since my parts were not large, I did not use agitation, but stirred the pot occasionally. Took two days to complete.

If I use the solution again, I will try running air to the bottom of the pot to keep the solution in suspension.
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Old 09-06-2021, 08:55 AM
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Midway USA has (had?) an instruction video on nickel removal. Quick, and worked great on a 1911 hammer.
He did not discuss the acid concentration in the bath and that confused me, but a high school chemistry teacher said it doesn’t matter. The acid does not “eat off” the plating, it’s just in the water bath to improve electrical conduction of the bath
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Old 09-08-2021, 03:08 PM
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Hi,
I know a Nickel finish is thin, so to speak.

If removed would there be areas where there might be some fitting problems.

Thinking of areas where there are 2 parts which mate, there would be twice the thickness removed.

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