Grinding/Buffing Out Previous Owner's Initials Steel
Close
Login to Your Account
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 22
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    13
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    0

    Default Grinding/Buffing Out Previous Owner's Initials Steel

    Recently got a good deal on a revolver that has the previous owner's initials on the grip and trigger frame, done badly with what was probably one of those $9 Dremel electric engravers. Must be at least .005" deep. I can have those parts re-blued once I remove the markings but was wondering what might be the best way to get to a smooth surface? I was thinking flapper wheel abrasives followed by Scotch Brite Unitized wheels in increasing fineness.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    California
    Posts
    6,591
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    131
    Likes (Received)
    1272

    Default

    I remember a FBI crime lab program. How they can still read printing after the metal particles around the depressions are removed.
    You think everything is nice and flat and polished.
    Don't know how deep the depression has to be removed for all the image information to be not readable.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    wales.uk
    Posts
    1,910
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    434
    Likes (Received)
    454

    Default

    I’d read that brush plating may be a repair option, might be worth investigating
    Mark

  4. Likes digger doug liked this post
  5. #4
    Join Date
    May 2021
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Virginia
    Posts
    345
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    374
    Likes (Received)
    88

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Yooper-Al View Post
    Recently got a good deal on a revolver that has the previous owner's initials on the grip and trigger frame, done badly with what was probably one of those $9 Dremel electric engravers. Must be at least .005" deep. I can have those parts re-blued once I remove the markings but was wondering what might be the best way to get to a smooth surface? I was thinking flapper wheel abrasives followed by Scotch Brite Unitized wheels in increasing fineness.
    I would start with a power sander (DA, Orbital, whatever) with a coarse grit and work up with hand sanding till you can buff it.


    If you can't get the engravings out, you could weld over them and grind them down. Not a joke. If they're on the grip and the trigger guard, I don't see how it could hurt - assuming the grip/main spring housing isn't heat treated. Not sure why it would need to be.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G891A using Tapatalk

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    California
    Posts
    898
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    887
    Likes (Received)
    210

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rons View Post
    I remember a FBI crime lab program. How they can still read printing after the metal particles around the depressions are removed.
    You think everything is nice and flat and polished.
    Don't know how deep the depression has to be removed for all the image information to be not readable.
    i work in an automotive machine shop there is this shyster that we do work for. his gig renumbering run of the mill Chevy blocks in to Chevy corvette blocks . i could be wrong but its my understanding that only one of the gm foundry's cast the corvette blocks along with like blocks for other chevys and that there are four things that make it what it is three of them are cast in to the block . no. 1 the foundry no. two the day it was cast and 3rd. the block size [is it a 350 a 427 and so on] the fourth is stamped in to the head gasket surface this tells what it is and what type of car it went in. and that's were the presto change o comes in and you won't find it with your fbi simple green two acid test . this is how it goes down after him gets a deposit . he starts off by taking an air hammer and going over the org. stamped id no. so now all the metal in that area is compressed so now if you do the acid thing you mite see a cloud type of image but no numbers or letters next the block is decked now there is a problum with that as the org. finish was brothed so that gets fixed on a big belt sander then the block is re stamped . i have never seen the stamping part as the shyster picks up the block and dose it at his shop [ i walk away from him when he comes in the shop as i don't like what he is doing ]at is also my understanding that he is the third owner of these stamps and that there is more then one faunt as the numbers and letters are not the same for the 50's 60's 70's and 80's there is a fixture that is bolted on to the top of the block and then its stamped then burnished and of all things cold blued . so when so one tells me its this and its i just say well maybe it is and maybe its not i have seen behind the curtain to meany times . when there money to be made the shysters will find a way to take it from you . so remember all that glitters is not gold

  7. Likes fusker liked this post
  8. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Southcentral, AK
    Posts
    3,399
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    1
    Likes (Received)
    2786

    Default

    I'm given to understand the OP isn't trying to erase a serial number or other ID to disguise a stolen gun. It's to simply remove a previous owner's initials.

    I once bought a Baldor bench grinder upon which the previous owner had stamped, with full 3/8" high letter punches, his full name and complete social security number.

    This was from back when people were told to engrave such things to expensive items like TVs and cameras, so they could be more positively identified if found at a pawnshop or the like. And obviously long before the SSN became such a crucial identifier.

    On the gun, a 'smith I know had been brought a rifle receiver, a Ruger #1 falling block. A previous owner had electric-pencilled his name and the town he lived in on the side, in tall and kind of ragged letters. The gun was a legit purchase from a dealer, but the new owner didn't like the markings because it wasn't his name, nor was it his town, nor was it particularly good handwriting.

    The 'smith simply surface ground the side of the receiver, a #1 is pretty slab-sided, and it was an easy job. Said it was about three thou to erase it entirely. Customer declined a full hot-blue, and so it was simply recolored with Casey's.

    On curved surfaces, I'd use sandpaper backed with something like a flat hardwood stick, and slowly work the area in smooth strokes 'til the marks were gone. If you just try and slide the paper across with your thumb, you'll get undulations, and the fresh blue will look wavy.

    I'd start with 320, kept lubed with a little WD-40, bump that up to 600, finish with 1,000, maybe bump up to 1,500 if it's a particularly glossy blue, and have the whole gun refinished by a reputable hot-bluer.

    Or you can just buff it off there with those little sanding drums on a Dremel, and cover it up with some cold blue. Plenty of people have done that, too.

    Doc.

  9. Likes ElCrasho liked this post
  10. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Brusly, LA
    Posts
    918
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    23
    Likes (Received)
    377

    Default

    Depending on what it is and where it is you have a couple of options.
    a ruger or run of the mill smith, grind, polish buff and re blue. Maybe in certain areas like a backstrap or trigger guard you can cover it with checkering, stipling, engine turning, or knurling etc.

    Next option is to have a good tig welder fill in the initials, then grind sand polish blue back to original dimensions. there may be some discoloration of the metal as the filler metal may not take blue the same as the gun but Ive had really good luck with Brownells nickel rod and cold blue in the past on most guns.

    Las option, and its gonna cost, so i wouldnt do this unless its like a korth or colt python is send it to doug turnbull.

  11. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    New Mexico
    Posts
    198
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    274
    Likes (Received)
    90

    Default

    My 1" mic that I bought from a fellow worker in 1956 still has his initials EM scratched on the frame. Why all the worry about it?? :-)
    ...lewie...

  12. Likes Joe Miranda liked this post
  13. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Country
    CANADA
    State/Province
    British Columbia
    Posts
    3,312
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    3313

    Default

    Hi Yooper-Al:
    I've welded up tons of engraving with a laser welder, and it works very well so long as you choose the same steel as the original part as akajun points out in post #7.
    If you don't it shows up like a sore thumb when you blue it or even polish it.

    So if the engraving is deep, that is an option for you, and you'd need to find a mold repair welding shop in your area.
    If it's shallow enough to blend out without making the rest of the gun look like a pig's breakfast, then I'd do that instead and save the cost and the headache if welding it goes wrong.

    I wouldn't touch it with a power tool; I find I can do a far better looking job with files and abrasive cloth...they are easier to control precisely but they are a bit slower too.
    I'd draw file it with a fine single cut file from several directions and work over a large area so I don't file a divot or a flat spot into it.
    I'd invest in a big Sharpie too and cover the area I'm filing from time to time so when I hit it with the file again, I can immediately see where the high areas are and direct my attention there.
    Do yourself a favour too, and put it into a nice solid padded vise so you can control the placement of the file strokes and the pressure.

    Moldmaker's abrasive stones are also a great way to refine what you're doing...buy them from Gesswein and use them by hand just like a file with a light oil like 3-in-1 from the hardware store.
    With patience and skill you can make a perfect blend, preserving the crispness of the lines and making a super smooth surface that matches the rest of the gun properly.

    A flap wheel will dub off all the corners and it will look like the gun was dragged behind a truck.
    A Dremel or the like will make so many nasty divots you'll polish half of forever to make them go away again.

    On the other hand, if it's just a working gun and not a showpiece for your collection, I'd just do as Lewie recommends in post #8.

    Cheers

    Marcus
    Implant Mechanix • Design & Innovation > HOME
    Vancouver Wire EDM -- Wire EDM Machining

  14. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Elyria Ohio
    Posts
    2,072
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    4252
    Likes (Received)
    949

    Default

    To me it adds character ... kinda like the rings of a tree trunk or the imperfections in a piece of wood.

  15. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2021
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Illinois
    Posts
    28
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    1
    Likes (Received)
    24

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Yooper-Al View Post
    Recently got a good deal on a revolver that has the previous owner's initials on the grip and trigger frame, done badly with what was probably one of those $9 Dremel electric engravers. Must be at least .005" deep. I can have those parts re-blued once I remove the markings but was wondering what might be the best way to get to a smooth surface? I was thinking flapper wheel abrasives followed by Scotch Brite Unitized wheels in increasing fineness.
    How can you be a Yooper and be in New Mexico?

    A simple file would do the trick.

  16. Likes reggie_obe liked this post
  17. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Texas
    Posts
    6,146
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    225
    Likes (Received)
    2124

    Default

    Not suggesting, just asking:

    What about bead blasting? Good? Bad? No idea?

  18. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Country
    CANADA
    State/Province
    British Columbia
    Posts
    3,312
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    3313

    Default

    Hi EPAIII:
    Bead blasting is unreliable in its ability to remove toolmarks from steel surfaces and they are typically fractions of a thousandth deep, not 0,005" as the OP is estimating.
    Not only that, bead blasting will erode the steel inconsistently...even worse than a flap wheel will.
    Last, polishing out the pits from a coarse beadblast will be worse than just rolling up the sleeves and accepting the file and the abrasive cloth into your life.

    It's not so bad...it's actually quite soothing if you have the right mindset...a bit like an old-fashioned woodworker with a nice smoothing plane, prepping a piece of fine hardwood for the next operation.
    Beats the cold impersonal mechanical reality of the CNC any day.

    Embrace it...let your inner craftsman shine out...be mindful, Zen-ful and happy!

    Cheers

    Marcus
    Implant Mechanix • Design & Innovation > HOME
    Vancouver Wire EDM -- Wire EDM Machining
    Last edited by implmex; 08-27-2021 at 12:03 PM.

  19. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Michigan
    Posts
    853
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    469
    Likes (Received)
    584

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Windy City View Post
    How can you be a Yooper and be in New Mexico?

    A simple file would do the trick.
    New Mexico native by choice, Yooper by da grace of God!

  20. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2021
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Illinois
    Posts
    28
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    1
    Likes (Received)
    24

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BoxcarPete View Post
    New Mexico native by choice, Yooper by da grace of God!
    Best kept secret in the USA!

  21. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Flushing/Flint, Michigan
    Posts
    11,072
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    661
    Likes (Received)
    8859

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 1yesca View Post
    i work in an automotive machine shop there is this shyster that we do work for. his gig renumbering run of the mill Chevy blocks in to Chevy corvette blocks . .....
    So weird, other than matching serial numbers to a car corvette blocks are the same as any others.
    Same castings, same machining line, same tolerances. It is only at assembly where they get different parts put in do they become "corvettes".
    A friend got a job at V-8 here putting in cams. Nobody told him to read the tag on the pallet, As they were the closest to reach he put corvette camshafts in every motor he built for 4 days.
    Bob

  22. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Houston
    Posts
    7,322
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    1422
    Likes (Received)
    4322

    Default

    I'd see if I could change to engravings to something more palatable. For example, if his initials were LVI I'd add an E and and S and make it say 'ELVIS'

  23. Likes reggie_obe liked this post
  24. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    TN
    Posts
    1,815
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    569
    Likes (Received)
    407

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Yooper-Al View Post
    Recently got a good deal on a revolver that has the previous owner's initials on the grip and trigger frame, done badly with what was probably one of those $9 Dremel electric engravers. Must be at least .005" deep. I can have those parts re-blued once I remove the markings but was wondering what might be the best way to get to a smooth surface? I was thinking flapper wheel abrasives followed by Scotch Brite Unitized wheels in increasing fineness.
    A picture of the part will help a whole lot...
    If its a removable grip frame and not adjacent to the area where the frame meets up its probably going to be relatively simple to fix.

  25. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Brookfield, WI
    Posts
    694
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    976
    Likes (Received)
    618

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by implmex View Post
    Hi EPAIII:
    Bead blasting is unreliable in its ability to remove toolmarks from steel surfaces and they are typically fractions of a thousandth deep, not 0,005" as the OP is estimating.
    Not only that, bead blasting will erode the steel inconsistently...even worse than a flap wheel will.
    Last, polishing out the pits from a coarse beadblast will be worse than just rolling up the sleeves and accepting the file and the abrasive cloth into your life.

    It's not so bad...it's actually quite soothing if you have the right mindset...a bit like an old-fashioned woodworker with a nice smoothing plane, prepping a piece of fine hardwood for the next operation.
    Beats the cold impersonal mechanical reality of the CNC any day.

    Embrace it...let your inner craftsman shine out...be mindful, Zen-ful and happy!

    Cheers

    Marcus
    Implant Mechanix • Design & Innovation > HOME
    Vancouver Wire EDM -- Wire EDM Machining
    Consider using a dental sandblaster. Used are cheap on Flea Bay. Far more precise and extremely fine medium available. Handpiece more like a laser pointer with a 2mm (or so) blast diameter.

  26. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    California
    Posts
    898
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    887
    Likes (Received)
    210

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by CarbideBob View Post
    So weird, other than matching serial numbers to a car corvette blocks are the same as any others.
    Same castings, same machining line, same tolerances. It is only at assembly where they get different parts put in do they become "corvettes".
    A friend got a job at V-8 here putting in cams. Nobody told him to read the tag on the pallet, As they were the closest to reach he put corvette camshafts in every motor he built for 4 days.
    Bob
    that's funny . hey grandma what's shaking . or the ol dodge ads back in the late 60's and early 70's with the racing grandma saying [ put a dodge in your garage sonny ]


Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •