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#4529877 - 09/29/17 10:05 PM Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating
Robenstein Offline


Registered: 12/23/09
Posts: 5653
Loc: Central IA
I was considering getting my Thompson 1911 hard chromed, but I like dark guns for concealment. What out there gives the closest performance in terms of hardness, corrosion resistance, and durability to hard chrome that is less "flashy"? I saw the hard hat treatment from Severns Custom. It looks promising, but what else is out there? And before someone mentions it...not cerakote/gunkote/duracoat. Those do not hold up well for me, although cerakote does okay. I only use it on mags these days.


Edited by Robenstein (09/29/17 10:07 PM)
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#4529883 - 09/29/17 10:14 PM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: Robenstein]
WhyMe Offline


Registered: 12/18/12
Posts: 513
Loc: Washington for now
black nitriding .

http://blacknitride.com/

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#4529886 - 09/29/17 10:17 PM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: Robenstein]
Oro_O Offline


Registered: 09/20/14
Posts: 1351
Loc: Seattle-ish, WA
Matte hard chrome is not flashy; and of course most of the gun is concealed so it shouldn't be an issue. I love every gun I've had this way.

But if you want dark exclusively, I would go with a nitriding/meloniting process. It's so tough, it's used as a premium barrel lining finish now.

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#4529889 - 09/29/17 10:21 PM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: Robenstein]
Robenstein Offline


Registered: 12/23/09
Posts: 5653
Loc: Central IA
The Severns process is a nitrocarburizing treatment if I recall.
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#4530074 - 09/30/17 09:23 AM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: Robenstein]
Cujet Offline


Registered: 02/15/03
Posts: 7162
Loc: Jupiter, Florida
You could choose a "black chrome" process. Reputable companies can do it based on trivalent chrome plating process and is available in matte, satin or shiny.

They add different alloys to the chrome to achieve the look and color. It's very corrosion resistant and tough, just like other modern chrome processes.
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#4530186 - 09/30/17 11:38 AM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: Robenstein]
billt460 Offline


Registered: 03/30/15
Posts: 4394
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Call Robar here in Phoenix. They'll fix you up with most anything you could possibly want. And it will be done right. Their reputation is second to none.

https://robarguns.com/custom-firearm-finishes/

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#4530230 - 09/30/17 12:34 PM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: Robenstein]
DuckRyder Offline


Registered: 10/20/05
Posts: 4212
Loc: Atlanta
Ion Bond DLC.
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#4530273 - 09/30/17 01:25 PM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: Robenstein]
Oro_O Offline


Registered: 09/20/14
Posts: 1351
Loc: Seattle-ish, WA
Originally Posted By: Robenstein
The Severns process is a nitrocarburizing treatment if I recall.


Looks like it. I read the Severns web site and it kinda danced around that fact, but the description was consistent with the process.

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#4530528 - 09/30/17 06:43 PM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: Robenstein]
901Memphis Offline


Registered: 08/14/10
Posts: 12893
Loc: Northern Kentucky
Robar is a good thing if you're rich.
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#4530741 - 09/30/17 11:40 PM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: Robenstein]
bubbatime Offline


Registered: 03/18/08
Posts: 5627
Loc: South Florida
Sell it and buy something else more suitable for carry.
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#4530893 - 10/01/17 07:33 AM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: 901Memphis]
billt460 Offline


Registered: 03/30/15
Posts: 4394
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Originally Posted By: 901Memphis
Robar is a good thing if you're rich.


You always pay for quality. One of the things about Robar you don't have to worry about. Is in the disassembly and reassembly of your weapon. A lot of people don't take this into account when they're having a gun refinished. Robar has people who either are gunsmiths, or else possess gunsmith like talent, who are in charge of this. Every screw, pin, and spring on your weapon will be professionally broken down, and put back together when the job is complete.

A lot of cheaper places have God knows who performing these very important steps. And you run the risk of having the gun "bubba'ed" by someone with marginal talent. With Robar your gun will look and run fantastic when you get it back. Firearm refinishers are a dime a dozen in today's market. If I were having a gun refinished, Robar or Ford would be the only one's I would let touch it. I'll only cry about the cost once. But I'll be admiring the gun until my heart stops beating.

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#4531685 - 10/01/17 11:38 PM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: Robenstein]
Unicorn01 Offline


Registered: 06/01/12
Posts: 38
Loc: W. WA (too close to Seattle)
Remember the black topcoating on the nitrocarborizing finishing like the old Tennifer, the replacement GLOCK calls "nitration," Melonite, and the dozen similar finishes is just that. A topcoat. The surface of the metal itself is treated and changed. A black finish is then applied over that. It's why people can polish their glock and M&P slides and not have any rust issues. It's not exactly a bare steel.
The black that glock was using on it's post tennifer, but pre-gen 5 guns wore off faster than it used to on the tennifer.

The most durable non-metallic finish is Cerakote. You just have to find a good applicator who knows not to put it on too thick on the inside of the slide, the rails on the frame, or the barrel. I've seen a 1911 that needed quite a bit of work just to get it to be able to hand cycle without inducing muscle failure. I think he took a case or so before it would cycle without issues.

Black chrome is pretty cool looking. Can be had in matte or polished. Most of what I've read is that it's not as durable as hard chrome. Scratches will show the bright silver undertone. It's supposed to be as weatherproof as hard chrome though, but weather and wear resistance are different.

Robar is great. I'd love to have a couple guns sent for the NP3+ finish.

Black T by Birdsong is a great finish. Not as durable as some though. It's actually two finishes. First the firearm is nickel plated (electroless), then a black Teflon finish applied over that. The really nice thing about that is that if... when the black starts to wear it's still extremely rust resistant because of the nickel plating. It's not shiny at all when it wears so not very noticeable. More a light gray than a true silver.

I have the most personal experience with Black-T and the Glock finishes. I know a lot of people who have guns that are cerakoted, and it's very highly regarded.

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#4531750 - 10/02/17 03:33 AM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: bubbatime]
Robenstein Offline


Registered: 12/23/09
Posts: 5653
Loc: Central IA
Originally Posted By: bubbatime
Sell it and buy something else more suitable for carry.


There is nothing more suitable for carry than a gun I shoot fast, shoot well, and has never jammed.
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1986 Chevy Monte Carlo SS
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#4533406 - 10/03/17 10:13 PM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: Robenstein]
901Memphis Offline


Registered: 08/14/10
Posts: 12893
Loc: Northern Kentucky
Copper custom does good cerakoting
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#4534748 - 10/05/17 04:34 PM Re: Best aftermarket dark surface treatment/coating [Re: 901Memphis]
Robenstein Offline


Registered: 12/23/09
Posts: 5653
Loc: Central IA
Originally Posted By: 901Memphis
Copper custom does good cerakoting


Oh I know, as does a place about 40 miles from me. I have some stuff that is cerakoted. For a spray on finish it is the best right now. But I know it won't hold up as well as other finishes.
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