Monday, August 31, 2015

Gun Bluing Cold with a Little Heat

Cold bluing is what most of us use to do touch ups on a Gun. For example a drop of perspiration on a receiver not cleaned off when the gun was cleaned will leave a rusty spot when the gun is taken out to use again. Or a gun in long term storage in a wet climate that was not regularly oiled will sometimes be covered in rust.  Rust is a cancer and if not removed will continue to eat at the gun. First attack the rusty spot with a brass shell casing and solvent or oil. Oil is ok for a general rust removal if you do not plan to do touch ups with a bluing product. But whichever you use the metal should be cleaned with acetate of lacquer thinner if you plan to blue the spot or part. Gun metals are of many types and the bluing you plan to match may be different as well. Some gun blues can be a beautiful plum shade or can go to a near black color. Even using the same bluing product you can end up with different results. A polished metal will give you a shiny glossy gleaming look and a sand blasted metal will show a flat finish. Screws, gun barrels, and receivers may all blue differently as they are all different types of carbon steel. In the factory each part would most likely have a different bluing process so when the gun was assembled it would look uniform. So do not expect uniform results out of a bottle.
Matching the finish by elbow grease only if the spot is large will you attempt to polish, sand blast, or use sand paper to endeavor to match the surrounding metal. It is better to use a touchup blue on a peculiar small mess than to try a file, scrape, or to sand the small spot and create a world of problems and make the situation worse than it was. Your best solution is to after cleaning just to touch up the spot with a Q Tip swab and your bluing solution if the spot is relatively small.
 For larger spots matching the surroundings may be your only choice. Remember if you polish the metal so it is too smooth the bluing will not be durable. Some gun metals show abrasive marks from a scratching before bluing stay in line with these marks. Your abrasive material will wear down and become finer and smother so when you find a an abrasive that matches the pattern use a new piece on the spot on the gun to match the original surface when the last finish is complete. You may be able to match a sand blasted spot that has worn smooth by using a yellow end clear plastic hammer and taping the sand paper with the clear yellow plastic end and then moving the sand paper to a new spot and striking again. Do not use too course of a sand paper, experiment on a piece of scrap metal to create a surface match before you try on the spot on the gun.
After using a cleaning solvent on the prepared metal where you want to use the bluing it can help to add a little heat to the steel with a heat gun or blow drier before or during the process.
1) For small spots a Q Tip swab with the bluing product of choice. If doing too big of a spot the Q Tip can leave streaks.
2) For larger spots a clean cleaning patch will work as an applicator (wear rubber gloves)
3) Sometimes a small piece of “OOO” steel wool will work as an applicator (wear rubber gloves) this will allow for small unseen scratches to help in metal preparation and bluing
4) Repeat the process until color is as close as can be had using what product you have. You will not always get a perfect match but it will be many times better than it was.
5)  Wash off the spots you blued with water so the acid is removed as the bluing chemical can eat on the steel after you put the gun away. Use your blow dryer or heat gun or a little heat from the kitchen stove to drive out the moisture.
6) Apply a coat of oil before putting the gun in storage. 
Richard W. Norman to see my book click my name

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Origin of Bullets and the Amount Carried

The Bullet has always ben defined as Ball Ammo the first lead projectiles were invented by the Greeks and later adapted by the Romans and were referred to as Ballo for this part of the definition I will take an extract from my book. “In the last few years, I had seen my first ballo (ball, bullet, as well as ballista, all have French roots as words) in Webster’s Dictionary of the English language, International Edition.  The original name bal’lo had its origins in Greek it means to sling aside or to put apart, to throw or thrust with intensity.  Bala- Spanish, balla- High German, Ballare- Late Latin.  Terms we are familiar with are ball, bullet, and ballistic.  (Howard Fox historian and friend) A bal’lo- was a chunk of lead that was shaped like a football and used by the Romans; but first invented and used by the Greeks, slingers who could throw them at a really fast rate of fire.  In talking to Howard, who likes history as much as I, he said the Romans could and did repel cavalry charges with them.
Lead has a high specific weight of gravity and so from the earliest time has been the projectile of choice as it has such a high impact rating.
 Round bullets and square bullets - - some of the earliest gun barrels are said to have been of two types round and square. These were simply made by hammer welding flat iron around a round or square bar stock. The square bullet obviously did more damage and so it was said that round bullets were to be used on Christians and square bullets were to be used on infidels. Some of these early guns were huge and fired on match lock or a burning string dipped in the powder pan.
Steel bullets were used when lead was not available and in short supply.
Some of the first shoulder carried guns as large as shall artillery pieces that needed to be rested on a pole stand it was obvious that the caliber needed to decline. To make guns more manageable they became smaller from 25 caliber to 40,45,48,62 in smooth bore or eventually rifled gun barrels and the muzzle velocity was from 1200 to 1600 feet per second.
Battle Compliment or as some call it Unit of Fire was the amount of bullets a person would carry. As we move forward you will notice how this would increase.
Militia Act of May 8, 1798 every able-bodied male citizen between 18 to 45 years old is to create a local militia and are to arm themselves with a musket, bayonet and belt, two spare flints, a cartridge belt with 24 bullets, and a knapsack. Men owning a rifle; are required to provide a powder horn one-fourth pound of powder and 20 rifle bullets a shooting pouch and a knapsack. Why so little powder and bullets? A smooth bore musket carried by the unskilled can take up to 2 minutes to load and fire. This can take up to 48 minutes to use that amount of ammo in a face to face line shooting at each other. British troops could fire up to 3 shoots per minute. One US commander during the revolutionary war simplified the loading method and so trained Continental troops could amass faster fire than the British making the rag tag US men more formidable on the battle field than the English.  
In the civil war men might carry 40 to 60 bullets and up to 100 total with some in their back packs this was the time when a transition would be made between the round ball and the Minnie ball. The Minnie ball was heaver and smaller around and would allow for the easy loading in the gun and on discharge the skirt would expand in the rifled gun barrel. The round ball was the smallest projectile that could be made and so the south used them more than the north.
 In WWI and WWII the standard cartridge belt had 10 pouches worn as a belt around the waist. In WWI two stripper clips fit in each pouch so this allowed them to carry 100 rounds of ammo + 5 more in the gun. In WWII the MI Garand had stripper clips with 8 bullets per clip, which lessoned the ammo to 80 rounds + 8 rounds in the gun . In the Civil War and WWII solders were known to drop backpacks and gear to be more mobile in going into battle. This allowed for greater agility and also to carry more ammo. Many figured they could resupply among the dead who carried their stuff forward.
 The Germans carried two stripper clip pouches with 3 cells each which carried 60 rounds of ammo total + 5 rounds in the gun. Photos and WWII movies showed that even the Germans did not run around with everything that was supposed to be on their belts. Wherever possible even they would lessen the load. It goes without saying that the Germans carried extra ammo when the felt the need in pockets and a lunch device called a bred bag.
WWII Japan carried two pouches with two cells each or 40 rounds with a piggy back pouch that was said to carry 60 louse rounds. I think the louse rounds were wrapped in paper pouches otherwise when you opened the flap with one hand behind your back depending on your position bullets would go everywhere.
 Cloth bandoleers - - had a number of pouches and this was a good method to carry more ammo and yet were disposable when empty. Even these bandoleers were used by quite a number of different countries the US included. How many bandoleers one carried would depend on strength and agility of the individual and what he felt comfortable with.  Given the size of the bullets and the extra weight involved two extra bandoleers during WWII would seem to be about the limit for the average man. Different US units were said to be required to carry 2 or 3 depending on the mission and whatever else could be left behind.

In Iraq US troops working with the M16 (Looks like the civilian AR 15 rifle) were said to carry 6 to 12 extra mags (6 = 168 + one on the gun =196 bullets and 12 = 336 + one on the gun = 364) with body armor and the rest of their gear. The mags were said to function best with 28 bullets instead of 30. In a war a US civilian in good condition without all the extra gear could carry quite a bit more. By putting extra ammo water food etc. on carry vehicles some dropped the number to 6 clips.  
 Richard W. Norman To see about my book click my name  

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Founding Fathers AR Improvements over Colt and Bushmaster

If building an AR and investing in a lower receiver then Founding Fathers is the way to go. They have cut out some arias of the lower as shown by the dotted lines “A” which is not needed for strength or function of the lower and moved the metal to needed week points all over the lower so as not to increase weight but increase overall strength. This sleight of hand of engineering has changed what people might think of as a normal or standard lower and created something special perhaps making it one of the strongest lower receivers for the AR for our time. One of the week spots on normal lowers is the spot marked “C”. If you break off one of these wings in assembly you must buy a new lower. Founding Fathers made this part solid as seen by dotted lines “B”. If investing in a lower perhaps it would make a lot of sense to have the best platform as a base for your AR build. No I do not work for Founding Fathers!