The Best Method of Gun Bluing

The Best Method of Gun Bluing

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Gun bluing is a process that protects the finish of a weapon from rust or corrosion and reduces scratching of the finish and glare, which is helpful in tactical warfare environments. The best way to apply a bluing solution has been in debate for many years, and each shooting enthusiast or gunsmith has a differing opinion on which method is the best. Traditionally, bluing was performed using a hot salt method, and currently, cold bluing and hot bluing are performed, both with varying results. Hot bluing s considered to be the best method only by the addition of heat, which helps set the bluing solution into place faster than with a cold bluing method. One of the best home bluing methods is a hot bluing technique and can be performed with little difficulty.

Items you will need

  • Oven

  • Bluing solution

  • Naval jelly

  • Pan

  • Soft cloth

  • Grade 0000 steel wool

  • Rubber or latex gloves

Unload your firearm completely, and disassemble the weapon. Only the outer metal parts, such as the barrel, cylinder, and metal framework of the weapon, will be blued.

Place the gun parts in a pan, and soak the parts in Naval Jelly. Rub the jelly all over the parts, and allow the solution to sit on the metal surface for an hour. This will remove any rust, grease or old bluing from the parts.

Dry the parts off using a towel, then lightly rub the parts with a grade 0000 swab of steel wool. This will remove excess bluing and rust pits from the metal parts.

Place the parts in a toaster oven or a conventional oven set on its lowest temperature, and heat the parts up for about 15 minutes. A temperature of about 150 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal.

Apply bluing compound to a clean cloth. Ensure that the cloth is free of any dust or debris, and only use a teaspoon of solution to start with. Using pressure, rub the compound evenly into the surface of the part, all around the surface. Continue until the parts have been completely coated with bluing, and allow the parts to dry for 24 hours before re-assembling the weapon.


  • Avoid skin contact while handling the bluing solution, and wear protective gloves while handling parts.
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