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Brown gun or silver ?
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RickC
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October 1, 2021 - 12:04 am
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What do you shooter grade collectors prefer? Brown patina or barely any bluing with mostly silver showing.

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October 1, 2021 - 12:09 am
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I find it a very individual thing.  Hard to quantify but I know it when I see it.  I lean toward silvering vs. browning.

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October 1, 2021 - 12:22 am
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I like more brown than silver but partial silver is ok as long as a hint of the blue is present. My 1894 carbine has a nearly all silver receiver and I honestly don’t prefer it but that is the character of that age group, 1923, I guess.

Darrin

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October 1, 2021 - 12:25 am
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“Brown” isn’t patina, it’s iron oxide, i.e., RUST.  When the bluing is worn down to the bare metal, but the metal is protected well enough to prevent rust, the result is the natural color of the steel, silver or grey, which is deliberately duplicated by the deluxe finish often preferred on engraved guns called French Grey, among other terms for the same process.  I love guns in that condition, & much prefer them to scratched & nicked blue.

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RickC
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October 1, 2021 - 12:38 am
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Personally I prefer brown all day long over silver. I’ve had dozens of both & silver just doesn’t do it for me. To me it’s like an antique Model A with the paint worn off to bare metal. They’re paying good money for the rusty car look these days. Heck they’re even painting them to look rusty.

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October 1, 2021 - 12:54 am
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RickC said
They’re paying good money for the rusty car look these days. Heck they’re even painting them to look rusty.  

Good Lord–“they” need to visit upstate NY.  And they won’t have to paint them to “look” rusty–they can get the real thang, & plenty of it.

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October 1, 2021 - 1:40 pm
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An originally “blued” gun looks good when it’s stating to “brown” out with some original finish remaining. A case colored gun looks good when they start to “silver” out with some of the color remaining

W.A.C.A. life member, Marlin Collectors Assn. charter and life member, C,S.S.A. member and general gun nut.

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October 1, 2021 - 1:45 pm
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Hands down brown.  Silver looks like it wishes it was brown.  Silver says “Look at me!”  Brown says “Just minding my own business over here.”  Silver is singing cowboy.  Brown is cowboy.

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October 1, 2021 - 4:10 pm
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To me, the question is better phrased, do you like rust covered guns?  I do not.  Here’s an example of what I do not like:

https://www.gunsinternational.com/guns-for-sale-online/rifles/winchester-rifles-model-1873/extremely-rare-1873-short-rifle.cfm?gun_id=101739886

By not not like, I am referring to condition only.  Obviously a 14 octagoned barreled M1873 that letters – is of interest!  Really too bad it isn’t silvered rather than browned.  

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October 1, 2021 - 4:15 pm
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steve004 said
To me, the question is better phrased, do you like rust covered guns?  I do not.

What do you mean “rust covered”?  You just don’t recognize “deep brown patina” when you see it!  Still, bargain-priced, as usual with Leroy.

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October 1, 2021 - 4:20 pm
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steve004 said

https://www.gunsinternational.com/guns-for-sale-online/rifles/winchester-rifles-model-1873/extremely-rare-1873-short-rifle.cfm?gun_id=101739886

Beautiful!  I’d put some inhibitor on it to freeze in place.  Too bad it doesn’t have a full length barrel.

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RickC
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October 1, 2021 - 4:20 pm
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steve004 said
To me, the question is better phrased, do you like rust covered guns?  I do not.  Here’s an example of what I do not like:

https://www.gunsinternational.com/guns-for-sale-online/rifles/winchester-rifles-model-1873/extremely-rare-1873-short-rifle.cfm?gun_id=101739886

By not not like, I am referring to condition only.  Obviously a 14 octagoned barreled M1873 that letters – is of interest!  Really too bad it isn’t silvered rather than browned.    

Yes Steve that’s probably a little more brown than I care for LOL. The brown I’m referring to that I like is glossy not Matte like that one. Although I wouldn’t mind owning it and cleaning it up without restoring it.

Always a bargain lol.

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October 1, 2021 - 10:28 pm
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Huck Riley said
Hands down brown.  Silver looks like it wishes it was brown.  Silver says “Look at me!”  Brown says “Just minding my own business over here.”  Silver is singing cowboy.  Brown is cowboy.  

Meant to reply earlier Huck. I liked your reply.

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October 1, 2021 - 10:46 pm
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RickC said

Yes Steve that’s probably a little more brown than I care for LOL. The brown I’m referring to that I like is glossy not Matte like that one. Although I wouldn’t mind owning it and cleaning it up without restoring it.

Always a bargain lol.  

Merz describes it as, “deep brown patina.”  I would say, “moderate rust”… oh wait, not if I was the seller.  Were I the seller, I would describe it as “deep brown patina.”  Wink

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October 1, 2021 - 11:48 pm
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There is no doubt in my mind that you people know more about this than me, but I was once told that both browning and bluing are a rusting process that can provide protection.  Hence, it is done, on purpose, to provide some protection.  A gun in the grey/silver has no protection, unless you slather something on the bare metal.

So, if true, I just like a real deep, dark browning.  LaughKiss

Seriously though, if you stop the rusting with CLP or whatever, don’t you just have a heavy “browning” job? 

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October 1, 2021 - 11:59 pm
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The difference, as I understand it, is oxidation. I’m OK with oxidation but I tend to avoid rust or at least attempt to neutralize it. After all, there are few things more beautiful than a rust blue gun. I got fooled by a silver gun early in my collecting career, I thought a silver gun was once color case but as I finally learned it was made over 20 years too late. 

To answer your question I will grade a brown gun a bit higher as steel that is “silver” has no remaining finish and a brown gun has some finish remaining. Just my opinion, worth every penny you paid for it!

 

Mike

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RickC
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October 2, 2021 - 12:20 am
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TXGunNut said
The difference, as I understand it, is oxidation. I’m OK with oxidation but I tend to avoid rust or at least attempt to neutralize it. After all, there are few things more beautiful than a rust blue gun. I got fooled by a silver gun early in my collecting career, I thought a silver gun was once color case but as I finally learned it was made over 20 years too late. 

To answer your question I will grade a brown gun a bit higher as steel that is “silver” has no remaining finish and a brown gun has some finish remaining. Just my opinion, worth every penny you paid for it!

 

Mike  

Huck Riley said
There is no doubt in my mind that you people know more about this than me, but I was once told that both browning and bluing are a rusting process that can provide protection.  Hence, it is done, on purpose, to provide some protection.  A gun in the grey/silver has no protection, unless you slather something on the bare metal.

So, if true, I just like a real deep, dark browning.  LaughKiss

Seriously though, if you stop the rusting with CLP or whatever, don’t you just have a heavy “browning” job?   

I’m on the same page as both of you.

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October 2, 2021 - 1:41 am
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Huck Riley said
There is no doubt in my mind that you people know more about this than me, but I was once told that both browning and bluing are a rusting process that can provide protection.  Hence, it is done, on purpose, to provide some protection.  A gun in the grey/silver has no protection, unless you slather something on the bare metal.
 

Looks like the original “protection” on Leroy’s ’73 left quite a bit to be desired; evidently previous owners didn’t believe in “slathering” either.  Freshly milled or sanded steel will begin to rust almost overnight under conditions of high humidity; browning or bluing will slow that chemical reaction down, but can’t stop it.  But a grey gun is not the same as “bare” metal, there’s a layer of oxidation that’s the remnant of the original finish.

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October 2, 2021 - 2:41 am
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I’ve seen a lot of beautifully rust blued rifles.  None of them looked rusty.

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October 2, 2021 - 10:16 am
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The next question is how does it correspond to value? This is probably different for each collector that collects brn or silver guns but do you grade it 30%/60%/70% etc. ??‍♂️

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