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Do I Fix It Or Live With It?

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing and Repairs' started by Plan2Live, Apr 14, 2019.

  1. Plan2Live

    Plan2Live Member

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    I inherited this Marlin 30-30. I can't find a serial number so I am guessing it was built in the late 50s or early 60s? Here are some photos of the cancer. Do I try to fix it or just slow it down and live with it? If the recommendation is to fix it, please describe the best process.

    Marlin 1.jpeg

    Marlin 2.jpeg

    Marlin 3.jpeg
     
  2. entropy

    entropy Member

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    Fixing it would need a hot blue. This post should actually be in the gunsmithing sub-forum. You also need a new rear sight.
     
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  3. earlthegoat2

    earlthegoat2 Member

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    Serial number may be on the bottom of the grip other wise called the bottom grip tang. Seen by cycling the action open to uncover the bottom tang.
     
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  4. Matthew Clark

    Matthew Clark Member

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    He is right on all counts.
    But since you are here, some 0000steel wool and a can of 3in1 oil plus a lot of elbow grease will get rid of the actual rust. It will still leave an ugly spot but if you can live with it it will stop the cancer. Cold blue might help a bit when you're done.
    A Smith will have to take away the ugly before even a hot blue will work to get it right. I forget what it's called but the do make spray on finishes. Never used them so can't recommend or condem.
    It really comes down to what you can live with and how much money you want to spend.
    Good luck!
     
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  5. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    That is pretty crusty rust. I'd scrape it off with a flattened case mouth, copper penny, even a razor blade; then steel wool it smooth and cold blue.
    Gunsmith reblue would probably cost more than a used .30-30 sells for.
     
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  6. earlthegoat2

    earlthegoat2 Member

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    That rust is going to leave pitting in the new finish anyway without removing an irresponsible amount of material. Cerakote could be a compromise but it is generally ugly on a gun like this. Any cosmetic value is already gone so it will not matter if it gets a little worse.

    I say maybe take the advise above and 0000 steel wool it with oil to get rid of the oxide and then keep it oiled to prevent any more corrosion and shoot the crap out of it.

    You will also want to do a detail stripping and cleaning if the internals as well since rust could very well have gotten in there too. These rifles are super simple to disassemble and reassemble and there are plenty of vids out there on it.

    Myself, I would probably modify it and rebarrel it into a .445 Supermag and Cerakote it.
     
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  7. Skylerbone

    Skylerbone Member

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    I soak in Kroil brand oil (Kano Labs) overnight, wipe with a soft cloth, repeat. Many times it will remove a surprising amount of surface rust so that you can see what’s what. It may require some light 0000 steel wool for stubborn bits. If deeper than just surface, alcohol after all rust is removed to clean off the oil, some 0000 steel wool, and a bit of Oxpho Blue (Brownells) to protect it.
     
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  8. edwardware

    edwardware Member

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    Today, oil and 0000 steel wool.

    What you do tomorrow depends on what you want to spend; reblue is pricey.
     
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  9. Scooter22

    Scooter22 Member

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    That rust does look crusty and may not be as bad as it looks. Don't fool around. Get a Big .45 pad and go slow They are the absolute best for removing rust without hurting the blueing. For 6.00 bucks try it first. Thats all I use on my guns now. Just look up the reviews on them. Anyone thats used one swears by them. Most steel wool is sharp, brittle crap these days and will scratch the blueing. Even 4/0. Try the pad. Good luck.
    This is not a stainless pot scrubber. http://www.big45metalcleaner.com/
     
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  10. Texas10mm

    Texas10mm Member

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    Remove the action from the stock and put in boiling hot water for a while. That will convert the rust back to bluing.
     
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  11. Old Stumpy

    Old Stumpy Member

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    Perhaps try a small stiff brass or bronze wire hand brush and some bore brushes and military bore cleaner to see how much that you can remove. It may be less damage than it appears.
     
  12. NIGHTLORD40K

    NIGHTLORD40K Member

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    A Dremel with a wire wheel attachement will quickly and easily remove spot rust like that. Then go over the effected spots with steel wool, clean and degrease, touch up with cold blue, polish with fine steel wool again, then rub in a generous coat of silicone. Quick and easy, it will look much better, though obviously not perfect.

    If you really want to go the extra mile because it is a family heirloom, look up THR member Tincan Bandits posts and blog. He does amazing restoration work and gives excellent tips and techniques, most of which you can do at home if you invest the time and elbow grease.

    Then, of course, there are professional restoration services, but you get what you pay for and pay you will.

    Good luck!
     
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  13. Ratshooter

    Ratshooter Member

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    How does the bore look? If the bore and action are OK I would clean it up like the others suggested and use some touch up blue and enjoy a fine rifle. It should have the Ballard rifling some its a good lead bullet shooter that because it isn't pristene you can just shoot it and not worry about the value.

    Sometimes a beater gun is the best one to have. And if it isn't drilled and tapped for a scope don't do it. Its worth more untouched even its its a little rough.
     
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  14. BigBore44

    BigBore44 Member

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    I’ve seen worse rust. It will scar the metal. So are you going to go out and hunt with this rifle? If so, it’s more about the memories than the rust. The gun simply isn’t valuable except for sentimental value. And I’m not discounting that in any way. To us, it’s a rusty 30-30. To you, it may be invaluable.

    If it were me, I would take that big45metalcleaner pad, or one like it, some ballistol, and a fair amount of elbow grease. It will clean it up. But it won’t take out the scaring. If you want to reblue it, you can. But I’m not sure it’s worth the cost to make it look right. Just clean it up and go enjoy it. It’s still a fine firearm. She’s just showing some character.
     
  15. someguy2800

    someguy2800 Member

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    15 minutes of work with some steel wool and it will look decent.

    I have been using a product called “blue wonder” to touch up firearms with worn bluing and have been very impressed with the results compared to other cold blue products.
     
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  16. hps1

    hps1 Member

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    That's some pretty deep rust and it will leave some pitting. Looks like someone stored it in a zipper case.

    Soak with kroil, marvel mystery oil or other penetrating oil, then keep surface wet with same while rubbing with a round bitted screw driver, such as a phillips driver. The smooth round bit will not remove bluing but will take off surface rust very nicely. Problem with steel wool is it removes surrounding blue as well as rust. If it were mine, I wouldn't bother to refinish, just keep it oiled and use it.

    Regards,
    hps
     
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  17. Dave DeLaurant

    Dave DeLaurant Member

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    Before taking action, check out some of Mark's videos on bluing and rust conversion at C&rsenal's Anvil channel. He makes a persuasive case for non-destructive methods when dealing with surface rust on old guns:





     
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  18. theotherwaldo

    theotherwaldo Member

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    I've given many of these crusty old guns a Kroil/copper penny/brass wool massage and then put the gun back in use if they were common low-value guns.
    If they were valuable or rare I would take Mark's advice as given in the above videos.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2019
  19. milemaker13

    milemaker13 Member

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    Oil and rub with steel wool or whatever you prefer to clean it up some... itll be a good rifle.

    It should definitely have a SN... they go back before ww2. I'm interested in that...
     
  20. d2wing

    d2wing Member

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    I have used 4 o steel wool with liquid wrench. It works pretty well.
     
  21. mgmorden

    mgmorden Member

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    If its taken care of and kept well oiled the rust won't come back if its removed. Bluing may look nice but it's rust prevention capabilities are pretty limited (even moreso for cold blue - plus cold blue stinks to high heaven no matter how long the gun airs out).

    If you want to be as gentle as possible some oil and steel wool will mostly take the rust off. If you want to be thorough but a tad more destructive to whatever bluing may be left, a small wire wheel on a Dremel will REALLY take the rust off (and any bluing it touches too, but I often go that route on any heavily rusted gun that I know is going to have huge amount of bluing missing anyways).

    Once you get all of it removed oil the gun up and use it. It should still shoot fine even if it's not the prettiest thing in the world. Just make sure to re-oil it after each use.
     
  22. skeeterfogger

    skeeterfogger Member

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    Smooth out the rust but leave a layer. I've used ospho before to fix areas like this. It will kill the rust and leave the area blackish. But be very careful applying the ospho. It will remove bluing. I used a damp qtip to put it on just the area. The surface will stay protected longer than cold bluing and most likely to match color better.
     
  23. LRDGCO

    LRDGCO Member

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    The outside is less important than the inside. Is the bore in similar shape? Does it shoot? If it is a cosmetic only issue, some very good advice has been given above. If it's got an ugly bore and isn't accurate, it isn't interesting.
     
  24. AlexanderA
    • Contributing Member

    AlexanderA Member

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    I would neither fix it nor live with it. I would sell the gun for whatever I could get, and be done with it.
     
  25. Odd Job

    Odd Job Moderator Staff Member

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    Moved to gunsmithing and repairs.
     
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