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View Full Version : Why Nickel-plated?


RogueSniper
03-01-2009, 1:53 PM
Apart from the sweet sweet look of a Pimp (advance apologies to all Pimpin' Calgunners) and corrosion resistance, why would you do a shiny nickel plate on your firearm?

Fantasma
03-01-2009, 2:17 PM
Because it looks cool.

RogueSniper
03-01-2009, 2:50 PM
Good enough for me. Look out, Haters!

http://www.chicotown.com/pics/silky-logo.jpghttp://img36.photobucket.com/albums/v109/nurshad/silky_johnson1.jpg

Saigon1965
03-01-2009, 3:00 PM
I own a SIG 226 in nickel - The finish is really nice - I don't know the durability of the finish though - I am sure there are tougher finish out there depending on the gun/job - I've always wanted to get my P7 hard chrome - They look so damm sexy -

elsolo
03-01-2009, 3:47 PM
The same reason Henry Ford decided to sell cars in colors other than black.

Jonathan Doe
03-01-2009, 4:30 PM
Because I couldn't find a blue steel ones.:)

tankerman
03-01-2009, 4:45 PM
If you can't shoot them, you can always blind them instead.

Stormfeather
03-01-2009, 4:48 PM
actually, the question should be. . . Why Not Nickel Plated! :thumbsup:

jbolton
03-01-2009, 5:00 PM
I own a SIG 226 in nickel - The finish is really nice - I don't know the durability of the finish though - I am sure there are tougher finish out there depending on the gun/job - I've always wanted to get my P7 hard chrome - They look so damm sexy -


Lets see it.

Grumpyoldretiredcop
03-01-2009, 5:04 PM
Nickel plating was one of the best corrosion resistant plating available for a long time. I can't imagine, though, why you'd want to have shiny plating instead of matte nickel (which looks more like stainless steel) unless you wanted your weapon to go unseen when you laid it on the bumper of your '57 Bel Aire... :rolleyes:

BillCA
03-01-2009, 5:32 PM
Think back to the blackpowder days. Firearms were constantly exposed to the elements in the holsters of those who wore them. Cowboys driving cattle in the pouring rain, the rancher riding his fenceline, trappers up in snow country. Nickel finished guns didn't rust as quickly as blued steel or case-hardened steel. And wiping them down after shooting was a lot easier than a blue steel gun because the nickel's smoother finish.

Until stainless guns became more widely available in the 1970's, if you lived along the shoreline or down south where there's lots of humidity, a nickel gun was much easier to care for than a blued gun. Especially in places like Key West or Baton Rouge or Mobile.

Since the mid-60s, satin nickel (matte) has been available on some firearms to protect the steel.

South of the border, Mexicans and South Americans often had their blued guns chrome plated. This was because there were shops already set up to plate with chrome for other industries and it could be done cheaply.

Today, it's mostly for cosmetic reasons that people select nickel finished guns. I've never been that fond of them, but with the acquisition of two specimens, I find I do like them in a limited way. On certain guns it looks flashy and out of place. On others, the result can be quite eye appealing.

http://i241.photobucket.com/albums/ff111/BillCA/Hobby/nf/M57/M57L_1086M.jpg

jdberger
03-01-2009, 5:43 PM
Yup. Bill nailed it. Corrosion resistance.

Great explanation, by the way.

I'm pretty partial to the S&W nickle guns.

Saigon1965
03-01-2009, 6:03 PM
She's an older W. Germany made -

Lets see it.


http://i28.photobucket.com/albums/c240/saigon1965/IMG_2125.jpg

http://i28.photobucket.com/albums/c240/saigon1965/IMG_2126.jpg

Turbinator
03-01-2009, 6:03 PM
Put away that nickel plated sissy pistol and get yourself a real gun. Get yourself a Glock! :D

Just kidding. I love the looks of nickel, brushed stainless, matte stainless, and so on. Something about it just looks more elegant, refined...

Turby

COILSPRING
03-01-2009, 6:14 PM
I remember that when I was a kid, maybe 30 or 35 years ago, some thought that Smith & Wesson would nickle the revolvers with looser production tolerances... I don't know. It sounds reasonable as I am sure that nickle plating is thicker than bluing. What do you think?

Saigon1965
03-01-2009, 6:16 PM
Oh I have those flavors too -

Put away that nickel plated sissy pistol and get yourself a real gun. Get yourself a Glock! :D

Just kidding. I love the looks of nickel, brushed stainless, matte stainless, and so on. Something about it just looks more elegant, refined...

Turby

Saigon1965
03-01-2009, 6:17 PM
I know some finishes are "thicker" than others - I would imagine that all would be more than blueing -

I remember that when I was a kid, maybe 30 or 35 years ago, some thought that Smith & Wesson would nickle the revolvers with looser production tolerances... I don't know. It sounds reasonable as I am sure that nickle plating is thicker than bluing. What do you think?

cineski
03-02-2009, 2:53 PM
So the bad guy has something to aim back at?

merritt
03-02-2009, 3:32 PM
Nickel is thicker than bluing (having done both) ... bluing is actually controlled oxidation of the gun surface so very little if any material gets added

BossHog
03-02-2009, 3:37 PM
+1 on corrosion resistance. This is my only nickel-plated gun and it's primarily used as my campsite gun in the Northern Sierras where it has rained from time to time in the late summer.

http://i14.photobucket.com/albums/a312/tharden/Jan-2009006.jpg

thefurball
03-02-2009, 7:24 PM
Shiiiiiny :yes:

jazman
03-02-2009, 9:27 PM
Here's a pic of my Python in Electroless Nickel (E-Nickel). Very easy to keep clean and always looks good. A better way of doing nickel, less conducive to peeling or flaking, and looks like a matte finish vs. shiny.
http://i242.photobucket.com/albums/ff199/jazman23/Python016.jpg

98REDrang
03-03-2009, 12:20 AM
Pimps roll with gold plated hardware, on the rims and on the teaf
A cooler choice would be hard chrome or Cad plate (carefully, watch out for H brittlement), its a show piece right?

Quiet
03-03-2009, 12:22 AM
NP3 > nickel.

:Pirate:

Turbinator
03-03-2009, 6:11 PM
NP3 > nickel.

Indeed, one problem I've read is that nickel will react to some chemicals.. so one has to be careful what is being used on or around the nickel plated items, so as not to create any finish problems. NP3 may not have such issues.

Turby

Riodog
03-03-2009, 6:57 PM
Indeed, one problem I've read is that nickel will react to some chemicals.. so one has to be careful what is being used on or around the nickel plated items, so as not to create any finish problems. NP3 may not have such issues.

Turby

You're correct Turby. Hoppe's will cause the nickle to peel as it attacks the copper underneath the nickle.
Rio

buffybuster
03-03-2009, 7:00 PM
I think there is some confusion regarding nickel plating and electroless nickel.

Nickel Plating was popular over 125 years ago for decorative purposes and also for it's corrossion resistance. Everything BillCA stated previous is correct. Nickel Plate was the "Wonder Finish" of the 19th century/blackpowder cartridge era. It remained popular in the 20th century primarily for is decorative purposes and to a lessor degree it's corrossion resistance.

Electroless Nickel came into industrial use in the 1950's. It can be applied very evenly in complex shapes and provides high wear resistance and very good corrossion resistance. All modern weapons with a satin nickel finish are generally electroless nickel. I think NP3 is a spin off of electroless nickel with teflon.

Regarding any finishes having nickel, keep them away from Hoppes 9 nitro solvent. Extended exposure will etch the nickel.

Industrial Hard Chrome was developed in the 1920's and refined in the 1940-50's. It is harder and nologer wearing in high load/high wear applications than E-Nickel but due to it's structure is not as corrossion resistant and does not apply as evenly in complex shapes.

RogueSniper
03-03-2009, 10:58 PM
Good info.

I'll have to look into that. E-Nickel ... like E-Mail ...