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Author Topic: Pietta screws  (Read 2502 times)

Offline mazo kid

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Pietta screws
« on: March 03, 2018, 10:48:36 AM »
Since Pietta screws are well know to be soft, has anyone tried to harden them? If so, how did they turn out? I have a can of Casenit (I don't think it is being sold anymore) and have been considering using it on some gun screws, but decided to ask here before investing my time. There are other hardening compounds on the market now, don't know why Casenit was pulled.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2018, 10:54:00 AM by mazo kid »

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2018, 11:22:50 AM »
Hi mazo, I think that Casenit has been discontinued. You can get Cherry Red that is a replacement:

https://www.amazon.com/CHERRY-RED-TR-CHER-1-HARDENING-COMPOUND/dp/B00DHMIY1K/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1520104419&sr=8-1&keywords=cherry+red+hardening+compound&dpID=31VK7RfXBsL&preST=_QL70_&dpSrc=srch

Personally, I don't like the aspect of hardening revolver screws. Replacement screws are cheap. What do you want to wear more, a cheap screw or the tapped screw hole.

If I was interested in hardening screws I would either fire harden them or use niter salts to do the job. Heat the screws in nitre salts and then quench in water.

I would rather wear out a soft screw than have an issue with a revolver tapped hole. If you are buggering the screw heads I suggest better screwdriver bits like the Brownell bits, see:

http://blackpowdersmoke.com/colt/index.php/topic,1700.msg16044.html#msg16044

Regards,
Richard
There’s nothing better in the morning than the smell of bacon and black powder smoke!

Offline mazo kid

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2018, 03:34:58 PM »
Nope, not buggering screw heads, and I do have a can of Casenit. I was thinking more of the hardening for wear resistance of the moving parts, hammer, trigger, etc.  Maybe not needed?

Offline 45 Dragoon

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2018, 06:48:27 PM »
Mazo,
 You are correct. The screws can be heated to cherry red, quinched in used automotive oil. Then you can straighten up the buggered up heads, remove the carbon from pin surfaces and polish to your desired flavor. Now you can finish them however you want. I fire blue them. You end up with screws that will stand up better to your needs, have a better bearing surface with nice looking non-buggered up heads!! Not to mention you'll have something closer to what most gun manufacturers put in their offerings rather than the soft stuff from Italy!

 BTW, it's best to mark one of the trigger/bolt screw pins and always use them in the same place.

Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com
Follow me on Instagram @ goonsgunworks
« Last Edit: March 04, 2018, 08:20:04 PM by 45 Dragoon »

Offline Captainkirk

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2018, 07:46:39 PM »
Mazo,
 You are correct. The screws can be heated to cherry red, quinched in used automotive oil. Then you can straighten up the buggered up heads, remove the carbon from pin surfaces and polish to your desired flavor. Now you can finish them however you want. I fire blue them. You end up with screws that will stand up better to your needs, have a better bearing surface with nice looking non-buggered up heads!! Not to mention you'll have something closer to what most gun manufacturers put in their offerings rather than the soft stuff from Italy!

 BTW, it's best to mark one of the trigger/bolt screw pins and always use them in the same place.

Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com
Follow me on Instagram @ goonsgunworks
Mazo, Mike is correct. I have two of his guns with the fire blued screws and they look great.
"You gonna pull those pistols, or whistle Dixie?"

Offline 45 Dragoon

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2018, 08:19:04 PM »
Thanks so much Cap!!


Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com
Follow me on Instagram @goonsgunworks

Offline 99whip

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2018, 07:41:36 AM »
I do mine the same way as Mike does, they will really look nice.

Offline mazo kid

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2018, 01:51:43 PM »
I have straightened out buggered screw heads on some used guns I bought, also fire blued several. I don't know if that does anything to harden them or not.

Offline G Dog

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2018, 02:52:56 PM »
I have done my part in helping to keep VTI in business just on screw orders.  I can't abide a buggered screw.  I'm better these days but there was a time when I could not get near a Pietta screw without damaging it.  The religious use of anti-seize compound has helped me in this.
"A man cannot have too much red wine, too many books, or too much ammunition".
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Offline Miguel Loco

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2018, 08:43:48 AM »
Damn good info! Any time I can use fire to make my guns look better I'm in! Time to start tearing into the guns and fixing screws.
"a dios rogando y con el mazo dando...y un buen cigarro"
-Mick

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2018, 10:06:50 AM »
Hi G Dog, I never seem to have a problem removing screws because I don't torque them in hard. Complete screw sets can be purchased for ~$25. Also, an 1851 screw set works for most of any same manufacturer's 1860 screw needs.

The secret to not buggering screws is to use a good screwdriver bit set. Of course, there is the occasional slip, but having extra screws on hand seems to minimize those occurrences, a Murphy Law thing.

Regards,
Richard
There’s nothing better in the morning than the smell of bacon and black powder smoke!

Offline mazo kid

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2018, 05:45:55 PM »
This is my fire blueing set-up. No, I won't blue that screw, it is just to show how I hold the screw while heating it. I heat the screw until I see the color I want, then quench it in the oil. The oil container is so I don't accidentally knock the oil over! :'(

Offline 45 Dragoon

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2018, 06:43:20 PM »
Mazo, Don't burn them fingers!! Lol

Well, if you'll heat them on up to cherry red and drop them in oil, you'll harden them. Then you can use sand paper or even a "scrubby" pad to card off the carbon. Then reheat to your color and then just use water if it's easier for quenching.
 I used to do them one at a time using needle nose pliers but have changed to "batch" heating. Saves me a LOT of time!! I still color them one at a time.

Oh, the other secret to keep from buggering them up is  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  harden them!  Lol !!  (Sorry Richard, I had to!!)

Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com
Follow me on Instagram @ goonsgunworks

Offline Yolla Bolly Brad

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #13 on: March 11, 2018, 09:58:53 PM »
I have straightened out buggered screw heads on some used guns I bought, also fire blued several. I don't know if that does anything to harden them or not.

There's actually a chart in the Machinery's Handbook (a bible for engineers and machinists) that tells you what temperature will get you what color on carbon steel. 560 degrees F for full blue, 570 F for dark blue and 640 F for light blue. These temps aren't hot enough to harden steel, but are in the range to draw back harness slightly.

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Pietta screws
« Reply #14 on: March 12, 2018, 11:13:51 AM »
Hi Brad, Brownells nitre bluing can also blue screws. This pdf shows the temperature and bluing color:

https://www.brownells.com/userdocs/learn/Inst-362_Nitre_Bluing_Bluing.pdf

IMO the Pietta screws are soft low carbon steel. Fire bluing them and quenching in oil picks up some surface carbon that allows hardening on heating again and quenching fast in water.

Mike has the hardening process nailed.

Regards,
Richard
There’s nothing better in the morning than the smell of bacon and black powder smoke!