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Can it be done at home with any of the more popular coating systems ie gun-kote duracoat or whatever, and what level of durability did you get, I've got bored of the stainless finish and don't have the funds to send it away for anything fancy so I want to try and turn it black myself at minimum cost but equally want a reasonably good result without the finish falling off evrey time it gets a knock.
 

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DuraCoat would be up to the task.
If it were me, I'd simply use Krylon, it gives you the ability to change the
color, or simple completely remove the finish very easily
 

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I second Krylon. Did mine in Camo, and it came out great. Overcoat with Krylon Matte clear finish.
Especially if you're just doing black, touching up any dings or scratches (if you care) takes all of 10 seconds...
 

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I'd also would like some more information on coating a stainless Mini with Krylon. How does it stand up to the heat, durability, etc. Does it just spray on or is there any thing special that has to be done? Any pic's.

:beer::rapid:
 

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Krylon will work, but hi temperature BBQ grill or engine block paint works better.

Stepping back just a moment theres a plethora of affordable firearms grade finishes - DuraCoat in the spray can, Brownell's AlumaHyde, even GunKote (the grandaddy of them all) comes in a spray can these days. Some will require heat to cure and can be done in the oven or under a heat lamp. A stripped mini will fit in most all ovens diagonally, and the small pieces can be hung by wires from the rack.

You MUST completely strip the parts of any oils. Unless the manuacturer says not to use it brake cleaner is cheap, fast and does a great job. Lightly sand or otherwise abrade the metal for a rougher surface to further enhance adhesion. Some products will call for the metal to be warm while spraying - be sure to read all the instructions first. I have used Alumahyde II for plenty of steel parts and you can even do camo with it.

None of it will last as long as a professional job, but at the cost savings you can afford to do it several times as it wears. DuraCoat also sells (as does Brownells) a starter kit with finish, airbrush and a can of air to one or two guns. Even in my shop it's not the products that cost a lot, it's the labor. The actual application of the finish is under 10 minutes, but the prep, set up, clean up, reassembly - all that takes many hours sepending on the level of finish. I just finishes one yesterday and before reassembly I have 23 actual labor hours in laying out the pattern and spraying. I'll spend another hour in reassembly and lubing a few days from now after it's cured enough to reassemble.
My point being - if you want immediate black use some Krylon, if you want to take the time to do it better, get better products and plan to make a weekend of it.

BTW - if you decide to make your own stencils and do camo work, buy the new green Frog tape. It's much better than the old blue painter's tape.
 

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. Any pic's
This is the Krylon camo job I did on my stainless 188:

http://www.perfectunion.com/vb/mini-14-gallery/79514-188-series.html

As Doc pointed out, durability is directly proportional to price...
The Camo can be as difficult, or hard, as you wish to make it. It's a series of overlays and masking. The more colors, and detail in the pattern, the more time it's gonna take.

I hand-drew a bunch of random shapes on 8-1/2" x 11" label paper (self-adhering), cut them with a razor knife for the Mini. I did my son's Rem. 700 bolt-action using actual leaves and grasses from outside. If you really want to match the area in which you hunt, this is perfect...

It's really important to use the Matte finish clear coat so you don't get any shine- not easy to find, Wally World carries it along with the Camo colors.

The other good thing about Krylon is if you screw it up, or just want to change the look, it doesn't get any simpler.
 

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It's really important to use the Matte finish clear coat so you don't get any shine- not easy to find, Wally World carries it along with the Camo colors.
The two things clear coats do well is to level the finish and level the sheen. If you start adding layers for a pattern the last coat will be higher than the base coat. Remove all stencils and then coat with clear to produce a level surface. as for leveling sheen, it will make all the colors have the same level of shine, or lack of it.

when removing stencils some materials will leave a residue that must be removed before clear coating. Mineral spirits will remove most adhesives without majorly removing the finish you just applied.
 

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Anyone have any photos of a stainless mini painted with Krylon, BBQ grill or engine block paint? What was your process? What parts did you paint? Did you apply inside and out? How is the paint holding up?
 
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