Model Engine Maker

Help! => Tooling Review => Topic started by: Jo on February 03, 2013, 02:53:59 PM

Title: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Jo on February 03, 2013, 02:53:59 PM
I have had this blackening kit for nearly 15 years, despite it claiming the chemicals are only good for three. With it I have successfully blackened all sorts of tools. My kit is a four stage process and I have always had good results, others have used a two stage or single stage and I have heard complaints that the stuff rubs off, mine has always stayed put.

In the kit are four chemicals that they don't admit to what they are: A degreaser, a conditioner, the blackening solution and a really smelly dewatering oil. Maybe someone can enlighten me.

Today I blackened some tool clamp spacers. So having got them as clean as possible the first stage is to dunk the parts in the degreaser for 10 mins.

(http://i214.photobucket.com/albums/cc12/jothoms/Workshops_and_tools/IMG_2624_zpsfcf300e9.jpg)

Rinse off in clean water. About 45 seconds in the conditioner:

(http://i214.photobucket.com/albums/cc12/jothoms/Workshops_and_tools/IMG_2625_zps9183d515.jpg)

Rinse off in clean water. From 30 seconds to 2 mins in the blackening solution. It changes colour really quick, I normally give it about 45 seconds.

(http://i214.photobucket.com/albums/cc12/jothoms/Workshops_and_tools/IMG_2626_zpsb7c1d79a.jpg)

Rinse off, This is what they now look like:

(http://i214.photobucket.com/albums/cc12/jothoms/Workshops_and_tools/IMG_2627_zpse197afbd.jpg)

Lastly soak in the dewatering oil. I would love to know what this smell stuff is as it evaporates and I have only a little left :Doh:

(http://i214.photobucket.com/albums/cc12/jothoms/Workshops_and_tools/IMG_2628_zps732a1b2f.jpg)

Allow to drip dry:

(http://i214.photobucket.com/albums/cc12/jothoms/Workshops_and_tools/IMG_2629_zpse4dbde5d.jpg)

Then dry them off and spray with silicon. One nice black set of clamps and spacers:

(http://i214.photobucket.com/albums/cc12/jothoms/Workshops_and_tools/IMG_2630_zps77bcbea3.jpg)

Now to do the R&B cylinder head..... ;D

Jo

Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Arbalest on February 03, 2013, 03:06:44 PM
I've seen this system before but it's a bit expensive is'nt it Jo? I've used Gun blue but it tends to cause the part to rust unless you quickly coat it with something oily! You're tempting me, got a link?  :naughty:
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Chris J on February 03, 2013, 03:21:12 PM
This is a very spooky post.
I was just drinking a cup of coffee and wondering about blacking some steel bits and pieces and how I should do it !

This forum has started to read my mind, what an upgrade  :)
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: zeeprogrammer on February 03, 2013, 03:28:15 PM
Nice post Jo.

A few questions...

Why do it? That is, what is the practical aspect of it?
Does it wear over time?
Can a cover be placed over that last step to reduce evaperation or are gases produced?

Thanks
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Jo on February 03, 2013, 03:46:23 PM
My kit is called "MetalBLAK" by Delway Technical services. I don't know if they still exist...

Zee: The blackening is a oxide layer which protects the metal and it looks pretty. You probably already have some tools that have been blackened in your workshop those were hot blackened, this is a room temperature kit. So it is not as good as the professional stuff so yes it will wear over time, slowly.

The last stage doesn't cause evaporation, it is just very smelly oil and if it was a bit warmer I would be venting the workshop to get rid of the smell :shrug:

Jo.
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Chris J on February 03, 2013, 03:52:29 PM
This place maybe worth a look

http://www.caswelleurope.co.uk
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Jo on February 03, 2013, 04:24:51 PM
Yes that is the stuff, same bottles & labels.

But I have picked up just the oxidsing solution much cheaper £3 for .5 litre.

Jo
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Chris J on February 03, 2013, 04:35:54 PM
Yes that is the stuff, same bottles & labels.

But I have picked up just the oxidsing solution much cheaper £3 for .5 litre.

Jo

Where from Jo ?
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Jo on February 03, 2013, 04:36:38 PM
Kicking around at the shows  :shrug:

Jo
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Arbalest on February 03, 2013, 04:47:46 PM
Some nasty sounding stuff in the chemicals!  :insane:

http://www.blackfast.com/datasheets/716-4.pdf
http://www.blackfast.com/datasheets/551-4.pdf
http://www.blackfast.com/datasheets/181-8.pdf
http://www.blackfast.com/datasheets/833-4.pdf
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: fcheslop on February 03, 2013, 07:04:27 PM
Very nice but at that price I think I will stick to the old ways.
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: chucketn on February 03, 2013, 07:23:03 PM
The company does still exist. Here's what Google found:

http://www.metalblak.co.uk/

Chuck
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: John S on February 03, 2013, 10:39:52 PM
I must have bought the one before you Jo or the one after because i have had my about 15 years as well.
Don't know why I bought it as we have a heat treating plant literally across the road from us that does hot blacking and also Tuftriding.

Tuftriding is awesome, it gives a hard coating of just a few microns but it's done at low temperature [ for heat treating ], about 400 degrees so you don't get distorsion. Another plus is this coating is very rust resistant
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: petertha on February 04, 2013, 05:52:31 AM
I just bought the blackening chemical component by itself to save money since I always have brake cleaner & acetone handy. I use those to completely clean the parts prior to immersion in the blackening solution. After blackening I just lightly rub the surface with a clean paper towel. A tiny bit of excess comes off as kind of a chalky residue but the surface is still completely black. When I tried a post water rinse, it seemed to create some rusty color blotches here & there. I could remove them, but it was just a bit more work than simple wipe off to dry.

It stays dull & dry looking without some sort of sealer. On that front Ive tried different oils & sprays.. it gives it a slightly deeper, satin looking finish, but pretty much they all look the same once applied. I'm not really sure what their 'sealer' could be in the kit. Anything I've ever dealt with as a sealer in paint finishes is not-oil based. I wonder if thats a key ingredient or maybe just re-packaged marketing? I figure the parts are going into a oily enviornment anyway. A freind of mine has the 4-stage kit & we were comparing parts, couldnt really see any difference FWIW.

Anyway, mine arent as deep or rich a black as commercial parts. I tried another brand through a gun supplier & it looked & acted identical to the product purchased through machine tooling supply. So I fifure its the same stuff & as good as it gets. I figure it's just simple, cosmetic treatment  that basically helps prevent rust. If you went at it with a 3M scuff pad, you could probably remove most of the finish so suspect pretty thin penetration. Im not sure how it stands up under heat like for cylinders.

Ive yet to try the heat & oil bath method. I have spare mini toaster oven from a garage sale used for bearing work & such. It can go to 475 deg F. I could probably get smallish parts up to temp quite evenly by baking it for 20 min. Not sure that it would do much for color though. Anyone have a temp recommendation there?
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: AdeV on February 04, 2013, 10:24:42 AM
Jo,

I think it's just a form of WD40-alike. I too have the Delway kit, albeit only bought about 3 years ago, my dewatering oil doesn't smell so bad? Mind you, I haven't tried it recently... However, reading the instructions ( :facepalm2:) suggested it simply displaced any water that was in the pores of the metal with oil, to prevent (or at least reduce) rusting - since the cold oxide layer isn't a seal.

When I blackened my lathe toolpost, despite using the dewatering oil it developed rusty patches; so I soused it in WD40 - never had a moment's rust with it since. I always figured the next part I blackened I'd try just WD40 & skip the dewatering oil, but predictably I haven't used it again...

A couple of pics:

QCTP about an hour after blacking:
(http://lister-engine.com/pics/lathe/qctp/055-PistonIn.jpg)

After a few days:
(http://lister-engine.com/pics/lathe/qctp/065-Problem.jpg)

After a good soak in WD40, the rust went away by itself (? maybe it just hid ?):
(http://lister-engine.com/pics/lathe/qctp/074-IsItDoneYet.jpg)
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Jo on February 04, 2013, 10:32:27 AM
Ade,

I tend to agree with you the dewatering oil (other than smelling horrid) does not seem to add value and takes for ever to dry. I normally give it half an hour then rub off the excess oil and spray the items with silicon spray, I suspect that that is providing as much, if not more, of the protection than the oil does.

I must admit that the kit is another of those things that if I did not have it I would be loathed to pay the £65 for it today but maybe that is just my natural Model Engineer's tendancy not to want to let the moths out of my purse if I can help it ;D.

Jo
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Arbalest on February 04, 2013, 10:59:37 AM
Looking at Chuck's link I think the best option would be to get the 100ml kit and add another 100ml of the Metalblak liquid.
You'd end up with 1000ml working solution of conditioner and 800ml WS of the metalblak for £24.49 inc delivery. As said you can probably get away without the oil although the kit contains 100ml of it. You may well also get away with using caustic soda as a degreaser which is available cheaply. Just a thought.
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: AdeV on February 04, 2013, 12:42:54 PM

I must admit that the kit is another of those things that if I did not have it I would be loathed to pay the £65 for it today but maybe that is just my natural Model Engineer's tendancy not to want to let the moths out of my purse if I can help it ;D.


I thought long & hard about it, I must admit; but I wanted some contrast on my QCTP (not just shades of silvery grey), and it certainly came out of the blacking process looking superb. Over the last couple of years, it's lost a bit of its blackness, picked up a few scrapes and scratches, but still looks good.

I'd like to try the "used engine oil blacking process" one day, I have loads of oil, just nothing to black.

I know a place which sells small pieces of mesh for £coffee_money, if you fit some of that in your purse, nothing will escape! Mind you, nothing will get in either...
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: fcheslop on February 04, 2013, 02:39:55 PM
AdeV if Jo's purse is owt like wor lasses its easy getting money in ,it just never comes back out
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Jo on February 04, 2013, 03:48:23 PM
AdeV if Jo's purse is owt like wor lasses its easy getting money in ,it just never comes back out

 ;D It does seem to be getting heavier  :embarassed:
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: fcheslop on February 04, 2013, 07:06:12 PM
MMMM, must be a female thing probably passed on from there mothers.
Do you also forget pin numbers at the crucial moment :Lol: :ThumbsUp:or do I just get conned :embarassed:
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Jo on February 04, 2013, 07:51:04 PM
 :noidea: I think I must have got something wrong along the lines. The way I remember it was I put all my salary in the joint account and when I came to try to buy something my ex had saved me the worry about how much money we had as he would have already over drawn the account and the magic father Christmas (credit) card irrespective of what I had managed to pay off was back on the limit :shrug:

I still find it difficult to spending money :-\

Jo
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Jasonb on February 04, 2013, 07:55:13 PM
I don't think Jo will have any delay in opening her purse if you stick a pile of castings in front of her, you just need to know her weaknesses ;)
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Jo on February 04, 2013, 08:19:54 PM
 :embarassed:
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: AdeV on February 04, 2013, 08:23:21 PM
...when I came to try to buy something my ex had saved me the worry about how much money we had as he would have already over drawn the account...

Hmm, that sounds familiar - except I can't blame the ex...  :embarassed:

On the upside, I tend to spend most of my money on tools, tooling, or hare-brained schemes. If only I could reduce my spending on the latter, I might actually have some savings worth speaking of!
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: John S on February 04, 2013, 08:25:22 PM
Ower Gert goes into Queens Med next week to have her Barclaycard surgically removed.............
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Goldstar31 on February 04, 2013, 08:36:17 PM
I'm interested in this  de-watering  :old:
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: fcheslop on February 04, 2013, 09:02:17 PM
I married the wrong woman :ROFL: :ROFL:
Although she tells me everyday how lucky I am and that she is the best thing that ever happened to me. I always tell her Iv had a sad life :embarassed:
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Jo on February 04, 2013, 09:26:01 PM
I married the wrong woman :ROFL: :ROFL:

I am open to offers, but warning you will have to accept me and the rest of my immediate family: six lathes, three milling machines, two shapers .... and just to clarify the casting sets are not up for adoption  :hellno:

Jo
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: AdeV on February 04, 2013, 09:31:48 PM
I married the wrong woman :ROFL: :ROFL:

I am open to offers, but warning you will have to accept me and the rest of my immediate family: six lathes, three milling machines, two shapers .... and just to clarify the casting sets are not up for adoption  :hellno:

Jo

It would appear that Jo's mailbox has collapsed under the load....  :LittleDevil:
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Chris J on February 04, 2013, 09:34:34 PM
I married the wrong woman :ROFL: :ROFL:

I am open to offers, but warning you will have to accept me and the rest of my immediate family: six lathes, three milling machines, two shapers .... and just to clarify the casting sets are not up for adoption  :hellno:

Jo

It would appear that Jo's mailbox has collapsed under the load....  :LittleDevil:

Personally I couldn't get involved with a woman who has more kit than I do. Sorry Jo.  :)
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: Jo on February 04, 2013, 09:45:21 PM
 :shrug: The Email/PM system has clearly failed again.

Oh well what is there to look forward to? More years of buying castings, machine tools, a new workshop, having lots of time to make model engines (http://smileys.on-my-web.com/repository/Love/love-061.gif) and no one telling me I can't :whoohoo: ... it is a hard life but someone has to do it. ;D

Jo
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: fcheslop on February 04, 2013, 10:45:48 PM
Sorry Jo, I would never be able to keep up with the studs :embarassed:
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: zeeprogrammer on February 04, 2013, 10:47:26 PM
Seems I'm always in the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong stuff.
Except once.  ;D
Title: Re: Tool blackening Kit
Post by: propforward on February 05, 2013, 12:13:18 AM
Seems I'm always in the wrong place at the wrong time

A favourite place of mine. I always seem to be there. At that time, too.  ::)