Finnish 1895 Izhevsk M91 - chromed - oh, the horror!
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Thread: Finnish 1895 Izhevsk M91 - chromed - oh, the horror!

  1. #1
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    Default Finnish 1895 Izhevsk M91 - chromed - oh, the horror!

    Came across a Finnish 1895 Izhevsk M91 today, would have bitten the seller's fingers off to get it, but the bolt (matching), buttplate, upper and lower bands and sling attachments were chrome or nickel plated. I do not have photos. It was sad to see. Can I assume that Bubba strikes again? A possible Classic Arms travesty (apparently they have chromed Mosins before)?

  2. #2
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    Yikes.... I hate hearing about old/rare ones getting chopped up. I have one like that at the gunsmith right now. 1893 Tula M91 that someone removed the sights and dovetails. I was luckily able to source all the parts and get a new rear dovetail made from a machinist friend. How much were they asking out of curiosity for the chromed 1895?

    Mosin Nagant's/C&R Guns I own:
    1913 Winchester M1897 12GA Takedown
    1915 Finn N.E.W. M91
    1916 Russian Contract Winchester 1895 7.62x54r
    1916 BSA Enfield No1 MKiii* SHTLE
    Bohler-Stahl M24
    1931 Tikka M27
    1932 Tikka M28
    1934 Sako M28/30
    1939 Erma RC Mauser 98k
    1941 Tula SVT-40
    1943 Izhevsk 91/30 PU Sniper
    1945 Inglis Browning Hi-Power W/Stock
    1952 Izhevsk Tokarev TT-33
    1954 HRA CMP M1 Garand
    1957 Tula SKS
    1968 "late date" Finnish M39

  3. #3
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    $450 was the asking price.

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  5. #4
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    You could always have the chrome/nickel stripped ......
    "Ole viisaasti höperö!" sanoi vääpeli Ryhmy
    Commissar Natalia Vengrovska Fan Club Life Member :-)
    Tired of the Police ? Try calling a Crackhead next time you need help
    ALWAYS looking for anything from Sortavala and Viipuri CG districts
    Looking for Norwegian Mauser K98F1 HÆR 43408 - the first military rifle I was issued

  6. #5
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    Wouldn't even know how to go about that, and the original finish on the chromed parts has already been lost. I suppose de-chroming the bolt is possible (and probably expensive and might damage the makings on the bolt), and replacement bands, sling swivels and buttplate can be found. Any ballpark idea of current value (the rest of the rifle was in good condition, no cracks, not too much loss of bluing, and no signs or a re-blue) and condition if not chromed? Just trying to work out if a restoration is financially reasonable. Barrel was typical (some wear, rounded lands, some frosting, but no noticeable pitting).

  7. #6
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    I did some more research last night - I'm going to have to look at the rifle again - it might be a Chatellerault...this is what happens when I am tired and in a rush.
    Last edited by spinecracker; 06-17-2017 at 10:06 AM.

  8. #7
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    Chrome....well now.... theres a solution to corrosive priming..... :D

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    It is either chrome or nickel plate - either way, not fun to deal with.

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    I had looked into this years ago. A plating process reversed removes the plating supposedly with out further damaging the object. I had thought about trying it on some 16" US bayonets that had been chromed. I think nickel is bonded to a copper solution so the plating is not actually to the original metal. People who are into car restoration or a lot of other areas might be able to shed more accurate information on removing old nickel and chrome finishes. Industrial chrome may be a different ball game but most "trophy plating" was done more cheaply which should be easier to remove. Guess a person needs to decide on how far you want to go with something like this? I had a few plating companies I went to on a regular basis years ago, so I had access to a shop that would do this for a price. Unrelated to plating I experimented and had a CMP welded drill rifle refinished with normal industrial black oxide. These shops were willing to do small jobs as some business was better than no business. This was probably 15 years ago already. When the CMP was offering chrome plated 1903 parade rifles I wanted one to use in competitions. Thought it would be cool to win a match with a chrome plated rifle, to add insult to injury to some competitors. Like using a Remington 870 to shoot trap and beating the competitions expensive O/U shotguns. Good luck on de-plating should you go there. Regards, John.

  11. #10
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    That's the thing - the bands, swivel attachments and butt plate can be replaced (it is a Finn, and the buttplate doesn't match anyway), and come of the bolt parts can be replaced. That said, the serialed part of the bolt is still plated. I just don't know if it is financially viable to have someone de-plate the bolt part and replace the other chromed parts. Early M91 parts aren't exactly common, last time I looked lol. What are unmolested antique Finnish M91s going for these days in the US?

  12. #11
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    I'm by no means an expert, but I do have some direct experience w this.

    A friend asked me to help him clean up a P-08 that had some grime and rust problems. Bore was absolute toast, but he was only looking for something presentable as a wall hanger anyway-he wanted it retired for good.

    the pistol had been chromed a long time ago, and a crappy job it was, too. The chrome top layer was flaking off in several large areas, and rust was coming through the base layers. BTW all chrome applications require a nickel and copper base layer prior to application of the final shiny layer-it won't adhere otherwise.

    I removed the rust easily enough by electrolysis-worked like a champ. But decided after extensive research to let someone else work on the chrome-this reverse plating process produces hexavalent chromium as a waste product, and you can't just dump that in the yard or storm drain. Bad stuff there.

    so i took it to a bumper shop i knew about and was able to pick it up in a few hours. The chrome job had hidden severe pitting near the muzzle and on one side of the pistol. We elected to just blue over the pitting, and his wallhanger is now displayed in a way that hides it. Presents well, and fits his purpose.

    unless it's uber-rare, $450 is a TON of Dollars to throw at a rifle you plan to dechrome-it's a LOT of work best left to someone else, and you may not end up being pleased with what you have left after the resto is done. Respectful suggestion? If the chrome is in good shape, leave it be and figure out how to dull it to knock the shine down so that maybe things look in the white, instead of like shiny costume jewelry. It wont be as noticeable and you will not have to go through the part replacement game.

  13. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by sovblocgunfan View Post
    I removed the rust easily enough by electrolysis-worked like a champ. But decided after extensive research to let someone else work on the chrome-this reverse plating process produces hexavalent chromium as a waste product, and you can't just dump that in the yard or storm drain. Bad stuff there.

    This. A friend of mine recently picked up an all chromed Anti tank weapon, and we have been exploring methods to dechrome it.

    Know another guy who does lots of sand blasting - he flat out refused to do it as sand blasting chrome is a chore and a half. Seems there are not many chrome shops out there any more, and I cannot stress to avoid home reverse electro plating - pouring hexavalent chromium say, down your drain is likely to get all sorts of government alphabet soup poking around. Think of the movie "Erin Brockovich" - the carcinogen was hexavalent chromium. Don't do it!


    That said, sand blasting chrome off a few barrel bands and small parts might not be so bad. An entire PIAT.... another story.

  14. #13
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    Perhaps the shiny parts were polished to a shine? I have seen Mosin parts polished to a mirror shine.

    Pahtu.

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    I only wish that were the case. Definitely plated.

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    I agree with the post above. At the price mentioned I would walk away. When the smoke all clears you have an expensive restoration that might not be all that nice when your done. On the other hand if that kind of project is intriguing go for it. Or buy it as is and just keep it as is for reasons to drink heavily at night. I do think a plating shop would end up having to reverse plate the poor thing. Feel sorry for any plating shop in business as the EPA and OSHA regs must be pretty heavy to deal with. But with the asking price that high I think it pretty much a lose lose situation. Let someone else have all the glory at that price. If you got it say for 2 Bills maybe, but even then you are going to have to find some intrinsic reasons to take this one on for restoration. Not knocking it really, a person would learn a lot in the process of making this project look respectful. Some times the learning can actually be worth the extra money spent if you can twist your mind to this abstract thinking. Kind of a research and development kind of expense?

    Regards, John.

  17. #16
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    I agree that, if it is to be purchased at all, the price should go down a lot from $450. However, the good news is that they did not get to the receiver and trigger guard/mag. And the bolt is in the white anyway. How about the option of taking the bolt apart and gently "rubbing" it with some fine-grit (#400+) sandpaper? You won't take off much steel this way, especially if you are careful (and you can even consider leaving alone the important mating surfaces, like the lugs, since they are not even visible). What I would double-check is whether chrome powder has any toxicity without any electrochemical reactions - now that would be a problem.

  18. #17
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    Well at this point in the discussion then, without pics this did not and is not going to happen! Best to the OP and choices. Regards, John.

    Had to edit this: After rereading the thread I see I missed the part that it was only the bands, bolt and butt plate that were chromed. Think you could get the price down and it might not be so far fetched an idea. I was going on the premise the entire barreled action was chromed. Still think the price high but the restoration effort is not near as bad as I had thought. Would still want the price down quite a bit if it were me. But the project doesn't seem near as bad to me after rereading the description. My bad.
    Last edited by Handsome Devil; 06-18-2017 at 04:40 PM.

  19. #18
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    Decided to pass. Too many unknowns.

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