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Value? If you do an undetectable job it won't affect value. On eBay you can find 3M polishing paper that goes a lot finer than wet or dry paper. On one I did, to remove a name engraved on the side of the barrel, it was lightly engraved by a jewelry store pantograph engraver, I carefully filed it down to level and blended in the curvature. With maybe 400 wet or dry, removed the file marks & with succeeding finer papers finished it to look original. It was important in this case that there was a 'direction' & 'fine-ness' to the original finish which I duplicated.

The job was for LGS, a new gun someone presented to a person who was anti-gun & refused it, brought back to the shop. LGS owner was ecstatic with undetectable removal, saying it could pass for new but he would offer it as a used gun.

From your questions it seems hazardous to use your gun to learn on unless you do a lot of dry-run experimentation to build up a skill. In my example above, I already had quite lot of experience in prep for finishing. Even so, I did a dry run on scrap before attacking the job.
 
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