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I am considering having a Colt 1909 restored to its as issued condtion. What is the correct blue finish for this gun? I know it is not hot blue that is used today, but a Carbonia blue? Or is it rust blue? I know the trigger and the screws were all fire blued or Nitre blue. Any help is appreciated and if you have a source to do it that would be great.
 

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Up until WWII, Colt used a carbona blue finish.

This is the finish in which the parts were put into steel drums which were filled with a Colt secret mixture of bone meal, charred leather and other ingredients.

This finish is much bluer than the current chemical hot salts bluing.
 

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There are gunsmiths who specialize in restoration work that can duplicate the original Colt finish, but it will be expensive. David Chicoine, Doug Turnbull, and a few others, can perfectly duplicate the original finish. Chicoine and Turnbull have web sites with examples of their work.
 

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This blue,on the 1909 and other Colts made before World War ONE,is a much finer blue,in my opinion. As Bob Murphy states in his book,Colt New Service Revolvers,"this fine old blue & polishing went to war in 1917 and never returned". The post 1919 guns,while beautiful done,don't have this finish. In some ways,the 1909 was TOO beautiful a gun for the military. I have seen a restored 1909,by either Turnbull.or Chicoine, with the the old style finish,and it looks like a custom gun. Bud
 
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