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If you have a gun engraved does it have to be reblued?

No re-Blue is called for, if one wants the incised/engraved lines to be silver color. And, sometimes things are done this way.


If you have a nickel finish, does it have to be redone after engraving?

See above, but, probably, usually, the Nickel plating would be removed prior to the engraving process, and, then, finial finish would be decided and applied.

Historically, Guns were engraved 'In the White' and then Blued or Nickeled or Gilded or combinations of these or as may be.

Recent times, various creative Liberties are sometimes indulged...where a Blued Gun is engraved right through the Blueing and left just as that.
 

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A nickel gun is almost always stripped to bare steel before engraving due to the tendency for nickel to flake and crack when cut with the graver.

Engraving a blued gun and leaving it as-is looks really good, but you have to be extremely careful about not allowing the bare steel areas to rust. Once the engraved area starts rusting, you have a serious problem getting it off and stopping further rust without damaging the bluing around it.
 

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As 1KPperday points out, the engraving can be done through the bluing, or it can be done "in the white." I remember one of the shooters on our revovler team years ago had a K-38 (I believe) engraved in the white. The gun had been polished to a mirror finish, and some areas not engraved were stippled, then the gun was blued. There were raised glossy surfaces with matt finished background and was a very handsome gun, in my opinion.

Bob Wright
 

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If the gun isn't re-buffed after the engraving, the displaced metal leaves a slight ridge(high spot). Buffing removes the ridge. My engraver, who is VERY old school, won't let anything go that isn't buffed after engraving, so that means it gets refinished as well as engraved. Doesn't matter whether he's doing blued, nickel, silver or gold plating.
 
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