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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just started this build, and the parts in the kit have a dull, black finish. It looks very much like black Parkerizing, but it could possibly be a blasted and blued finish (which looks very similar). So what's the proper finish on these guns? I'm leaning towards Parkerizing since I can do that myself, but I can blast it and have it blued, if necessary.
 

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typically there is plenty of finish left on the parts like top cover, selector, RSB to be able to deduce what proper finish was.
it's possible that it was different for different years of production.

i.e. polish AKMs were grey parked in the 60-70s and in then in the 80-90s painted
 

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yeah, there were different finishes for different years and different armory's that did rebuilds, I think. Some were parked light, and some darker. Some were painted. The painted ones might have been refurbs... I don't know. What year is your kit? I'm guessing it's a late 70's or early 80's.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The kit is from 1976, and there's plenty of finish left. If it's parked, it must be manganese park, since it's a pitch black color. I just can't determine if it's park or a very dull blast/blue finish, like what you see on many trigger guards.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
…and she’s done. Seems like the black park matches the dust cover and the bipod quite well, so I’m very happy with how it turned out. Still missing the rear sight, but I’m hoping to have one by the end of the week.

Air gun Road surface Trigger Wood Machine gun
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Nice. What park did you use?
Lauer black manganese. You can get a "blacker" finish than this by using pre- and post-treatment chemicals, but I think the "natural" charcoal black/grey manganese looks best. You never know what you're gonna get, but in this case it matched the rest of the kit (bipod, top cover, selector etc) quite well.
 

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I don't know how I missed the update with the finished product. Looks like it turned out great. Congrats!
 

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Lauer black manganese. You can get a "blacker" finish than this by using pre- and post-treatment chemicals, but I think the "natural" charcoal black/grey manganese looks best. You never know what you're gonna get, but in this case it matched the rest of the kit (bipod, top cover, selector etc) quite well.
Thanks, I'll check that out. How well has it held up against rusting and abrasion?

I used Russian Paint (IntMilCo) on the last two rifles, but I've been disappointed at my lack of painting skill to get it to come out looking decent. The last one, the only part that came out looking sweet was the dust cover, The rest of the parts didn't look much better than rattle-can. Shame, as the RP is not cheap stuff. So I'm looking at other finishes that are hopefully harder to screw-up than RP but still come out looking good. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks, I'll check that out. How well has it held up against rusting and abrasion?

I used Russian Paint (IntMilCo) on the last two rifles, but I've been disappointed at my lack of painting skill to get it to come out looking decent. The last one, the only part that came out looking sweet was the dust cover, The rest of the parts didn't look much better than rattle-can. Shame, as the RP is not cheap stuff. So I'm looking at other finishes that are hopefully harder to screw-up than RP but still come out looking good. ;)
Parkerizing is not very resistant to scuffs and scratches, but it protects from rust as long as it's properly soaked in oil. It's the same finish the US military used on pretty much all guns from WWII and up, so it obviously has a good track record. It's nothing you want to use on an AK if you want to maintain "show quality", in my opinion it usually looks better after it starts wearing a bit. It's an excellent "primer" though, probably the best base coat you can find if you want to spray paint the gun. Parkerizing can't peel or flake, and paint will stick really well to it.
 
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