Thursday, August 15, 2013

Blue Gun Prep

This Tips and Tricks segment will focus on Ring’s Blue Guns and some advice and ideas on how to get them ready for your holster projects.  Blue Guns (BG’s) are commonly used by hobbyists and even larger manufacturers as molding stand in’s for live weapons.  They work very well for the application, but there are a few tips you can use to make the holster production process easier and more accurate.

Paint Removal

The first issue to be aware of is that some Blue Guns are actually painted blue (why, I don’t know) depending on where you get them from.  This blue paint will stick to your holster shell if you don’t remove it prior to molding.  The paint is easily stripped off with Acetone, nail polish remover or 90% rubbing alcohol.  I put the guns in a basin and slosh the solvent over them and let them soak for a minute or so and then wipe off the paint with an old rag.

Right-Sizing the Trigger Guard

Next, look at the trigger guard of your BG.  On Glocks or pistols with thick trigger guards, the BG will be true to the size of the guard.  Frequently though, on metal frame pistols, there will be extra material on the inside of the guard.  Ring’s probably does this to increase the strength of the trigger guard on the molded gun.

You will get a better final fit and retention if you trim a little of this material away.  I use an end mill in a Dremel and carve the extra material away at an angle until the “real edge” of the trigger guard is exposed.

You will get a better final fit and retention if you trim a little of this material away.  I use an end mill in a Dremel and carve the extra material away at an angle until the “real edge” of the trigger guard is exposed.

Filling the Ejection Port

The last issue we’ll look at is filling the ejection port to prevent the Kydex from pressing down into the port.  Some folks will let this happen and then release the port molding with heat later or just leave it.  Other methods involve bridging the port with a durable bar or dowel taped or glued in place.  My preferred method is to fill the ejection port completely with automotive Bondo and never worry about it again.
I start by cleaning the port with Acetone.  Then I use a small ball end mill in my Dremel and plunge it in at about a 45 degree angle at multiple points inside the ejection port.  You could use a small drill bit too.

These pockets will give the Bondo a positive place to lock into the surface of the BG and will prevent it from falling out down the road.  You can skip this step and instead coat the port with some silicone spray or paste wax and you’ll be able to pop the plug out later if you want.  The plug is brittle so you might damage it popping it in and out.
Next, mix the Bondo and start smearing it into the port, forcing it into the pockets you bored out.  You’ll want more hardener than the instructions recommend and the final mix will look fairly pink.  It will harden faster and speed up the process for you.

Keep adding Bondo a little at a time until the port is over flowing.  In between each layer, use a hobby knife or razor blade to shave away gross excess once the Bondo sets but is not totally hard (it will have the consistency of clay and can be cut easily).  Depending on how much hardener you use the Bondo can be sliced away after about five minutes and will be ready to sand in about ten minutes.  Poke at the leftovers on your mixing plate to see how the layer you just applied is doing.

Once you get the Bondo close to the outside dimensions of the pistol’s slide, start using a coarse foam sanding block (or sand paper) to contour the Bondo and match the lines of the slide.  Don’t worry about contacting the BG with the sander, it is much harder than the Bondo and does not sand down easily.  If you have any low spots, mix a small amount of Bondo and repeat the process until you’re satisfied.  Use compressed air or a damp cloth to remove sanding dust before you apply the next layer.

Now you have a perfectly filled ejection port that will give your holsters a very clean look.  If you want to add clearance for the extractor or stand-offs to flair the opening of the holster you can just cut strips of Kydex and tape or glue them on and not worry about them sinking into the ejection port.
And this fill method can be used many different ways on your Blue Guns.  You can smooth out slide serrations or add clearance channels for control or take-down levers.  It’s up to your imagination when you do it yourself!


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  2. Your articles and contents are encouraging.Gun Mann

  3. Perfect Holster Tips & Tricks for sure the idea you share it help me more to keep my firearm in a good condition.