Richard Craver

Thoughts, Musings And The Occasional Rant

I’ve Got An AR And I Want To Paint It Black

Written By: richardwcraver - Feb• 18•18

When I built my AR a couple years ago I wanted to do something different than most. I had been looking into Cerakote and found some neat builds in their gallery. So silver it was.

After buying the lower receiver, the part with the serial number that is THE firearm from the ATF’s standpoint; I bought individual components over several months and put together a budget build. As my budget was already over-budget I opted to glass bead and apply silver alloy wheel paint instead of Cerakote or Duracoat. It is a remarkably durable finish, it has to be on car wheels that are exposed to heat cycling and harsh cleaners.

It was a fun build, but only a decent shooter. I know it’s a low budget carbine, but I was not really impressed with my 100 yard groups of 3.4″ to 3.8″. The quadrail handguard was utilitarian and inexpensive, but also pretty heavy. The whole package was over 8 lbs.

So I started drooling over better quality barrels. I cannot justify paying $300 and up for a barrel as a hobbyist. The same for $250 and up handguards. It’s not as if I’m shooting competitively, I’m just punching paper and ringing steel at the range.

A coworker told me about Ballistic Advantage and Roscoe Manufacturing barrels being a good price to value solution. After following some auction sites for about a month I picked up a Ballistic Advantage Hanson profile mid-length barrel for a good price and a light weight cosmetic blemished USA made handguard for a good price as well. I also picked up a blast can to replace the standard mil-spec flash hider to direct muzzle blast downrange. Unless I take up night coyote hunting muzzle flash doesn’t matter to me. Where were these lower prices two years ago? Oh yeah, Obama was in the White House and Killary was running for office. Socialists always want to be in control of the guns. Anyways… now it’s time to install these mostly module parts.

I decided to change colors. I had shied away from the black rifle look two years ago for something different, but let’s face it, most accessories are black and honestly I really don’t care what hand wringing bleeding hearts think about my gun. (Though I did look at a deep forest green.) So after a few hours disassembling, and applying paint stripper I was back to bare aluminum.

Parts were painted satin black and baked in my ‘gun oven’ at 150F for an hour and a half.

The satin black wheel paint is a bit shinier than I expected, maybe it was the baking step but overall came out nicely.

A bit of color filling and I now have a 6 lb 11 oz black rifle ready to punch some paper.

Maybe next weekend I will have pictures of some nice tight groups.

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