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Just passing this along from TM 9-1275.

b. REFINISHING SHINY GAS CYLINDER.

Rifles with shiny gas cylinders must not accompany troops to oversea bases. The gas cylinders, gas cylinder locks, and gas cylinder lock screws of these weapons are machined from stainless steel. Normal methods of blackening these components, such as penetrating (application of black finishing oxidizing material) or parkerizing, are ineffective; therefore, if no special processes are available (see TM 9-1861), refinishing of the gas cylinders must be performed by painting, using the following procedures:

(1) Remove all old paint, and make certain the surfaces of the parts to be painted are free from grease or other foreign matter.

(2) Assemble the gas cylinder lock to the gas cylinder, securing it with the gas cylinder screw.

(3) Paint the shiny parts with a mixture of flat black paint thinned with synthetic enamel thinner in the ratio of 2 ounces of thinner to 1 quart of paint. Both are listed in ORD 3 SNL K-1 and may be requisitioned from Raritan and Benicia Arsenals. The paint may be obtained in quart cans; 1 quart will paint approximately 250 gas cylinders. The thinner may be obtained in 1/2-pint cans; 1/2 pint is enough for approximately 1 gallon of paint. Have some additional thinner on hand to clean the paint brushes or spray guns, and for thinning old paint. Be certain that the paint and thinner are mixed thoroughly, then apply with a spray gun or a small, flat paint brush. Take care to prevent paint from running into the gore of the gas cylinder.

(4) Place the painted assembly in an oven (fig. 52) and bake for 1 1/2 hours at a temperature of 300 degrees F. To prevent drying or charring of soft materials, the heat is not to be greater than the maximum temperature prescribed. The baking may be accomplished in any type of improvised oven and in conjunction with any available source of heat capable of producing a relatively low temperature of 300 degrees. An oven for baking purposes can be improvised from sheet iron; or, if this is impossible, an ordinary domestic-type, kerosene stove oven may be used. The oven may be heated electrically, by gasoline, or by oil, and may be used in conjunction with a field range or portable stove.

Caution: Care must be used to prevent the parts from being subjected to direct or open flame.

(5) When properly applied, the resultant dead-black finish which does not reflect light will be hard, durable, unaffected by the normal heat of the weapon, and highly resistant to abrasion. This method may also be used to blacken other nonfunctioning exterior surfaces, such as folding metallic stocks, butt plates, front sights, sling swivels, and other small parts.
 

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Cool, I wanted to darken up the Gas cyl on my HR but it wouldn't even take cold blue I tried 3 different types...

I was clueless why I couldn't blue it :oops: ...

...off to buy paint now :lol: ....
 

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That also answers another question for me...

I was wondering if you had to strip the gas cylinder each time you cleaned in order to prevent rust.
 
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