SS vs nickel plate, is there a way to test....

SS vs nickel plate, is there a way to test....

This is a discussion on SS vs nickel plate, is there a way to test.... within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I purchased a used 1858 New Army Pietta revolver in near new like condition. It was sold to me as all SS. The barrel and ...

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Thread: SS vs nickel plate, is there a way to test....

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    Distinguished Member Array CAS_Shooter's Avatar
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    SS vs nickel plate, is there a way to test....

    I purchased a used 1858 New Army Pietta revolver in near new like condition. It was sold to me as all SS. The barrel and cylinder are obvious to me that they are SS, but I am wondering about the frame and that it might be nickel plated (maybe over brass) instead of SS as the frame has a more mirror like finish than the barrel and cylinder. Is there a definitive way to test for nickel plating or for SS that would let me answer the question for certain. I have seen some rather shiny SS so I know that alone will not answer.

    Anyone know how I can test to determine for sure?

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    IIRC Pietta only made blued, stainless, and brass 1858's. A borescope might be able to tell. If it's stainless, the inside of the barrel will be stainless. Take it to a gunsmith.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CAS_Shooter View Post
    I purchased a used 1858 New Army Pietta revolver in near new like condition. It was sold to me as all SS. The barrel and cylinder are obvious to me that they are SS, but I am wondering about the frame and that it might be nickel plated (maybe over brass) instead of SS as the frame has a more mirror like finish than the barrel and cylinder. Is there a definitive way to test for nickel plating or for SS that would let me answer the question for certain. I have seen some rather shiny SS so I know that alone will not answer.

    Anyone know how I can test to determine for sure?
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    Distinguished Member Array CAS_Shooter's Avatar
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    There is a light magnetic attraction to the frame so I am assuming it is not brass. This question aside, it has terrific fit and finish. Action is very smooth, the cylinder clicks and stops where it is supposed to with no jiggle, and the cylinder pin slides in and out smoothly with no burs or rough spots.

    Really a very nicely built, smooth action, and beautiful looking revolver. When I was active in cowboy shooting, I had a pair of pietta Thunderstorm 45LC model and they both were top quality, smooth action shooters.
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    OD*
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    Quote Originally Posted by CAS_Shooter View Post
    I purchased a used 1858 New Army Pietta revolver in near new like condition. It was sold to me as all SS. The barrel and cylinder are obvious to me that they are SS, but I am wondering about the frame and that it might be nickel plated (maybe over brass) instead of SS as the frame has a more mirror like finish than the barrel and cylinder. Is there a definitive way to test for nickel plating or for SS that would let me answer the question for certain. I have seen some rather shiny SS so I know that alone will not answer.

    Anyone know how I can test to determine for sure?
    Nickel plate almost always has a slight "yellowish" tint, where polished SS is more like a bright "white."
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    VIP Member Array OldChap's Avatar
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    There is a chemical test brother, but I suspect it would mar the finish.

    The easiest method that I find to identify it is by pouring one drop of 10% ammonia on cotton wool followed by one drop of 1% of dimethylglyoxime (DMG), rub it 15 seconds on the object. If the cotton wool turns pink or red, it indicates the object contains nickel.
    One caution: Make certain it is 10% ammonia, and NOT reagent grade. The reagent stuff is not to be fooled with!

    I'm told a jeweler can look at it and tell.

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