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I'm thinking about having one of my guns nickle plated. There's a gunsmith in town that will do the job. Has anyone here had a gun nickle plated? Any input as to positive or negative will be appreciated. Thanks.
 

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I think it looks nice, but for defensive purposes (for semi-autos), flat-black seems more practical. I like that look as well.

If for revolver, dunno.
 

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I had a Colt Trooper MkIV that was nickle plated. IMO, too glossy for me actually. Rather have something like brushed stainless or matte as it were. Semi non-reflective maybe. I'm not a flashy person and pretty much reserved. Thinking about things tactically, and all pistols should be flat, matte, blued, or black. I like my P220 two-tone with stainless slide just the way it came from the factory. That's about my limit on being flashy. I think NP³ finish is just a tad less showy than chrome.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I had a Colt Trooper MkIV that was nickle plated. IMO, too glossy for me actually. Rather have something like brushed stainless or matte as it were. Semi non-reflective maybe. I'm not a flashy person and pretty much reserved. Thinking about things tactically, and all pistols should be flat, matte, blued, or black. I like my P220 two-tone with stainless slide just the way it came from the factory. That's about my limit on being flashy. I think NP³ finish is just a tad less showy than chrome.
I would go with the matte finish, much like the brushed stainless.
 

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Prefer electroless nickel - matte appearance

Nickel seems to come in two varieties - the shiny, polished look and the matte "electroless nickel" variety. I prefer the latter electroless nickel, and have two guns in that finish, a Colt and a Sig. The finish is pretty durable, although both guns tend to be safe queens.



 

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I carried a factory satin (matte) nickel Colt Combat Commander 1911 for many years back when stainless was not that common and it held up well after a lot of weather extremes. All I did after a day out in nasty rain or slopping through water and mud was strip it and the mag, wipe them dry, blast out any water, a little WD40 and some grease and it was ready to go for another adventure. It served me well and I later sold it to an LEO who wanted it for off duty carry. He replaced the wooden grips since they were the only thing the years of use had affected.

bosco
 

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I have several factory satin nickle guns. Finish has held up extremely well on them. Durability of the finish would be my only concern. Technology has improved immensely over the years, I would guess a good gunsmith, with the proper equipment for the job could do it well. For what it's worth, I'm not a fan of the polished nickle look.
 

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As with others' I don't much care for the bright finish unless it comes from the factory. However, I do like the satin e-Nickel and Hard Chrome but not so much for appearance alone. Also, on some alloy guns, it actually makes the gun more durable. The e-Nickel is corrosive resistant whereas the hard chrome helps prevent galling of stainless. Ideally, I would like both whereby the e-Nickel is applied as the base and the hard chrome is applied on top. In fact, I'm considering this method for my 640.
Regards,
 

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I have a S&W M25-5 that had a factory nickle finish. After some use it began peeling off. I finally had the gun hard chrome plated which is attractive, tactical and much more durable.
 

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Everyone has their own experiences and their own preferences. I can't imagine there's a 'wrong' choice or a 'right' choice. I dislike the whole idea of plating anything, but plating a weapon, in particular, is particularly repulsive. Folks see things in different ways, and I think you need to be okay with the appearance, wear and repairability of a plated firearm. I'd go without a firearm entirely before I'd own one that was nickel plated...that's just me. Rather defend myself with a baseball bat. :)

OTOH, the P226 above did make me drool just a little. :) Could be because there's no tac rail and no ridiculous beavertail though. Might fine looking 226.
 

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I have four handguns with the polished nickel finish. One I inherited the other three I bought in the 1970's, IIRC you pretty much had the retail choice back then of blue or nickel, with SS just coming around.

My inherited nickel gun is a S&W revolver, the nickeling is OLD and some coming off in places. Long long ago it belonged to a leo in Memphis.

I have a nickeled Colt 1911, S&W Mod 19, and S&W Mod 36, the nickel still looks very good, pretty much LNIB. They are nice looking with wooden grips, though some sort of "fancy grips" might make them look cheap. Funny thing the dark muzzle end of the 1911 against that light nickel contrast makes it look really BIG BORE.
 

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The only Nickel suitable for firearms is Electroless Nickel.

It is in no way related to the old style flaky peeling bright Nickel which needed to be applied over a base coat of Copper.

It was the old style "Decorative Nickel" that flaked off and peeled off of antique and vintage firearms.

Electroless Nickel is fantastic stuff with great hardness and natural lubricity - it can be applied Mirror Bright OR Matte or Satin.

It all depends on how the metal substrate is prepared.

Properly applied Electroless Nickel will never flake, chip off or peel.

It is molecularly bonded directly to the substrate.
 

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It was the old style "Decorative Nickel" that flaked off and peeled off of antique and vintage firearms.

Thanks for the info, it sounds like my inherited gun was done in decorative nickel, my other three are apparently electroless nickel.
 
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