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More Scans of The Green Finish On M1 Carbines

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quanjito View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote quanjito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: More Scans of The Green Finish On M1 Carbines
    Posted: Nov 16 2021 at 10:36pm
More Scans Taken With The Delta XRF on M1 Carbine Stubs.




https://youtu.be/W7DlVKSWdrU                    ; Model 1919 Top Plate, I kept the grease on the plate to see if any copper traces would be significantly increased with the grease, as I was once told that people thought the Cosmolene / Grease was the cause of the Greenish Color of M1 Carbines. It is not, the printed results show that somehow Copper got into the finishing process either on purpose or by accident which seems highly unlikely considering this green tint can be found on multiple weapons. It appears on carbine receiver made by each of the major manufacturers.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blackfish Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 4:59am
Why Cu and not Cr which is from your results over 25X more abundant?

Addition of chromium to the surface treatment is well documented
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote quanjito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 5:30am
Its not more abundant, the percentage are just the resonant frequencies. When it is charted, it shows the total element. Copper has a different resonance than Chromium. I have not located the old printouts yet, but  an example is the picture attached to this response. This is a sample of paint. But it is the total resonance of all together that tells you the color or make-up of the paint. You see, the radiation causes the elements to Vibrate like the crystal in the radio, this vibration is rebounded back to the sensor as a reading based on intensity. When taken together, you can then chart and compare to a like source to determine the actual Color, or chemical total makeup. This is an example below from paint. In this way, if you take out the metals contents, then what you have left is the basic finish. And since steel is not processed with Copper, then the copper has to be in the finish. And when copper ages or reacts with other metals, the color usually turns out green expecialy when exposed to Sunlight, Acids, or solvents like what is used in finishing steel.
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Dan Pinto, Photo Editor

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote New2brass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 8:05am
Parco-Lubrite did have copper in their parkerizing solution, this is what lead to lower temperatures needed for the process.

Park does display different shades on different compositions of metal as well over time in the batch. In the mornings it was found that the acidity climbed. The copper helped reduce the swing.

I believe the addition of copper  actually creates a blacker finish, but not positive.

I believe the receivers were 4140, which is composed of
Chromium, Cr
Manganese, Mn
Carbon, C
Silicon, Si
Molybdenum, Mo
Sulfur, S
Phosphorous, P
Iron, Fe

From your other post I replied
Originally posted by New2brass New2brass wrote:

Interesting stuff!
I guess the analyzer does not check carbon and silicon?

Was the metal prepped or cleaned before the test?

then looking closer there were some interesting elements which lead me to ask if the sample was cleaned to eliminate residual items

Blackfish, what do you think of the presence of
Titanium
Tungsten
Potassium
Bismuth
Rubidium
all in addition to the said copper?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote quanjito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 8:36am
The analyzer was a soil sampler, it could not check for precious metals and some other elements because it was not programmed for that. I did not know that when we ordered the analyzer at the time that there is different programming schemes depending on the application. This one was programmed for soil. So it picks up the things that would affect the soil for contaminants. It has a limited range of elements it scanned for.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote quanjito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 8:38am
I cleaned the M1 Receiver stubs with alcohol but not the 1919 Top Plate for the first scan. I have another scan of the top plate cleaned. It came out pretty much the same.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote New2brass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 8:47am
1919 top plate is interesting as there is no Chromium, but has Nickel and Calcium (if I am seeing the reading correct)

I would figure the Nickel would be problematic with parkerizing?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote quanjito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 10:15am
You guys are more of an expert on this subject on refinishing chemistry. I just know the Basics, But not the methodology they used on the USGI parts of the time. My father did some experimenting and I have some videos with different methods that he thought might work and although I did offer some imput, he was more interested in that subject than I. I took these videos simply because I thought that people would like to know what the cause was for the green. This was the only way I could figure that would possibly solve the question.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blackfish Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 5:12pm
I believe the "%" (or ppm, noting 10000ppm is the same as 1%) on your handheld readout is relative abundance based upon spectral intensity detected for any particular element.

For major constituents, percent is more convenient to display, for trace constituents, ppm is more convenient.

As to rubidium Dan I have no idea. Random environmental noise I think.

Copper is not the only element which can form "green" compounds
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote New2brass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 6:20pm
@ Quanjito, I am far from an expert on it but have a general background in many things. That said I find it very interesting that there is a hand held scanner that can due such things.
One of my hobbies is machining and I am sitting on a ton of mixed tool steels. It would be nice to know what there compositions are.

on the odd elements,
Titanium
Tungsten
Potassium
Bismuth
Rubidium
some of them are more costly than gold!
I am thinking they had nothing to do with the parkerizing, but you never know?

The ones listed are also used in pyrotechnics. So they may have sat under a expensive fireworks display or I wonder if they were used in the presence of military flairs to light the battlefield?


My interest in the first generation of night vision led to reading accounts of the night vision usage. The death of the gen zero stuff was that those running the battlefield preferred lighting up the night sky, even if it gave the enemy the same advantage of visibility.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote quanjito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 10:21pm
Possible but I did clean  the M1 Stubs and the although the 1919 top plate was done in grease, I have another video where it was cleaned off, I dont know. You can rent one of the machines or if you know someone who works for your local county that deals with EPA issues, maybe they will do some quick scans for you. Make sure to get the printout.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote quanjito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 10:25pm
This is true, it just seemed to me to be the most logical with what is known about copper and coloration. As for background noise, I don't think so because the scanner only reads about 1/64th of an inch in steel componants. I did the proper calibration with the metal element for each scan, and the metal element that came with the machine sowed exactly as the machine should have as shown on the chart in the instructions. That componant "Bare" did not show any of these other odd elements.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote painter777 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 17 2021 at 10:44pm
Green Color,

Years ago I had tossed around the idea of the use of Zinc Chromate Green in a reduced liquid form being used as a tint in the 1-after park 2-after rinse 3-Chromic Acid Dunk. Since the PDF (BELOW) mentions tint and I know Zinc Chromate (As a tint) can work in the temperature ratings that either Type Z or M phosphate is heated to.
Also since Zinc Chromate was already in use by the DOD on aircraft and marine use.
This link will give you a little info about Zinc Chromate and some of the colors and dyes in use pre-WWII:

After either a Type Z or M Parkerizing a after park neutralizing / rinsing is done. A Chromic Acid Rinse was then used as a sealer to provide additional corrosion resistance. I used to find it in MIL STD MIL-P-16232F in paragraph 3.2.5. But can no longer find it. Believed Superseded, but from my notes I see that DOD-P-16232 F appears to contain the same Specs to Z or M phosphating per the DOD requirements.

You can download in a pdf from the link below. Click DOD-P-16232 F or the Orange Download File- 74.21kb: http://everyspec.com/DoD/DoD-SPECS/DOD-P-16232F_10390/ ;
Then find 3.2.5 Stage 4 for details on the Chromic Acid Rinse
In this PDF are Specs and ratios of how much chromic acid (Flake) to use per liters/gallons of water, temp ranges, PH levels to maintain... etc.

After the initial parking and after park neutralizing / rinse were done. This is the next step required by Ordnance, the Chromic Acid Rinse used as a sealer to provide additional corrosion resistance.

11+ years ago much of this information was shared with me from 2 long time CC members.
They added this to the conversation-
"In an in-house newsletter published by Inland during the war there is a picture of a factory worker dunking assembled barreled receivers into a tank of sealer. The sealer would have been the Chromic Acid Solution. Too long of an exposure time or too high of a concentrate of H2CrO4 (Chromic Acid)  imparts the green tint to the phosphate coating. Too weak of a solution due to dilution or PH level will impede the green tint. Nothing spectacular just simple chemistry at work."

When asked if matching original finish was possible, one replied:
"It has been done using the same solutions, or as close to the same as possible using available period data and MILSTD procedures used today. After some trial and error the result was an olive green tint to the zinc phosphate finish."

I'd assume depending on the makers strength of this solution vs others is why we see some  greener than others. Depends on when it was treated.... fresh bath vs older bath ready to refresh. Keep in mind these tank solutions were kept track of for temp, ph, solution strength, mix ratio etc. They were inspected and logged.

I had 2 bad barrels cut to multiple ~4" long lengths each to experiment on. After trial, error, time and $$ that green tint was achieved that could not be washed off with Denatured Alcohol or any other product I could find.... Unless it was something caustic enough to break down the actual Park like Muriatic Acid. That 'Formula' is tucked away in my safe...... 

Charlie-Painter777

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