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 Substitute for "Blacken-It" ?

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
480Fan Posted - 01/17/2011 : 06:58:53 AM
Is there a substitute for the product "Blacken-It"? The LHS has a 2 ounce bottle for about 5 bucks. I figured since I am building the Sierra West Sawmill Machinery I would need quite a few bottles. Any help would be appreciated.
15   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
railman28 Posted - 01/23/2015 : 2:24:25 PM
I'll endorse EPI's aluminum blackener. I used it all the time.
BUT, use it out doors unless you lie rotten eggs.
eTraxx Posted - 01/23/2015 : 12:21:32 PM
A while back I got sample kits from epi for both stainless steel and aluminum.


clicking around the website they have a GEL for brass/copper ..


the 250ml (about 8.5 oz) is around $15
CieloVistaRy Posted - 01/23/2015 : 11:24:24 AM
hon3_rr Posted - 01/22/2015 : 11:37:50 AM
*** If *** you do dilute the solution, make sure to use distilled water, not tap water.
Frank Palmer Posted - 01/22/2015 : 10:13:23 AM
Originally posted by closetguy

I just read an article on blackening metal and it suggested diluting what ever chemical is used to a 50-50 mixture. Mike M

Mike, I'm assuming you use water to dilute the blacening.
CieloVistaRy Posted - 01/22/2015 : 09:18:17 AM
Originally posted by Dutchman


I think that a gun bluing solution would also work, but I'm not sure it would be cheaper.

MicroMark has Backen-It in 4oz bottles for $8.95. I've had mine for years and am still on the first bottle. You can use and re-use the stuff for quite a while if you keep the bottle sealed well. If not, it evaporates. I decant a few ounces into a small glass container to do the blackening. When you are done, leave it sit for a while and the particulates will drop out. Then carefully decant the good blue liquid back into the bottle. Actually, I replaced the original plastic bottle with a glass bottle some time ago. I think it has a better seal.

Really wish I had read this while I had my original bottle.
CieloVistaRy Posted - 01/22/2015 : 09:16:26 AM
Blacken-it seems to have suddenly gone out of stock or been backordered. I have been searching everywhere for a bottle. Micro-mark, hobbylinc, et al. do not have any available.

Any ideas?
hon3_rr Posted - 01/01/2015 : 4:11:47 PM
I took Brett's advice, but with a minor twist. I took a empty bottle to a local jeweler and obtained some blackening agent. I think it is the Jax product. Sure seems to work as well as Blacken-It.
Dave D Posted - 01/01/2015 : 07:32:40 AM
5 bucks isn't that bad.

What did you spend on those castings?

I'd stay with the tried and true.

You don't need to use a lot, just enough to cover what you are "blackening".

Plus as you use it there is a build up of rusty colored film on the bottom of your container.

You can use that to drip back over blackened pieces for a nice effect.

Just my 2 cents worth.


Mario Rapinett Posted - 01/01/2015 : 05:41:35 AM
Great thread. I was looking for a different way to "prime" brass & metal castings.

The last few thread comments might be the answer

Pennman Posted - 01/27/2011 : 2:04:42 PM
HO Henry, I told Tony last week to buy the same bottle. I ordered one online just the other night, and hope to use it soon if it arrives in the next couple of days. Blacken-it, would probably work but I wanted to try this other brand. I will post some photo's, once I try it out.
Ho Henry Posted - 01/27/2011 : 12:32:09 PM
To Tony in Tampa from Henry in Clearwater;

Go to your local gun shop dealer he can order a bottle of Birchwood-Casey Blacken it for you so you won't have to pay any shipping charges, it should take about a week,.

Bought a bottle a few years back, still have it,. Works quite well.

ho Henry
Philip Posted - 01/23/2011 : 7:36:09 PM
thanks... most useful info!
closetguy Posted - 01/23/2011 : 3:51:21 PM
Blacken-it is not a stain. It actually changes the surface color chemically.
Mike M
closetguy Posted - 01/23/2011 : 3:50:13 PM
Hi Phillip
The first pic, shows the brass un-dipped. The following pic's show the brass sanded and than dipped for 30 minutes in a reused solution of blacken-it. If you scrape the brass with something sharp,it will show bright brass again. However, it is not a fuzzy finish and it will not flake off. This is the first time I've gotten blacken-it to work properly. IACC glue adheres to this finish. The 50-50 mixture is supposed to be done with distilled water. The brass tube and rod are good old fashioned brass stock that I guess has a clear coat on it. The sanding with 220 aluminum oxide paper removes the clear finish. The 50-50 will still darken pot metal castings really fast. I found also that i need to wash everything to remove grease from the surface. The blacken-it does not like grease and you get bare spots.
Mike M

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