High end black finish help..?

Discussion in 'General 1911 talk' started by Mongo45, Oct 2, 2018.

  1. Mongo45

    Mongo45 Active Member

    Jul 15, 2014
    I have a Springer TRP with several mods that I shoot competition with.

    I’m looking at having Nighthawk put their DLC (PVD Vapor Coating) on it because the Ceracoat black just does not hold up to hard use.

    I have a NH Warhawk with the DLC and it seems like it’s gonna really hold up.

    Are there any other finishes (Robar, Birdsong, etc...) that I should be considering for a super tough corrosion resistant black finish..? NH is quoting $400 range and 16 weeks turn around.

    Any personal experience would be great....
  2. Old Sea Dragon

    Old Sea Dragon Well-Known Member

    Feb 10, 2018
    DLC is superior to those mentioned, in my opinion and limited experience. NC work is also highly regarded.

  3. AZ Husker

    AZ Husker Well-Known Member Supporting Addict

    Oct 14, 2017
    I'm very impressed with Robar's Np3+, but have never tried their Roguard black finish.
  4. jaydoc

    jaydoc i'm riding a turtle!

    Aug 10, 2012
    DLC for the win!
    Guncrafter’s melonite is pretty good too
  5. bnaples

    bnaples Well-Known Member

    Jun 24, 2013
    Love the melonite....its super black. Gotta be done with machine work prior though. Most won't machine on it afterwards .
  6. dtelston

    dtelston Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2012
    DLC is good stuff for sure...That said, my favorite black finish for toughness and looks is Severns Custom Hard Hat treatment. It may be a similar process for DLC, but I've had both, and this stuff holds up better than anything else I've personally used. I have it on a Glock 19 with thousands of draws on it and about 10,000 rounds through it to date. It looks pristine still and just barely is starting to show a crease on the barrel hood. I haven't had a 1911 treated yet but fully intend on sending Dave Severns my next 1911 in need of a refinish. His work in this regard rocks and I believe he's located just outside of Reno in Nevada. Hope this helps as you explore options.
    ImperialBlade likes this.
  7. bdg501

    bdg501 Well-Known Member

    Jan 19, 2014
    B0DCCA4D-1AFB-4354-BB2B-B4D31B89ED88.jpeg 0413DF28-4E07-4B72-A561-38EA7EDE7369.jpeg ABA6157F-39C9-47FA-AD02-99EAB8D10848.jpeg 34DFFE2B-A664-41B9-938F-F8FABDDE024C.jpeg 6D226370-6044-4849-B8AB-B9796EA86E38.jpeg Love my Black T finish for the corrosion resistant properties...it’s not the toughest finish, but the fact that it retains its properties even after the finish is worn off is what sold me on it.
    Finish after a month and a half of getting it back from Walter birdsong.
  8. sean10mm

    sean10mm Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2018
    DLC/PVD/Diamondblack/Infinicoat - All different names for the same basic thing, diamond like carbon coatings. In my opinion these are the best hard black finishes. They're also among the most expensive though. Don't have to worry about affecting part dimensions or heat treat on small parts.

    Meonite/Hard Hat/Tennifer/QPQ/black nitride/ferritic nitrocarburizing/Duty Treat - This is a chemical treatment of the steel to harden it. Results in a very tough black finish. Not usually recommended for small parts because it can affect the heat treat and even part dimensions to a certain extent because it's done at a fairly high temperature. I've read some gunsmiths talking about how they had issues with guns messed up by people they contracted to do this type of finish, but I've only heard good things about Dave Severns and his Hard Hat version. They didn't return my e-mails earlier this year though, so I don't know if they're still taking orders for it or not. These finishes can also be discolored by some gun cleaners/solvents.

    Roguard/Black-T/Teflon-S/GenIII-4/Poly-T2/Armor-Tuff/Cerakote - These are all spray and bake polymer finishes. They all offer really good corrosion resistance, but they are also all very soft compared to either of the above types of finishes. On the upside they are also usually much much cheaper.
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2018
    Sniper 217 and dtelston like this.
  9. sean10mm

    sean10mm Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2018
    Some old gunsmith posts bout melonite and DLC I found.

  10. Bender

    Bender Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Aug 15, 2011
    Guncrafter will......:cool:
    bnaples likes this.
  11. WoodrowAugustus

    WoodrowAugustus Well-Known Member

    Jan 16, 2018
    I'm a huge fan of DLC, but for what you are describing I'd say go with melonite. Specifically, if you have the ability to disassemble the pistol completely, then send it to H&M Black Nitride. It will cost you $225 with return shipping and should take 2-4 weeks.
  12. WWB

    WWB Administrator Staff Member Admin Moderator Supporting Addict

    Apr 11, 2015
    Nighthawk will do it in nitride or DLC both would be excellent options.
    Shocker2000 and Kip like this.
  13. sean10mm

    sean10mm Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2018
    His website lists his location as Mt Juliet, TN.

  14. mbacker_99

    mbacker_99 Well-Known Member

    Jul 3, 2017
    Is your TRP carbon or stainless steel? DLC is not the most corrosion resistant finish and is best suited for stainless steel.
  15. Kip

    Kip Sir Kip Esquire

    Apr 12, 2016
    +1 WWB
    Finish tougher than a truckload of anvils,and we already know the Nighthawk reputation!!
    It's a no-brainer!
    WWB likes this.
  16. WC145

    WC145 Every day is Saturday and every night's a party!

    Jan 1, 2013
    That's a new one on me. Take care of your gun, don't leave it sitting in a salt water bath for days at a time, and DLC is plenty corrosion resistant. I have a carbon steel Colt that was done in DLC by Ionbond 4 or 5 years ago and it's been carried on plenty of hot sweaty days, shot in rainy matches, etc and I haven't had any corrosion issues at all.
    cwoods and Kip like this.
  17. dtelston

    dtelston Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2012
    Hey 10mm...I believe that he did in fact actually moved to TN in the past year or two sometime. His website, confusingly enough, has both addresses still listed. That said, I believe that you are right in his currently being located in TN. Dave was never super easy to get into contact with, or to communicate with virtually, but he was great on the phone and the work most certainly got done, for whatever that’s worth. I’ll personally go back through him before sending a 1911 off to get finished elsewhere, but Nighthawk DLC would be my second choice and Birdsong Black-T would be my third. All great and provided great results when used in the past, but Hard Hat is pretty hard to top based on my preferences and needs.
  18. firecop

    firecop New Member

    Oct 13, 2016
    I like Black T by Birdsong. If it’s good enough for a Pro it’s good enough for my TRP

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro
  19. Shocker2000

    Shocker2000 Well-Known Member

    Apr 6, 2016
    I agree. My Nighthawk Falcon has the best black nitride finish of any gun I have, or have seen.

    @bdg501 - I have a Springfield Pro I'd like to get refinished with Black T. Did you send directly to Walter Birdsong, or through Springfield?
  20. Descartian

    Descartian Well-Known Member

    Apr 13, 2017
    I have a pistol in Severus Hard Hat and numerous in DLC. I am getting some of my builds in progress done in DLC.

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