A wee Webley gets some TLC......

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A wee Webley gets some TLC......

Postby Leonardj » Sun Sep 25, 2016 3:27 pm

This was originally posted in 2011.

A short while ago, this Webley "B" Series Premier was donated to me. Because of it's less than attractive condition, it was thought to perhaps be a good parts donor. Well, having searched for a "B" Series Premier for many years without any luck, I decided that this little gun would get "the treatment", in an attempt to restore it to it's previous glory. The barrel joint pivot screw was missing, with an old Phillips head screw just cross-threaded into the hole, and one grip had a minor gouge in the checkering, just below the "Webley" emblem on the left grip panel. Also, the small spring in the cocking shoe was broken, as is so typical of these vintage Webleys - but - it has potential !!

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These pics show where it had been splattered with some solution that had not only removed the bluing, but had also etched the base metal - not very pretty at all. The other side of the gun was actually quite nice, with only light box-wear.

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Phase one - chemically remove all the original bluing. I used Birchwood Casey Rust and Blue Remover, and it worked great. You can now see how badly etched some areas of the bare metal are.

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Phase two - the affected areas have been carefully filed, then polished with progressively finer grits of emery paper. You can still see a few small areas that have yet to be cleaned up. The spring in the shoe of the cocking linkage was replaced during this phase as well.

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Phase three - the entire gun is carded (wire brushed). This can be done by hand, or with a fine wire wheel in a lathe or on a pedestal grinder. Care must be taken if done by the latter methods, as too much pressure will cause abraiding, too little, will not produce the desired shine.

The gun is now ready for bluing. I wanted this gun to look as good as it did when it left the factory, or as close as was possible, and I knew that this was beyond my abilities using cold bluing, so I enlisted the services of a local airgunner that was equipped to do hot salts bluing. I had seen examples of his past work and I thought it to be of excellent quality.

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And finally, phase four - the gun has been blued, and reassembled. Note the contrast between these two pics and the first two close-ups at the top of the post.
The bluing turned out absolutely fantastic.

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So here we see the completely re-assembled Premier. A proper barrel pivot screw has been fitted, along with it's keeper screw, and the grips have been replaced with a much nicer set that I had on hand. The bluing and degree of depth are excellent, and has just the correct amount of shine, that only a keen eye could tell that the gun has been re-blued.

I could not be happier with the results, and I now have a very nice specimen of a "B" Series Premier in my collection.

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Leonardj
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Re: A wee Webley gets some TLC......

Postby Certus » Mon Sep 26, 2016 7:42 am

Hi Leonard,

Another example of a sympathetically restored air pistol being given a new lease of life. I have never been a big fan of refinishing the rarer air guns providing they are in better than relic condition, but with the Webley Premier I can't see any reason why it shouldn't be returned to as near to original condition as possible. The A and B Premiers are my favourite models in the series and I believe they represent the pinnacle of refinement to the original Webley design.

Thanks for taking the time to describe and illustrate the steps in the process for this and the Crosman 137 restoration.

Regards

Brian
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Re: A wee Webley gets some TLC......

Postby Leonardj » Tue Sep 27, 2016 3:41 am

Thanks for the kind words, Brian.
It is always gratifying to save any of these vintage airguns from being relegated to paper weights.
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Re: A wee Webley gets some TLC......

Postby bellringer » Tue Oct 11, 2016 4:48 pm

I have only just seen the thread regarding the ''wee Webley'', it is so nice to see that you have gone through so much work in restoring this pistol to a superb condition rather than just using it for parts; I know the B series is rarer than most so well done and a fine example is now loved again as it probably was many years ago. I noticed your remarks regarding missing parts and not intending to use this post as an advert but as a useful point for reference; I have a huge collection of spares for several makes, so an e mail to ray210645@yahoo.co.uk may be of use to you; that aside, again sincerely well done. :text-bravo:
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Re: A wee Webley gets some TLC......

Postby pmh » Tue Oct 11, 2016 10:28 pm

Excellent work, as usual.

Another saved for a future generation.

Kind regards,



Phil
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