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This coating has facinated me ever since it came out. From what I can find out about the coating and the process, it is hard, black, highly corrosion resistant and bonds well to the gun. Why don't we see more custom guns using this? Is it the price? It is about double what a Black T coating would be, I believe. Dane, have you used TiN before?
 

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Black is available, it is TiAlN and even harder than the TiN and TiCN types. AP&W offers it. I talked to them once, but, honestly, as good as it sounds I was not willing for my guns to be 700deg test subjects.
 

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It has been my experience that TiN coated parts have no place in a carry/self-defense weapon. Once the gold anodized coating wears off, the part underneath is usually a very soft metal, and wears MUCH quicker than steel. Good for race guns - not one I trust my life to.
 

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There are a several good reasons we are not seeing more use of TiN, TiCn and related vapor phase deposition coatings:

1- When a typical CVD (Chemical Vapor Deposition) process is used there are coverage problems in the internals, bores, and pinholes.

2- The CVD (Chemical Vapor Deposition) process is not effective for deep hole coverage.

3- The CVD and PVD processes require an extensive array of cathodes and/or very hard vacuum environment in order to get thorough coverage on complex parts. So far, no one has been willing to invest in the tooling, setup and odious Federal Firearms Licensing; not to mention the EPA nightmare of dealing with titanium/flourine/carbide gases.

4- Typical coating thickness is very thin (0.000001-3") and although very hard (~90HRC)has little toughness or strength on its own. Hard chrome in and of itself is very tough and strong, and goes on considerably thicker, at .0003-0005". It also offers suberb surface lubricity, with an avergae surface hardness of 72HRC and very low surface energy.
The better baked on finishes have good strength and toughness. Hard chrome and spray/bake finishes are easier to apply, and require far less exotic tooling, vacuum systems or scientific expertise than TiN.

5- Due to its thinness, TiN has relatively poor corrosion resistance, especially in comparison to Hard Chrome or the better polymer type finishes. In some instances, it has been seen to increase corrosion cell formation due to its place on the Galvanic scale in relation to the underlying material. We know of no Mil Spec for TiN salt spray resistance.

6- TiN coating was initially designed for application to very hard substrates, primarily cutting tools made from Tungsten Carbide or M2/M42 HSS. Both of these substrates have fairly high surface lubricity to begin with, and this is further augmented by the application of the TiN.
Ideal substrate hardness for TiN application is in the 60+ HRC range.

A hard barrel is in the high 30-45 HRC range. Typical hardened 1911 frames and slides are in the Rc28 range. Small parts and sights are more often than not in the teens, essentially unhardened.
The result is that softer parts coated with TiN will readily deform in use, and the TiN's advantages are obviated.
 

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I have used both coatings, the TIN and the Boron Carbide. The Boron Carbide is a superior coating for a couple reasons. First it is applied at a much lower temperature, aprox 225 deg far. TIN if I remember correctly is in the 700 deg far range so further softening of a heat treated part with Boron Carbide is not a problem. Boron Carbide runs about 95 Rc, TIN is much sofeter. Also Boron carbide can be applied thicker, it can be built up. Also, with Boron Carbide alternating layers of chromium and BC can be applied for enhanced lubricity and corrosion resistance.

Sorry about my not to scientific post but it is my experiance. Here is a picture of some blades coated with Boron Carbide and a combo of TIN and Boron Carbide. I like the BC can you tell?




I also have dont the camo finish on several guns now and the Boron Carbide wears very, very well!

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Rob Simonich on 2002-01-11 02:00 ]</font>
 
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