By Mark V. Lonsdale – STTU
Over the years I have tried several finishes on my handguns and rifles, to include conventional gun blue, Pakerizing, black phosphate, hard chrome, electroless nickel plating, Roguard and NP3. Of all of these, NP3 has truly impressed me with its lubricity and resistance to corrosion.
When I first had Robar of Phoenix, AZ, NP3 one of my carry handguns, it was because I was working in a salt water environment and my blued guns were literally rusting overnight. I also had a problem that when I was training in the desert, the sweat running down my side was running into the holster with the same result – a thin film of red rust by morning.
Every day carry (EDC) SIG P228 9mm with NP3 finish.
Ever since I began using NP3 in the early 1990s, I have no longer had this problem, and I still work in hot, humid environments. I also had Robar NP3 the bolts of my sniper rifles to slick up the actions.
Bolt of my SR90 300 Win Mag with NP3 finish. Definitely slicks up the action and makes the bolt easier to clean.
Robar 7mm Mag sniper rifle with NP3 bolt and Roguard barrel and action
From the Robar webpage:
Robar’s® NP3® finish is an electroless nickel-based finish for steel, stainless steel and aluminum alloys that co-deposits sub-micron particles of PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene), otherwise known as Teflon™, with electroless nickel.
NP3® metal finish offers many benefits. NP3® permits firing for longer periods of time between cleaning, dirt and powder residue have no wet or oily surface to cling to. When cleaning is required, the effort needed is minimal – usually requiring only a soft cloth. NP3® is very corrosion resistant. It provides a high lubricity and low friction co-efficient, greatly increasing the life expectancy of a firearm due to reduced friction wear. NP3® is a satin gray, non-reflective color ideal for all firearms.
NP3® can be plated to all internal parts giving smoothness to the action not found with any other coating. In cases where the NP3® has been perforated, the corrosion shows no tendency to spread or migrate under the coating. NP3® also carries a lifetime warranty.