Camo Dip

jayber

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A buddy had mentioned seeing something on TV awhile back where they dipped forearm and butt stocks of guns in a camo slurry to finish them.  He said the components were negatively charged and paint positive, or vice-versa, so that it adhered.  He couldn't tell me much more than that.  Does anybody know what the process is called and who is doing it?
 



Jaggermax

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Jayber, I have not heard of that exact process, however, I know of one which is very similar that a lot of companies use to apply camo, wood grain, etc..  to their parts.  It is called Cubic Printing  (also called 3D printing and water transfer printing).  

When a lot of my friends became interested in the cam I am playing around with, they all wanted one , so I started to get the crazy idea that once I got them working like I wanted, I might actually try to sell them around my area.  I wanted to get a professional finish done on the cam case and started looking around to find out how others camo painted their products.

I have talked with a number of companies that both perform the cubic printing and supply the film (it's expensive!  $700 bucks for a 300 foot x 36" roll!) and chemicals to perform the printing.  A few of them are:

http://www.trebark.com/second_skin/process.htm
http://www.xfinishes.com/camo.shtml
http://www.immersiongraphics.com/patterns.html
http://www.designinsite.dk/htmsider/inspproc.htm
http://www.sages.com.tw/

I talked extensively with xfinishes and they are located in Indiana.  If I ever get a chance to finish my cam design (I have a two year old boy that gets most of it now), I am going to have him coat my boxes for me.  Cost will be about $15 buck each in a nice Advantage type pattern.  

The process is quite simple.  The part is first cleaned with a degreaser and then sprayed with a neautral primer coat.  A water tank is then filled with water and a piece of film containing the camo or wood pattern is floated on top of the water.  An activator chemical is then sprayed on the film which desolves the film and leaves the oil based paint floating on the top of the water.  The part is slowly dipped through the paint and into the water tank.  The remaining paint, which is floating, is skimmed away and the part removed.  A protective coating is then sprayed on the part to protect the finish and provide waterproofing and durability.  Pretty cool process.  


(Edited by Jaggermax at 8:46 pm on Aug. 9, 2001)


(Edited by Jaggermax at 8:47 pm on Aug. 9, 2001)
 

Stickbow

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Jaggermax,

Thanks for doing all the leg work. Great, informative post!
I also was considering having the dip finish applied to my Pelican boxes, as paint or tape is a hassle and not nearly as professional looking. (Not that I'm gonna sell any cams, but I do want them to look good and have the finish to be all-weather durable)

I have seen the film process in "action" while visiting the Knight factory in Iowa during a break in my 2000 Whitetail hunt.....it was impressive to say the least!

I think I'm going to be giving xfinishes a call REAL soon!
Thanks again......
 

Jaggermax

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Stickbow, were you able to get any "free samples" from the Knight factory?  ;)  

I am trying to get ahold of some of the camo film and the activator used in the process.  That is all that is really needed to coat boxes.  I talked with the owner of Xfinishes and he said he not only performs the process, but he also sells the supplies to do it.  However, the price of the film is kind of high.  He said all you need is a tank to hold the water and a paint gun to spray the final coat.  If I hit the jackpot on one of the casinos down here, I may splurge and buy a roll of the film.  
 

jayber

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Thanks for the excellent info Jaggermax......I'll check 'em out!  And sorry I haven't responded sooner, but I was out west on vacation for a week.  
 

quackmaster

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there is a place here in arkansas that does the dipping for gun stocks. The name of the place is Ballistic specialties or Agleport. A couple friends of mine have had their guns "dipped". Looks pretty neat, I think it is supposed to last two or three years before it starts scratching off.  There are some prices on there web page for custom stock and scope painting, I would guess a pelican sized box would take a little more paint than a stock.  page says $25 for a scope painting. Check out http://www.angleport.com  There are a few pictures of some custom gun jobs.
 

buckman0

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try using this . find some of your wife's old silk flowers or her new ones like i did  , take the leaves of and silicone them to the box . it looks real natural on the tree .
 

Stickbow

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Jagger-

No free samples, but did get a great tour! We happened to be there while Tony Knight was filming some commercials and ad work....Heck of a nice guy. They were just unveiling the Master Hunter rifle, and we got to see and check out Tony"s own #0001 of 1000. It was kinda neat to be the first ones to see a new model even before it was unveiled at the SHOT show!

Also, they have some outstanding mounts in their store area, including Gery Blair's WR Muzzleloader Elk. Awesome animal! Highly recommend the tour to anyone going thru that part of SE Iowa.

I don't doubt given the film and activator and having the right area to work in, you could do your own dipping...but it IS real expensive, (unless your doing large quantities) and after seeing it done, it does take a certain "knack" to do it just right!!

Good luck if you try it for yourself, and send me a price list!!!  8^)
 


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