- I have this VR1 project in the works and thought I'd share this photo. The cans need repair of the 4 extra holes that were drilled in the face. I don't know if I can repair/fill the corrosion pits. - I stripped the whole regulator for re-plating. Removed the chrome with muriatic acid. Removed the underlying nickel with Brownells room temperature nickel stripper. Then buffed off the residue with a scotch bright pad... It's kind of beautiful! - I'm planning to plug the holes with brass screws. Fill with copper brazing rod, and grind the surface flat. I'm hoping I can fill corrosion pits with brazing rod, too.
Last Edit: Mar 5, 2013 15:27:41 GMT -8 by surflung
Dang dude--you're almost as crazy as I am! WOW--very nice... Would be kinda cool to see one of those left brass and then watch what color it turns after ten or so dives, would be really pretty I'd bet, not that you'd even consider that.
- I've watched a few on-line videos on brazing and got to worrying... What if I get it so hot the brazing on the horn melts? It might if it is lower temp melting point than my copper brazing rod. There are ways to wick away heat, but... - Another approach I might consider to this is the idea of leaving some "Character" in this reg. The holes and pits are part of its history. Maybe I should leave them there... Just polish the front, bead blast the back, and send it to the plater. A polished surface tends to hide pits better than a matte surface... Maybe it'll camoflage the holes, too. - As for leaving it au-naturale, I've seen a few on Ebay where that was done... Not pretty. They don't take on a patina. They just get corroded and ugly... And ruined. I know what you mean though... It looks so nice in the bright brass. There are lacquers and baking lacquers that metal finishers use to protect natural brass. So that's a consideration for someone. - I happen to have access to Hi-Phos Electroless Nickel plating here at work... I can include my regulator parts in a batch for a pretty reasonable price. And, Electroless Nickel covers everything evenly... Total protection in every nook and cranny.
SL, do yourself, and us, a favor: see if solder will take a plating!
When I was restoring my '56 Buick, I remember reading that the better shops would fill the pits with soldier before re-plating. If it does, then fill your little surface cavities that way, instead of burning through the soft brass of the can. Geepers, maybe you can close the holes that way too? Since there's no torque or tension put on the can, you should be able to get away with a pretty quick and dirty remedy for the butcher job done to that reg...
- Thanks for the suggestion. I didn't think electroless nickel would stick to solder but, my electroless nickel plater got back to me this morning and said the process sticks to solder just fine. So, I'm back in the saddle again! - I was all set to throw in the towel and send this off to DoucheBag Dave for his magic touch. Which, by the way, is a bargain... But, I like learning and doing things myself. I'll post pictures of my progress.
- My plater said it didn't matter what kind of solder. I purchased some "Hobby Solder" that's 96% Tin and 4% Silver. Alot of other solders are high in lead... So there ARE differences. This stuff melts at 430 degrees Ferenheit... Which is good. - I'm still debating whether to just send this off to DoucheBag Dave. For $195 he'll do the whole job and his work is beautiful. I will definitely have the authetic VR1 I crave when he's done. - Doing the plating myself will give me the better corrosion protection of electroless nickel and self satisfaction, BUT...
Surfling, it is good to stay away from lead! I'm interested in seeing how it goes. One precaution is that the hole where the orifice goes into the main body, if you have too deep a layer of plating, the orifice may not fit. So ask about that before getting the body plated.
I just got these parts back from Dave Ali. As you can see, he did a beautiful job! Pits as well as holes are repaired. He even smoothed out the casting seams on the yoke.
I have new green hoses and mouthpiece. I also secured a new VR1 label and chrome band clamp. All new internals will be installed. BUt, it may be a couple of months before I actually finish assembly on this one. Too much going on (wedding in the family, fixing up the house, etc) and I want to take my time and enjoy finishing this project... It should be about the most beautiful Voit VR1 Regulator On Earth when it's done!
Last Edit: Jun 11, 2013 14:20:34 GMT -8 by surflung