That's a thing of beauty! I love that you were able to take it from an underappreciated workhorse to like-new. Really nice job.
How did you remove all of the of the bluing? And how did you put on the new enamel so evenly?
Phosphoric acid in a plastic tub will remove bluing easy and "neutralize" ant rust. The bore was in "Great" shape so I plugged the muzzle and chamber hand cut rubber wedges I made and forced them in so not to get any acid in the bore. It really wouldn't have hurt it anyway but I wanted it left alone. I just used a disposable paint brush and worked at it slowly. Actually washing an hour it was completely bare metal. I then used soap and water to thoroughly clean the acid off and rinse real well. I instantly dried with towel and blowdryer to stop moisture for starting surface rusting.
I warmed up my BBQ grill at 200º and threw it in. After it got to temp in about 15 mins I pulled it out with a welding glove, hung it by the last stock tab screw hole with some wire and put on a first "light" coat, almost dusting of High heat (Rustoleum) BBQ flat black paint in about 85º ambient air and no wind. Once this acted as a primer, and sat for a few hours I then did another coat, still hanging a little heavier, checking for runs. Lucky it being outside in the sun it was staying hot and drying quickly. I let that set 24hrs. The next day I repeated the process. This is the results.
As I'm getting older, my patience is much better with stuff like this. But, I always did love making something nice from a pile of $#!T.
. For the price of a small can of clear gloss min-wax and a can of enamel paint, it didn't come out to bad!