I'm looking for opinions for the best finish for an MP5 clone. When I say best I'm talking about durability more than looks. I've seen the failings of gun kote and durakote.
ok, how about something that doesn't cost as much as the firearm, lol. I must admit I never gave nitriding a thought though. I was considering a good manganese phosphate park job.
Cerakote Armor Black or Cerakote Elite Series Midnight over a parkerized finish. The interior can be lightly fogged with the Cerakote but don't overdo it.
I sold my HK's and bought a whole bunch of Century C93s. The best rifles on the planet bar none. I love the C93 pistols with the 12 o' clock slot!
bad experiences with cerakote chipping off just like gun kote and durakote
While this is a little more expensive than dura/cera/gun kote, I have personal experience with it on a Sig 226 I once owned.
This stuff held up way better than my cerakoted guns. I also had problems with the cerakote flaking. That said, I attribute the flaking more to improper metal prep than the cerakote itself. In places that had wide open surfaces on the receiver, the cerakote stuck. I'm guessing because the wide open surfaces were the most exposed to the blast media. Corners and edges, flaked.
Be sure whoever is doing your prep work, is thorough. Robar does great work, if you are gonna use and abuse it, I suggest roguard mentioned above. If it's a collector piece, then good blast prep and cerakote.
You might check out Moly Resin by John Norrell. Not sure of his cost to do a whole firearm the size of an MP5.
Prep is key to a great finish. I've seen parts not prepped correctly namely glass beads used instead of Aluminum Oxide, not enough PSI while blasting, and surfaces still retaining oils/moisture. The new Elite Series Cerakote is very durable. I painted a lower and needed to make some adjustments for the bolt hold open tubes. I abrasive blasted the lower and it took a lot longer to remove the coating, a lot longer. Another thing to consider while using Aluminum Oxide is to replace it more frequently if doing a lot work prep work.
I have a demo K that is tough as nails. Nitride isn't that expensive.
But what if you have some stainless parts? Can you Nitride stainless?