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"Oil Can" Finish on golf clubs

Intro / synopsis: Readers don't quite agree whether this term should apply to Vokey clubs or Scotty Cameron putters, but is a brownish black finish on steel with an iridescent look. It may involve Laurel Mountain Forge's "barrel brown and degreaser" or it may involve heat. Definitive answer not yet posted.

Q. I am interested in learning how to put an "Oil-can" finish on a carbon steel golf club, but have no idea what this entails... I have blued several times, however I feel that this is much different... Thanks

Brad Fraley
- Jeffersonville, Indiana

Q. I would like to know this too.

Jamie K
- Louisville, Kentucky

A. If you look at the Scotty Cameron website glossary list "" you will see that an oil can finish is a "Oil Can Brown black oxide finish that has an iridescent look like oil. This is achieved by heating the putter. Scotty wanted a putter that has a worn leather look and his Tour Rep., Larry Watson, coined the term Oil Can because the finish looks like it has a fine film of oil on it." Perhaps if you can find some Brown Black oxide you may be able to achieve this beautiful finish for your own clubs.

Brent Gatto
- Wilmette, Illinois

Q. Hello, my name is Mat, and trying to get a different look for my golf clubs. I am curious on how to turn a steel-headed golf club to have an "oil-can finish". I noticed on the web that this is also referred to as a "Brown black oxide finish". I've been searching the web quite a bit, but just can't find any info on how to do this. I searched your site, and noticed the black oxide finish, but didn't know if this is the same thing. Do you know how to do this, or point me in the right direction to find out how to do this. Thanks for any info!

Mat Segal
golf enthusiast - Gaithersburg, Maryland

A. The oil can finish on Scotty Cameron putters is not the same as on the Vokey Oil Can wedges. The putter finish can be achieved using something like Birchwood-Casey Plum Brown [adv: Plum Brown on eBay or Amazon (adv.)] finish combined with heating the putter head. But it will look like the examples on the Scotty Cameron website, which is nothing like the Vokey Oil Can finish.

I haven't found anything that produces the same look as the Vokey finish, but there are products that produce a dull brown finish which may be acceptable. Laurel Mountain Forge makes a solution called "barrel brown and degreaser" [on Brownells] , which produces a rust brown finish. Their website gives specific directions.

Given the way the wedges look, and the relative ease with which the finish is removed (hit a few balls on an Astroturf mat, and it starts to come off) I think it's some kind of color anodize or Alodine coating. I'm just starting to fool with this, if anything comes of it I'll post my results and the process.

Mike Bielefield
- Hebron, Connecticut
March 1, 2009

Q. Hello!

I've a question concerning my golf clubs.

I have three Titleist Vokey Wedges that used to have a so called "oil can" finish.
I would like to renew this finish but cannot find any kind of tutorial.
All I know is that it is a special procedure of oil oxidation.

Is it possible to create such finish at home?
What materials and machines do I need for it?

Thanks a lot for your help!

Helge von Selasinsky
hobbyist - Göttingen, Germany
May 5, 2009

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