I found this really nice Wilton Bullet vise for a very good deal at a garage sale, and decided that such a nice vise deserves to look nice.
I videotaped the entire process of restoring this vise and have a video of it on my youtube channel. If you want, you can either read about the process here, or you can watch the entire restoration process.
Step 1: Take the Vise Apart
I started off with taking the vise apart, and separating all of the separate pieces into dedicated piles so I could keep track of them. This vise did not have a lot of small parts, but the few that it had were critical to this vise working properly.
Step 2: Wirebrush and Strip All Paint From Parts
In order for me to get a clean paint job on the vise and to make it look good as new, I had to clean off all of the old paint, and grime that had gathered up in the decades of this vices life on it. After I would wirebrush every part, I would wipe it down with a paint thinner, just to make sure I got all of the old paint.
Step 3: Prime All of the Parts
After I wirebrushed all of the parts down to bare metal, I taped over all of the holes, and parts that would be in contact with other parts with painters tape. After I taped over all of the moving parts I then sprayed two layers of primer onto the parts.
Step 4: Paint the Primed Parts
After all of the parts had been primed and had dried, I took some gunmetal black paint that I had in my shop and painted all of the parts. I let them dry for a day and then sprayed a second layer of paint onto the parts.
Step 5: Assemble and Oil the Vise
After all of the parts had been painted, I wiped them all down with some Howard's beeswax and orange oil finish, and applied a liberal dose of new grease the the screw and the gear box of the vise. After that had been done, I put the entire vise back together.
Step 6: Repaint Embossed Lettering
After I had the entire vise back together, I repainted the embossed lettering on the vise with a yellow enamel paint, Doing this one final step in my opinion brought the whole project together.
Step 7: Enjoy Your Creation.
After all of that had been done, I not only had an amazing vise to use in my shop, but I also had an amazing looking top tier machinists vise that I can use in my shop and pass down for generations.