Between bowhunting, bass fishing, a new house, and new hobby of pistol shooting, I have less and less spare change for my main passion: duck hunting. I've carried the same Remington 870 12 ga into the blind for 15 years; it's taken a lot of abuse but I point it well and it always goes bang. My only real complaint has been it attract rust anytime it's near water. Instead of shelling out $1000-1500 for a top-of-the-line autoloader with a nice camo finish, I decided to give my old gun a facelift.
Over the course of the past week I sanded, primed, painted, and sealed it using Rustoleum paints, painters tape, and a bunch of Johnson grass and reeds for stenciling. I have a stainless follower, paracord sling, Carlson choke tubes, and new recoil pad to install as well. Painting alone only cost about $20 in materials. Upgrading the other parts set me back only $140.
I'm really happy with how the paint job turned out and wanted to share it with anyone who is thinking of doing the same. Just go for it - if you mess up, sand it off and start over. You'll have a gun that doesn't look like anyone else's when it's done. The paint will hold up a lot longer than hydrodipping and cost a fraction of that process. It was a pretty rewarding project and I have the added benefit of continuing to get to use the gun my dad gave to me for Christmas when I started duck hunting in high school.