Stock refinishing help


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stevelyn
April 3, 2003, 04:32 AM
I've taken on a project to refinish a rifle stock that's been neglected. I've had limited experience in this area and I'm learning more as I go along.
The problem I'm facing now is how to draw years of oil and bore cleaner from the wood without having to remove too much wood in the sanding process to make the color even.
Any help or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Steve

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Clemson
April 3, 2003, 10:44 AM
What kind of finish is on the stock now? Many commercial finishes will yield to an application or two of paint stripper. Some won't. An oil-soaked stock usually needs multiple applications of Whiting. If you make a paste of Whiting and solvent (trichlorothethylene, methanol, or the like) and coat the stock with it, the solvent will pull the oil out, and the Whiting will soak it up. When it dries you can brush off the dirty Whiting and do it again. It takes a few applications, but it is a much more pleasant and predictable process than baking in an oven, coating with oven cleaner, etc., that some folks will try to convince you to do. You can get Whiting from Brownells. www.brownells.com

stevelyn
April 3, 2003, 12:03 PM
It had a coating of varnish that had cracked and flaked over time. I used Zip-Strip to take off the varnish and got down to bare wood. There are a few very dark areas that were oil or solvent soaked that are almost black.
My intention is to refinish w/ boiled linseed oil. I've done three stock projects now and their owners including my boss have liked the results.

Badger Arms
April 3, 2003, 08:41 PM
May I suggest that you use Tung Oil instead of BLO. Tung Oil seems to work better for me. I use Fromby's Low Gloss but the High Gloss will look better if you have a high-gloss blue finish. The process I use after I get bare wood is to apply a single coat thinned 50/50 with Laquer Thinner. Do a heavy coat of this and wipe the excess off. When this dries (about two days) you can use fine steel wool to dewisker the stock. Second coat and any further coats you want should be straight, no thinner. The thinner on the initial coat is mainly to allow it to penetrate further. You can do multiple coats, but I've never done more than three. You can also wet sand with the Tung Oil and this helps to fill the pores of the wood, but I prefer to leave the pores open. The first deep coat seals it good enough for me.

bamasurp
April 3, 2003, 11:54 PM
you can use a degreaser that is sold in automotive departments called "purple power". It does a great job. Apply several times until you are satisfied with the amount removed. The wood will appear white after it dries but once you apply tung oil, or BLO, (I like tru-oil stock finish) the wood's color will shine through. It will remove stain so if you are attached to the stain on the wood already I wouldn't use PP. I collect old military rifles and most came to me soaked in oil and cosmoline. Some folks will put a greasy stock in kitty litter (unused :) ) and set that in say a car trunk when it is real hot outside, or maybe in a blck trashbag in the sun. The heat draws out the oil and the kitty litter absorbs the oil from the stock.

Have fun,

bamasurp

HSMITH
April 4, 2003, 12:10 AM
there is a guy that posts by the handle "mosin guy" over at the "falfiles.com" . Send Fred your stock and forget your troubles, it will be back faster and cheaper than if you tried to to get a professional result on your own.

Fatelvis
April 4, 2003, 01:09 PM
I think this site has some great info. http://riflestocks.tripod.com/refinish.html

Ebbtide
April 4, 2003, 01:20 PM
but it is a much more pleasant and predictable process than baking in an oven, coating with oven cleaner, etc., that some folks will try to convince you to do.

How did you know I was going to mention those? :D

For mil surplus stocks the oven, oven cleaner, scrubbing bubbles, work well. If it is a modern rifle stock go with the Clemson's method and take your time for great results.

stevelyn
April 6, 2003, 12:11 PM
Thanks for the help everyone. Carb cleaner extracted enough oil brighten the wood. Used cotton rags as an absorbent. The grain is just beautiful. Can't wait to get the oil on it. I'll post the results.

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