Would Bocote wood work for a gun stock?


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the_worst_name
October 13, 2012, 02:35 AM
I have 5 pieces of bocote large enough to make rifle stocks. Would this type of wood work? Has anyone ever herd of anyone using this type of wood for a stock? I have seen pistol grips made from it, but never a rifle stock. Thanks

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meanmrmustard
October 13, 2012, 09:08 AM
Not only do I think it would work, I think it would look gorgeous! It is twice the hardness of most walnut species.

I've seen knife handles made of it before. If you have five, it might not hurt to sacrifice one for the sake of science!:D

helotaxi
October 13, 2012, 09:24 AM
Gonna be heavy. About 50% more dense than black walnut.

Beautiful wood though.

303tom
October 13, 2012, 09:37 AM
Gonna be heavy.


And Expensive !!!!!!!!

Cesiumsponge
October 13, 2012, 10:10 AM
I am surprised that tropical hardwoods aren't used more often. Many of them, like bocote, are quite visually stunning and many tropicals grow large enough to make gun stocks. Bocote might not be cheap but its not unreasonably priced. There won't be a giant premium price on stock-sized pieces like some high grades of figured walnut so it can end up being cheaper. Exotic hardwoods have been catching on in the last decade or so for electric guitars and basses though so prices will start going up soon.

One thing I would do is research if it tends to check or crack. I think its a relatively solid wood but some African tropical hardwoods are somewhat brittle, despite their increased hardness and density.

StretchNM
October 13, 2012, 11:57 AM
Bocote seems like it would be a little, well, "loud" on a rifle. Wouldn't it? To me anyway.

barnbwt
October 13, 2012, 12:54 PM
Bocote seems like it would be a little, well, "loud" on a rifle.

I'm currently inletting a R700 stock I made from cocobolo and jatoba--now that's gonna be loud! I'm gonna follow that with a VZ 58 stock made from wenge.

Btw, tropical woods tend to be hard to glue (cocobolo) and make nasty, irritating, or poisonous dust (wenge splinters always get infected :what:)

Good luck, it'll be a lot of work...

TCB

rcmodel
October 13, 2012, 01:09 PM
and make nasty, irritating, or poisonous dust + 1,000.

Use a high end dust mask, and suck up the dust with a shop vac as you make it.

Rosewood dust almost killed me with double pneumonia years ago before I knew about many tropical hardwoods being toxic.

Bocote is one of them if you develop an allergy to it.

rc

meanmrmustard
October 13, 2012, 02:13 PM
And Expensive !!!!!!!!
He already owns it.

I'd make a stock out of Osage Orange if I had the tools. To hell with heavy, tough is more like it.

Cesiumsponge
October 13, 2012, 06:03 PM
Cocobolo is so oily that I've had little success gluing it. It does smell fantastic when worked though. I'm surprised cocobolo isn't a spicy aroma used in scented products and its a shake the smell doesn't linger like a cedar. Wenge is a pain to fill in the pores!

barnbwt
October 13, 2012, 09:51 PM
Fun Fact: Polyurethane doesn't cure on many fancy woods (cocobolo and other dalbergia(?) genus woods) so you have to use lacquers (with their horrible, horrible fumes) if a coated finish is desired. I made the mistake once, and had to end up resurfacing the molasses-goo off my workpiece two-weeks after applying the PU.

The farther north you get it from, the lighter and orange-er the cocobolo will be. My stock's wood is reputedly from guatamala, so it's quite "flamboyant" when freshly sanded, but the orange tint fades to a reasonale medium-brown in UV light.

I find Titebond III and lacquer work very well with cocobolo. At least the stuff is a joy to carve, though; very consistent in all directions (since the grain is so swirled up), but sharp tools are a must. It's almost like carving plastic.

Cocobolo does smell good (cinnamon-y :)), but get much exposure to your sinuses or skin and you'll have a mild-to-moderate allergic response (itching, burning, flu-like symptoms). I thought I'd caught a cold the day after I routed some coco for a drawing board, and that was with a mask on. Pretty much all saw-dust is really bad to breathe (sometimes even carncinogenic) so dust control and discipline is really important, especially if power tools are used in carving. That's why I use hand-planes, chisels, and card scrapers (that, and my apartment would throw me out if I ever fired up a power carver :evil:)

I've not played with the wenge yet, but I've heard the pores can be easily filled/sealed with cyanoacrylate (superglue) and then polished to a lustre. The main thing I've heard is that sand is impregnated in the wood pores, so tools get chewed up fast, and that the dust/splinters are basically toxic to humans. Splinters must be removed or infection will set in (scary...:eek:). It's reportedly used as flooring and axle-shafts in the 3rd world, so it'll make a damn tough gunstock :D Polished, it looks like grainy ebony imbedded with gold glitter. Gonna make my VZ 58 a "BBQ Rifle" :cool:

I'd make a stock out of Osage Orange if I had the tools. To hell with heavy, tough is more like it.

Brilliant! You wouldn't even need a dayglo orange patch during hunting season :D! That is a tough wood to mess with; I tried it once, and I found it splits very easily. Great for bows, though! Would make a WWII-era bolt gun an even better club ;)

TCB

Dr.Rob
October 14, 2012, 03:11 AM
Cocobolo is my favorite on handgun grips but imagining the expense of a rifle stock in that? Would be very pretty though... very pretty.

beag_nut
October 15, 2012, 08:53 PM
Bocote is:
Gorgeous (or can be)
Almost impossible to glue (but not needed for a stock, hee, hee)
As rcmodel said (again, correctly) quite toxic when working it.
Incredibly tough.
Incredibly stable.
Difficult for novices to woodworking to shape.
Expensive, therefore has many bragging rights.
Gorgeous.
That's the facts (from a retired furnituremaker, who has used bocote before).

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