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Ways of getting cosmoline out of wood

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by esmith, Aug 24, 2007.

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  1. esmith

    esmith Member

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    How do you get cosmoline out of wood without the aid of the sun? I thought of using a hair dryer since it blows warm air. What else is there?
     
  2. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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    Wrap it in a good amount of kitty litter, in something flame-proof. Bake it in the oven. It will continue to sweat cosmoline in the Summer, but that gets rid of most of it, at least as well as sun-baking it. Probably better. Best done when wife is out of town.:)

    Stinks up the kitchen really nicely.

    I've heard that turpentine works, too. Haven't tried it, though.
     
  3. General Geoff

    General Geoff Member

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    Steam cleaner.
     
  4. JonB

    JonB Member

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    I used *gasp* the oven cleaner method on my Yugo 24/47. Have to be careful not to overdo it as if the oils are pulled out too fast it leaves the wood brittle. But it worked for me on a very ugly black cosmo soaked stock.

    I bought some stuff from Brownell's called 'Whitening'. It's purpose is to pull excess oils/grease out of wood. Basically a power that you mix with acetone, mineral spirits or something similar and then smear the paste on the wood. Haven't tried it yet though I have a walnut forearm for my 24/47 that I'll test it on.
     
  5. Jackal

    Jackal Member

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    EZ-Off oven cleaner. I have used this on at least a dozen stocks and it works well every time. Keep in mind though, it will also clean off the stocks current finish. Just spray it on and watch the crud bubble out.
     
  6. kymarkh

    kymarkh Member

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    Solar

    Wrap in old towels and place on the dashboard of your car after closing all the windows and parking in direct sunlight - one day should do it in this weather.
     
  7. foghornl

    foghornl Member

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    Heat as suggested above

    Mineral Spirits and A LOT of wiping

    Murphy's Oil Soap

    Any combination of the above
     
  8. Float Pilot

    Float Pilot Member

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    I have a couple old steam irons. Here in the dead of winter (prime Alaskan gunsmithing season) there is no solar method available.

    I put a damp towel over the stock and steam iron it. The cosmo seeps into the towel. If it is a real gooey mess, mineral spirits work as does turpintine.

    I just get the wood all warm with the iron and then start wiping with mieral spirits in between heating sessions... this also raises up any shallow wood dents.

    You can also use denatured alcohol to clean off any other petrolium product residue.
     
  9. aka108

    aka108 Member

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    I usually start with mineral spirits or brake cleaner fluid. Then go to hot water and SOS pads and finally coat it with painters whiting, put in a black plastic bag and set it out in the sun. Does pretty well.
     
  10. Rockrivr1

    Rockrivr1 Member

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    Warning - Do this when the wife is not home.

    Put the stock into your oven on low. Make sure to put some tin foil on the bottom to catch the melted cosmo. You'll have to take the racks out of the oven when you do it. I used this method with my Yugo SKS and it worked great. Just make sure to not overcook it.
     
  11. Mr White

    Mr White Member

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    if your house has an attic that gets really hot in the summer, wrapping the stock in old towels and putting it up there for a few hot days will do the trick.
     
  12. Taurus 617 CCW

    Taurus 617 CCW Member

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    At school we use a 48" boil out tank. It works very well and leaves almost no oil on the stock. You can make your own out of a small horse troth and boil it outside over a fire/propane flame.
     
  13. rocketfish

    rocketfish Member

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    I would avoid oven cleaner and water as it is unnecessary and is not good for wood - the oven cleaner especially will damage the stock. I've read many sucess stories with oven cleaner and the dishwasher method, and these might satisfy your requirements, but technically, oven cleaner and water is not good for wood. If your stock is a beater and you don't need the best possible result, hit it with oven cleaner (and then flush with water) by all means. I would never put a surplus rifle stock in my dishwasher - that is nasty.

    As mentioned, all you need is some solvent (mineral spirits or denatured alcohol) and heat. I made a little cardboard box "oven" in my garage with a long cardboard box, a ceramic space heater, and a $5 cooking thermometer jammed through the cardboard box. Get the temperature up to 170 - 180 degrees F, put the stock in for 15 minutes wrapped in paper towels, pull out and wipe with rag dampened with mineral spirits, and repeat until it stops bleeding cosmoline. Cosmoline melts around 150 degrees F I think so you wnat the temperature above that.
     
  14. Sunray

    Sunray Member

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    "...oven cleaner especially will damage..." Yep. It's caustic and will burn the wood. It's made for removing carbon from enameled steel, not removing grease from wood.
    A tub of mineral spirits is all you need. Heat isn't required. Drop the stock in and leave it there for 24 hours. Then wipe off the gunk(No dumping it down any drain though. It's toxic) and put on a few coats of BLO or do a complete refinishing of the wood with tung oil. Depends on whether or not you want a shiny finish or flat. BLO give the flat finish.
     
  15. P5 Guy

    P5 Guy Member

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    I used one of those old trouble lamps with an incandesant bulb. Just hold it a few inches from the stock and watch the oil bubble up from the wood. It'll only be able to do small areas at a time though.
     
  16. byf43

    byf43 Member

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    I've used a combination of methods.

    1. Get a length of PVC pipe large enough (in diameter) to allow the stock to go into.
    Seal ONE end of the pipe with a cap and glue in place.
    Put a screw-on cap on the other. Use teflon tape on the threads, if necessary.

    Carefully lower stock into the PVC pipe.

    Fill pipe with mineral spirits.
    Screw on lid.
    Let sit for two hours, (vertically).
    Every two to four hours, shake the pipe, then turn pipe so that the opposite end is up.

    Repeat for 24 hours.

    Pour out and save old mineral spirits and pour in fresh.
    Repeat for another 24 hours.

    This method will remove a LOT of cosmoline.



    Last process.

    Using acetone (or mineral spirits) get some "Whiting" from Brownell's.
    Make a paste with the acetone (or mineral spirits). Note: Acetone evaporates QUICKLY! It MUST be used in a well-ventilated area, too. (Ask me how I know.)
    Apply liberally to the stock.
    The "Whiting" will turn dark from the residual oils/cosmoline.
    Allow to sit 6 to 8 hours.
    Brush off "Whiting" with a semi-stiff brush.

    Repeat.

    Finally, spray down stock with "Greased Lightning".
    Wipe with a paper towel.

    Refinish stock as you wish.

    Here's my K98k that I refinished as described above:
    byf43Mauser.jpg

    This stock was absolutely black from oil and cosmoline. I was shocked at the way it turned out, and it's not that good of a refinish.
     
  17. esmith

    esmith Member

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    That gun looks good.
     
  18. GRB

    GRB member

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    No, no NO! Never use steam on wood that you intend to preserve, even to remove cosmoline. Water in any form is the enemy of nice wood grain, and fine wood.

    all the best,
    Glenn B
     
  19. RockyMtnTactical

    RockyMtnTactical Member

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    Heat gun, mineral spirits, kerosene...
     
  20. Tully M. Pick

    Tully M. Pick Member

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    Dishwasher.
     
  21. JamesM

    JamesM Member

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    I just put mine in the oven at the lowest setting ~170 F and wipe every ten min. Finish up with some mineral spirits. For the metal, I use a tooth brush and a steamer. Compressed air and mineral spirits also works well.
     
  22. silverlance

    silverlance Member

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    truly, nothing beats wrapping it in paper towels, the putting it in the back seat of a hot car. in the sun. dont forget to take it out before the sun goes down and the oil goes back into the wood.
     
  23. pdowg881

    pdowg881 Member

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    I've used a heat gun with variable temp settings. Worked well.
     
  24. W.E.G.

    W.E.G. Member

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  25. busy_squirrel

    busy_squirrel Member

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    my favorite method is simply extended firing. Put 80 rds down the barrel in 20 min. or so and it'll start coming right out!:neener: Wipe the wood off, and keep firing until it doesn't sweat anymore.:D
     
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