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Refinishing a Refinished Stock

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gene of oregon View Drop Down
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    Posted: Oct 14 2016 at 12:51am
Just curious how many here will refinish a stock on a new carbine you've picked up with pretty much all correct parts but stock has been sanded and refinished with a high gloss. Personally I don't like the high gloss and prefer the pure raw linseed oil look. Now if it had the original linseed finish I'd leave it alone but sense it's been refinished I don't feel it's taking anything away from originality or value??
   
    Or leave it alone find another correct stock refinish it, mark and store original??
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Charles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 14 2016 at 9:04am
I know there are those that wouldn't change a thing on a nearly perfect M1 carbine and those, including me who would like to restore it to it's war worn condition. I would strip the varnish off if that is what is on it and restore the oil finish but leave any signs of wear.
But I would wait and see what others have to say.
Charles
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SWANEEDMB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 14 2016 at 1:22pm
I recently picked up an IBM, was all proper parts but the stock did have a refinish, thanks to whoever  had done it did not sand very hard, all markings were still there, I just removed the varnish and did a BLO, came out quite nicely. Will do some pic posting of it when we can get some GOOD pic's of it. Was a bring home from WW11 so I've been told, am trying to get more info from the family which it came from.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote m1a1fan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 14 2016 at 7:53pm
I've had grand plans for a while now to treat a stock.  Have all the tools, RLO, directions, etc..., but still haven't done it.  I've not a fan of the shiny finish either.  Maybe someday....
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Charles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 14 2016 at 8:14pm
Hello Ted, When you decide to strip the finish, may I suggest a water soluble stripper. It is non toxic, non flammable and much easier to use.  You don't need to neutralize it with solvent, just water. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote m1a1fan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 14 2016 at 8:24pm
Will do Charles.  Thanks for the input.  Need to find some old junk stocks to practice on first.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote New2brass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 14 2016 at 9:17pm
Water is the enemy of the stock. Water raises the grain. Raised grain will blend out the markings.
A good eye can pick out a stock that has been stripped and refinished by the grain.

With that. The original finish was raw linseed oil. Same as flax seed.

RLO slowly evaporates over time. Adding more brings it back to life.

If you have a dirty original stock you can clean it with RLO. Use a piece of cheese cloth or old jeans. The dirt will just flush off.

Boiled linseed oil has modifiers which make it dry on surface. Leaves a shine.
BLO does not touch up like RLO does.

If a rebuilt stock like the OP states i would try rubbing alcohol to knock it down. If not working then try acetone. This will dissolve most finishes.
You can then follow up with RLO.

Rub on creating slight heat from friction. Can also slightly warm the oil. This helps it penetrate wood. Let sit few minutes, wipe and let dry overnight.
Repeat for several days.
Then once a week for a month.

Some will do once a month, then once a year.

You will be amazed how it does not build up like other finishes.

I stop after it reaches "that look"

Just my humble opinion.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Charles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 14 2016 at 9:54pm
Once you have striped the wood, the best way to prepare walnut for refinishing is to dampen the wood with water, then pass a pro pain torch quickly over it careful not to scorch the wood. This will raise the "whiskers only, not any of the markings " then lightly sand them off with 220 sand paper and repeat until no more "whiskers"appear. This may take several times.  If the stock needs staining you must prep the stock first. Mix a pint of turpentine and a table spoon of linseed oil, wipe on a very lite coat  and let dry. This will ensure an even stain coat. If you don't feel comfortable doing this, practice on scrap piece of walnut.
I've have been doing this for about 40 years.
Good luck,
Charlie
 
Charles
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gene of oregon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 16 2016 at 12:25pm
Dan   I'm also a RLO fan. Has a natural finish and very low shine. I use the citrus stripper (water soluble stripper) which works well for me but you need to watch it around markings especially faint cartouche markings. I just finished a handguard I bought from cali201, looks great. When I get back home I'll post a few pic's
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Charles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 22 2018 at 1:31pm
If you can it, the best and easiest stain to use is made by Behlen, usually sold at professional paint stores. 
Charles
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Charles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 15 2018 at 9:29am
It's amazing what a good scrubbing with the right products will do for a carbine stock. I  remembered a product called Paraffin Oil we used in my cabinet shop to clean up an old finish before respraying a clear lacquer finish. 
Before I started, I could barely see the makers stamp and cross cannons. A vigorous scrubbing with the Paraffin Oil and very fine (triple O) steel wool,wipe and let dry over night.
The first coat of BLO made the stamps jump out like never before. I was truly amazed. The stock never looked better. Still has all of the character as before.
Charles
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BER911 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 15 2018 at 3:10pm
Very timely post Charles.
 
I am in the process of cleaning my Carbine stocks.  I just started the SA "pot belly" that was on my Rock-Ola.
 
I first gave the wood on the stock and hand guard a good cleaning with diluted Simple Green and a regular Scotch-Brite pad.  I diluted the Simple Green 50/50 with warm water.  Poured the solution into a spray bottle and sprayed down the stock and hand guard.  I let it sit about 5 minutes and then gently rubbed the surface of the wood with the scotch-brite pad.  I then dried the wood with a clean towel.
 
Some folks say to do this cleaning process a second time, but my stock was not that dirty, so it only needed one cleaning.  After drying with a towel, I let the wood dry for about an hour.  Since I did not use any straight water on the wood, there was no need to sand because "whiskers" did not appear on the wood's surface.
 
I next wiped the stock and hand guard with a light coat of RLO.  I rubbed the wood surface with a small clean cotton rag that I dipped in RLO.  I let it sit for about 10 minutes and then rubbed the RLO into the wood using my bare hands.
 
I will let the RLO continue to soak into the wood and dry for a minimum of 24 hours.  I will then apply a second coat of RLO.  After the second coat dries, I will determine if it needs a third coat.
 
I can already tell the "cleaned" stock is going to look great.
Semper Fi, Bruce
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Charles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 15 2018 at 3:52pm
Many ways to skin a cat. What ever works, the end results are what counts and it sounds like you have a winner Bruce.
Charles
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BER911 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 15 2018 at 4:36pm
Originally posted by Charles Charles wrote:

Many ways to skin a cat. What ever works, the end results are what counts and it sounds like you have a winner Bruce.
 
Thanks Charles, but as you said, it's just one of many good methods to clean up our stocks.
 
I may have to use a water-based stripper on my Bavarian NPM stock.  It has that shellac-like finish that the Austrians applied.  I doubt Simple Green will get it off, but I will give it a try.
 
Semper Fi, Bruce
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote New2brass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 15 2018 at 5:22pm
Originally posted by BER911 BER911 wrote:

I may have to use a water-based stripper on my Bavarian NPM stock.  It has that shellac-like finish that the Austrians applied.  I doubt Simple Green will get it off, but I will give it a try.
 
 
The finish on the Bavarians is part of the carbine history, why would you want to remove the finish and history?
 
Originally posted by BER911 BER911 wrote:

  After drying with a towel, I let the wood dry for about an hour.  Since I did not use any straight water on the wood, there was no need to sand because "whiskers" did not appear on the wood's surface.
 
I next wiped the stock and hand guard with a light coat of RLO. 
 
I would suggest to wait a few days for the stock to dry, you may be sealing in the moisture.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BER911 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 15 2018 at 5:32pm
Dan,

The finish on the Bavarian has two drip runs in the sling cutout.  The finish has also worn off in a couple spots, down to the wood.  I defer to your judgement about preserving the history an Austrian Carbine. Glad I spoke up; every now and then I need a slap to the side of my head! ;)

The stock I cleaned this morning did not get any plain water on the surface; just what was mixed with the Simple Green.  I'll wait and let it dry longer when I do the Rock-Ola stock I bought a couple months ago.

Thanks for the tips.
Semper Fi, Bruce
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote New2brass Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 15 2018 at 7:00pm
Drips can be cleaned with a sharp chisel, then buffed.
With Bavarians you need to take it on a case by case basis. There are those that are just how the Bavarian/Austrians received them that they put their touches on.
then there are those which came home in pieces and assembled to make complete carbines.
If the latter there is really no harm done.
If it is an otherwise correct carbine with a upgrade or two but has expected parts (including transfers) I would leave alone.
 
A great many Bavarian returns were stripped of the good parts to assemble "Corrected" carbines or people tried to correct them. A number of years back the marked recoil plates could be found cheap and guys would grind, buff and park. Yeesh.
 
Bottom line it is your carbine and do what you wish. I just feel compelled to urge caution at times.
 
Oh, by the way, Simple greens number one ingredient is water.
It has listed used such as cleaning kitchen cabinets. But you are using it to remove finish?
I guess its emulsifiers will loosen the RLO and lift it off. Might not work on other finishes for removal
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BER911 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov 15 2018 at 9:34pm
I am fairly confident my Bavarian is correct.  My carbine was returned by the Austrians to the US Army; it is not known the actual date of this transfer but my guess is it occurred in the 1990's.  The US Army then transferred it to the CMP in 2008.  It was then sold by the CMP in 2009. I bought the Bavarian from the gentleman that had bought it from the CMP in 2009.  When I received it last summer, it was still in the padded cardboard box the CMP had used in in the 2009 sale.  It had not been altered or changed during the last 9 years.

I will take your advice to "urge caution".  My Bavarian is correct and has a fairly well documented past.  It is worth preserving that history.  I will not refinish the stock.

Semper Fi, Bruce
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Timothy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 02 2022 at 9:26pm
my Austrian carbine has a somewhat shiny finish (varnish) as well; definitely not original GI oil.
This thread makes it sound like the gloss is its Austrian history and maybe I should leave well enough alone . However it is a bit tacky/sticky to the touch which I don't like the feel of. Maybe the finish is degrading? Any thoughts on how to get rid of the tackiness?

I can see some wonderful tigerstriping hiding just below the finish. Would be nice to bring it out

I am an experienced woodworker; this ‘feel’ reminds me of a varnish applied over an oil before it has had a chance to cure.

T R
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Charles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Aug 28 2022 at 11:44am
Nothing to do with carbines but I found another supplier to the war effort .
I have a pare of navy issued binoculars my dad brought back stamped  "Product of the SQUARE D COMPANY. For those of you who are not electricians, SQARE D manufactured among other things, outlet boxes. Interesting..
Charles
Co B 1st Batl.115 Inf. Reg.
29th. Divi.
4.2 Heavy Mortar Co Retired
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