world war 2 rifle stock refinish

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Project by pallystu posted 01-02-2014 03:39 PM 3443 views 0 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a old rifle that I got for my 18th birthday this year. It was made in 1943 and the stock was well beyond worn out. The pics with out the old pizza box i worked on are of the stock before it was refinished. First I striped the old shellac finish with 60 grit sandpaper and sanded it up to 220 grit sandpaper making sure not to remove all the scratches from the wood. I was going for a nice looking clean finish but have the rifle still show a little age. After it was sanded I used Varathane pre-stain and some Cabernet wood stain made by Varathane followed by Formby’s Tung oil finish. I did 4 coats of the tung oil finish rubbing it down with 0000 steel wool between coats. when it was dry I buffed the finish with 0000 steel wool with minwax furniture wax. The finish came out about how well i wanted it to but after the Tung oil most of the red came out of the stain. Im not quite sure why it did that but I still like the color of it although i think it could of came out a little more red and even. This is really my first post on here and really one the first wood working projects iv done.

-- take your time

11 comments so far

View johnstoneb's profile


3167 posts in 3188 days

#1 posted 01-02-2014 05:37 PM

The original finish was Boiled Linseed Oil. Good chioce going back with tung oil.
It looks good.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View Knothead62's profile


2600 posts in 3977 days

#2 posted 01-02-2014 11:51 PM

You might have checked with a collector first. Refinishing an old firearm can decrease its value. However, good choice on the finish. I have used Birchwood-Casey Tru-Oil for firearms and other woodworking projects.

View pallystu's profile


75 posts in 2624 days

#3 posted 01-03-2014 09:32 PM

Knothead62 thank you for your post. I know that refinishing a rifle decreases value but this is a Mosin Nagant m91/30 and has no value since hundreds of millions where produced. I know some models are collectible but mine is not rare in the least bit. I made sure to make sure that mine was not a collectible piece.

-- take your time

View pallystu's profile


75 posts in 2624 days

#4 posted 01-03-2014 09:34 PM

also thanks for the tip on birchwood-caseys product I will keep it in mind if i redo any more modern firearms.

-- take your time

View Don W's profile

Don W

19899 posts in 3583 days

#5 posted 01-03-2014 10:06 PM

Nice refinish.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View pallystu's profile


75 posts in 2624 days

#6 posted 01-04-2014 01:40 AM

thank you don it was a needed boost in self-esteem :)

-- take your time

View mustang6tee8's profile


15 posts in 3068 days

#7 posted 01-04-2014 02:56 AM

Clean job! I’m still debating on refinishing my Swiss K31.

View pallystu's profile


75 posts in 2624 days

#8 posted 01-04-2014 07:05 PM

man idk about the k31 I have NO experience with them what so ever….strange looking firearm that is :) thank you for your post!

-- take your time

View tefinn's profile


1222 posts in 3453 days

#9 posted 01-05-2014 02:52 AM

Nice job on the refinish. A little info about the stain pulling out, for whatever reason, reds like Cabernet, Red Mahogany, etc. don’t set very well in the wood. If you rub oil or brush water based finishes on them they bleed or pull from the wood. Even brushing oil/solvent based finishes will pull some out onto the brush (one reason why you should never work right from the can of finish). It’s best to spray an oil/solvent finish over them.

-- Tom Finnigan - Measures? We don't need no stinking measures! - Hmm, maybe thats why my project pieces don't fit.

View pallystu's profile


75 posts in 2624 days

#10 posted 01-05-2014 07:16 PM

Thanks tefinn! I have all ways had problems with the dark red stain pulling up and never really new why. I did some more research into it and some people have said that the particles of red pigment are larger and don’t cling into the wood as good. I don’t know if that’s true or not but it would explain my problems lol. I really need to get my spray gun out when the weathers better and try my hand at spraying varnish.

-- take your time

View hoss12992's profile


4178 posts in 2909 days

#11 posted 01-06-2014 12:33 AM

Great job

-- The Old Rednek Workshop

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