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Stock refinishing thread: BLO vs PTO vs Tung Oil Finish

Discussion in 'Military Surplus' started by coolhandluke, Jan 26, 2016.

  1. gfercaks33

    gfercaks33 Sharpshooter

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    Are you telling me it's a bad thing if I chop up a mosin stock and dye it a funky color and add railing to it???
     
  2. Catt57

    Catt57 Gill-Gun Guru

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    Not so much if Bubba got to it first. If it's still in its original finish, yeah, kinda.... At least that's my opinion.
     
  3. gfercaks33

    gfercaks33 Sharpshooter

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    Yup if it's already been tampered with go for it. My other thought on it is this, I'll use a car analogy you can have an all original 69 camaro that has holes rusted out and is blowing smoke out of the tail pipes or you could have the same car that you fix the rust, paint it and rebuild the engine, is it all original no but it's still a beautiful classic.
     
  4. crrcboatz

    crrcboatz Sharpshooter

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    I owned 24 mosins as of a yr ago. I sold 14 of them at the Wannamaker . That said if you own a mosin nagant in any form its just like any other firearm, it is yours. Do what you want with it. Purists think they have a duty to society, ie, controlling others to think like they do, about these old rifles. All but 2 of mine were never changed in any way. Does that give me the right to chastise others to pamper these old things? No not in my eyes. Hey do what you want with that rifle it is yours.
     
  5. Baus302

    Baus302 Marksman

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    I've had good results using BLO. I humbly submit two examples:

    Garands.jpg
     
  6. magna19

    magna19 Sharpshooter

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    The last 8 weeks or so this Rem 581 stock has seen a few coats of BLO. It is dry and may get one more.
    20160221_213110.jpg
    20160221_213128.jpg
     
  7. milsurp2.0

    milsurp2.0 Sharpshooter

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    Just don't expect your rifle to be worth as much or more than an unmolested example.
     
  8. Sanford

    Sanford Sharpshooter

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    Raw Linseed Oil, anyone? It's what we used to wipe down M1 and M14 stocks years ago. Doesn't dry as quickly as BLO (or what they sell as it these days) but doesn't contain the nasties they do either.
     
  9. jbrentd

    jbrentd Sharpshooter

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    @coolhandluke or others,

    What would you recommend for this M28 I recently picked up? A previous owner went to town on it and I'd like to make it look like a Finnish should. Or would you leave it be?

    [​IMG]
     
  10. coolhandluke

    coolhandluke Sharpshooter

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    @jbrentd....the following is borrowed from one of my previous posts in another thread. It will likely be the best course of action, but you might do some research on Gunboards for additional info before tackling the project. I believe that the correct finish that was applied to the M28's would have been a stain followed by an oil finish that included varnish in the mixture. Because of the varnish in the mixture, it will be difficult to exactly replicate the appearance when just using pine tar, turpentine, and linseed oil. You might try applying a few different test mixtures with linseed oil and varnish on birch samples until you find one that looks most correct. Below is more info on the pine tar finish which I would suggest applying prior to your oil finish. I would be willing to attempt refurbing the stock for you, but it would likely take a few weeks to complete.

    Let me preface this post by stating that I am not sure whether or not that pine tar can be considered a correct finish, only that it provides a close appearance to the product that Finns originally used. The only documented Finnish stock finish that I am aware of is Kiväärintukkiöljy which is a dark stock oil comprised mainly of tung oil, varnish, and drying agents. The use of pine tar has been debated for decades. I have personally only encountered one Finnish rifle that had what looked (and smelled) to be copious amounts of wood pitch applied to stock. It was covered in preservative grease and included a hang tag so I doubt that it had been applied after import. All other rifles that I have encountered looked to have Kiväärintukkiöljy or another oil finish applied. Some of which had a stain applied prior to applying the oil finish. Many collectors will say that the use of pine tar is just a myth. The Finns used a few different variations stock finishes over the course of the Mosin Nagant's service life so it is probably difficult to say "never" based on the lack of documented evidence here in the states. The recipe was likely altered a few times based on the different appearances throughout and even within model designations.

    Hopefully this how-to will help someone come close to restoring the original appearance of a Finn stock that has been refinished here in the states.

    Here's today's patient...hopefully the photos are acceptable. I chose to be lazy and used my cell phone instead of my Nikon.

    [​IMG]


    Materials needed: Pine tar (Auson Swedish Pine Tar works best) and pure turpentine. You'll also need a small container to mix the two ingredients in as well as a brush to apply it. Gloves will also come in handy too.

    [​IMG]


    Mix a small amount of pine tar and turpentine...equal parts if you are wanting a drier, matte appearance similar to most M39's and post-war refurbs. If you are looking for a higher sheen you will need to apply straight pine tar and allow for it to fully cure, then scrub the hardened pine tar with a 3M non-scratch pad dipped in turpentine. This will remove the excess tar, scrub the finish into the wood, and burnish the surface as well. If you decide to apply straight pine tar it is usually a 2 week process to allow the tar to cure and then finish the scrubbing process. In my case, I mixed the pine tar at a 75/25 ratio with turpentine and did not allow the tar to harden.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    After coating the wood, place it somewhere safe in the sun to bake. It helps drastically if the temps are at least 90 degrees. An alternate heat source (like a heat gun) will work, but it takes a ton of work.

    [​IMG]


    After you have allowed the pine tar to sit on the wood for an extended period of time (this handguard sat in the sun for 8 hours), wipe (or scrub) down the wood with turpentine. You should see results similar to those in the photo below (no stains or oils have been applied...only pine tar and turpentine).

    [​IMG]



    After allowing at least 48 hours to dry you may stain or apply oil if needed. I would recommend staining with an alcohol based stain after applying the pine tar if you are trying to match an existing piece of wood. If you stain first you will likely end up with darker wood that has little contrast in the figured areas. The handguard shown in the photos below has been lightly toned with RIT brown dye since the spliced forend on the rifle was slighly darker than the rest of the stock. It then received a coating of pure dark tung oil. After the previous coat has fully cured, I will likely add an additional coat of pine tar.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2016

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