I have a couple of rifles with walnut stocks. At the moment they have just
the 'factory' finish, which looks like a couple of coats of an oil. (I have
contacted the manufacturer to try to discern exactly what oil).
I would like to end up with a high sheen, but not glossy finish, that will
not make the gun slippery to handle, especially if the weather should turn
wet whilst hunting. Are there any of the standard oil based finishes that
somebody (preferably a gun user) would recommend for a finish?
One rifle in particular has a beautiful 'tiger stripe' pattern in the grain,
which I am certain will look fabulous when given several coats of the good
I thought i'd drop by first though and see if anybody has any experiences or
information they would like to share?
I fully agree with Dave and also to check in at rec. guns. Leave those stocks alone
until you determine the rifles' value. Since you have contacted the manufacturer, I
assume it/they is/are still in operation. Who were the manufacturers? U.S. or
foreign? If they are military rifles, I am assuming the present finish is BLO, boiled
linseed oil, but I could be wrong. Any any event, leave those stocks absolutely
untouched until you know much more of the rifles. What are the dates of manufacture?
If military, the dates could be stamped on the top front of the receivers toward the
barrel and just forward of the bolt opening. Tell us what you see there and on the
two sides of the barrels at the rear where they screw into the receiver. Pay
particular attention to ALL of the marks - even the funny looking ones, perhaps in a
weird alphabet. THEY DO MEAN SOMETHING. Perhaps we can help, perhaps not.
Federal licensed Curios & Relics collector
I have a 40 year old 22 semi-automatic that I purchased new with an unfinished
stock. It has the the nicest finish I have ever applied. It's simply Outer's
gun oil. I applied a number of coats over the first month and then wipe the gun
down with gun oil after every use. I believe the saying for an oil finish goes
Once a day for a week.
Once a week for a month.
Once a month for a year.
Once a year for life. (It the case of a gun I recommend once after each use).
Buffalo, NY - USA
(Remove "SPAM" from email address to reply)
week of hunting in the rain finally ended the factory finish (geeze it
only lasted 40 years :) I stripped it including using an old toothbrush
to give a moderate brushing of the checkering. Oiled it over three
weeks with Linseed oil then finished it with Paste wax. It's worked
great so far.
I have an old Springfield .22 that has been in my family since
the 1920s. Each generation has done minor sanding and refinishing
with linseed oil, and that's it. I remember when I first removed
the butt plate (when I was about 15) and found my father's name
on the stock, from when he'd taken it in to his high school
woodshop for some light sanding. This is a gun that has seen
heavy use, much of it banging around lose in a model T, then a
1950s Willy's. It's a very nice tactile finish for a working gun.
You know that that's worth a small fortune, right? Unmodified,
As a shooter, that's great. As a collector, I am cringing. As long
as it's gentle and only with the appropriate oil (sounds like it
is) it's not too bad, though. Fun little guns, aren't they?
The really cool thing is that I have a pair-- I got a second,
matching model at a farm auction about ten years ago for $40. It
wasn't in quite as good condition, but it's a good match.
Oh yeah-- can't think of a much better gun for a kid to learn
with. I know there have been many 1,000s of rounds through our
original and it's still one of the most accurate gun with iron
sights I've ever fired. I'm looking forward to passing it on to
my grandkids (along with that second one now).
They were designed for trainig troops; the cost of .30-06 ammo
was prohibitive, and supplies were tight; the .22 trainers have
the same dimensions, etc as the '03 Springfield used by the US
military at the time. Basic marksmanship can certainly be taught
on a .22 as well or better than a high-power rifle, so it's a sound
If you wanted to drop me an email, I'd be happy to look up serial
numbers or whatever for you, if you want specific info on which
varients you've got.
Mine are old 1906-06 03-A3s from the days when our government felt it
was a good idea to have a well armed and trained population. I bought
them, and ammo, from the DCM (the Pentagon's Director of Civilian
Marksmanship) for $25 each. Admittedly it was many years ago but these
weapons still work as well now as they did then.
I've been at this for long enough to remember boarding an Allegheny
Airlines flight at Logan on my way to the Camp Perry pistol matches
carrying several pistols and about 3,000 rounds of hand loads on board.
The airline and flight crew were well aware of what I had and why I
was carrying it. No problems.
I still have those pistols. If I carried them on a plane today the
Govies would have a fit. What's changed? I haven't and the pistols
Dave Hinz wrote:
Thank you for posting that link. I've been wanting to get my hands on an '03 to
replace one that I foolishly allowed to get away
from me when I was home on boot leave and needed a few dollars. Think I'll pick up a
service grade M1 while I'm at it as a reminder
of my ill-spent youth.
Wichita, KS USA
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