M14 Forum banner
1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,761 Posts
Comments

Please see answers embedded below in Red.

M1Army


All - I have a few specific questions on 2 projects: 1 is a USGI and 1 is a Dupage purchased unfinished. I have read, and re-read I think each post on the above subject by "M1Army" and "Doug Carlson", corresponded some with them. However, since these questions below may be of interest to others I make this thread.

Both stocks clean, finish-free before I did anything else.

USGI Stock - The USGI "steam ironed" numerous times to raise as many bumps and dings as possible. I lost patience with steaming each dent individually, and whether best practice or not, I just steamed the entire stock several times. I was pleased with the results.

After it dried I sanded to 320, and then I wet sanded it 3-4 times at 320 with Teak Oil, allowing it to stay on the stock for over night (first application), and the 2-4 applications for a couple of hours, before I wiped it off with clean, lint free rag thoroughly. Grain was filled. Then I wet sanded with Teak Oil at 400 (2-3 applications), 600 (2-3 applications), and 800 (3 applications). Based on my readings on the forum, I intend to apply a mixture of Stew Mac alcohol based dyes next, and then wet sanding 2-3 times at 1000, etc., etc. up to 2000 or 2500.

Dupage Stock - Sanded to 400, then TransTint alcohol based dye (ebony) applied, then PTO (15+) hand rubbed in applications. Stock felt great but was an ugly, muddy mess to look at: blackish, but not a "pretty" ebony, etc. I abandoned it for a couple of years even. I came back to it and wet-sanded with Teak Oil starting at 320 (3 -4 times), then progressively finer grit (3-4 times each), and next will be 1000 grit to wet sand . . . up to 2000 - 2500.

To my very pleasant surprise, the teak oil drew out a lot of the black-dyed mess, revealing soft browns from the walnut underneath. It has started to look really nice! (at least so much better than it did before).

To my questions:

M1Army - assuming you are doing a presentation type finish since you are filling the grain of the stock, I have outlined answers to your question below in Red (based on a lot of experience).

Question 1: When wet sanding (after grain is filled), how much time needs to elapse before wiping off the excess? Minutes? Hours? Until it "feels" cured? (They feel "cured" within a few hours. I've usually waited 24 hours for the next application, but sometimes only 10-12 hours). I wipe off the excess teak oil immediately. You just want to wipe it lightly so you have consistent coverage over the stock. I recommend letting it dry for 24 hours before you start your next progression. Also, in this process you should apply a thin coat of Teak oil to the entire stock before you begin wet sanding. Don't just dip your sand paper in the teak oil and start wet sanding on the dry stock.

Question 2: When wet sanding at the progressive grits, how much sanding should be done, how much pressure, how vigorous, etc.? Is it just enough to smooth any imperfections in the last "layer" / "application of Teak Oil? Think of the progressive wet sanding as a very, very light sanding. You need to learn to have a very soft touch. When going from 800 to 1000 the grit is so fine you can learn to feel just a slight drag when you start wet sanding and the paper will slide smooth when you are done [but is a very soft process]. You are really not sanding at this point you are gently moving the paper around. The sanding for imperfections should have been done during your dry sanding at 150, 220 and 320 [I refer to this as the tactical sanding phase] - everything after that is not really hard sanding or removing wood.

Question 3: When I apply the Stew Mac dye, I presume I want to start light and increase it isn't quite what I want? Or, since the Teak Oil is going to remove some of the dye, should I apply a little heavier? Or? I do not stain the stocks at all until I have finished wet sanding at 1000 grit. If you add the stain early you loose too much color as you work up the wet sanding progression. The beauty of alcohol based stain as you can add it late in the process [e.g. at 1000 grit] then you will retain most of the color up to 2000 if you do your wet sanding with a light hand.
If you need more color add it after 1500 etc.


Thank you for your consideration in reviewing the above and contributing what insight you may have.

JGW
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,761 Posts
M1Army - Will multiple "wet sandings" at 1000, then multiple at incrementally finer grit, lay down more and more "layers" of the Teak Oil to provide increasingly "deep" appearing finish?

In other words, will 2, 3, 4, 5 "wet sandings" at 1000; then 2, 3, 4, 5 "wet sandings" at 1200; then . . . . [continue pattern] . . . provide incrementally deeper" finish? Or, is one layer / one wet sanding at each grit the same as multiple wet sandings / multiple teak oil apps at each grit level?

JGW
I always start out my answers by saying there are many was to refinish stocks and get excellent results. The methods I use which many were shared with me by Doug Carlton and that I have added and tweaked over the years deliver consistent beautiful results.

The method you describe above is not something I have done as part of my process. I do not believe continuing to add teak oil at 1000 and above for multiple applications as you have described will provide any additional benefit.

After completing my dry tactical sanding on a stock [150, 220 and 320] I use the stocks own sawdust to fill the grain. I let that dry overnight and then begin my teak oil wet sanding progression from 325 - 2000 next.

So I start wet sanding at 320, then 400, 600, 800, 1000, 1200, 1500 and 2000. So by the time I reach 2000 I have added 9 coats of teak oil including the teak oil coat added when I fill the grain after dry sanding. Adding more / multiple costs at the higher grit will likely just result in losing stain color without any material benefit. After my final coat at 2000 I let the stock dry 2 full days then buff the stock and wax the stock.

Below find just a few examples of completed stocks using the process [but I have done several hundred stocks] using the process. With all of this said as I stated in the beginning no single process is correct. I think both Doug Carlton and I would say that refinishing stocks requires a lot of trial and error then you eventually settle in on the process that works best for you. If adding multiple coats of teak oil at the higher grits provides you with a specific benefit then work that into your process. Again this process is for the presentation grade type finish as shown below. I have a different process when I refinish and want to keep more of a military open grain finish!

Here are a few examples - that include the process using Stew Mac stains. You can go my M1Army Albums to see many more examples.

Hope this helps:




Another:




And my prized Big Red Winchester


 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,761 Posts
Well, I decided to essentially "start over" on the USGI stock. I didn't think I was going to end up where I wanted, so I used PP, then mineral spirits to remove the existing Teak Oil and dye, then went back to 220, then Teak Oil; 320, then Teak Oil, etc. I liked the look so much better than with the dye, I'm not going to use dye this time. I am going to progress up through 2000 grit, then buff and wax.

Two things learned:

(1) Doug Carlson and M1Army are absolutely correct that with a teak oil finish (and in my experience a pure tung oil finish as well), if you mess it up, it's easy to start over / fix.

(2) My Granddad was right when he said: "If a barn needs painting, then paint it. If it doesn't, then leave it alone! (he said that in relation to women and make up!). As it applies here, this stock doesn't need any more color or different color to be pleasing to my eyes.

JGW
We all look forward to seeing the finished stock JGW....

JWG - not trying to hijack your thread, but I thought everyone might enjoy this progression of pictures as it basically ties to what you are tying to explain -> [I have shown this on many of my refinish posts] but since we have some interest this might help everyone understand the progression. this is a really nice Birch TRW stock. My disclaimer again - there are hundreds of ways to refinish stocks and this is not the only way and I do not know it all, but this pictorial may help you follow this specific process.

After refinishing so many stocks over the years I can generally look at the stock after stripping it with Soy Gel and getting the first few coats of teak oil on the stock what type of plan I have for that specific stock in terms of staining / color. Generally speaking the staining we are discussing relates to birch stocks. However, even with a plan you might get into the refinish and the stock will dictate the direction you ultimately take. After finishing hundreds of stocks you begin to see certain attributes and you move along and make adjustments on the fly.

As far as walnut stocks I generally do not want to stain walnut unless the stock has a lot of Sap Wood and has light and dark areas. When I get a stock like that I often use a mix of tobacco brown and mahogany [I call it my "Walnut Helper"] and will stain the stock so it has a nice uniform color.

Like I have mentioned so many times before I have had a lot of "Failures" in the earlier years, but those failures taught important lessons that I retained on future refinishes.


Here is the starting point:



Next - using Soy Gel and to strip 60 years of crud off of the stock



Next - after removing the Soy Gel with a warm water bath and spraying down with de-greaser you have a Birch Stock stripped to the bare wood.....



Next - comes the "Tactical Sanding Phase" as I call it [Dry Sanding - generally use 150, 220 & finish with 320]- where I removed some of the "sins of the past" and ensure the stock has the sharp lines that an M14 stock should have. You may get a stock that has some damage or that has been sanded poorly in the past. This process corrects those problems. I would say this is one of the hardest steps to do well and can only be mastered with a lot of practice. You tend to know each stock manufacturer and the classic lines of the M14 stock. When a stock has been rounded off in certain areas due to poor sanding it is just ugly...




Next - after filling the grain with the stocks own sawdust, I begin working up the teak oil wet sanding progression. I generally begin by adding a thin coat of teak oil over the entire stock then work up the progression from 320 to 2000. You apply the teak oil, gently wet sand and then take your 2x2 cotton folded up lint free rag and wipe the stock down. You need to let the stock dry overnight, then repeat to the next grit. This is what the stock looks like after wet sanding with teak oil [Still NO Stain at this point]. To follow the entire process you need about 2 weeks and you need patience. Many are not willing to take the required amount of time to use this method as you are talking about 9 days to work up the wet sanding progression.



Next after reaching and finishing the 1000 grit wet sanding it is time to lay down the stain. I only use Stew Mac Alcohol Based Stain - this is a mixture of tobacco brown and vintage amber. A few pics after adding the stain to the stock then wet sanding at 1200. After adding the stain you need a VERY soft sanding hand to wet sand. You apply a thin coat of teak oil over the entire stock then apply very little pressure when you wet sand or you will loose color. You can see the stock has taken on some color. When the stock dries it will have a bit of a dull look [but don't worry].




Lastly - after working up to 2000 and doing the final wet sanding you allow the stock to dry two days then take it to the buffer and that is when you will see the reward of all your had work. I buff the stock and then hand wax [3-5 coats] with Renaissance Wax then do one more final buffing. This is the final Product / Reward!


 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,761 Posts
While I don't have the experience Wes has, I would like to give one piece of advice. Where most go wrong when refinishing a 50 plus year old stock is over sanding. It is easy to tell the difference between a professional restoration job vs an amateur, you will find it every time in a stock that has been over sanded. All the edges which should be sharp will look rounded over, it is the tail tail sign, so be careful when sanding and go slow because once the wood is gone its gone forever!

REN GI2
Ren - is exactly correct regarding the sanding of a stock and like I mentioned above properly sanding is really a skill that takes a long time to master.

If you want to see an example of a stock that was poorly sanded take a look at the link below - Go To Post #23. This is a relatively rare National Match Stock that I restored. Post #23 will show the results of a BAD sanding job and you will see how I was able to correct those sins.....

https://m14forum.com/stock/471448-restoration-h-sacks-son-s-stamped-7791174-done-2.html

M1Army
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,761 Posts
So I didn't take my stock all the way down to 150, only 400, and I didn't apply oil in this raw state, I went from 600-1000 alternating dry and wet, with water, then, added teak, so as it I, I have put my initial coat down with a surface prep of 1000 grit, then I decided on the new round to wet sand with teak oil at 600 in hopes to great slurs, which I also dont think is goin on.its currently on it 2nd application of teal oil, and tomorrow will be wet sanded at 800. Should I just start over?
When I refer to wet sanding I am referring to the process shown below which only refers to the use of teak oil (never water). And you start with teak oil when you have the stock sanded and prepped regardless of what your starting point is - 320, 400, 600 etc. Regardless of where you start and stop I.e. You started with 600 and went to 1000 but you need to put 7-8 coats of teak oil on even if you use the same grit when you get to your final grit e.g. 1000, 1500 2000 etc. just keep repeating the process until you get 7-8 coats on.

Here is the process and if you follow my outline in the full posting you should be fine. Sometimes you have to start over - Trust me I made a lot of mistakes and the only way to learn is trial and error. It is a labor of love to do it right.

Next - after filling the grain with the stocks own sawdust, I begin working up the teak oil wet sanding progression. I generally begin by adding a thin coat of teak oil over the entire stock then work up the progression from 320 to 2000"(in my orginal post this was 1000, but I meant 2000). You apply the teak oil, gently wet sand and then take your 2x2 cotton folded up lint free rag and wipe the stock down. You need to let the stock dry overnight, then repeat to the next grit. This is what the stock looks like after wet sanding with teak oil [Still NO Stain at this point]. To follow the entire process you need about 2 weeks and you need patience. Many are not willing to take the required amount of time to use this method as you are talking about 9 days to work up the wet sanding progression.
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top