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"Cleaning" a GI stock

This is a discussion on "Cleaning" a GI stock within the Stock forums, part of the Rifle Forum category; I just started stripping down a birch myself. Hit it with 2 simple green scrub downs, an acetone wiping so far. Keep us updated as ...


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Old August 16th, 2016, 04:14 AM   #16
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I just started stripping down a birch myself. Hit it with 2 simple green scrub downs, an acetone wiping so far. Keep us updated as you go. What color are you wanting to finish up with?
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Old August 19th, 2016, 09:25 PM   #17
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Not sure if asking me but will be taking some pics as I go. Not sure on color yet. No real preference yet and just when I think I'm leaning towards a particular tone of stain, another beauty gets shared that looks great in another tone. I'm leaning a little more towards brown than red but maybe a bit of a blend. Will be revisiting threads and methods to see what looks refloat my boat.

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Old August 20th, 2016, 07:30 AM   #18
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I just picked up a birch stock that I'm looking to just clean up some without harming the finish underneath and this thread has been helpful. Keep em coming.

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Old August 20th, 2016, 08:46 AM   #19
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In my opinion...

unless you're looking to get a specific color of stock...STAY AWAY FROM STAINS ! The various oils will bring out the natural figure of the stock and darken it as you apply coats. If you must use a coloring agent use "alkaline dyes" in an alcohol solution...that's the desirable agent for "coloring" fine furniture,,,and it can be "lightened" by wiping with pure alcohol on a rag. After the desired color is reached it is then covered with a protective finish.
Use the oils and avoid all the problems hinted at above. In the Corps in my day we were furnished "linseed oil" for stock maintenance and such. It was rubbed in by hand and the heat generated by the "rubbing" allowed the stuff to penetrate.,,kept the wood from drying out and becoming brittle plus looked ship shape. Boiled linseed oil has drying agents added and is not a real desirable cure for the problem. A little of anything goes a long way...to much will produce a gummy mess...careful !

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Old September 18th, 2016, 03:09 PM   #20
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Anybody for sure on what is BEST to clean this perfect very DARK (near black) walnut Overton stock I just got from CV0Sailor? It is perfect exactly what was looking for without starting from scratch. All I want to do is clean it - if the orig. stain, read finish, got in any way disturbed and/or lightened it would be ruined to me and have to start completely over - what I do not want to do. I want to keep it dark as is. Just clean it. There's alot of references yes, but I gotta make sure I don't screw this up. Mineral spirits work here? I read it does, but some is part of what begins as a stripping process which I'm not doing. Just can't remove any color/finish. Thanks.

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Old September 18th, 2016, 04:52 PM   #21
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I believe anything you are going to use MIGHT take some of the color off. SO to use the lightest cleaner, I would get some LEMON OIL from Home depot or Lowes or ACE. And I would start in the mag well area and try a little bit on a rag or T-shirt and see how much comes off. Than wipe it dry. But than you say it is just the way you want it ?? So why go thru the cleaning process!!

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Old September 28th, 2016, 08:23 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by chief on one View Post
I believe anything you are going to use MIGHT take some of the color off. SO to use the lightest cleaner, I would get some LEMON OIL from Home depot or Lowes or ACE. And I would start in the mag well area and try a little bit on a rag or T-shirt and see how much comes off. Than wipe it dry. But than you say it is just the way you want it ?? So why go thru the cleaning process!!
Thanks Chief. I had some Lemon Oil (Weimans) which we use for the house furniture with type of finish that's rock solid stable. So I used it after reading this. Now, the REASON I wanted to clean it is to even out the the "sheen" dull in some spots lighter in others though certainly nothing close to shiny. On a newly stained or oiled stock that was handled too soon the finish where touched will be duller than the rest of the stock. I don't know that it's dirty, just simply looking to completely maintain the COLOR and evenness of reflected ambient light off it. Started in the mag well and the rag using a clean white rag. What came off pretty much matched the color, but I used it VERY light as to not lift the substrate out of the grain as best I can explain it. Here in n/c Texas the humidity is finally subsiding so it's out there drying. Looks like this lemon oil is doing what I needed it to. Thanks.

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Old September 28th, 2016, 09:21 AM   #23
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I've had pretty good luck with "Krud Kutter" on stocks.

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Old September 28th, 2016, 06:50 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by pdcrig View Post
I recently picked up two GI stocks from a buddy of mine with the intent of bringing them back close to their former glory. One is a tiger strip birch that needs considerable TLC on it's finish. I just stripped it yesterday with the plan of doing some light steel wool and then hitting it with several coats of Tru Oil.

The walnut stock is actually in very good shape and doesn't need quite the attention as the birch. I just want to clean off the age a little and don't feel the need to do any steel wool or refinishing. I just want to clean it and then put some more linseed into it, maybe. What do you guys advise. Would a little acetone be okay? Any advice is appreciated.
Ironic that you asked. I mistakenly used brake cleaner on my M14 GI stock that was oil/grease impregnated. I watched in amazement as the petroleum products and dirt ran off the stock and dried to perfection on what I discovered to be a red walnut stock. Lightly sanded the stock with 800 grit paper to remove any fuzz and wiped it down with a damp cloth and let dry for 24 hrs. I used a light coat of Birchwood Casey's stock sheen to seal. You can add more coats to darken but always followed with a rub down off 0000 steal wool before the final coat. If you want a shiny stock don't do anythings else, for a flatter finish gently rub down the stock with 0000 wool to knock down the sheen.

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Old September 28th, 2016, 10:41 PM   #25
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find a nice big piece of pvc sewer pipe to dunk the stocks in to strip/soak

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Old September 29th, 2016, 01:52 PM   #26
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I have stripped may dozens probably ino the hundreds of surplus stocks and this is the cheapest, fastest, easiest method I have found
Takes maybe 15 minutes for a completetly clean bare stock . Its a really simple ,easy and alot less harsh than other methods
I first take Purple Power degreaser ,not Simple Green , etc, but Purple Power full strength and put it in a spray bottle.

I then spray down the stock with full strength degreaser, immediataly you will see years of grease. oil and dirt start to roll off .I do his in a utility sink but can de done in a bucket etc.

I then take a soft nylon bristle brush and go over the stock.
Rinse very well with hot water while rubbing with brush .
I will usually do procedure one more time except the last time wipe dry with cotton towel.
If stock is very oil soaked it may take another cleaning .
I then let the stock set to dry out of direct heat source.
This is what the wood looks like after drying,and only took 15 minutes of work


I let the stock dry for a day or two before refinishing

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Old September 30th, 2016, 04:33 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mic52 View Post
Thanks Chief. I had some Lemon Oil (Weimans) which we use for the house furniture with type of finish that's rock solid stable. So I used it after reading this. Now, the REASON I wanted to clean it is to even out the the "sheen" dull in some spots lighter in others though certainly nothing close to shiny. On a newly stained or oiled stock that was handled too soon the finish where touched will be duller than the rest of the stock. I don't know that it's dirty, just simply looking to completely maintain the COLOR and evenness of reflected ambient light off it. Started in the mag well and the rag using a clean white rag. What came off pretty much matched the color, but I used it VERY light as to not lift the substrate out of the grain as best I can explain it. Here in n/c Texas the humidity is finally subsiding so it's out there drying. Looks like this lemon oil is doing what I needed it to. Thanks.
If you want to keep the original stain dark like the it came, just soak a rag with acetone and rub it down. I got a beautiful S.E.Overton stock, dark just like TRW stocks are known for and it turned out perfect. No staining required, just a little teak oil and off to Jon Wolfes it went.

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Old January 9th, 2017, 06:44 AM   #28
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I recently purchased an "excellent" birch stock from treeline. It's very dark and looks like it could be cleaned up a bit.(these have been sitting for years from what I've heard) I'm seeing a lot of different suggestions on this thread. I want to bring out the grain and make it look less dirty. Should I soak this in something suggested above or should I just rub pure tung oil into a few times?

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Old January 9th, 2017, 06:51 AM   #29
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I'm certainly no expert, but citrastrip has worked well for me the couple of times I've used it. It's not caustic and don't even need gloves, but it sure removes the old finish. Got it at lowes, I think.

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Old January 9th, 2017, 08:37 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Junkyjunk View Post
I recently purchased an "excellent" birch stock from treeline. It's very dark and looks like it could be cleaned up a bit.(these have been sitting for years from what I've heard) I'm seeing a lot of different suggestions on this thread. I want to bring out the grain and make it look less dirty. Should I soak this in something suggested above or should I just rub pure tung oil into a few times?
If you want to bring out the grain;;;; 1. try to use the method Ren just mention..... if that does not work for you than strip it down using a degreaser like purple power. rinse well with hot water;;;; let dry for a couple of days;;;; steam out the dents;;;; let dry again;;;; light sand start with 150-200 grit;;;;
Remember if you want to stain;; this takes know how!!!!;;;; try to bring out the grain with just some TEAK OIL;;; see what you get;;; Teak oil will darken over time.

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