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Old 01-18-2004, 03:27 PM
97cowboy

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Refinishing a checkered stock



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I just read the thread on refinishing a stock. Great information but no one mentioned how to handle the checkering. My buddy just tapes it up and works around it. The checkering doesn't have the same finish then. Can anyone tell me an alternative process. I would like to refinish the stock on a firearm that has a hard glossy finish and roll checkering. Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 01-18-2004, 05:28 PM
rsv1mos
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I have refinished many stocks successfully but never one that was checkered. Were I to, I would use a paint/varnish remover working it into the checkering with a tooth brush, applying as many coats as necessary until the stain/varnish was removed, then spray off with a high pressure hose to get the excess out of the checking. Dry with towels out of the sun and when fully dry, a couple of days, lightly sand and apply a combo stain/varnish (minwax/formbys) to the whole stock blotting the checkering with cheese cloth until I achievied the desired finish. Then after screwing up a perfectly good stock, I would contact someone that actually knew what to do. Story of my life
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Old 01-18-2004, 08:06 PM
Frank
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I've only refinished a couple of stocks and taken a few others from semi inlet to finished. Just to let you know of my previous experience. That said, I would carefully sand off the old finish being careful not to ding up the checkering and invest in a single line checkering tool to fit what is on your stock. Use the tool to touch up the points as well as knock off most if not all of the old finish in the checkering. My personal preference is a sanded in tung oil finish which takes numerous coats as well as patience between coats. Obviously you don't sand in the finish on the checkering, just apply multiple coats of the thinned tung oil to the checkering with a rag or tooth brush until the sheen matches the rest of the stock. I've read of using strippers with water rinse off, but cannot convince myself to apply water to unfinished wood on a stock. Most stocks have dried for upwards of 8-10 years in order to stabilize, and once you apply a sealer coat of whatever finish you use, you trap any moisture that is left into the stock. It just seems like a better idea to sand off the original finish (I didn't say it was fun or quick) in order to maintain the integrity of the stock. Good luck and have fun, it's a great winter project.
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Old 01-18-2004, 10:40 PM
Yorman

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I started refinishing a stock this weekend. I stripped with a paint stripper and wiped up the residue using rags and laquer thinner. To clean the residue left in the checkering (cut, not rolled) I used laquer thinner and the type brush provided in a military AR cleaning kit. The long bristles were stiff enough to clean most areas and the short bristles were plenty stiff to clean out the built up areas. It took multiple applications and scrubbings to get the checkering to clean up to my expectations. Water and wood leads to whiskering or worse, I wouldn't even think of washing a quality gunstock. To apply the oil in the checkering I used a toothbrush and worked in the direction of the cuts. Looks great so far. Good Luck!
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Old 01-19-2004, 07:12 AM
rsv1mos
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I wouldn't be too concerned about rinsing off a stock with water, most hardwoods tolerate it well as they have inherent oils that prevent intrusion. Key is to dry the stock well with a towel and dry away from the sun. Done it for years on many many stocks with no negative affects. There are those that advocate the "dishwasher" method though, a little too extreme for me.
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  #6  
Old 01-19-2004, 08:07 AM
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97cowboy,
only problem I see is its roller checkering, it typically refinishes darker than cut checkering. Franks idea might be the only one that works well, I'm not sure (never done an impressed checkering stock). I use as agressive a stripper as I can find, clean the checkering with a very soft bristle brass brush(plastic ones dissolve too fast). Afterwards I rinse with multiple washings of solvent (acetone, or laquer thinner, then alcohol) then water baths. Now I carefully mask the checkering with multiple coats of tape, trimmed carefully with a hobby knife. Once dry and taped I remove the whiskers with 1500 grit wet dry, used wet (water). Now I use a mixture of turpentine and boiled linseed oil (50/50) and soak the stock. After a half hour or so I wipe off the excess and allow to dry for a week, hard wiping with a lint free cloth every 24 hrs. Next I wet sand with 1500 grit soaked with strait boiled linseed oil, this fills the pores well. Once the surface is level, you can surface finish to the sheen you desire. Next remove the tape gently, and a single or two drops of oil will usually do the checkering panels worked with a fine/soft bristle toothbrush.
The turpentine mix makes the linseed penetrate further, and darken the wood a bit, you don't want over penetration in the checkering, hence the undiluted oil.
The resulting color match and finish are incredible.
Take care,
warren
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Old 01-20-2004, 01:16 AM
97cowboy

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Thanks for all the great tips everyone. Now I just have to get busy and try them out.
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