Mosin–Nagant Stock Restoration Hint

This is a discussion on Mosin–Nagant Stock Restoration Hint within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I hope this does not hack someone off but I thought I would offer a hint anyway. Bought a M91/30 from Buds a few weeks ...

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    Distinguished Member Array Diddle's Avatar
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    Mosin–Nagant Stock Restoration Hint

    I hope this does not hack someone off but I thought I would offer a hint anyway.

    Bought a M91/30 from Buds a few weeks back and decided to refinish the stock. After removing the cosmoline I was still left with a lot of oil that, even through oven heating persisted to leave a mess. Sanding seemed to do nothing more than bring more of the soaked-in stuff to the surface. Baking in the sun did about the same thing as the oven experiment. [I am using a commercial heat cure oven for such applications running at 135/f. FYI] After washing and cleaning things the best I could and letting the stock air dry for a couple of days Here is what we came up with since the other endeavors failed.

    Take the stock and place it in box that will hold the entire stock. Something like 5x5x60 inch box. Pour in about 2 inches of Oil-Dry. Place the stock in the box and finish filling with Oil-Dry while shaking the box occasionally to distribute the Oil-Dry in such a way as to make complete contact with the stock. DO NOT use solvent based floor dryers or cat litter. Oil-Dry is mostly clay and is harmless other than the dust. Let it set for a few days. (I let it set in the box from Friday until today (Tuesday) and sure enough the stock came out dry, dusty and oil / grease free.

    I am not interested in hearing of how I might have mistreated, had little or no regard for weapon history. This simply a hint for those such as myself who want to try to preserve history through giving these old rifles the respect they deserve with the least amount of harm to the original item.

    My best regards,

    Diddle
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    Diddle
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    Distinguished Member Array phreddy's Avatar
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    Why shouldn't one use kitty litter? I have often used the cheap stuff instead of Oil-Dry in my garage.

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    I have also had good results using common cornstarch although it may be a bit messier than Oil-Dry. Just spread the cornstarch on, let it sit in the sun and scrape it off, as it becomes oil soaked.
    When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
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    Quote Originally Posted by phreddy View Post
    Why shouldn't one use kitty litter? I have often used the cheap stuff instead of Oil-Dry in my garage.
    He may be referring to the clumping type rather than the cheap clay type.
    When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
    "Don't forget, incoming fire has the right of way."

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    Distinguished Member Array Diddle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phreddy View Post
    Why shouldn't one use kitty litter? I have often used the cheap stuff instead of Oil-Dry in my garage.
    Here we use the clumping kind. I just figured it would gom things up worse and the clumping verity recommends that the user not breathe the dust which would be left on the stock. Non-clumping I suppose would be fine however. Frankly I am not too well educated in cat litter although we are servants to two felines; One Female and one consultant...
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    It's considered radical by some but gasoline works exceptionally well for removal of cosmoline. A few drenching applications of a rag soaked in de-natured alcohol also pulls the remainder of any oils out of a wood stock.

    I've not investigated this yet for historical correctness but have discussed the Mosin Nagant with a fellow who sets up at the regional guns shows I regularly attend. He's specialized in peddling Mosin Nagants of all variations for several years now. He says the Mosin Nagant rifles we've all seen imported in large quantity don't appear as they did in World War II. According to him, the stocks are "incorrect" anyway with their slick, shiny finish. Seems the Russians refinished the stocks this way during arsenal overhaul of the rifles. He says a simple oil finish, resulting in a darker stock, more closely mimics the Mosin Nagant during the time it was the primary issue infantry rifle.

    I like the notion of a darker, oil-finished stock and am not too keen on the shiny varnished stocks we see on these rifles. There's one around here and I've threatened to strip its stock and redo it with raw linseed oil just to see the results.
    “No possible rapidity of fire can atone for habitual carelessness of aim with the first shot.”

    Theodore Roosevelt, The Wilderness Hunter, 1893

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    Member Array Wolfiesden's Avatar
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    Honestly should someone care, especially if it isn't their gun? If you are working on one for some re-enactment or museum piece, then yea, you should care if its period accurate. Otherwise if its a daily shooter, clean it and varnish it how you wish. As long as its safe to operate and shoots good, do whatever. There are about 100 of these for every man, woman and child in the US. They all don't need to be museum pieces.
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    Distinguished Member Array chuckusaret's Avatar
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    I have redone several 91/30's, stocks and all metal parts, and have caught flack from members of gun forums for doing so. First of all the majority of 91/30's will never become a true collectors item IMO, but there are exceptions, there are literally millions in America and millions stored in Russia. In my immediate family alone we have at least 10 at any given time. Second, it is my property and I can do as I see fit with it. Third, it is very satisfying to take a $60 beater and transform it into a like new weapon.

    Number produced between 1891 and 1965; 37,000,000
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    Member Array Wolfiesden's Avatar
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    Wish I could find one for $60 ;)
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    Distinguished Member Array chuckusaret's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolfiesden View Post
    Wish I could find one for $60 ;)
    Actually it was $59.95 + $3.60 tax they can still be found in the $125 range in my area.
    US Army 1953-1977

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    Distinguished Member Array Diddle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bmcgilvray View Post
    I like the notion of a darker, oil-finished stock and am not too keen on the shiny varnished stocks we see on these rifles.
    I agree. When this on is completed it will simply have walnut stain, tru-oil and a single coat of stock sheen. The final finish is very close to the original shellac finish but with a more defined grain pattern.

    I have read a number of articles on accurizing these rifles to reduce this, that and the other. To bed or not to bed. Harmonic issues, adding shim stock and the list goes on and on. This is well well out of the scope of anything I would be interested in doing. I'll leave that up to the next owner.

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    What is historically correct would be what the Russians would have done with the 1 million plus Mosins' they had in storage waiting for WW III. Most likey they would have done anything to get them to be functional and would not care about the history of a weapon
    Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”
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    Too bad you didn't post this in late December or early January. Would have helped me out when I "STRIPPED AND REFINISHED MY (beat to heck) TYPE 53" (yelling to make sure the busybodies hear me).

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    my tip get a CPVC plumbing pipe from the Home Depot or Menards, Fleet farm What ever. The large one I am not sure it is either 4" or 5" make it long enough for your wood stock to fit in. Install a cap on both sides and there is your "box". There is a chemical that you can add to water. ( not sure the name but I will pass it on if I find it again). You can fill the tube with water the stock and chemical, then let sit for 24 hours dump out dirty mixture and replace with clean water and chemical. repeat another 24 hours. remove the stock rinse and allow to air dry for a few days. You can sand and oil the stock as desired. You can steam out the dents when the stock is wet. It will look like brand new.
    I did this to my 303 Enfield ( too bad it does not shoot as well as it looks) The Nagant would look amazing when finished. I don't see any problem with the oil dry but the water and chem treatment is for very stained oiley wood.
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    Distinguished Member Array chuckusaret's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrBuckwheat View Post
    my tip get a CPVC plumbing pipe from the Home Depot or Menards, Fleet farm What ever. The large one I am not sure it is either 4" or 5" make it long enough for your wood stock to fit in. Install a cap on both sides and there is your "box".................................
    I use a similar setup to soak the barrels of my 91/30's in hot soapy (Web detergent) water after a day at the range and then cleaned as normal after they are wiped down an blow dried.
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