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Old August 15, 2008, 01:01 PM   #1
10-96
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M1A Wood

Does anyone know about the finish on the NM M1A factory wood finish? I'm not in a high humidity area, but the question just won't go away. Is that wood sealed or just stained? I went ahead with my base coat of teak oil and six rubbed in coats of tung oil. The stock looks great- but did I goober up, waste time, or actually do something productive? I know the GI's before me used BLO and tung oil on Krags, Garands, and M14's and I kinda figger it was done for something besides looks. Am I right or wrong?

Walt, are you back from Camp Perry and settled in yet?
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Old August 15, 2008, 01:16 PM   #2
30Cal
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All the ones I've seen straight out of the box look like their simply stained with no further effort. What you've done sounds great. If you wanted it to be super durable, use polyurethane (I don't like that look though--I go with tung oil).

It's not a bad idea to put two coats of poly under the buttplate and on the inside of the stock. Thats how mine is set up and it ran flawlessly at the M1A match at Camp Perry last year when we had to use snorkels during the prone stages.
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Old August 15, 2008, 01:47 PM   #3
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I don't remember what made me do it, but four years ago I got to playing with a drying puddle of tung oil and one thing led to another. I ended up putting tung/teak oil together on a glass slide and after it dried- I was flat-out amazed at the hardness and flexability of the stuff. I took it to a relative who is a chemical guru for Connoco-Phillips and he played with it for a while and finally got back to me and said that it really ought to be a winning combination. What I don't know yet, is how long the finish will last and stand up before turning brittle or clouding.

For the bonding, after I put on the teak, I let it cure until it's tacky- then rub in a generous coat of tung. This will need at least 48hrs to dry (cure) instead of 24, then I rub in additional coats of tung til it looks right to me with 1 coat per day for three days then one coat per week for three weeks. Oh, and I did hit it with a light rubdown of 0000 steel wool between coats. I flunked chemistry with flying colors 20+ yrs ago, I wouldn't know a polymerization if one bit me on the leg, and I may be way off base in my assumptions- but it seems to work well for me. Yeah, it takes a long time but I'm limited in my hobbies anyhow and the looks are worth it.
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Rednecks... Keeping the woods critter-free since March 2, 1836. (TX Independence Day)

I'm going to use the words "clip" and "Long Colt" every chance I get. It grinds my gears to see new members attacked when we all know dang good and well what's being refered to.
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Old August 15, 2008, 09:04 PM   #4
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According to the military publication I have on it, it is linseed oil that is used.
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Old August 16, 2008, 12:15 AM   #5
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Yeah, Linseed oil, or BLO is what I remember reading about them using up until somebody found a cheaper and greater supply of Tung oil.

I know I could've gone with polyurethane or tru-oil and saved a hineyload of time- but there's just something that calls to me to give the rifles a little extra time and sweat.
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I'm going to use the words "clip" and "Long Colt" every chance I get. It grinds my gears to see new members attacked when we all know dang good and well what's being refered to.
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