View Full Version : Tung oil and stock refinishing experts

December 7, 2010, 07:49 PM
I am refinishing the stock on my son's M1 Garand as a surprise Christmas present for him. Since he is in the Air Force, he won't get to see this until he gets home for Christmas.

Now the questions:
I am using 100% pure Tung oil and according to directions, I put the first coat on with 50% mineral spirits and hand rubbed it in for several minutes. I let it sit for 15-20 minutes and then wiped off the excess. 24 hours later, I put the second coat on at 100% and followed the same directions. So, it then says I can apply additional coats without specifying whether subsequent coats should be wiped off. I don't want the glossy, store bought rifle look, trying instead for a semi-authentic GI look of semi-gloss or matte look.

Can anyone out there tell me if subsequent coats should be wiped off after sitting? Also, how many coats does the average restorer put on?


December 7, 2010, 10:04 PM
All coats must be wiped off. The idea is to build up many extremely thin layers. Pure tung oil can sometimes take a very long time to dry so go slow.

December 8, 2010, 08:22 AM
Thank you. Currently doing third coat with 1-2 days between coats. I will let it dry for a week or so and then add some wax to the stock.

December 8, 2010, 09:38 AM
What you are doing is OK but seems unnecessarily tedious to me.
I have used one coat of pure and that was it. 35 years later still looks fine. If you want to de-shiny the finish just rub with 0000 (four aught) steel wool.

December 8, 2010, 10:54 AM
Once a day for a week,,,
Once a week for a month,,,
Once a month for a year,,,
Once a year for life.

Now this always seemed to be rather convenient to me,,,
Nothing really works out that nicely.

Having said that my Poppa is a professional cabinet maker,,,
His retirement is making rustic furniture from driftwood,,,
On the rare occasion when he uses an oil-base finish,,,
He does the once a day for a week thing.

And yes you always wipe the excess before doing the new coat.