View Full Version : Stock bending

July 30, 2001, 09:36 AM
Hello Chaps,

Does anyone have any suggestion as to where I could obtain information on hot oil stock bending?

On a related item does anyone have any information on a similar approach for the material used in modern stocks?



July 30, 2001, 08:10 PM
Amazing, a net megasearch yielded nothing...I would call the tech-staff at Brownells and ask which of their books covers the topic. The staff there is usually very well informed about the stuff they sell...

July 30, 2001, 09:22 PM
Hello Romulus,

Thanks for the tip, this is the only item I found from www.woodweb.com:

Bending gun stocks
by Professor Gene Wengert

Do you have any info on the hot oil method of bending gun stocks?

The hot oil method is used to dry gun stocks, but I have never heard of it being used to bend them also. However, to bend a piece of wood, we need to get it hot and wet. So, if you put a gun stock that is wet in hot oil and dried the stock a bit to get it to about 25% MC, it would bend as easy as steam bending.

Professor Gene Wengert is Extension Specialist in Wood Processing at the Department of Forestry, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Click on Wood Doctor Archives to peruse past answers. http://www.woodweb.com/backart/backart-dex/wooddoctor.html

The search continues....



July 30, 2001, 11:14 PM
I found that same exact link, the only active one on the subject...not terribly helpful...Good luck, I'll keep my ears and eyes peeled...

George Stringer
July 31, 2001, 06:51 AM
UK2TX, I saw an article on stockbending just recently however it wasn't a hot oil method but a hot lamp method. It's in the July 2001 issue of American Gunsmith. If your e-mail is available I'll scan it and send it to you. George

George Stringer
July 31, 2001, 06:53 AM
Well it wasn't so e-mail me and I'll send you a copy of the article. George

July 31, 2001, 08:59 AM
Hello George,

I've dropped you an email. Thanks once again for your kind offer.



August 13, 2001, 02:05 PM
Follow up:

Thanks to George for the hot lamp information!

The theory:
Heat the stock for 30min between ( 11" apart ) two 250 watt Red incandescent heat lamps using high boiling point oil as a method of enhancing heat transfer ( applied every 5 minutes ). Apply gradual apply pressure via clamps to bend the stock and continue to heat stock for another 30 mins as before. Leave to cool for several hours before removing clamps. Expect some springback to occur, compensate during the application of pressure.

In practice:
I tried this method on a Remington 870 Express Beech hardwood stock, after the clamps were removed the stock when back to normal with no bend at all, no wonder 870 have the reputation for being indestructable.

I decided, therefore, that additional force was needed so called into play the 20 ton shop press sitting in the corner of the garage.

Repeated the heating, without the oil this time, then gradually applied 20 tons of pressure to the stock, then left to cool overnight.

Next morning, success, the stock now has the cast off that I needed to apply.

I'm assuming that the more direct / localised pressure enabled the wood to deform in the area directly under the ramrod area were as the clamp method attemps to apply the pressure over a larger area. Imaging bending a pencil by holding at both ends, it will flex quite a bit without breaking.

My recommendation would be to apply aluminium tape to the surface of the wood to prevent the the outer most surface from suffering from deformation ( FWIW this technique is used for extreme bending of wood for chair backs ).

I am currently trying to establish a working practice for bending synthetic stocks as I have some concerns about toxic fumes from heating them.



August 31, 2001, 12:39 PM
I have bent many peices of wood although I must admit none were gunstocks. The method that I used was to get the wood to soak up as much WATER as possible usually soaking overnight did the trick. next I rapped a wet rag, usually a wash cloth around or over the area I wanted the bend in. Next applied heat in the form of an iron until steam was produced and the wood was hot and steaming, then applied pressure. The wood will bend to almost any degree you wish. It doesn't take a lot of cooling under pressure to get the desired results. The thickest piece I ever worked with was about 8" wide and almost 3" thick and although it took a while to soak and heat it bent easily.