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Old December 7, 2010, 07:49 PM   #1
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Tung oil and stock refinishing experts

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?

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Old December 7, 2010, 10:04 PM   #2
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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.
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Old December 8, 2010, 08:22 AM   #3
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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.
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Old December 8, 2010, 09:38 AM   #4
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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.
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Old December 8, 2010, 10:54 AM   #5
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The old timers used this formula,,,

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.

Caje: The coward dies a thousand times, the brave only once.
Kirby: That's about all it takes, ain't it?
Combat: "A Silent Cry"
Aarond is good,,, Aarond is wise,,, Always trust Aarond! (most of the time)
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