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Old January 23, 2011, 04:26 PM   #1
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Stock Material - Persimmon?

I many high grade stocks are made from walnut. Just a thought but could Persimmon be used? I know high end golf clubs used to be made from it. I have two large persimmon trees that were downed about 3 months ago and the idea struck me. I have an uncle that has all the wood working equipment to rip a few blanks. Just curious on any thoughts. Thanks.

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Old January 23, 2011, 04:29 PM   #2
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Nearly any wood could be used....dried/processed properly..

... just a matter of how durable they would be and/or how well they would finish/sand
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Old January 23, 2011, 04:36 PM   #3
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My grandmother has a Black Walnut in her front yard. I wish the right storm would come along!
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Old January 23, 2011, 06:09 PM   #4
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Just about every wood has been tried. Most are not suitable for gun stocks. Most are too soft, or too heavy, too hard to work. There have been a couple of exceptions...Screw Bean Mesquite was used some years ago.
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Old January 23, 2011, 07:27 PM   #5
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Persimmon wood is very pretty, but I don't think I would use it in a rifle stock. It's hard and dense, but it does tend to crack if subjected to sharp impacts on a regular basis (this was a regular problem with those old golf clubs you mentioned).

With a golf club, this means part of the head left on the grass, or maybe flying downrange a short way. I'm not sure I'd like to be around when it gave way around the recoil lugs of a rifle.
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Old January 23, 2011, 09:53 PM   #6
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Any fruit wood has the potential for being a good stock wood. I have seen persimmon wood, it is reddish wood beautifully streaked with brown, and would make a very attractive stock. That said, making a stock blank from a tree is no easy feat, involving debarking and sealing the log, drying the wood for several years, quarter-sawing the log, and carving the stock after sawing. You could just as easily buy seasoned wood from a wood wholesaler and be time and money ahead, but if you feel you have the skills and the patience, by all means give it a try. I have seen very nice gunstocks made from apple, mulberry, almond, pecan, hickory, cherry, you name it.

The main reason most gunstocks are made from walnut is that walnut has just about perfect qualities for stockmaking: it is strong and dense without being overly heavy; it is hard without being brittle or checking easily during working and yet cuts very easily; it is flexible and strong without being too limber. Walnut is pretty much the perfect wood for gunstocks, and furniture makers like it for the same reasons. Another reason is that large orchards of walnut trees are grown commercially for the nuts, and they are harvested at about 50-75 years old as nut production declines, and new trees are planted. This makes good quality walnut lumber common enough for industrial use.
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Old January 23, 2011, 10:19 PM   #7
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Great summary Scorch. I once tried to age a very nice piece of walnut myself, only to see it crack and split after 3 years. Still made a very pretty knife sheath, but not the fancy stock I was hoping for.
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Old January 24, 2011, 07:52 PM   #8
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Couldn't tell ya if it would make a good stock or not, but I bet if you bite it while its still green you'll only do it once! (Just a little persimmon humor for ya). I've never seen persimmon sawed lengthwise. If you do, I wouldn't mind seeing pics. Might make some nice revolver grips if nothing else.
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Old January 24, 2011, 10:15 PM   #9
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I've screwed up and done that more than one time. Better be careful pickin them up and eatin them right after a windy storm too. But all I've seen is golf clubs. A guy I use to work with worked for ATCO timber company and he told me persimmon was used for decorative trim on coffins as well as golf clubs. Kinda freaky.
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Old January 24, 2011, 10:30 PM   #10
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Nearly any wood could be used....dried/processed properly..
Dry Hickory or Jatoba (aka "Brazilian Cherry") any way you want: if you make a gunstock out of them, they'll split. If you take "process" process to mean turn it into a laminate ........ then maybe ..........

Walnut works because it is resilient ..... it is relatively stable (for wood) with temp and humidity changes .... it's grain is interlocked, so resists splitting...... It is easily shaped and is beautiful when finished.
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Old January 31, 2011, 02:08 AM   #11
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Jerry Clower /use for Persimmons

Ole JerryClower uses to say that Persimmons were the cure for baldness.

Just grow a good thick set of mutton chop sideburns.

Then rub some green Persimmon juice on the top of your head...

Now it won't grow new hair....but

It will draw them sideburns right top your head
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Old January 31, 2011, 09:39 AM   #12
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I believe the persimmon would work for a rifle or shotgun stock. But it would be heavy. I don't think you would like it but it will work.
Better suited for pistol grips.
If you plan to use those trees, get off ground quickly. There is a wood borer that loves persimmon, it won't last long on the ground.
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