Stock finishing with Tru Oil.

Boosh

Well-Known Member
Hi guys, beginner stock maker here finishing the labour intensive job of creating my first rifle stock out of a laminate block ( grey plywood 😁) that I started in the first lockdown, when I thought the time in the garage would last forever, Doh! 🙄
Finishing with Tru Oil as it seems like the easiest of products to finish with.
Just applied the third coat tonight.
First coat on Sunday, on a hunch I mixed a little thinners into it and thinly applied with my finger and sanded it in with P 600 and finally wiped it over again with my digit. It did the job, as you can imagine it showed up a few spots that needed a little more work with the sandpaper.
Second coat yesterday after the stock had been knocked back again with the P600. This time I tried just neat Tru Oil. Think I f**ked up this as the temp was 25 degrees and it just tackied up in no time. Way too thick of a coat with fingerprints and lines all over the place, as you can imagine, it had taken a good 24 hrs to cure enough for sanding, and a lot of it, probably 2-3 hrs today.
Third coat tonight, again went with a thinned down mix, went on nice and light, and starting to build up a little shine in spots, and all missed or void areas are filling in.
Question now, should I continue using a thinned down mix and Knocking it back with the P600 or should I be looking at applying full undiluted coats for the final finish, and if so is there an ideal temp for doing so.
Sorry for the essay, and thanks for reading.
Boosh.
 

GrahamK998

Well-Known Member
Hi Boosh, I've refinished a few target rifles with Tru-Oil as it gives them a hardier finish than linseed or walnut oil that I use on guns with better looking wood.

I tend to apply it sparingly, and allow at least 72 hours between coats. Whilst I will thin natural oils for the first coat or two with Tru-Oil I've just used it neet.

Whenever I start to apply any oil I tend to only use wire wool (0000) to rub down between coats.

Enjoy your new obsession :)
BR G
 

Boosh

Well-Known Member
72 hrs, it's starting to make sense now!
Need some steel wool I reckon as time goes by.
 

kripton

Well-Known Member
I use True oil now that Purdey's Warthog oil (Slackham) is no longer available.
Before using any oil I wet the stock (warm water) to raise the grain and sand back with 600 then 800 grade wet and dry. I then use grain filler before sanding with 1000 grade wet and dry and finally with 1500 wet and dry. I do not use wire wool (although I know that most professional stockers use it) as I find that some very fine bits of wire can sometimes break off into the pores of the wood.
I then use Trade Secret Rapid oil neat but very sparsely (just a dip on one finger) and repeat the process until it no longer soaks in. Once it no longer soaks in I continue the Rapid Oil applications but when it has become tacky, I rub it off with Trade Secret TS-95 oil. using the palm of my hand to create some heat. Repeat this process until you have achieved the finish you require and (very important) never be impatient - it does take time (I reckon it takes me 3 or 4 months to oil a stock satisfactorily.
 

kripton

Well-Known Member
My apologies - I referred to True oil but meant Rapid Oil - totally off the subject (and my head no doubt). Having said this I have used True oil in the past and used similar procedures - a good friend (gunsmith and stocker who served his time with Wesley Richards I think) uses True oil and produces excellent results rubbing down with Rottenstone. I have always used pumice powder.
 

Steff

Well-Known Member
Like Graham said, allow ample time to dry before knocking it down and applying the next coat. I also use steel wool and neat TrueOil.
BTW you don't need to get the finish perfect on you last coat. I use car polish to do that. This will clear away any streaks.
 

Heym SR20

Well-Known Member
Time is the best stock finisher. Let each coat really harden before next coat. Once you have applied a few coats you will get a sort of layering / varnish like quality on the surface.

You now need to be brave, and take fine paper or wire wool and all that surface finish off. Take it back to the wood. Look carefully and you should see all the pores completely filled. What you now have is a really good finish that is in the wood.

Leave it to harden for another few days. Then take a car polishing cloth and polish it - you will find a good finish starts to come through. Then add a drop or two of oil and polish it within your hands. And leave it for a few days. And polish it again - and repeat. I move to a yellow duster for these final polishes and oils.

A good oil finish takes time. Its not a lot of work, just time. Tru oil type oils do harden faster, but it does take time. And think 10 to 20 thin coats rather than three or four thick ones.
 

Boosh

Well-Known Member
Thanks Heym, I guessed it may take that many coats, will have to let it garden a few days before each one I reckon.👍
 

Boosh

Well-Known Member
Right, just a follow up and findings now I'm 9 coats of Tru Oil in.👍

Been knocking back with 600 grit paper after each coat but come to the conclusion I am pretty much taking nearly as much off as I am putting on, so before the 9th coat tonight i just used fine steel wool and it was much easier.

Tried varying methods of applying, fingers, pad in a lint free cloth, section of sponge cloth but fingers has worked the best for me.

Had tried wiping down with thinners on kitchen roll, but does not seem necessary, and the following coat goes on better after just a good dusting down with a microfiber cleaning cloth.

Temperature when applying coats has made a big difference, I have left it on average 48 hrs between coats, in the 25c temps we have had here it is real easy to leave lines from fingers which is no big deal until the final coat, but it would be nice to perfect it before then. The 18c tonight made it far easy to work the Tru oil with enough time before tacking up.

Last point, with multiple coats you learn how to handle the stock each time, allowing a better chance of even coverage worked just the right time. My stock is suspended at chest height on a piece of para cord through the stock screw holes which is working out good.

Right, enough for now, see you all in another 10 coats time at the end of the month!👍
 

Steff

Well-Known Member
Right, just a follow up and findings now I'm 9 coats of Tru Oil in.👍

Been knocking back with 600 grit paper after each coat but come to the conclusion I am pretty much taking nearly as much off as I am putting on, so before the 9th coat tonight i just used fine steel wool and it was much easier.

Tried varying methods of applying, fingers, pad in a lint free cloth, section of sponge cloth but fingers has worked the best for me.

Had tried wiping down with thinners on kitchen roll, but does not seem necessary, and the following coat goes on better after just a good dusting down with a microfiber cleaning cloth.

Temperature when applying coats has made a big difference, I have left it on average 48 hrs between coats, in the 25c temps we have had here it is real easy to leave lines from fingers which is no big deal until the final coat, but it would be nice to perfect it before then. The 18c tonight made it far easy to work the Tru oil with enough time before tacking up.

Last point, with multiple coats you learn how to handle the stock each time, allowing a better chance of even coverage worked just the right time. My stock is suspended at chest height on a piece of para cord through the stock screw holes which is working out good.

Right, enough for now, see you all in another 10 coats time at the end of the month!👍
Don‘t worry about your finger lines. When you are done polish the stock with auto polish. This will give it its final even shine.
 
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