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MadTripper
10-26-2007, 01:53 PM
Anyone build their own gun stocks? I love working with wood and have found a good project for the winter months. At least I think it will be a good project.

I'd like to design and build my own rifle stock. I have found that most stocks are either man made materials or walnut. I'd like to make one from black locust, ash, or perhaps maple. Any thoughts on this would be great and if all goes well, a nice "how to" could be put together for future reference.

Thanks again!

Tripper

Mac_Muz
10-26-2007, 07:46 PM
Maple, Paper Birch and Beech are sound and stable woods.. I don't think you will like black locust, ash, and oak because the grain is way to open IMO.

You would have the option to use a grain filler on these last 3 woods..

Other woods that also work and well are apple and pear.

I have built flinter 2 rifles , one flinter pistol, and some smooth bores, mostly in walnut, but some rock maple and currently am re-building a stock for a belguin Blunderbuss.

Some of the above I have almost made every part of by hand including lock parts.

MadTripper
10-27-2007, 08:42 AM
We have plenty of those woods around my area. I had originally thought of ash because of its use in baseball bats. I figured it would handle recoil about as good as any wood. I have a real passion for locust because its plenty here and is quite possibly the hardest wood I know of. Sure there are some others across the world however I can walk about 50 feet and get locust. I also think it has a beautiful color in its natural form. Of course it is a bear to work with so this probably wouldn't be a great starter not to mention I'd rather not have to use a bunch of filler.

Beech sounds like it could be neat. The way the grain goes this way and that could really provide a great look. Maybe I'll try that for starters.

I was going to scout for deer a little this weekend however with the constant rain, they are all tucked under the hemlocks somewhere. When I do make it out, I'll keep an eye out for raw wood as well.

In the mauser post, you mentioned a lug in the stock. I'm not clear as to what you mean but perhaps when I get time to disassemble the rifle, it will be more clear.

Tripper

DM
10-27-2007, 09:45 AM
I've built several stocks, and have done a lot of stock alterations for customers, when i had my gunshop... There's no need to reinvent the wheel, walnut was picked for most stocks because it's "lighter" and still will handle heavy recoil. That is, if you pick a decent piece of walnut in the first place...

Another thing about walnut, it takes inletting and checkering much better too...

DM

Mac_Muz
10-27-2007, 11:55 AM
You can see the lug... I wish my K-98 was still my K-98 so I could just look.. You may see a round flat washer like metal part on both sides of the forearm. It might have 2 small holes opposite each other, where a tool tightens and loosens it to be removed/ installed..

You have all these woods more or less local? That causes me to wonder some. And Hemlock too.. hmmm

Black Locust will grow here in NH, but it was brought here. So it isn't common.

A wild guess says you are in central Md and or west Pa.

close ???

All of these woods would work, but Black Locust is heavy and dense, and doesn't really cut with out fuzzies well. You will have added weight, but you sure won't need to worry about rot in this life time or the next.. Around here there are fence posts made of this wood, and it is said it will out last granite..

It burns hotter than blue blazes, but it sucks in open fires, as blue hot coals go ripping off, and that's a bad thing when you live in a tee pee. Don't ask how I know.

Making a stock of this will be the devils own work.

Ash is similar in the cutting to get fuzzies, and just look at a bat and all that open grain! Yikes! This could rot if left outside, which it wouldn't be as a gun stock..

Beech is what wood plane bases were once made of and it a tight dence heavy wood with out much character.. Ya lost me on that one..

Walnut is the easiest to deal with abd cuts well, leaving a shiney edge where the cutters were usually so long as you cut with the grain. It is considered a light wood and as anyone knows works and well...

Oh! Probably the wood on the gun now is Euro Beech, so you can see that with no problem at all. Very stable but boring.

Maple can be boring to the worst nightmare you ever worked. It can be birdseyed, tiger striped which is tuff to get all leveled.. it is stable too, but a tad heavy, as are fruit woods. Cherry is damn fine though. Nice reds can be interesting.. I commonly use that for end plugs in powda horns straight from the wood pile.

I make a similar type of salt, pepper and rum container, and i swear cherry will change the taste of whiskey to a better flavor if the whiskey is left in the run horn long enough.. not that it does much.

I guess there is not much chance you will gnaw off any stock very soon is there?

MadTripper
10-27-2007, 12:40 PM
You are quite close as a matter of fact. *I live in the N.E. corner of Pa. *About 20 minutes from the NY state border, Susquehanna county to be precise.

Aye aye on the lug as well, I now understand what you mean.

I mentioned the beech because it is one of my favorites to burn however splitting can be a major pain because of the grain patterns. *It seems like the grain will take a 90 degree turn for no apparent reason.

We have soft and hard maples. *My guitar is made from tiger maple which is gorgeous however I don't know of any in my area.

We use locust for fence in our area as well, especially if it is a swampy area and they last well over 40 years. *I also love to burn locust but it is better worked with when green. *I have actually seen sparks shoot of my saw when cutting seasoned locust.

Cherry is around as well. *I have a few trees on my property but they aren't ready to be harvested. *I'm sure I can get some however as there are plenty in neighboring woods.

How about black birch? *I burned some last year however if it isn't seasoned right, it puts out a ton of creosote. *The kind that drips out of every crack and seam it can find. The grain was nice in it and it seemed quite light when seasoned.

Of course I can always fall back on Black Walnut which is around here as well. *Not as much as it was but I know of some.

Mac_Muz
10-27-2007, 05:28 PM
You can try to use black birch, but I wouldn't be surprised to find large flaws as pitch pockets in it.

Working live trees isn't really that great an idea as the wood won't be stable for a long time.. like years..

I won't try to stop you though.

There is no such tree as tiger maple. usually this comes are red maple or sugar maple. Rock maple is just another name for red maple.

I am not going to say wind has anything to do with the striping effects, but it might. If a tree has it it will be low near the root ball, and can extend into useable wood at the root ball.

This isn't just for maple, as I have seen pine, oak,ash, and Hickory with this feature/flaw of nature.

I have a hunk of grand canyon pine here now I collected on a motor bike trip. I wanted a lousey set of scale grips on a blade the next time I make any, as a sort of souvenier of going there. I wish it was a hard wood, but so far as i can tell there isn't any out there.

If the plan is take a tree get busy as this is the season to find one. Dig down spme and use some old nasty chain on a saw to drop the tree.

Look hard at the bark as that will show you what the wood might look like better.

You need to imagine what you see contains a gun stock, and perhaps having the gun will help.

If you get lucky you will find a tree that has the rioght bend, and the tree with be large enough that you can use sap wood and not get into heart wood, or you can use heart wood and not be into sap wood.

Then cutting much larger than the gun stock cut away as much as possible and linseed oil it some wicked hard for 3 weeks every day, placing the wood under cover from any weather including a sunny window! Breeze would be good and light is fine, but no sun.

After that you can make little cuts in the wood a little at a time to speed drying.

If you go too fast you will get checking, warping and odd bends. I need not tell you, that that won't work.


My take is dough is tight.. me too... besides you can have a project that will be your way and i respect that.

anytime you cut the wood oil again, no way should this wood dry too fast... If it does you wasted the time and have no more than kindling for the labor.

You might look around as ruff stock makers usually have some on hand for lower dough, ready dried maybe 7 years time. PA and W.Va are full of guys like that doing BP guns.

I think in PA there is a BP shop that has stocks in the ruff. I will have to collect my brains, and see if I can come up with the name of the place.

AlchemyAcres
10-27-2007, 07:03 PM
My guitar is made from tiger maple which is gorgeous however I don't know of any in my area.


There's tiger (fiddleback) maple around here, but only a very small percentage, maybe one percent, of red maple logs have some tiger figuring.
You can spot the curl in debarked logs.

I've never carved a gunstock...but I've carved lots of wind turbine blades, recently with the aid of a "copycarver".
Saves a lota time. The "art" is in the finish work anyway. :)

http://www.copycarver.com/


~Martin ;)

Mac_Muz
10-27-2007, 08:12 PM
AA, If you look harder you can spot the figure on the bark, before the tree is felled..

AlchemyAcres
10-27-2007, 08:55 PM
AA, If you look harder you can spot the figure on the bark, before the tree is felled..


Yeah, that's true, but you can't get a very good idea of the 'grade' . usability and suitability by just looking at the bark.



~Martin

Mac_Muz
10-28-2007, 07:36 PM
Well it beats dropping every tree for miles to find nothing..

MadTripper
10-28-2007, 08:33 PM
Well I'll just consider myself lucky to stumble on some tiger maple.

I'm going to keep my eyes open while cutting wood this fall for something that sticks out. I have access to a huge supply of trees that have been limbed and stacked ready for firewood. I just have to cut and split it and pay $15 a facecord. Best of all, its less than a mile from my house.

So, I'll snap some photos if I see anything special.


Tripper

DM
10-28-2007, 10:48 PM
Well I'll just consider myself lucky to stumble on some tiger maple. *
I'm going to keep my eyes open while cutting wood this fall for something that sticks out. *I have access to a huge supply of trees that have been limbed and stacked ready for firewood. *I just have to cut and split it and pay $15 a facecord. *Best of all, its less than a mile from my house. *
So, I'll snap some photos if I see anything special.
Tripper

And once you find the tree you like, then you can saw it down and cut out your stock "blank". (make sure the grain is laid out properly, and it's big enough for the intended use) Once that's done, and you find a "proper" place to store the "blank" for drying, you only have to wait a few years before it's dried to a low enough moisture content to start your gunstock!

DM

MadTripper
10-29-2007, 09:36 AM
I have a local place where I can get it kiln dried as needed.

DM
10-29-2007, 10:28 AM
That will speed things up a lot, i assume the kiln runs wood of this size in their kiln regularly? You have to run lumber of about the same size and species in a kiln to get quality lumber out. No big deal at all, if they do this all the time, as they will know what they are doing...

Personally i always prefered air dried blanks, and i do still have quite a few around, even though i no longer make stocks...

BTW, be sure you seal the ends of the blank with anchorseal ASAP. You can also use candle wax if you don't want to buy anchorseal, it works just as good.

Some try to use paint, but it doesn't work nearly as well as wax!

DM

farmboy
10-30-2007, 01:22 PM
I always did want to make something out of black locust because of the color. It does seem to have intertwined grain though and looks tough to work. All I ever made was firewood and fenceposts out of it.

How about ironwood? (hornbeam)


farmboy

MadTripper
10-30-2007, 02:25 PM
I was just talking to a friend about ironwood. There isn't as many around as their used to be. He told me about a large tree in a cemetary not far from here. Not that I'm planning on taking it down but they usually stay small and die out any more. I remember playing around them as a child and they were like rock. The bark resembled beech but looked like it covered wooden muscles. That is supposed to burn well also.

Here is some locust I pulled out of the wood pile and planed down a couple years ago. I keep it next to my desk trying to find a use for it. I thought about making some wooden spoons with it but haven't come up with anything else.

http://www.madtripper.com/gallery/v/Various/Nature-Shots/locust.jpg.html

http://www.madtripper.com/gallery/v/Various/Nature-Shots/locust2+001.jpg.html

Tripper

Mac_Muz
10-31-2007, 08:02 PM
What is the term face cord? new one to me, and it isn't used in NH, or if it is I have never heard it.

In a kiln see if they deal with oiled wood... If not cut the wood far longer and wider than you need.. You must not get checking in the stock part.

No hops I ever saw was large enough for a rifle stock, perhaps these here are smaller. These rot fast, no sooner then dead. Harder than hell alive and make great but heay mauls to drive wood chisels with.

I have never heard of anyone using "Shad" the first trees in spring to bloom at waters edge, and have no idea if you have these. The wood is very hard and these too are used to make mauls. The wood fresh cut is purple! As it dries it reddens..

DM is pointing to how important that a natural bend in the wood grain is at the wrist... I agree.

MadTripper
10-31-2007, 09:00 PM
A face cord is about a pickup full however there is a technical definition. Whatever the length of your wood chunks are, usually around 16 to 20 inches, by 4 feet high, by 8 feet long. So if you had 24 inch pieces, a face cord would be half of a true cord.

I'm not sure what you mean by "hops". We have hops here but they grow on vines for beer.

As far as the bend for the grip is concerned, would a branch be the ideal piece? I guess I'm just trying to picture a large piece of wood that would have the right grain pattern. I learned from an old timer years ago that any wood you use for projects needs to have the heart split to help prevent checking and twisting. He recommended finding some large chunks and split them in fours. This way there is little chance it cracks as it dries.

Tripper

AlchemyAcres
10-31-2007, 10:23 PM
I'm not sure what you mean by "hops".

hops=hophornbeam=ironwood

No hops I ever saw was large enough for a rifle stock, perhaps these here are smaller. These rot fast, no sooner then dead. Harder than hell alive and make great but heay mauls to drive wood chisels with.


I've seen good ones 12 to 14 inches dbh around here....some knarly specimens even bigger.

I learned from an old timer years ago that any wood you use for projects needs to have the heart split to help prevent checking and twisting. He recommended finding some large chunks and split them in fours. This way there is little chance it cracks as it dries.


Also called quarter sawing.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quarter_Sawing

You'll get a lot more from a log if you use a froe and split out smaller pieces, depending on exactly what you're doing and the diameter of the log.
I split out the blanks for my wooden spoons, etc. that way.

~Martin :)

DM
11-01-2007, 09:00 PM
A branch makes very poor stockwood...

Around here we also have "ironwood", but it's really Blue Beech...

DM

Mac_Muz
11-01-2007, 09:58 PM
AA, Has bigger hops hornbeam than I do. In NH they grow in low laying areas near water, but not with wet feet exactly, but close..

Most of these are no bigger in diameter than 8 inches at best.. These are good for handles on mauls with steel heads, and or make good wood chisel mauls simply lathed to shape.

I am un-aware of any big enough for a gun stock, but if AA says he knows better I would trust that.

So a face cord is stove wood 4 feet high, by 8 feet long, by what ever the stove can burn, as a single row.

2 rows the same at 16" would be 2/3rd a cord here. 3 rows at 16 would be a cord.

When I was in Arkansas I heard a term Ric/Rick?? I am not sure the spelling at all, and don't know what that means either. Anyone know?

AlchemyAcres
11-01-2007, 10:12 PM
When I was in Arkansas I heard a term Ric/Rick?? I am not sure the spelling at all, and don't know what that means either. Anyone know?

Generally a rick means a face cord..and around here, usually a face cord is 1/3 of a cord...4'X8'X16"...but certainly not always....and "face cord" isn't a formally accepted term of measurement...since the width can very tremendously.....
I sell firewood and the 'rulers' :-X have ruled that I must technically call a face cord 1/3 of a cord..or they'll freak-out, (choke on their coffee while setting at their desks pretending to be truly important ::) while I'm out here bustin' my ass)...doesn't matter how the wood is stacked...nawwww...that makes no difference....people could be paying for a lota air...just as long as the legal definition of cord and 1/3 (face cord) ...volume...is respected.

BTW..
I stack all firewood (it's all hardwood) as tightly as possible in rows. 24'4" long..and 4' plus inches high...always exceeding a full cord , cut and split (by hand) for $99 (you haul)..'cause I want repeat customers.


~Martin :)

Mac_Muz
11-02-2007, 07:40 PM
A full cord o' wood here is outragouse in pricing. I used to make the same, for the same AA, but I have no access as I did. These days in NH a real cord of wood is over 200 bux! It might be dumped on the ground as delivered..

My LL uses wood to heat his shop, and I help out alot. He is older and has 2 small saws. One shakles my hands so bad I can't run more than a few moments. I have a older husky thank god.. I need another saw as I am used to having 2.

I gave away my other one as it was to big for me any more.
That was a Sachs Dolmar 120 super...

If I can afford another it will be a husky in the 300 series.. fast enough and lighter weight. The one I have now is in the 200 series, and is supposed to be a limbing saw.

Over summer into fall I have put up a mix of wood off this land I live one to amount to maybe 5 cords... A bit more than enough for the purpose, even if much is white pine...

The deal is I am making hard woods clear from the pines. Back in the 30's this area was a fair ground with a horse race track. When the place closed up the big field pines here then put out seed which took over. The abandoned land just grew in pine..

A few old hard woods had been left here and there as well, most have died and are stumps about 30 feet tall. I can salvage some of these. Swamp birch is growing in the deep shade, which are about max growth, with a smattering of sugar and red maple, and a bit of beech.
There is a bit of hemlock as well as spruce, and balsam fir, which I tend to save.

Some pine is large enough for lumber and these are being marked out for cutting latter. Over all I have been selectiing out in 2 of the 8 achers here.

Off this property there is ash, hops and many more types that will have to self re-introduce in time according to nature.

This property does not reflect the local woods at all.

MadTripper
11-02-2007, 08:54 PM
I have a Husky 359 with a 22" bar. I love it and it runs great. I picked it up used at a Stihl dealer so the price was pretty nice.

Tripper

DM
11-02-2007, 08:57 PM
Around here a "rick" and a "face cord" are the same thing, 1/3 of a cord. Most want their wood sawn to 16" here and i do sell a little firewood.

Thing is, the wood i sell are "slabs" off my sawmill. I saw them into 4' lengths, and make a stack 4' high. This is 1/2 cord, and someone else can cut it down further if they want to.

DM

http://www.fototime.com/DD41756CCB74C5F/standard.jpg

http://www.fototime.com/7BEBF52D572CE0C/standard.jpg

http://www.fototime.com/EA9945538C498DF/standard.jpg

Mac_Muz
11-03-2007, 04:21 PM
That orange paint reminds me of a very long time ago.. I had some cords for sale, and one day I came home from work to find a lot gone. No note no nuthin'

It wasn't even the ones for sale it was my dryer private stock.

I moved that around as no pile was all gone to set it up for mid winters pickin's and add what was lost from 1 year dried wood. Some "select" pieces were drilled to 2 6" deep and 2" around and I filled these 4" inches deep in black powda', and plugged them. The powda was in baggies and sealed the plugs were sealed in bee's wax too, and I put these in my private stock with a orange marker on both ends..

Some more of that was stolen, but never again....

farmboy
11-05-2007, 07:35 PM
MadT,

Looks like that black locust planed up nice. The ones I used to cut had almost a yellow color, do they lighten up with age?

At my last property we had plain Hornbeam and Hop Hornbeam, they call them both ironwood but are very different. One has smooth grey bark and has the sinews and muscle shapes in the wood. If you can find a straight branch they make unbreakable walking sticks. I think the biggest one I saw was about 18" in diameter. The other kind has a light colored, ridged bark. Both are pretty much impossible to split.

What did they makes stocks out of in the old days? Hickory? Chestnut?


farmboy

MadTripper
11-05-2007, 09:03 PM
I love the natural color of the locust. It is quite yellow when wet however after drying a while, he color lightened up, especially if you plane it again to remove the outside layer. I was thinking today I might make a darning egg or two out of it. I guess I'm still waiting for the right inspiration.

From the most part, hickory seems to have been the wood of choice. I did find some references to other woods being used.

Tripper

Pitdog
11-09-2007, 08:20 PM
Tripper, I may again be of service to you. I have just completed the semester in 'One Piece Stock Making' I have some handouts and instructions that may assist you.
Be ready for a LOT of work, however there are techniques to use a router that can speed things up a LOT.
DM, you got any blanks for sale??
I agree with you on air dried blanks for quality.

MadTripper
11-09-2007, 08:34 PM
Do you have anything scanned to your computer you would be willing to make available? Let me know when you get a minute.

Tripper

farmboy
11-14-2007, 07:49 PM
Hey,

I found a website that had this to say about Black Walnut : "No other wood has less jar or recoil, it doesn't warp, shrink or splinter and is light in proportion to it's strength. The US gov. used Black Walnut gunstocks for generations and it is still the favored wood for shotguns and rifles used by hunters and sportsmen"

I was looking in my Audubon tree guide and found a pamphlet I stuck in it called the NY State Big Tree Register. It says the largest Hophornbeam tree found in the state has a circumference of 7-6", which is about 2'-3" diameter and it was 76' tall! The American Hornbeam listed was a little bigger around and is the National champion. Another National Champ was a Black Locust with a diameter of almost 7'-6" and 96' tall. :o

farmboy

Pitdog
11-15-2007, 07:14 PM
Not yet Tripper, I don't even have a scanner. I will see what I can do.

MadTripper
11-15-2007, 07:52 PM
Hmm, I don't think I have an old one laying around however if I stumble on one, I'll keep you in mind.

On a side note, we have a local company that produces cabinets and so on. I tend to their computers on site so while I was there, I asked about some wood or connections. They pointed me in the right direction so I'll see what I can find. Since black walnut is the defacto standard and I'm a beginner to say the least, I think I'll entertain that option.

Tripper

ArmySGT.
11-16-2007, 01:53 AM
CHARLES E GRACE

Address: 718 E 2ND ST TRINIDAD, CO 81082 USA
Voice: 1-719-846-9435 Fax:
Keywords: GUNSMITH, STOCKMAKER,


Shulin Stockworks

Address: 16511 Co. Rd. 75. Trinidad, CO 81082 USA
Voice: 1-719-846-2301 Fax:
URL: http://www.yourdomain.com
Email: edshulin@bacavalley.com
Contact: Edward SHULIN
Keywords: Gun stock duplicating, my pattern or yours. I will supply gun stocks or use yours experience: taught stockmaking at Trinidad Jr. College for 27 years, built custom stocks for 30 years, have been stock machining for 25 years.
Listing ID: 24403

I know both of these guys personally. They are awesome at what they do. Chuck Grace is a Member of the American Custom Gunmakers Guild. Ed Shulin is as his ad describes. He has stock blanks on hand for rifle and shot gun. Claro, english and turkish walnut. Cherry, Myrtle, and a few other types. graded and priced. I bought a cherry blank from Ed for 30 dollars, couldn't afford the Turkish walnut in the 1000s.

Either has a stock duplicator and can make most any stock you wish.

Pitdog
11-22-2007, 10:00 PM
Highly reccomend Ed here as well, one of my instructors was his personal friend, and we deal with him a lot. VERY nice semi-inlets for good money, especially for students.

I am getting ready to put a piece of Maple on the duplicator on Wednesday, going to put a piece of orange maple burl on for a forend tip and whittle it out for a Mauser action I am going to do in .35 Whelen.
My roomate did a piece of maple for his one piece and said it was a PITA to work, and sharp tools are key as well as good sharpening stones.

steven7
02-13-2009, 11:05 PM
Hi,
This is Steven. I am new member to this site. I have no idea about this topic. *I really very enjoy to this site and gather more information about the own gun.

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ArmySGT.
02-16-2009, 11:14 PM
[quote author=steven7 link=board=fir-longarms;num=1193421206;start=20#36 date=02/13/09 at 17:05:32]Hi,
This is Steven. I am new member to this site. I have no idea about this topic. *I really very enjoy to this site and gather more information about the own gun.

========================
steven7
visit
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