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emcon5
02-04-2012, 4:14 PM
I couldn't stand the ugly red shellac the Soviets used on my Mosins, so I finally did something about it.

Before any purists howl (and I am one) some Mosins came with a oil finish (http://www.surplusrifleforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=118&t=62855), so this is not a "Bubba" job. Plus shellac isn't exactly hard to find, so I can ugly them back up any time I want if I choose to do so.

I started by removing the shellac with Denatured Alcohol and 0000 steel wool, then cleaned and degreased the stock as much as I could. Next I applied an Oil Scrub with Boiled Linseed Oil (http://www.surplusrifleforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=137&t=51760), 4 coats with 0000 steel wool, followed by one hand rubbed. Finally I sealed it with 1/3 mix (equal parts Boiled Linseed oil, beeswax and turpentine)

I think they turned out pretty good. The wood underneath was pretty nice, even with an arsenal repair to the toe on the blonde. Really interesting that both rifles came from the same factory, Izhevsk, in the same year, 1943 yet the wood is so different. I have read that the Soviets used Pine tar to treat some of their stocks, that it probably the case with the sniper.

The top photos are with the shellac, middle is after stripping and degreasing, and the bottom is the finished rifles.

Both are 1943 Izhevsk, the top is a Century Reproduction Sniper.

http://www.shedracing.net/imgmisc/sniper_steps_sized.jpg

Enormous sized version of same photo (http://www.shedracing.net/imgmisc/sniper_steps.jpg)


http://www.shedracing.net/imgmisc/blondie_steps_sized.jpg

Enormous sized version of same photo (http://www.shedracing.net/imgmisc/blondie_steps.jpg)


I am having no luck at all getting a photo of the blonde rifle that does it justice. Artificial light makes it look darker than it is, and sunlight, even diffused by the trees in the photo above makes it look shiny, which it really isn't.

In person, the finished product looks a lot like the photo of the stripped stock, which also looks brighter in the photo than it did in person.

It is also hard to tell from the photo, but the pistol grip area on the blonde is also considerably darker than the area around it. Almost as if some oily handed Russian conscript spent a long time holding it there defending the Motherland from the fascist invaders. Big part of why I love old rifles. I wish they could talk.

rodngun762
02-04-2012, 5:46 PM
I like the top one a lot it reminds me of a finn, very nice.

Chaos47
02-04-2012, 5:59 PM
Personally I don't like it but to each their own.

even with an arsenal repair to the toe on the blonde.

Kinda doubt it was a repair.
Toe splices are very common during later war years. They where able to use smaller board blanks. As you can imagine wood was in high demand.

See here about 3/4ths the way down
http://62x54r.net/MosinID/MosinFeatures04.htm

mosinnagantm9130
02-04-2012, 6:59 PM
Probably not a repair, most late/post-war stocks have a toe splice.

bruceflinch
02-04-2012, 9:42 PM
I like them!
They look great.
I love woodworking, so this thread is Bruce Approved! :thumbsup:

caldude
02-04-2012, 10:24 PM
Personally, I like shellac. I just removed the crappy Russian stuff and used a dark amber shellac.

http://i249.photobucket.com/albums/gg229/caldudejr/Pb020175.jpg

TheExpertish
02-04-2012, 10:33 PM
Great job. They look good to me.

McNally M.
02-04-2012, 11:14 PM
Nice job guys. They look beautiful.

There was a time when I was so opposed to altering military surplus that this would have been sacrilige to me. But truth by told, I have gotten a bit tired of the Russian shellac myself. Some stocks have it all pealed off and it make the rifle look that much worse. I'm thinking of refinishing a few of the the generic post war stock that I have so that I can boast a good looking shooter. I guess I'll be asking tips from you professionals on how to go about applying such a good looking finish.

McNally M.
02-04-2012, 11:15 PM
Do you typically remove the recoil lug when you apply the finish? I've never removed the recoil lug from any of my stock before. How does one go about doing this so as to ensure a better more even finish?

Okami
02-05-2012, 12:55 AM
Looks damn nice! Well done!

caldude
02-05-2012, 6:25 AM
Do you typically remove the recoil lug when you apply the finish? I've never removed the recoil lug from any of my stock before. How does one go about doing this so as to ensure a better more even finish?

I removed the recoil lug. I think I used the same tool used to remove Mauser recoil lugs (available from Brownells). Either that or pliers with pin tips for O-rings.

Don't remove the sling slot metal though. There are hooks on the back of those that are pressed into the wood, and you'll either screw up your wood or break off a hook if you try to pry them out (I've done both).

emcon5
02-05-2012, 9:01 AM
I left the lugs in place, I think it turned out OK.

Clipity
02-05-2012, 2:49 PM
Lookinggggg goooood.

Mojaveman
02-05-2012, 9:06 PM
They turned out pretty nice.

By the time that I got all of the cosmoline removed from my Mosin it looked pretty bad. After I sweated all of it out of the stock I finished it with Birchwood Casey stain and True Oil.

Garand1911
02-10-2012, 7:12 AM
i just finished my MN M38 with amber shellac too, it looks like Caldudes.
the M38 i got from Big5 years ago was ****ty looking, so i stripped the old shellac and got some new flake, it came out really good for my first time using shellac.
I still gotta re-do my 91/30, need some orange or reddish blonde shellac.

bombadillo
02-10-2012, 7:21 AM
If you ever decide to change it, TruOil is amazing stuff. The more you put on the shinier it becomes but it all looks good.

Fate
02-10-2012, 2:57 PM
I couldn't stand the ugly red shellac the Soviets used on my Mosins, so I finally did something about it.

Before any purists howl (and I am one)

Uh. No, you're not. You altered it from original army specs. Accept the reality that you are now Bubba. Embrace it.

mosinnagantm9130
02-10-2012, 3:41 PM
Didn't the mosins with the oil finish originally have shellac over the oil anyway?

Caribouriver
02-10-2012, 4:30 PM
FWIW, I did the same thing. Removed the Russian shellac and re-applied garnet shellac from flakes. Didn't like the color. Off came the shellac again. Then min-wax red mahogany stain. Then about 6 coats of true-oil. Looked great but too shiny. Rubbed it down with 000 steel wool lubricated with boiled linseed oil. That took the gloss down pretty much to gloss of the original shellac. Did I bubba it? I don't think so. That MN look and feels a heck of a lot better than it did. And the true oil is easily repairable. Like somebody said, "Life is too short to have an ugly gun."

rojocorsa
02-10-2012, 4:41 PM
FWIW, I did the same thing. Removed the Russian shellac and re-applied garnet shellac from flakes. Didn't like the color. Off came the shellac again. Then min-wax red mahogany stain. Then about 6 coats of true-oil. Looked great but too shiny. Rubbed it down with 000 steel wool lubricated with boiled linseed oil. That took the gloss down pretty much to gloss of the original shellac. Did I bubba it? I don't think so. That MN look and feels a heck of a lot better than it did. And the true oil is easily repairable. Like somebody said, "Life is too short to have an ugly gun."

Interesting. Do you have a pic of your stock by any chance?

emcon5
02-10-2012, 4:43 PM
According to the guy at Tula:

There were two types of finish during the rifle M 1891 production:
1. processing by boiled linseed oil with coloration (toning) and outside surface final smoothing.
2. impregnation in bath on basis of pine tar by liquid-bath method, polishing and shellac varnish covering.

Fate
02-10-2012, 8:32 PM
Didn't the mosins with the oil finish originally have shellac over the oil anyway?
No. I have an original, matching (except for the bolt), unmessed-with bringback that has the oiled finish. It's a 1937 Izhevsk. The OP's stripped Mosins look nothing like the real Soviet oil finish. If anything, the top one looks "somewhat" like a Finn captured version, but still, not quite correct. My 1937:

http://i42.tinypic.com/nzitme.jpg

According to the guy at Tula:
The thing is...you're not working for Tula ;)

rojocorsa
02-10-2012, 8:35 PM
Fate, that's a nice Mosin!


It's very nice to see what a non refurbed rifle in good condition looks like. Thank you very much for posting.

mosinnagantm9130
02-10-2012, 8:53 PM
No. I have an original, matching (except for the bolt), unmessed-with bringback that has the oiled finish. It's a 1937 Izhevsk. The OP's stripped Mosins look nothing like the real Soviet oil finish. If anything, the top one looks "somewhat" like a Finn captured version, but still, not quite correct.


Thanks for posting that up, I haven't seen many original oil finished Soviet M/Ns at all.

rojocorsa
02-10-2012, 9:05 PM
This is the second one I've seen.

I'm pretty sure I saw one last year in the for sale section, it was a '38 Tula whose stock looked "off." Then I realized what it was too. OHOD knows which gun I'm talking about.

hybridatsun350
02-10-2012, 10:05 PM
Nice work! I've got a 91/30 that now has about 8 coats of BLO on it. I think it looks a lot better than the original red crap!

rojocorsa
02-11-2012, 1:56 PM
Nice work! I've got a 91/30 that now has about 8 coats of BLO on it. I think it looks a lot better than the original red crap!

Got pics of it?

I'm seriously thinking of taking off the shellac on one of mine, getting some cherry stain to make it red, and then putting some BLO.