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Old 09-13-2011, 7:45 PM
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7,62x39 7,62x39 is offline
Join Date: Feb 2010
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Bakelite Refinishing

Here are the materials that will be needed.

The project that I am working on is a Bulgarian bakelite upper handguard that will be used on a Romanian AIMS-74 clone. The handguard started off with the name "ARKO" carved into the side and the bakelite was dark, ugly, and looked like a bunch of straw fibers stuck together. Here is the original picture, which doesn't really show how it looked very well, but at least it is something.

I started off by fitting the handguard to my gas tube, and then just used the plastic polish on the handguard. It looked better, but still not great. Then I realized that the areas I had fitted with a file were a lot lighter after using the plastic polish on them, and no scratches. Since my pistol grip for this project is pretty light orange/red, I decided to sand the entire handguard with 220 grit sandpaper, and then buff it with 0000 steel wool. Please wear a mask when you do this, bakelite is basically just filler stuck together with plastic resin, and the filler can be don't want to be breathing in that dust. Here is a picture of the handguard after sanding and steel wooling:

Then I used the plastic polish on the handguard, and it looked a lot better:

You could stop here, but I decided that I was going to use the poly to coat the handguard. Here it is after several coats with the poly still wet.

And now done! Poly is dry in this picture, and there are 5 coats on it. I did not steel wool it or anything, just leave it as is. The late style romy pistol grip is in the picture for reference, I used plastic polish on that but nothing else.

And lastly, do NOT use the plastic polish over the poly! It will ruin the project, make the poly look milky and dry. I know from experience unfortunately, I had to redo the hand guard after doing this a couple of days ago.

Have fun and post your results here please!

Last edited by 7,62x39; 09-15-2011 at 9:56 PM..
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