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Posted: 3/21/2006 11:00:38 AM EDT
I just got my 1903 from CMP and it's loaded with cosmoline, looks like the entire thing was preserved in ear wax.

Does anyone know how I can clean it off and what the proper procedures are? What cleaning products do I need to buy?

All I own for cleaning is BreakFree CLP and I know that would damage the wood.

How can I clean it off and what do I need to do it?

Thanks!

I'll post pictures once i've got it all cleaned up nicely.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 11:36:35 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/21/2006 11:37:45 AM EDT by MauserMark]

Originally Posted By Accord:
I just got my 1903 from CMP and it's loaded with cosmoline, looks like the entire thing was preserved in ear wax.

Does anyone know how I can clean it off and what the proper procedures are? What cleaning products do I need to buy?

All I own for cleaning is BreakFree CLP and I know that would damage the wood.

How can I clean it off and what do I need to do it?

Thanks!

I'll post pictures once i've got it all cleaned up nicely.




I can give you my method, but it will cost you about $25.

I went to Home Depot and bought 2 6 or 7" air duct aluminum tubes (they should be the 2 foot long type, although they sell the even longer 5" tubes). Put them together (very easy) that should be long enough for most long gun stocks. Then buy a small ceramic heater (found mine at Target). Should be around $10, but some on here have found smaller cheaper ones. Line the bottom of the tube with a layer of News Paper (to collect the liquified cosmo as it drips out).

And the rest is obvious. lay the tube out over the floor (did this in the garage) and I actually elevated the end of the tube not facing the ceramic heater (basic knowledge of physics, hot air rises), so that the hot air would rise through the tube and continually heat the stock.

It worked great, took a few days of heating a couple hours at a time, take out about every hour or half our and rotate the stock, and wipe down with mineral spirits or denatured alcohol (all from Home Depot) and continue to heat until you don't see any or very little cosmo sweating out of the stock.

For the metal parts I would put all that would fit, minus the receiver and barrel (stripped) in boiling water with a little dish soap. Let the boiling water cook off the cosmo, and it does a great job. Then just wipe dry the metal parts, coat them in CLP.



-mark
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 12:42:51 PM EDT
Buy the 1 gal. can of mineral spirits and a dish pan.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 1:06:33 PM EDT
www.surplusrifle.com/shooting2006/lowheatmethod2/index.asp




Check that out, I built one and it worked pretty damn well, took a little while to put together, but you can use it for all your guns then.

Beats the oven and your food tasting like shit for a couple weeks.....
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 1:11:50 PM EDT
It's actually #2 axle grease. We took ours to the local car dealership and used their parts washer. Grease came off slick as snot and no need to worry about cleaning up a mess. Depending on how soaked your stock is, an hour in front of the TV with a steam iron, a washcloth and a bowl of water should clean it out deep enough for some BLO or something else to seal the wood.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 1:27:25 PM EDT
Once I finally do get all the cosmoline (or whatever this stuff is) off the stock, what should I use to coat and protect the wood?

What is BLO?

Thanks
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 1:31:16 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Accord:
Once I finally do get all the cosmoline (or whatever this stuff is) off the stock, what should I use to coat and protect the wood?

What is BLO?

Thanks



Go to the hardware store and get a pint of Minwax Tung Oil Finish and put on 3 coats total, 1 per day for 3 days. It won't be too shiney but will look "military" and will protect the stock.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 4:58:43 PM EDT

Once I finally do get all the cosmoline (or whatever this stuff is) off the stock, what should I use to coat and protect the wood?


The one reason I made that little garbage can thing, is because I read the article, and there is actually cosmoline inside of the wood. So remember that when cleaning it off the wood. But once you get it clean just use minwax or any other wood protector. Nothing special needed.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 5:15:26 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Hoppy:
Buy the 1 gal. can of mineral spirits and a dish pan.



+1 , I used mineral spirits (aka paint thinner) on paper towels on my m1903a3, didn't take off any of the stock's finish. Used on both stock and metal parts- make sure you oil/grease metal parts as needed when you are done, especially if any finish is gone. On a really hot day in TX a little grease wells out of the stock, and I just wipe it off with a paper towel. Of all the ways I've seen and heard to take the grease off, mineral spirits and heat (Not at the same time!) are the safest for the wood, IMO.

If you live in a hot climate (FL works!) take the stock off and put it in a black garbage bag in the hot sun for a hour or 2 on a hot day. The grease will pour off. Repeat a few times!
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 6:20:07 PM EDT

Originally Posted By RangemasterP226:

Originally Posted By Accord:
Once I finally do get all the cosmoline (or whatever this stuff is) off the stock, what should I use to coat and protect the wood?

What is BLO?

Thanks



Go to the hardware store and get a pint of Minwax Tung Oil Finish and put on 3 coats total, 1 per day for 3 days. It won't be too shiney but will look "military" and will protect the stock.


Thanks for that suggestion, I just got back from Home Depot and they had what seemed like hundreds of different Minwax's available, but nothing by the name of "Tung Oil" or Tung anything. Is there anything else you would recommend? They also had Minwax wood clear protector, should I use this instead of an actual finish because I want to preserve what the stock looks like, but just protect it.

Also, should I completely disassemble the entire rifle (i.e. remove the receiver from the stock, etc.)? I'm not sure how to field strip this rifle, much less totally break it down and the manual that came with it from CMP didn't really describe much of anything as far as field stripping and maintenance goes.

Thanks
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 9:15:40 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/21/2006 9:19:29 PM EDT by Hoppy]

Originally Posted By Accord:

Originally Posted By RangemasterP226:

Originally Posted By Accord:
Once I finally do get all the cosmoline (or whatever this stuff is) off the stock, what should I use to coat and protect the wood?

What is BLO?

Thanks



Go to the hardware store and get a pint of Minwax Tung Oil Finish and put on 3 coats total, 1 per day for 3 days. It won't be too shiney but will look "military" and will protect the stock.


Thanks for that suggestion, I just got back from Home Depot and they had what seemed like hundreds of different Minwax's available, but nothing by the name of "Tung Oil" or Tung anything. Is there anything else you would recommend? They also had Minwax wood clear protector, should I use this instead of an actual finish because I want to preserve what the stock looks like, but just protect it.

Also, should I completely disassemble the entire rifle (i.e. remove the receiver from the stock, etc.)? I'm not sure how to field strip this rifle, much less totally break it down and the manual that came with it from CMP didn't really describe much of anything as far as field stripping and maintenance goes.

Thanks




No protector! BLO (Boiled Linseed Oil) is available anywhere. Cut it 50/50 with mineral spirits (this washes cosmoline off everything too) and hand rub this into the stock. After 15 minutes of soaking into the wood, wipe off the excess with a clean rag or soft paper towel. Repeat the same 24 hours later and repeat every day until you attain the finish you want. This is the original "hand rubbed oil finish" the rifle came with. Careful with BLO soaked rags as they are well known to self ignite (this is a real NO SHIT!). BLO will also cover and seal any residual cosmo left in the wood.

Tear the rifle down completely as per this page. The right side of the page has links to everything you need to know and are downloadable as Adobe files for you to save on your computer.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 10:27:57 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/21/2006 10:41:24 PM EDT by Accord]

Originally Posted By Hoppy:

Originally Posted By Accord:

Originally Posted By RangemasterP226:

Originally Posted By Accord:
Once I finally do get all the cosmoline (or whatever this stuff is) off the stock, what should I use to coat and protect the wood?

What is BLO?

Thanks



Go to the hardware store and get a pint of Minwax Tung Oil Finish and put on 3 coats total, 1 per day for 3 days. It won't be too shiney but will look "military" and will protect the stock.


Thanks for that suggestion, I just got back from Home Depot and they had what seemed like hundreds of different Minwax's available, but nothing by the name of "Tung Oil" or Tung anything. Is there anything else you would recommend? They also had Minwax wood clear protector, should I use this instead of an actual finish because I want to preserve what the stock looks like, but just protect it.

Also, should I completely disassemble the entire rifle (i.e. remove the receiver from the stock, etc.)? I'm not sure how to field strip this rifle, much less totally break it down and the manual that came with it from CMP didn't really describe much of anything as far as field stripping and maintenance goes.

Thanks




No protector! BLO (Boiled Linseed Oil) is available anywhere. Cut it 50/50 with mineral spirits (this washes cosmoline off everything too) and hand rub this into the stock. After 15 minutes of soaking into the wood, wipe off the excess with a clean rag or soft paper towel. Repeat the same 24 hours later and repeat every day until you attain the finish you want. This is the original "hand rubbed oil finish" the rifle came with. Careful with BLO soaked rags as they are well known to self ignite (this is a real NO SHIT!). BLO will also cover and seal any residual cosmo left in the wood.

Tear the rifle down completely as per this page. The right side of the page has links to everything you need to know and are downloadable as Adobe files for you to save on your computer.



Wow, thanks, that is exactly the type of info I was looking for!

So I shouldn't attempt to remove the cosmoline or anything first, I should just jump right into it with the BLO/mineral spirits mix?

Should I use the 50/50 mineral spirits and BLO mix on the metal parts too or should I use just mineral spirits only on the metal parts and then CLP afterwards?

I've never refinished wood before so this question may sound stupid, but is there a certain way or certain pattern I should rub it in?

Also, just by dry firing the rifle a few times, when I pull the bolt back it literally wobbles around a pretty good amount, should the bolt when pulled all the way back be rigid and stuff or should it be able to wobble around like that?

Thanks a lot for all of the information, I can't begin to tell you how much I appreciate it.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 10:50:44 PM EDT
Also, forgot to ask: which is darker, Boiled Linseed Oil or Tung Oil?

Thanks
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 11:11:01 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Accord:
Also, forgot to ask: which is darker, Boiled Linseed Oil or Tung Oil?

Thanks




BLO
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 11:23:18 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Hoppy:

Originally Posted By Accord:
Also, forgot to ask: which is darker, Boiled Linseed Oil or Tung Oil?

Thanks




BLO


Thanks.

Also, just by dry firing the rifle a few times, when I pull the bolt back it literally wobbles around a pretty good amount, should the bolt when pulled all the way back be rigid and stuff or should it be able to wobble around like that?
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 11:53:37 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Accord:
Also, just by dry firing the rifle a few times, when I pull the bolt back it literally wobbles around a pretty good amount, should the bolt when pulled all the way back be rigid and stuff or should it be able to wobble around like that?




They wobble a bit.
Link Posted: 3/22/2006 12:03:07 AM EDT
Something I found out the hardway, check on your magazine floor plate. If it has a B stamped into it then it has been pinned in place by the Greeks or Danish (I forget who). You will need to remove the entire trigger housing and push out a brass pin just before the magazine on the trigger side of the trigger housing. After that, you can remove it normally by depressing the floor plate catch.
Link Posted: 3/22/2006 8:49:11 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/22/2006 8:53:18 AM EDT by Hoppy]

Originally Posted By Accord:
So I shouldn't attempt to remove the cosmoline or anything first, I should just jump right into it with the BLO/mineral spirits mix?





I'm sorry, I should have been more clear. You will need to get as much cosmoline out of the stock and off the metal as you can first. I use a mineral spirit wash on everything followed by a little heat to "sweat" the rest out.




Should I use the 50/50 mineral spirits and BLO mix on the metal parts too or should I use just mineral spirits only on the metal parts and then CLP afterwards?




No this is a wood finish. Use the mineral spirits to clean the metal followed by an application of CLP or whatever your choice lube/protection. BLO is a unique product that goes on as an oil, but then sets up hard like a varnish when it cures. It should not be used on any metal parts.



I've never refinished wood before so this question may sound stupid, but is there a certain way or certain pattern I should rub it in?



Nope, I usually pour a little in a small, shallow dish, dip three fingers in then work it into the wood. It cleans off your hands well with soap and water.

This page from CMP has some good reading on the subject. They use a little different technique and materials, but it's good for a lot of general info.


Link Posted: 3/22/2006 10:13:33 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/22/2006 10:43:55 AM EDT by Accord]

Originally Posted By Hoppy:
I use a mineral spirit wash on everything followed by a little heat to "sweat" the rest out.


Thanks for the information.

Would using a hair dryer for this be sufficient or would an actual heat gun be better?
Link Posted: 3/22/2006 11:51:33 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Accord:

Originally Posted By Hoppy:
I use a mineral spirit wash on everything followed by a little heat to "sweat" the rest out.


Thanks for the information.

Would using a hair dryer for this be sufficient or would an actual heat gun be better?




A heat gun would work better, but a hair dryer should work but take a little longer. The wifes oven on it's lowest setting works for a lot of this stuff, but I'm required by law to warn you this may be very dangerous depending on your wife's mood at the time. I set my stocks in front of the fireplace for a while and wipe off the excess cosmo when it sweats out.
Link Posted: 3/22/2006 3:33:00 PM EDT
I've been at this for 4 hours now, man is it tedious and i've still got a ways to go.

Now I know what an ear doctor feels like .
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