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Advise me on Dyeing/Staining wood AKA Stock Options

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post-17871-0-18870200-1327225153_thumb.jpgHi people. There are many things that I am ignorant about.fine woodwork is nearly one of them.

 

So I have Bulgarian Surplus AK 74 wood that I bought from MarkW1.

 

I bought two sets. One was refinished and is beautiful, I just need to make a matching wood pistol grip and clone his finish.

 

The other one is the what I want your help with for now. This is going on a gun with a magwell and a very non-standard grip. I intend it to be suitable for 3-gun or similar, whether or not I ever get the chance to take it to an event. Since the style of traditional wood doesn't really match the modern features on my gun, I wanted to deliberately go non-traditional with my colors to emphasize this. I had thought of going with a light green stain or color matching the blonde buttstock to the hazel colored fore-end, and staining the grooves and contours in green. Now I think I am inclined to go with my first plan and Stain both Grey/ Charcoal, and make the grain pop as much as possible. I want the parts to match as much as possible, and am ok if dings get highlighted. This will be a gun to use, so I will apply a durrable finish and aim more for matte than gloss.

 

I am open to all of your suggestions.

 

I cleaned all the shellac off with denatured alcohol and sanded first with 100 grit and then 400 on both. I may need to get some intermediate paper and remove some crossgrain scratches that showed up on the forend, then redo the fine paper. I will do steel wool too if that is advisable, but I was just working with what I had onhand.

 

The process I expect to do unless you guys recommend something better is as follows:

 

1) touch up the sanding a little better, moisten them with a rag of warm water, and sand a little more. Then 0000 steel wool.

 

2) get some dye at least black or grey, and brown if needed to get the stock to match the forend. I read here http://milsurpshoote...ay#.TxvWDW9rN2A that dye is better than stain and more controlable.

a) do a light coat on the stock only and let it soak in of brown if needed.Repeat until underlying tone is comparable to the other piece.

cool.png use black or grey stain to get an over all Charcoal tone on both pieces. I want the grain to stand out if feasable. Do this in multiple stages so as not to over do it or get mismatches since the wood is different.

 

3) after the above seems good and dry, Use a paint brush to apply a durable urethane finish. Aparently the thing to do is several coats before it cures fully and steel wool near the end.

 

Here are pictures for reference:

 

Stock Before:post-17871-0-97098600-1327224695_thumb.jpg

I am told that beech was a common wood for Bulgaria. This appears to be beech.

Fore-End Before:

post-17871-0-36822900-1327224769_thumb.jpg

I do not know what kind of wood this is, but it reminds me of mahogany but harder and darker.

 

Both together after sanding:

post-17871-0-58036800-1327224910_thumb.jpg

 

Close ups of grain (The beech looks really good, and I wish they matched):

post-17871-0-40971300-1327224971_thumb.jpg

 

More pictures in reply:

 

post-17871-0-01388000-1327225139_thumb.jpg

post-17871-0-25571300-1327225144_thumb.jpg

post-17871-0-87244000-1327225148_thumb.jpg

post-17871-0-18870200-1327225153_thumb.jpg

 

Continued even further:

Edited by GunFun

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post-17871-0-22578400-1327225349_thumb.jpg

 

A ruger 10/22 hickory laminate stock that is about what I want to end up with minus the gloss.

Greyer would be more to my taste, but I can live with brown tones if that is necessary to make the pieces match. I know the grain won't stand out as much as the laminate, and that even if the colors match the grain won't. I can live with that.

post-17871-0-54849800-1327225353_thumb.jpg

 

Alright, now that I have used the forum's bandwidth for the month, advise me.

 

Technique, brand and source are all needed. Small quantities are preferred, due to finances and the size of the project.

 

Thanks guys.

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That fore end looks like walnut. You will have a bitch of a time matching those two. Do the walnut FIRST, and match the birch to it. It is easier to do the darkest wood first, as you cannot make it lighter without bleaching, The light wood you can add more coats of stain to get the color right. Be aware - you will never match the grain of those two pieces, you may get the color close, but the grain will never come close.

Use alcohol based stains and just fuck with it untill you like it, and then use a satin or gloss urathane spar varnish to finish. If you use water based varnish, you can mix a little stain in some of it to darken the stock if it is still too light. Just put another clear coat or two on both pieces when finished.

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G O B is right, the grain will not match.

I am not a wood person myself, I can work metal and make it look good.

Ys did good cleaning it up down to the wood.

Do you any cabnit makers, thay might be able to help.

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I done a ironwood desings stock set, using red mahognay stain, and RIT dye turned out beautiful.

 

a few things I learned,

 

darker wood can be bleached to a lighter color, I done this since my pieces were from ironwood designs (woodpile) so the color was different. you can submerg it in a 25% bleach/water mixture, the longer it sits the lighter it gets, you can do it for 5 minutes, take it out, wipe it down with vinegar to kill the bleaching process, let it dry and see how it looks, then repeat as nessessary.

 

the red mahognay stain (or any stain) can be adjusted for shade, wipe it right on pretty thick, then imediantly wife it right back off, for a lighter color,

or wipe it on and rub it in for a minute for a darker stain.

 

I used RIT dye (powder) like this

mix Rit dye powder with 2 ounces of denatured alchol, pour mixture through coffee filter into glass container.

mix that container to 8 ounces of polyurithane or what ever you are using to give it some collor,

you can add small amounts and test your color as you go on a scrap piece of wood if you like.

Edited by universal_exports
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I done a ironwood desings stock set, using red mahognay stain, and RIT dye turned out beautiful.

 

a few things I learned,

 

darker wood can be bleached to a lighter color, I done this since my pieces were from ironwood designs (woodpile) so the color was different. you can submerg it in a 25% bleach/water mixture, the longer it sits the lighter it gets, you can do it for 5 minutes, take it out, wipe it down with vinegar to kill the bleaching process, let it dry and see how it looks, then repeat as nessessary.

 

the red mahognay stain (or any stain) can be adjusted for shade, wipe it right on pretty thick, then imediantly wife it right back off, for a lighter color,

or wipe it on and rub it in for a minute for a darker stain.

 

I used RIT dye (powder) like this

mix Rit dye powder with 2 ounces of denatured alchol, pour mixture through coffee filter into glass container.

mix that container to 8 ounces of polyurithane or what ever you are using to give it some collor,

you can add small amounts and test your color as you go on a scrap piece of wood if you like.

 

 

 

 

Good tips ^^^^^

 

Lots of those Bulgy furniture sets seemed to have the one different colored type wood HG piece.

 

I used the bleach & water soak method as well. Start with short periods of time and dry it out after. One piece that I did multiple times developed a tiny crack in the wood.

 

Powdered Rit dye thru a coffee filter with denatured alcohol was good for coloring things. You can use a small paint brush and hilight specific grains in the wood (like with laminates). You can also mix it in with base stains, etc. for a general overall effect,

 

There are some good tutorials on other AKcentric sites

 

Have fun

Harv

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you can make a natural stain by putting steel wool in a jar of vinager. it is a old tecneque but sometimes looks realy good. also sometimes I use charcole and and or lightly burn to get a darker look. a small dish of alchhol lit on fire makes a real good sooty flame to burn with rub the soot into the poors of the wood to showoff grain. alwase test on something else to see if you like the efect . some of the minwax poly stains work well cause you can adjust color in layyers and not have to start over to change color a little.

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Thanks, guys. So far your answers were more or less what I was expecting. It is good to get confirmation and more options though before I ruin all the work I put in or spend extra money.

 

I may try the bleach on the walnut, but the wood is thin enough already from reaming it to clear the fat barrel. I am concerned about drying and splitting it.

 

I have also contacted MarkW1 to see if he has another in matching beech. If so, I will probably just get that and sell the one I have to someone who is afraid to do the woodwork them self. It is a pain to do and would be easy to ruing one. You have to be careful installing or removing it, but once it's on there it's solid.

 

Has anyone tried doing a stock in grey or black colors? (other than solid black U_Ex) I guess I could try bleaching then Black Rit, but I would think a product made for wood would be better. I don't know so though. Here is one I looked at. http://www.minwax.com/wood-products/stains-color-guide/ about halfway down "charcoal grey" The "deep ocean" and the "emerald" down at the bottom are pretty cool too.

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the steel wool in vinager is a dark gray stain that reacts chemicaly with difrent kinds of wood it is cheap and easy to try and see if you like it

just put some steel wool in a jar and some white vinager and let it sit for a while then put on a sample

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I'll post up some pics tonight, I tried to dye mine black using the RIT dye powder, 1st I tried mixing it with alcohol, then brushing it on, it didnt get really black like I wanted, then I tried brushing on the RIT dye liquid (straight), it got darker, but not as dark as I wanted, so I use black paint, ended up not liking the black and going red. I'll post up picks later tonight I am at work and photobucket is blocked.

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For black I would try black leather (boot/shoe) dye and satin urethane for a finish.

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Ok thanks. The pictures would help. To clarify, I want the overall color to be grey with the grain tending toward black, not solid black.

 

I will have to go find some beech wood scraps to do testing on I guess.

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here is mine after a lot of black dye,

 

DSCF5823.jpg

 

DSCF5821.jpg

 

 

 

here is mine after black spray paint.

 

DSCF5844.jpg

 

 

 

then I sand it off and went red with the dye method I mentioned above.

 

good3.jpg

 

good1.jpg

 

putting the dye straight on the wood did not work great, although it would have looked better if I had put clear polyurethane over it.

 

putting the dye into the polyurethane works way better by coloring the polyurethane, with a little practice on some spare pieces I think you could get the color you want.

Edited by universal_exports
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Yeah. Both of those are way darker than I want. I am definitely going to get some test pieces before I do that to my stock.

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re; black effect

 

One of the more recent techniques Ive seen/heard about involves Swedish pine tar.

Allegedly its often used with the Russian laminates. Pics Ive seen look pretty nice.

Its really messy and smells so you need a good location ;-)

 

Check out the AKForum section on refinishing. Member "Yavlar" has great info and tutorial on the technique. Theres various threads elsewhere also and you should find some good pics. I have not used so not sure if there is a method for lightening it up towards grey.

 

Cheers

Harv

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I did a black dyed pseudo-walnut stock on a Rossi single a while back. A couple coats of TransTint dye mixed in alcohol went on first, were allowed to dry for a few days, and then covered in wipe-on poly. Pretty nice effect, though I tend to prefer Watco Teak Oil, which is a nice oil/varnish blend.

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I did a black dyed pseudo-walnut stock on a Rossi single a while back. A couple coats of TransTint dye mixed in alcohol went on first, were allowed to dry for a few days, and then covered in wipe-on poly. Pretty nice effect, though I tend to prefer Watco Teak Oil, which is a nice oil/varnish blend.

 

Ok, do you have pics so that I can see how that turned out? It sounds like yours is closest to the color I am trying to achieve.

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Update and questions...

 

I decided it would be easiest and best to just try and get another cheap forend in Beech. Due to a mix up I got a banged up walnut... The guy I got it from more than made it right, but that puts me back where I started.

 

At this point i want to know whether I would be better to do successive washes of:

1) Rit, or

2) steel wool/ vinegar dye, or

3) trans tint dye (diluted with denatured alcohol)?

 

I want overall grey color with grain and "character" showing darker grey to black, not solid black.

 

Question #2: I accidentally got some alcohol on my dust cover and ended up taking all the paint off. It was ridiculously easy to get it squeaky clean to parkerized metal. (2 minutes in a ziploc with about an ounce of denatured, wipe clean.) I guess both the factory workers and their paints are alcohol soluble. Anyway, I like the look. I am thinking of having my gasblock, gas tube BCG, Shutter and dust cover in Park Grey, along with a new muzzle atatchment in Park. The rest would be black. I haven't finalized this decision, but what do you guys think of mixing a bit of blue into #3 above for the wood to go with this?

 

And I would still like a picture from Dr. Thunder if possible. --Thanks.

Edited by GunFun

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Have you seen Yeoldetoole's s-12 its a really nice greyish-black. You might check it out and give him a PM. He seems pretty good with wood...lol.

Edited by Yoshi

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Thanks guys. Thunder? Is that just black dye or did you use some brown too?

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Getting the Beech forend will make life easier. I have a lot of experience with finishing Beech from my previous life as a Violinmaker and repairman... :)

Beech is hard and waxy but usually will take any finish. To get a uniform finish, I would seal and/or burnish the entire surface. You can seal the wood with cut shellac or burnish it with a hard maple dowel or a polished drill rod. You said that you wanted maximum "pop" from the grain.

One way to do that:

Seal the grain with cut shellac... 2-3 coats. You can just rag it on. 2-3 coats can be done in 4-5 hours. Leave it overnight and scuff sand it with fine sandpaper. You can use the sticky rag from the shellac as a tack cloth. Getting the dust and junk off the wood will go a long way in making a better result.

After it's sealed, you can add black dye (transtint or similar) to the shellac. You can go as dark as you want with the dye. rag on the dyed shellac just like the sealer. It's going to look ugly but don't worry... Once you get it covered leave it overnight. When it's dry you can wet sand it or steel wool with oil (mineral oil or olive oil is fine). You're going to take most of the color off just leaving the dye/shellac in the soft grain. You may get to a point in this process where you like it as is. So you can stop and just poly over it and you're done. Otherwise, keeep sanding until there is only the most dramatic streaks of black left. From there you can use an oil stain (ebony) or other dye (analine,leather dye or similar). The oil will be easier and less streaking.

Wipe on the dye and let it sit. Depending upon what stain/dye you use you may leave it overnight. You may be able to wipe it off with a polishing motion or might have to do the steel wool and oil thing. If you like the result, hit it with poly clear. If not, hit it with the stain again and repeat.

If you are more adventurous, there are options for adding the color to the clear and spraying... (That's my preferred method) But this way should be fine...

Let me know if you want more info...

later

rich

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Yeah. That is great. Anything you have for me is appreciated. I think I am stuck with what I have for budget reasons. I don't know how I can guarantee that I get a beech forend.

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If you don't get a beech forend, you can follow the method I described. Just sand the first dye/shellac coat down to the minimum of black streaks and continue with the method. The Beech stock may need a coat or 2 more to get to the same shade(or close enough). Or you can hit the Beech with a walnut stain before the black shellac....

I've touched up tons of instruments over the years in tons of different shades and colors. Pretty good at color matching by now... But believe it or not, Black (and White) are tougher to get right... :) But the distance between the 2 parts will make it a lot less noticable.

I don't know if you were responding to me when you said "anything you have for me" So I'll leave it there. But if you do want more advanced technique options, let me know...

later

rich

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That's a starting point.

 

I will try to find some transtint black locally and failing that use rit and follow your steps. Everyone seems to have a similar general process, but you are the first to mention burnishing. Is that just rubbing in a circular motion?

 

Oh, and it sounds like the thing to do is to get the walnut piece where I want it then stop, and do the beech in stages until it matches.

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Burnishing in this case would be rubbing the entire surface with moderate pressure with a hardwood dowel or polished drill rod. Even a smooth polished/chromed screwdriver shaft would work. The goal is to close up the cells of the wood and compress them a bit. It makes the stain absorbtion more uniform. You will get less blotchiness and no darkening of the end grain.

More of a back and forth motion taking long passes when possible. Start with about the same amount of pressure you would use with an eraser on a pencil and add more until you see the surface get shiny then add a bit more speed with the same pressure thereby generating a little heat. Shouldn't take more than10-15 minutes...

Yup, you can do the walnut part and see what it looks like. Then, either hit the stock with walnut stain or just the black. I would probably try the walnut stain on the beech while the forend is still in a natural state to see how it matches. If I could get it close, I would then do both parts at the same time. If not, I would go the way you suggested.

If you do get a walnut stain, try to find an "antique wanut" as many walnut stains tend to have a bit more red in them. Beech has a lot of red in it that you don't notice until you stain it. A few drops of blue transtint will tone down the red. Black won't do it. it will only make it a dirtier red.

Keep in mind that when you're done, you will have 2 items that match in color. But the grain structure will be different. So you will probably need to go a little darker than you think. Also, go with less gloss on the top coat...

Good luck,

rich

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