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Thread: How to Fix No4 MkII mistake

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  1. #11
    Advisory Panel Brian Dick's Avatar
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    I've had a few hundred of the nos No.4Mk.2 rifles but have never peeled and cleaned one. I have cleaned up a few messes like that with ease. The last being an M1icon rifle that had boiled linseed glopped all over it including on the metal. What a sticky mess it was! Here's how to fix it quickly and easily. Remove the wood, wash it in Dollar Store, grocery store grade clear ammonia. Wipe it off gently with a Scotchbrite/spongy pad, clean the nooks and crannies with a soft bristle toothbrush. There won't be any elbow grease needed. You'll see the mess come off almost immediately. Then rinse the wood pieces with cool water, pat dry or blow off with a compressor and set them in the sun to dry. That would take about 20 minutes here in South Carolina right now. There's no need for stain but stain if you want using an alcohol based stain. Chestnut Ridge is good if you like a reddish military tint. That being said with your rifle, I would forget the stain and just soak the freshly cleaned wood with raw linseed oilicon on a sponge brush. I like to warm the wood up in the sun, (the linseed tanks that were used originally were just warmed, not hot), and carefully rub it out with fine steel wool and then just by hand, mopping off excess with a blue paper shop towel. Just keep applying coats of raw linseed until it won't take any more or you're happy with the finish. You'll be amazed how fast it takes on a sheen as original if you do it this way. Three or four coats will do it. Taught to me by a real craftsman who specialized in restoring antique firearms and building Pennsylvania and other black powder rifles from scratch. The ammonia cleans the oil and grime off almost immediately, doesn't harm or discolor anything and once rinsed and dried, leaves a perfect base to start over with the finishing process. Remember to wear gloves and work outdoors with good ventilation.


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  4. #12
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    Definately beech or birch I would say and I think that a lot of these last Mk2's came out with VERY pale natural wood. Obviously hot linseed dipped of course but I say that it probably came as a very pale wood. Why it was dark when it was unwrapped, then I say that's because the protective grease coating, protected by the original greaseproof wrapping had stained the wood. Just my opinion of course. The way to tell is to take a handguard off and see what colour the wood is underneath. Because if it WAS stained at Fazakerley when new, inside it'll STILL be stained.

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    Advisory Panel Brian Dick's Avatar
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    I'm with Peter on this one. I don't think I've ever seen a No.4Mk.2 that was nos and out of the wrap with what looked like stained wood. Just clean it and reoil it. The patina will come back after rubbing it out with several coats and you won't even be able to tell.

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  9. #14
    Advisory Panel Brian Dick's Avatar
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    I'll venture a wild *** guess, (WAG), as to what the original powdered stain was that the REME Armourers mixed into the hot linseed oilicon tank. Ground Alkinet root. High grade Britishicon gunmakers have been using it for centuries to stain wood. I actually acquired some of the actual root which I'll mix into a small container of raw linseed oilicon to see how it works.

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  11. #15
    Senior Member capt14k's Avatar
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    He says he is going to follow directions given here to prep the stock then boil in a vat of pure linseed oilicon. I will update when he does and post pics.


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    (the linseed tanks that were used originally were just warmed, not hot)Heed this advice I would not go sticking a stock in boiling linseed oilicon less you run the risk of warping the stock it may not happen but why take the risk you can get the same result like BD says with a bit of time and little effort we are not at war globally so a war time expedient does not have to be done..........his call but remember if it goes south you were advised on how to do it with modern techniques.

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  14. #17
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    Brian is right. Our linseed tanks were pleasantly warm to hot when you put your hands into it. If you are bent on health and safety etc etc and didn't take kindly to the work practices in our big and small workshop facilities, the 60's and 70's Army wasn't the place for you. Linseed tanks, boiling trichlorethylene and carbon tetrachloride tanks were the norm. I did see a pair of rubberised gloves and a leather apron once and that was in the battery shop!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Laidlericon View Post
    If you are bent on health and safety etc etc and didn't take kindly to the work practices in our big and small workshop facilities, the 60's and 70's Army wasn't the place for you.
    Gas baths for weapons cleaning...at least they were outside. I still didn't want my hands in them much, just enough to do what you needed. The rubber gloves were part of the NBC gear and not for playing house with.
    Regards, Jim

  17. #19
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    Luckily, yoiu, me and Muffer were all of the same serving era BAR so we're all on the same wavelength so to speak. Talking of which, ain't heard from Muffer for a while. Where are you Muffer?

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  19. #20
    Contributing Member mrclark303's Avatar
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    I would use Liberian spirit based wood stain on that, red scotchbrite first, making sure it's clean and dry, then apply (I would suggest light oak colour) apply to desired finish, cut raw linseed oilicon 50% with turps, then follow on with neat linseed oilicon applications.

    Buff with a cloth to semi Matt finish and it will very closely match the original finish.
    Last edited by mrclark303; 07-22-2019 at 05:32 AM.

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