Another Lee Speed style stock

Von Gruff

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The second grain raising this morning at 360grit. Will l eave it again for 24 hours before starting in with the 600grit to raise the grain again.
IMG_20180912_114903.jpg
 

Shootist43

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Why is sanding the stock with finer and finer sandpaper called raising the grain? What is really happening? My subsequent question what is filling the grain? What is used to do it? Please show photos of the before and after. Are these prosses required because the finished stock is "oiled" rather than having a "finish" i.e. a thinned varnish applied?
 

Von Gruff

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Why is sanding the stock with finer and finer sandpaper called raising the grain? What is really happening? My subsequent question what is filling the grain? What is used to do it? Please show photos of the before and after. Are these prosses required because the finished stock is "oiled" rather than having a "finish" i.e. a thinned varnish applied?
There are two seperate operations involved here Art. Using finer grades of sandpaper is to remove the scrathes from the previous coarser grit paper. and when it gets to 360 grit raising the grain is simply wetting the wood which causes the fibers cut by the sandpaper to stand up and then when you go over it again with sandpaper it cuts those grain ends off. Wetted and sanded twice with the 360 grit then twice at 600 grit leaves a surface that has nearly all the grain torn by the sanding grits cut off flush with the surface and is then ready for filling the grain. That is done in small areas at a time by applying a liberal amount of BLO or if the wood is light coloured it may be best to use BLO with alkanet root to highlight the grain (giving it the old english slightly red finish) and sand it in with 600 git paper. It will be done twice with 600 grit and then with 1000 grit. The slurry caused by sanding with the oil will fill in any open pores in the wood. The the finish can be started with hand rubbed coats of Tung oil and the last coat may be rubbed back with rotton stone (a pumice powder) in oil to reduce the shine if a gloss finish is not desired.
 

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Von Gruff

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Really love the old Lee speed rifles. Truly the essence of the early British stalking rifle.
Thanks Stuart. I agree and having had numerous genuine rifles in hand and built many more I have been permanently adicted to the style and feel of these old stalking rifles and of course this also carries over to the mauser based rifles as well.
 

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Will get something later in the day Art but it dosent look much different now to the pic shown up the page.
 

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Not enough difference from the pic above to take another one today but got another 1000grit wet sanding done which is just with turps and is the last wet sand. Will go over it next with a 1000grit dry sand and then start the finish. Different walnut may need more or less preperatory surface work due to cell size in the wood etc.
 

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Been very pleased with progress and have the prepetory coats of finish done. I go over the stock including all the inletting and under the butt plate with a mix of equal part pure tung oil, refined boiled linseed oil, marine varnish and vegetable turps. Brush it on and leave for 15 minutes then wipe off and this helps to seal the surface with three coats today, 4 hours apart and will leave it now for 48 hours before I start hand rubbing in the tung oil.
This 4 part mix is what I use for my knife handles although I give them 5 coats without any suplimentary finish as the surface is very nice and servicable like that.
 

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Getting close now with the last tung oil going on. will let it dry properly and then wax it so should be able to show it off later in the week and hope to deliver it friday.
 

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I have a VZ 24 action that has Colombian Famage markings so I may get it scrubbed and do another early rigby styled stock from a blank I have sitting here doing nothing. No suitable barrel and not sure what direction to go in with that but will inlet for the action and see what comes along that might be worth persueing.
Definately an oberndorf type bolt and possibly a square bridge
 

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@Von Gruff your skills are fantastic! Ever think of applying your craft to more valuable donor guns? Lee Speeds, the very best of them, are worth less than the price of a good stocker like you applying your craft to them. However, $12,000 double rifles with broken stocks can be had for $5000-$6000 as a bucket of parts if only there were good stockers out there willing to get things done quickly and cheaply. (less than 2 years, less than $4000).
 

Von Gruff

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@rookhawk I have had exactly one enquiery about a double rifle but because I hadn't done one before he decided not to chance me doing it for him and the type of market you are meaning is almost non existent here in NZ with only you guys and maybe a 1/2 dozen people here in NZ knowing that I like to play with this type of thing.
It is not so much the value in the finished rifle that is the important result for those I do them for as I charge next to nothing for it (realativley speaking) but it is the ability to go hunt with such a light and pointable rifle which has such a rich history here that drives the need and the desire for them..
A little like someone on your side of the pond doing G&H style '06's for those that want to recreate (in their mind) a hunt with the feel from when they were the top of the line rifles.
 

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All waxed this morning so thought I would get a couple of pics to finish the thread with









and of course the companion knife with walnut handles from the same blank.
 

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Von Gruff

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Thanks @AdamFromMN It is a pleasure to have these projects to play with and the conversation with like minded forum members makes a positive addition to that.
 

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