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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have my camp 9 original stock stripped, cleaned, and lightly sanded to a smooth, unstained appearance (birch wood, I believe). I am trying to figure out what stain to use, as I know from prior experience the standard walnut stain looks terrible. For those of you who have thoroughly refinished an original stock, what stain did you use? If you did not use a stain, what oil or other coating did you use?

Thanks for your help.

Jim
 

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Depends on if you want to stain it Walnut or some shade of Walnut. You will want to use an oil based stain so it penetrates the wood. After you get the shade you like then seal it with a grain sealer. I have been using Birchwood Casey products for many years with very good results. You have to decide if you are going to go with a polyurethane final finish or an oiled finish. Minwax has some nice stains and polyurethane finishes. If you are not good at hand rubbing I suggest the spray on finish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thanks, cowboy. I had a camp 9 5 years ago that I refinished in walnut (oil based), and it was so ugly, uneven, blotchy, I stripped it and just used linseed oil. I gave stained lots of walnut wood stocks with walnut stain, and they turned out great, but this is not walnut wood. I wanted to know if there is a better color than walnut. Have you stained one of these in walnut? Mine would not take the stain...it sat mostly on the surface, and was really ugly.
 

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I've always been happy with straight Tru-Oil from Birchwood Casey. It has a very slight tint to it.

If I want to add color to a stock, I use water-based aniline dyes. But I still finish it with Tru-Oil after color is applied.
 

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Birch is difficult to stain evenly and usually looks blotchy. The best bet is to seal it then spray the stain on in thin even coats until you get the color you are after. I have done this with difficult woods and it turns out really nice when done right. Or you could just live with the color of the birch stocks.
 

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Here's a couple of non-walnut stocks that I've refinished - two store brand Marlin-made levers, a Marlin 25N, and Glenfield Model 60.

The two levers and Marlin bolt were stripped down to bare wood and have nothing but Tru-Oil on them. The Glenny was also stripped and has yellow, water-based aniline dye and then Tru-Oil.

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I've only restained a couple of birch stocks, one a Swede Mauser and the other a black powder half stock 50 cal rifle. I think it is really tough to make birch look like walnut so settled on a very different look using water based cherry stain. This gives a very nice and even orange-red tone without any blotchiness but of course if the stock has large looking grain it can always look nasty with almost any color stain. Tight birch grain with cherry stain then only takes a few coats of BLO to achieve a very nice almost clear look.
 

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I used Rit dye in the bottle. "Dye More" synthetic in chocolate brown. No blotches and very dark brown results.
I don't recommend Watco danish oil. It looked nice but is no good out in the elements .
 
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