Originally Posted by TheOldMan
Checked out your shotgun thread also.. Nice job on the wood especially considering it had been "customized" with the initials.. If you don't mind, could you share your process with me/us? I'd like to know how you degrease your stock(s) and what you mean by "bleaching" (as asked in your other thread).
My process, which was basically given to me by a buddy of mine that is working towards starting a gunsmith business.
1. Cleaning/Degreasing: I take the wood and thoroughly soak it with Krud Kutter...a cleaner/degreaser that is available at Home Depot. I spray a heavy amount on the wood and let it sit for about 3 minutes. Then I use a green monster (green scratch pad) to scrub it down with. I repeat this step 2 to 3 times. Not only does it clean it, but it helps to remove some of the wood finish.
2. Steaming/Bleaching: After I'm done with the cleaning/degreasing I put the wood into the dishwasher and run a standard cycle with detergent. Once it gets to the drying cycle, the dishwasher builds up a lot of steam to help swell the wood and start bringing up the dents, dings, and shallow scratches. It also helps with the continued cleaning and removing more of the wood finish by use of a bleaching action. For more direct steaming on a particular difficult blemish in the wood is to use a wet wash cloth and an iron. You don't want to do this too often because too much repeated heat my start to crack the wood. As for bleaching, you can buy wood bleach or deck bleach to apply directly to a stain and use 0000 steel wool to help "rub" it out. Once this is done, let the wood thoroughly dry. Sometimes I let it air dry for a couple of days, but I've also put the wood in the oven under low heat.
3. Sanding: After the wood is dry, I start sanding. I start with 60 grit, step up to less course sandpaper up to 320 grit.
4. Apply finish: After sanding I start applying the finish. For me I use WATCO Teak Oil. I just like the look, and it helps to protect better and makes the wood stronger. After 3 coats, I'll give the wood a light sanding with 320 grit sandpaper, apply 2 more coats, and repeat until I'm satisfied with the look. I haven't finished the shotgun or rifle stocks yet...I'm going to get smoother sandpaper and repeat the process of sanding, staining, sanding, etc...to get the right look.
Hope this helps.