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02-22-2010 01:48 PM
I am lookingfor a good source or direction on making a gunstock for my son. The project will be from beginning ( cutting a blank from mesquite wood) to end ( mounting it to his action). Your advice and help, like always, will be greatly appreciated. Thank You
02-22-2010 02:08 PM
that's a very ambitious project. you don't mention if you've ever made one before. i assume you have not.
do you have an existing stock to use as a pattern?
i'd suggest you practice on some cheap wood first. if i recall, most gun stocks start as 8/4 or 10/4. say it's 8/4. get some cheap plywood, rough out a basic shape, repeat a few times and glue it up to the proper thickness. then start cutting, carving. if you make a mistake, it'll only cost you a few bucks.
02-24-2010 05:24 AM - edited 02-24-2010 05:36 AM
I have made a couple of gunstocks in the past. I wouldn't recommend plywood to start with as it will splinter and not give you the preliminary results you would want for practice. Voice of experience here. Solid wood is best, pine is too soft to work with. Oak might be a better choice. You want something that will give smooth cuts and inlets. Virtually all of your work will be by hand.
Is the wood dry? Is it for a rifle or shotgun? Do you have inletting tools, rifflers, rasps, to name a few? Do you have lots and lots of time? For a shotgun, you have to make sure that tolerances are very close where the wood meets metal at the back of the action. If it is not exact, the wood can crack. The forearm is a different story as you will have to drill a hole for the magazine. If it's for a rifle, you will need special inletting tools for the action and barrel. Also, you might want to bed the barrel or free float it. The best source for gunsmithing tools is Brownells in Montezuma, Iowa. They have tools and books that will help you get started. You can get a catalogue from them. Remember, you can take away wood but can't put it back. The time factor is a reason that custom stocks are so expensive.
The easiest finish to apply for gunstocks is Tru-Oil by Birchwood Casey.
I had a gunsmithing business but quit when the federal government started putting all kinds of extra restrictions on the industry.
02-24-2010 07:30 PM
It sounds to me like I may be getting Way Over My Head; but the good thing about using mesquite - if things do not work out I can always cook some fajitas with it.I will check Brownells. Thank You
02-25-2010 04:51 AM - edited 02-25-2010 04:53 AM
Had a thought (for a change). Many stocks are made of laminate since certain woods are getting expensive. You might try laminating some maple together for a practice stock. I have seen some laminate stocks that are downright nice. Or....you could do a google search and look for a semi-finished stock that is about 90% done. All you have to do is do the final fit and finish. My last stock is a semi-finish. However, companies that do semi-finished stocks are becoming rare. Good luck!