Tony

Butt treatment

13 posts in this topic

ID: 1   Posted

Has anyone had a go at preserving an old piece of wood that's been underground for a good few years?

I was thinking of some 00 wirewool and a coating of linseed oil or maybe rubbing in some beeswax, but at the same time I don't want it losing that been in a tunnel the past 100 years look.

Thanks for any suggestions.

Tony

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WP_20170703_12_06_06_Pro[51207].jpg

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ID: 2   Posted

Personally, I'd go with the beeswax: doesn't add or take away anything, but will help seal it against further desication.  With artifacts of this sort/condition, one is caught between 'making it look good' and 'keeping it as found' but musuems and conservators will always come down on the side of the latter, as it's history since it was made is a key part of it's value.

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ID: 3   Posted

I clicked on the "new threads" link and see a new thread entitled "Butt treatment" with the latest post by Peter saying "Go with beeswax, it prevents desication..."

Then I get all excited and click on it....

And find this.

Imagine my dissapointment.....

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ID: 4   Posted

If you decide to use steel wool go with 0000 (4 zero) not oiled. Most if not all 00 has oil in it. You may have to go to a wood finishing supplier. There are several good waxes and bees wax is a good one. I've finished several old stocks and use Conserver's Wax which I think is also sold under names such as Heritage Wax. Once you use any Wax or other finish you will find the "just found" look Weill be lost as Wax will darken the stock's colour. Personally I would consider just a cleaning and leaving to as is, it is a personal choice of course.

Good luck with this very interesting project and please keep us updated on your progress.

Regards

Brian

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ID: 5   Posted

Thanks for the replies and I'm pleased to hear my thoughts of what to use were along the right lines. The metalwork is dark so has no doubt had some kind of treatment like electrolysis, which is why I was thinking about waxing the butt.

I'll go with a light butt rub (no doubt music to Chris' ears) to remove the loose bits and then leave it, wax can be rubbed into the woodwork at a later date if necessary.

As for the metal well, I'll probably put some beeswax on that to prevent it turning back to orange in the little nooks and crannies and will add a photo in a day or two.

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ID: 6   Posted

Hi Tony,

I would be very cautious using wax on a weapon that has been rusted and contains a lot of pits etc. that can trap the wax in small pockets and cracks.  I've had a good deal of experience in the use of wax on weapons as well as in my wood working shop and still, after decades of experimentation, try new products on a regular basis.  On a sword or other smooth sucface wax works well as it can be hand buffed out.  On the other hand anywhere there are stampings or designs the wax will build up and once dry is very had to polish out.  On a rusted piece such as the rifle you have this can be a nightmare with pockets of white residue wax left that would be impossible to polish so that it becomes invisable as it would on a smooth surface.  If it were my rifle I would use a thin coat of light oil on the metal.  This will soak in and leave the rust a dark colour and blend with the rest of the metal that may not be rusted as badly..  Just a thin layer is enough, not an oil bath.  The reason I do not use oil on my muskets, for example, is that it will "attrect" dust, while wax will not.  Your case is different, in my opinion, as a bit of dust in the oil which will need to be wiped off once in a while and reapplied is much better than pockets of white unpolished wax residue.

Again it is a matter of personal choice, just be careful with wax coatings and try a small area where it will not show to see how wax will work before committing the whole weapon to that type of finish.  A finish such as wax, if it is the wrong finish, can be impossible to reverse.

Regards

Brian

 

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ID: 7   Posted

17 hours ago, Chris Boonzaier said:

I clicked on the "new threads" link and see a new thread entitled "Butt treatment" with the latest post by Peter saying "Go with beeswax, it prevents desication..."

Then I get all excited and click on it....

And find this.

Imagine my dissapointment.....

And you were doing so well, Chris. :(  The rest of us looked at that title and, in the extremely unlikely event that our minds went in that [low] direction, remembered the place and our roots - 'Gentleman's' - and resisted our inner demons.  But thanks for contributing!

[Actually, it was my first thought too, but... ;) ]

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ID: 8   Posted

9 hours ago, peter monahan said:

 

[Actually, it was my first thought too, ]

HA!!!!!

Say no more, say no more..... nudge nudge ... wink wink......

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ID: 9   Posted

On 04/07/2017 at 23:40, peter monahan said:

 in the extremely unlikely event that our minds went in that [low] direction, remembered the place and our roots -

[Actually, it was my first thought too, but... ;) ]

Luckily Chris does't speak Australian slang :)

So, a couple of pics are below but it's not the easiest thing to photograph.

I gave the butt a light rub with wirewool which only removed to loose stuff and the rest has been oiled rather than waxed, thanks for the tip Brian.

Just in case anyone is wondering - the magazine is empty.

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WP_20170705_13_45_48_Pro[51255].jpg

WP_20170705_13_46_20_Pro[51257].jpg

WP_20170705_13_46_36_Pro[51258].jpg

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ID: 10   Posted

I would respectfully suggest that Chris' last post implies that he does understand, if not speak, Oz. ;)

Interesting that none of the forestock but all of the butt has survived.  Thanks for sharing the full view, Tony.  Great relic.  And I suspect Brian is correct - wax would be impossible to get off/out of some of the bits on this.  I hadn't considered that when I suggested it. :(

Thanks again for sharing.

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ID: 11   Posted

11 hours ago, Tony said:

I gave the butt a light rub with wirewool which only removed to loose stuff and the rest has been oiled rather than waxed,

 

Try this and you will never ned wirewool, wax or oil.... it removes ALL the loose stuff....

http://www.ebay.de/itm/48-ROLLEN-Toilettenpapier-EINHORN-3lagig-Klopapier-WC-Papier-Klo-mit-Zauberduft-/362030537323?hash=item544ab39a6b:g:fU4AAOSw3h1ZXjY9

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ID: 12   Posted

Hi Tony,

I must echo Peter's comment; nice relic. It should display very well. Thanks for posting your results.

RegardsBrian

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ID: 13   Posted

Thanks for the positive comments, even yours Chris as 3 layers are always worth thinking about.

A shame it isn't complete and it'd be nice if the nose cap was there as I've also got a pretty decent relic 07 bayonet. It came from the Somme but I just wonder where it actually came out of the ground.

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