?'s on stock blanks

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing' started by Ridge Runner, Mar 9, 2008.

  1. Ridge Runner

    Ridge Runner Well-Known Member

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    I cut a piece of walnut awhile back and decided to use it for a stock, how long should it air dry before kiln drying? anyone have any ideas?
    I ask because an old timer told me that it could easily split if dried too fast.
    RR
     
  2. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

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    I believe the old timer to be correct.

    My dad did the same thing years ago. I believe he let it dry naturally, as dry as Pennsylvania can let something dry, for about a year.

    He then sent it to Fajen who rough shaped and inlet it.

    Years later I still have the stock. Its as hard as and heavy as a rock.
     

  3. ss7mm

    ss7mm Writers Guild

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    Do you have it in "tree" form or did you rough cut it into a blank shape? The thicker the wood the longer it takes to air dry. Did you seal the end grain or is it just "natural".

    I usually let rough green wood set under controlled air conditions for at least 1 year per inch of wood thickness. If you have a good moisture meter you can periodically check the moisture content.

    Do you have access to a kiln where you can control the process?

    It won't do you much good to take it too low in moisture content because if you take it down to say 5% in a kiln and then let it sit in a living environment that has normal moisture the content of the wood will just go up again and yes you can crack it and ruin it if done improperly.

    Wood for furniture use in a home is usually milled and built into something with a moisture content around 7-8% plus or minus and I would think a stock should also work at that range. Depending on the finish used the wood may still go up and down in moisture content during different seasons or storage environments. The movement of wood is the reason that synthetic stocks are so popular.;)
     
  4. Ridge Runner

    Ridge Runner Well-Known Member

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    right now its 3.25x10x96" setting in a storage building, yes I have access to a kiln. was cut in jan/08. The tree was dead for awhile and the heart had a lil rot in it at 1 end, thats why its been regulated to a stock blank, what else can you do with a 4" long piece of walnut.

    SS, I like the feel and lightweight of synthetics, but they are just to cold in cold weather, not quite as bad an an AR in winter but almost.
    RR