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Old Gun Rack

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Peanut

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Many times as a child I sat with my Grandpa as he built things in front of the fireplace at night. With wood he used a coping saw almost exclusively. Most things were lost in the tornado of ’74. This is a gun rack he built. It hung on the wall in his living room with a couple of .22’s in it. I found it in the shop the other day. It was nasty, covered with decades of dirt and grime. I cleaned it as best I could then gave it a couple of coats of lemon oil.

It’s made from 3 different kinds of pine baseboard and trim material. All the joints need to be glued to make it structurally sound. Several places need sanding, I also bought a piece of green felt and fabric glue. I wish to retain its character yet dress it up a little. I wish to preserve it and use it.

I’m not a wood worker so I’m looking for suggestions. I know there are several woodworkers here in the forum. What would you do if this were your project?
 

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Caribou

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That is really a great find. Do you want to refinish this or keep the original finish? If you want to want to refinish it then trying to take it apart while many of the joints are loose might be best though you will need to take care not to split anything. This will hwlp with any sanding or varnishing.
 

phideaux

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Sounds like it would be easy to disassemble, sand and refinish.
IF thats what you are looking for,
Or just hit it lightly all over with 220 t0 320 grit paper and wipe it down with mineral spirit (damp only).
Then decide if you want it low lustre/Satin or semi gloss, or glossy.

Satin.. a couple coats of Boiled Linseed Oil , buff with 3 00 steel wool between coats., or 320 grit paper.
Semi gloss 4-6 coats of Boiled Linseed Oil, or a Semi gloss Urethane varnish,

Of course gloss Urethane for high shine.

If it were mine...
I'd wipe it down really good all over with 2 00 or 3 00 steel wool, clean it up really good, tighten all joints, then Johnsons Paste Wax and buff.

It depends on how much work you want , and what you want it to look like.


Jim
 

Caribou

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It also depends on how close you want to keep it to the original and how bad the finish is now. Do you know how he finished it originally?
 

Peanut

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Most of the wood had no finish, oiled maybe, except the center/back cross piece and its twin… the piece across the front of the tray. These two pieces look like they were varnished originally.

Would like to… 1. The piece of trim at the front of the tray and the piece across the back/center are ripped from the same piece of wood. A handsaw with fine teeth was used but it is still pretty rough to the touch. The upper side of each is the exposed cut. I would like to smooth these two cuts but it’s aged wood. I’m afraid sanding would change the color.

2. I would like to cover the tray with a simple lid of some type to prevent dust collecting in the tray and on boxes of shells. It’s a lot simpler to dust a lid than everything in the tray. This would mean pulling out the 2 tray dividers and cutting them at an angle. I’m unsure how this would look.

Thoughts?
 

gumpy

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Sounds like it would be easy to disassemble, sand and refinish.
IF thats what you are looking for,
Or just hit it lightly all over with 220 t0 320 grit paper and wipe it down with mineral spirit (damp only).
Then decide if you want it low lustre/Satin or semi gloss, or glossy.

Satin.. a couple coats of Boiled Linseed Oil , buff with 3 00 steel wool between coats., or 320 grit paper.
Semi gloss 4-6 coats of Boiled Linseed Oil, or a Semi gloss Urethane varnish,

Of course gloss Urethane for high shine.

If it were mine...
I'd wipe it down really good all over with 2 00 or 3 00 steel wool, clean it up really good, tighten all joints, then Johnsons Paste Wax and buff.

It depends on how much work you want , and what you want it to look like.


Jim
I agree. I'm sentimental about things like that. If my gramps made it, I'd use it as he made it.
 

Caribou

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I'll go with Gumpy. If you sand any of it you will take off the patina and you will need to sand it all. If you remove any of the dividers or cut them the cut or the lines where they were is going to stand out. I'd go with a light oil or Murphy's Oil Soap. As far as dusting it goes, it is just another chance to remember your grandfather.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0006ZHCK0/?tag=skimlinks_replacement-20
 
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Peanut

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If it were mine...
I'd wipe it down really good all over with 2 00 or 3 00 steel wool, clean it up really good, tighten all joints, then Johnsons Paste Wax and buff.
Jim
@phideaux I stopped at lowes today. They had 00 steel wool, bought some. They didn't have Johnsons Paste Wax.
The only wax they had was Minwax "Paste Finishing Wax". It also says "Special Dark" on the label. Do you think it's okay for the gun rack? :dunno:
 

phideaux

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@phideaux I stopped at lowes today. They had 00 steel wool, bought some. They didn't have Johnsons Paste Wax.
The only wax they had was Minwax "Paste Finishing Wax". It also says "Special Dark" on the label. Do you think it's okay for the gun rack? :dunno:
I do use Minwax finishing wax also.
It works good also,

But, best I can remember is, that it takes more buffing on dark woods to get a good shine.
Works best on light colored wood.

The last Johnsons paste wax I bought , was about $6 for 1lb can at Lowes.
Can't recall what I paid for the Minwax.


But, yes it will work, but I do prefer the Johnsons.

I also use Johnsons on all my guns.....wood ,Synthetics, and the metal parts.....works great as a moisture barrier on blued barrels OD.:thumbs up:



Jim
 

Peanut

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I ended up using steel wool on my Grpa's gun rack. I glued new felt in the gun slots and trimmed it up a few weeks ago. Today I finished gluing new felt in my dad's old rack. When the glue dries in a couple hours I'll trim up the felt with cuticle scissors. I'll hang both of them tomorrow. Can't believe it took 22 months to finish this little project... :( My only claim... other projects kept jumping ahead on the priority list.

Gunrack 03a.jpg
 
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