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 Post subject: Refinishing Wood
PostPosted: Wed Feb 29, 2012 12:22 am 
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DOSAAF
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Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2010 11:23 am
Posts: 339
Location: NJ
Howdy folks!

I've inherited the body and accessories to an RPK-74, courtesy of Doorman. Had the gearbox of my Inokatsu RPK rebuilt since I shattered it after 18000 rounds in 24 hours (two 8 hour games, back to back in December).

Since an RPK-74 is more correct than an RPK for our time era (and works well with my Soviets in Afghanistan weapon collection) I greatly appreciate Doorman's contribution to this.

So, with the help of a guide posted by Sherony: http://stlouisairsoftplayers.com/forum/ ... ight=paint I decided to take the two photos involving the refinishing of wood, and expand on it for the **** retentive/OCD people like myself. So, hat tip to Sherony for the ground work!

Before we use any power tools, let's take a moment to talk about shop safety. Be sure to read, understand, and follow all the safety rules that come with your power tools. Knowing how to use your power tools properly will greatly reduce the risk of personal injury. And remember this: there is no more important safety rule than to wear these — safety glasses.

Bonus points if your internal monologue read that with Norm Abram's voice!

Without further adieu: Franken RPK-74: A combination of Inokatsu (Dust Cover, Selector Lever, Bipod, Pistol Grip) and Echo 1 (Stock, Gas Tube, Body, Bolt, Barrel, Front Sight), RPK-74. It really only needs a real steel RPK-74 bipod (which has slight differences from the RPK bipod) RPK-74 rear sight, and an RPK-74 flashhider, which, apparently the real deal are -14mm threaded, so it will screw right on.

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Very purty. Thanks again Doorman!

Original finish on the Stock. An Orangy-Blondish color.

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Original finish on the Foregrip and Gas Tube wood.

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To start off, remove the furniture from your gun. Also remove any metallic pieces that you don't want to paint, such as the butt stock cover, gas tube, sling loop, handguard end caps, etc. You just want the bare wood. You will also need:

Coarse Sandpaper. I used 60 grit. It's made in Canada, so naturally it wants to destroy WARPAC equipment.

Minwax Wood Finish - Red Mahogany (the same kind you use for the grain on your Fakelite magazines.)
Minwax Semi-Gloss Fast Drying Polyurethane (Fast Drying is a lie. Give it a day).
Paint Brushes (Don't mix your Stain and your Polyurethane brush without a thorough cleaning... or just used a 2nd brush.
Latex or Nitrile Gloves. You don't want this stuff on your hands.

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Start by stroking your wood. Or, using the coarse sandpaper to remove the finish from the wood. Using 60 grit sandpaper, I finished all 3 pieces in about 20 minutes. Probably faster if I actually used an electric sander, but where's the fun in that. Work with your hands! It's good for you!

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You know you're done when there's no more shine on the part you're sanding. Also, don't intentionally sand the "inside parts" of the furniture, such as whatever interfaces with the foregrip end caps, or the part the butt plate goes over. Here's a comparison of before (bottom foregrip and stock) and after sanding (upper foregrip).

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Making progress, the upper and lower foregrip are sanded.

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All 3 parts are done. Don't go crazy. Don't permanently alter the shape of your furniture. Just sand until the shine and the color disappear. Don't worry about sanding out dings and dents. This is character. As I got my parts used from Doorman, there's some great character in this furniture, and I'm hoping through use to add more!

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I don't really have an intervening photo here. It's impossible. So I'll just say that once I finished sanding, I wiped off as much of the powder as possible, and proceeded to paint on a semi-thin coat of wood stain. You don't want it dripping wet, but you don't want to dry brush the primer on. Paint. Paint like you're painting a wall. I recommend starting with the biggest pieces first, so that you still have enough paint on the brush for the smaller parts, without having to re-dunk your brush. And, don't actually dunk the brush. Like they say, just the tip, just for a minute, just to see how it feels. That's all the wood stain you need.

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You'll note that it's way too red when freshly painted. Just roll with it. We'll fix that soon enough.

Once your parts are painted and you've cordoned off the area they're sitting in, set a timer for 15 minutes.

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Go listen to the first 5 tracks off of "45" the first album by КИНО, which is way cooler than staring at your microwave's timer.

Once the timer is up, or the songs are over (Track 3 and 5 are AWESOME), go rub your wood. Or, take a paper towel (which, some people will say not to, because of all the fibers you'll leave behind, but my wife yells at me when I use dish rags for this stuff, so paper towels it is!) and wipe off as much varnish as you can. You don't have to scrub, but you should try clean off as much as possible. The wet stuff, obviously, but you'll notice if you keep wiping a spot, you'll keep getting varnish on the napkin. If it's very very light, move on. Wipe down all 3 pieces.

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Without Flash. The Upper Foregrip and Stock are unwiped. The lower foregrip is being wiped.

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An unwiped upper foregrip compared to the wiped lower foregrip.

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Once everything is wiped down, paint it again. Same method. Don't soak it, but don't run the brush dry. One dipping should cover all 3 pieces.

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Set your 15 minute timer again, and listen to tracks 6-11 off the same album.

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Yea, it's the same photo. Big deal, wanna fight about it?

Once the music and timer is up, wipe down the furniture again. The second wiping will start to show your final product... still a little too light, IMO. You may re-coat as many times as you'd like. I prefer the slightly redder color, so I opt to do a 3rd coat. Sherony's original guide says 3-4 is about right.

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2nd Wipe, without flash:

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Apply the 3rd coat, per the instructions above. You should be a master at this now.

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Another 15 minute timer. Finish the album, and then listen to tracks 3 and 5 again. Yeah, that's like 17 minutes, but who cares.

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When your timer is up, and the music is done, wipe down the furniture again. Now is when you decide if you'd like to darken it up even more with another coat, or finalize the stain job.

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3rd Coat, wiped, without flash:

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If you are coating the furniture again, follow the above steps: Paint on the wood stain, let stand 15 minutes, wipe it off. If you're satisfied with the color you're at, it's time to apply the polyurethane. But first, a 30 minute air-dry session. Just put tracks 3 and 5 on loop for 30 minutes. Or go polish your boots.

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30 minutes are up, here's a quick "before polyurethane" photo of the stock. Compare this to the second photo from above... or, without scrolling, I'll just post the second photo again:

Before:

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After (Without Polyurethane) (Without Flash):

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After (Without Polyurethane) (With Flash):

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Noticeable difference. I put the full res versions of both pics up, one on each of my 17" monitors, for an epic side by side. It looks great!

Now, crack open your Polyurethane. The instructions say do not shake. It's also flammable, and the vapor will kill you. Can't be worse than smoking belamorkanals! Crack open a window... or don't like I did. Carefully stir the polyurethane. Stir from a bottom upward motion, as you'll see two distinct layers if your can has sat as long as mine. You want these layers well mixed before you proceed.

Take your 2nd brush, and paint on a layer of polyurethane. It goes on very water like, so be careful of dripping. Paint with the grain, and make sure the entire piece (minus the ends or insides, or parts you don't want to paint) look wet. If you have a dry spot, then you missed. Go back over it with a wet brush of polyurethane.

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And my microwave wouldn't let me set a 24 hour timer, so you'll just have to wing it. Don't touch for 24 hours. Let that polyurethane really set. Avoid fingerprints or laying the pieces down on anything. If you have family, threaten death if they bump into your workspace (aka the dining room table).

After 24 hours, the pieces should be handle-able. Re-install them, put your ID number somewhere, and post up pics!

I shall post up the finished product tomorrow after work... in about 24 hours!

_________________
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http://www.operationeastwind.com
"Not because it is easy..."
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 Post subject: Re: Refinishing Wood
PostPosted: Wed Feb 29, 2012 10:41 pm 
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DOSAAF
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Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2010 11:23 am
Posts: 339
Location: NJ
Part 2, as promised!

The Polyurethane has dried for about 26 hours. In fact, at about 22 hours in, it was still damp in some spots. Good to go now! The rest are mostly with and without flash photos demonstrating the color, and a final before and after photo for all to enjoy!

Finished product, no flash:

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Finished product, with flash:

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It wouldn't be one of my guns if it didn't have a special education sized armory number on it.

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Armory number, without flash, and still drying.

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Closeup of the finished stock, with flash:

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Closeup of the finished stock, without flash:

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Closeup of the finished upper and lower foregrip, with flash.

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Closeup of the finished upper and lower foregrip, without flash:

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And finally, a good and proper Before and After photo.

Before:

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After:

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Thanks for looking!

_________________
ГСВГ, 8 ОА, 27 МСД, 5 ОРБ, 7 РР, Cтарший Лейтенант Куперов

http://www.operationeastwind.com
"Not because it is easy..."
Like & Follow Op:EW on Facebook

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