Milled Stock Blanks for BP

Discussion in 'Black Powder Shooting / Muzzleloaders / Handguns' started by missourikid, Jan 11, 2017.

  1. missourikid

    missourikid Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2015
    Do anyone of you guys buy just milled blanks for your stocks when you build your rifles? I'm looking at cutting a couple of Cherry trees for my own use and possibly selling in my shop for those who want the added the challenge of cutting out their own stocks, and am having trouble with the pricing if I do go that route?
    grcsat likes this.
  2. Jeff Brown

    Jeff Brown Well-Known Member

    Dec 5, 2016
    Yep I have done one or 2. I have never chosen cherry. Usually maple, birdseye maple, curly maple or walnut.. I'm currently in the middle of assisting the son inlaw on the how to. He is doing a long rifle in a .45 from birdseye.

    IIRC I have seen full length cherry blanks for 100.00 plus ship.
    Pricing with walnut and maple depends on the Grades of the blanks. The higher the grade of wood the pricier it is
    grcsat likes this.

  3. missourikid

    missourikid Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2015
    Ok I'm currently doing one in .36 maple or hickory as the stock was given to me I'm not sure which. I'm also planning on hickory, maple, and walnut too.
  4. PRR1957

    PRR1957 Well-Known Member

    Dec 2, 2016
    Berkley, Michigan
    When harvesting wood for items such as a gun stock, first the the tree has to be limbed out than the main trunk has to be lowered with a crane, not dropped. If dropped the tress cellulose fibers will break and the wood will fuzz up on when sanded. Then the wood has to cut into slabs at least 20% larger than the needed size. The ends of the slabs need to be painted with melted bee's wax so the ends don't dry out first and crack.(A visible crack will actually be 70% longer that visible.) The wood needs to be stacked with 2 X 4's separating the slabs so air can circulate allowing the wood to dry out along its whole length and if dried like that it will take about two years for the wood to fully cure in a temperature of 65 degrees F. and a humidity of less than 15%. If you can find a lumber yard that has a kiln to dry the wood in, it will speed up the drying process to about 4 months with one week in a kiln. This is all done so as the have a piece of wood that will be stable and not warp or crack at a later time. Also. When working the wood in your case as a gun stock, you should work it so far and then let it set for a day to allow the wood to stabilize because as the wood is remove, the wood fibers stress will be relived and the wood will want to shift to a relaxed position.

    I have as a hobby built electric guitars and electric bass guitars for over 40 years now and as a result had to learn about wood.
    Jeff Brown, bosun, Twicepop and 3 others like this.
  5. grcsat

    grcsat Well-Known Member

    Oct 2, 2010
    I do agree with PRR1957 about the way to handle wood for stocks.
    The one exeption is when I have picked out Rock Maple for rifle blanks.
    What I have done in the past is after finding a good tree is to cut the root system around the tree so it falls over on it's own accord.( have to use a few ropes for a directional fall) This is always done in late spring. We never delimb the tree until fall time when we come to pick it up. Leaving the leaves and branches on dryes out the wood slower than a cut and pile and you never have to worry about the wood developing cracks before you seal the cut ends of the blank.
    I don't know of a single commercial place that is willing to work with Rock Maple due to all the sand or what ever gets caught up in the wood grain.
    Jeff Brown and PRR1957 like this.
  6. grcsat

    grcsat Well-Known Member

    Oct 2, 2010
    Before you start cutting wood, you really should know about grain patterns for rifle stocks.
    Most trees will give you one very good stock blank and the rest of the tree will just good or ok wood for a stock blank. That one great piece of wood can be worth more than all the other blanks cut from the same tree. The one really good blank is where the money is.
    There is a reason why some blanks are worth $40 and others are worth $400.
  7. Shooter45

    Shooter45 *Administrator* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2001
    Here at TFF
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