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 Post subject: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2021 10:19 am 
Field Grade

Joined: Sat Jan 30, 2021 5:59 pm
Posts: 28
Depending on the gun I usually need a little cast-off. Some guns, like the Browning Auto-5 are thin enough at the comb that a straight stock is okay but I recently acquired a SxS Browning BSS that has a wide stock that needed some adjustment. I watched a video or two on the different methods and also found some good info on this forum.

It is surprisingly easy to do. Put the receiver in a padded vise. Bolted a piece of 4x4 to my bench to serve as as something to affix a couple of c-clamps to. Removed the trigger guard. Wrapped the wrist area with cheesecloth. Heated peanut oil to around 250 degrees then slowly soaked the cloth. Took about 1 1/2 hours to get the stock to warm through completely. At that point it bends easily. The BSS has a 6-8” stock bolt so I could only bend the stock about 3/16” at the comb but that is enough. No damage to finish or anything else. Turned out great. I’ll post a pic or two if I ever figure out how to do it on this site. :D




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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2021 10:53 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2016 11:45 am
Posts: 2170
Interesting, I’ve contemplated doing something like that.

Question, so from the receiver to the butt pad the stock is at an angle then is that correct ? The further back the more offset ? Does anyone ever bend the angle, then further on bend back straight ?


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2021 11:16 am 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2018 3:03 pm
Posts: 131
Draw bolt type buttstocks are a bit more difficult to heat bend.

You may damage the stock finish with most heat or hot oil methods.

The grain of the wood has a memory and wants to return to its "straight" position over time. Nothing holds it ins place once removed from the jig (Think of a steam bent chair back -- once one end is freed they tend to spring back). So don't be surprised if the heat bent stock loses its bend dimensions over time and returns closer to wherever it started.


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2021 11:17 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Tue Jun 15, 2004 11:55 am
Posts: 5599
Location: Hemingway, S.C. 29554
I am glad to hear about your success. I never tried oil but it sounds like an effective method. I am left handed and almost all imported SXS shotguns from Europe have cast to accommodate a right handed shooter. I can deal with neutral cast but not cast in the wrong direction. My first stock bending experience was in the latter 1990's & I have bent a dozen or so since then. My experience is pretty much the same as yours. I suppose you could bend the stock bolt or enlarge the hole a little but I have not needed to do that so far. I just stick to the basics. Support the stock well so you don't damage anything & don't get in a hurry. I use infrared heat lamps & let the pressure & heat do it's thing for as long as it takes.


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2021 7:09 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sat Jan 30, 2021 5:59 pm
Posts: 28
McFarmer wrote:
Interesting, I’ve contemplated doing something like that.

Question, so from the receiver to the butt pad the stock is at an angle then is that correct ? The further back the more offset ? Does anyone ever bend the angle, then further on bend back straight ?


If I understand your question, I bent butt of mine to the right as I shoulder the gun or “cast-off”. If you were to look down the from the muzzle end you’d see that the butt of the stock is slightly to the left. It bends at the rear of the grip area. The bolt in a BSS is small with plenty of room drilled out of the stock so it may not have had any effect on the outcome.


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2021 1:41 pm 
Crown Grade
User avatar

Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:59 am
Posts: 6512
Location: Neosho, MO
In stock bending the terminology for the initial movement when the bending force is removed is "springback". The amount a stock will springback is closely related to the amount of force required to bend the stock once the pre-heat is completed and must be compensated for to get your required dimensions. On a 1/4" bend, setting in 3/8" to allow for springback is a good ballpark figure in my experience. The springback occurs rather slowly, but once the stock is fully cooled to ambient temperature, the bend remaining is permanent. I have stocks bent 15 years ago that have never changed at all. Every stock is different, with some stocks absolutely refusing to take a bend. Luckily I've only encountered a few unbendable stocks that slowly crept back to their original dimensions as they cooled. Pictured below is the stock bending jig I use for my guns. Red GE heat lamps are used to transfer the requisite heat to the wrist for the bend.

Image

_________________
An elderly gentleman, his faithful dogs, and a 16 ga SXS. All is right with the world.


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2021 1:50 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2016 11:45 am
Posts: 2170
Do you have a photo with a shotgun in the jig ? It would help me visualize how it’s used.

Thanks.


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2021 2:03 pm 
Presentation Grade
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Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2012 12:15 pm
Posts: 970
Location: Kentucky
I'm gonna guess here...

The gun sits in the jig "upside down" by that I mean that the rib sits in the groove along center line.

The muzzle end of the barrel(s) is secured in the bracket at the upper left corner of the photo.

The clamps in the middle of the jig secure the receiver.

The three round clamps in the large frame in the lower right corner of the picture hold the meaty part of the buttstock.

The muzzle clamps and the receiver clamps hold the gun rigidly in place, while the buttstock clamps apply pressure in the desired direction.

How did I do? I have never seen a stock bending jig, but the idea of the thing seems pretty straight forward to me.

_________________
Cancer survivor since 2011


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2021 4:49 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sat Jan 30, 2021 5:59 pm
Posts: 28
Riflemeister wrote:
In stock bending the terminology for the initial movement when the bending force is removed is "springback". The amount a stock will springback is closely related to the amount of force required to bend the stock once the pre-heat is completed and must be compensated for to get your required dimensions. On a 1/4" bend, setting in 3/8" to allow for springback is a good ballpark figure in my experience. The springback occurs rather slowly, but once the stock is fully cooled to ambient temperature, the bend remaining is permanent. I have stocks bent 15 years ago that have never changed at all. Every stock is different, with some stocks absolutely refusing to take a bend. Luckily I've only encountered a few unbendable stocks that slowly crept back to their original dimensions as they cooled. Pictured below is the stock bending jig I use for my guns. Red GE heat lamps are used to transfer the requisite heat to the wrist for the bend.

Image

Gosh, that’s a nice tool. My bending rig is comparatively crude. A 6” Wilton vice with padded jaws and a six inch chunk of fir 4x4, both bolted to a heavy workbench. I used heat lamps along with heated peanut oil, the heat lamps just to maintain the warmth. I have heard that stocks with a draw bolt tend to straighten out more often due to the pressure of the bolt drawing the stock to the receiver. I guess I’ll find out.


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2021 7:28 pm 
Crown Grade
User avatar

Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:59 am
Posts: 6512
Location: Neosho, MO
Road Man wrote:
I'm gonna guess here...

The gun sits in the jig "upside down" by that I mean that the rib sits in the groove along center line.

The muzzle end of the barrel(s) is secured in the bracket at the upper left corner of the photo.

The clamps in the middle of the jig secure the receiver.

The three round clamps in the large frame in the lower right corner of the picture hold the meaty part of the buttstock.

The muzzle clamps and the receiver clamps hold the gun rigidly in place, while the buttstock clamps apply pressure in the desired direction.

How did I do? I have never seen a stock bending jig, but the idea of the thing seems pretty straight forward to me.


You absolutely nailed it. I probably should have included that info, but really tried to address the springback issue and the permanence of the remaining bend. Most of the stocks I've bent have had a through bolt securing the stock to the action. A couple of the guns actually ended up putting a little bend in the through bolt with no adverse affects. The through bolt should be tight when bending the stock as that helps stabilize the head of the stock to prevent damage. The pictures below show the jig with a gun being bent to 3/8" cast off. The bend you see there will spring back quite a bit when the bending force is removed.

Image

Image

Image

_________________
An elderly gentleman, his faithful dogs, and a 16 ga SXS. All is right with the world.


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2021 7:52 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sat Jan 30, 2021 5:59 pm
Posts: 28
I wound up with 3/16” cast off which is all I need. I did make sure the draw bolt was tight before starting. I was a little nervous going in but the further I got into the project the more confident I became. I’m pleased with the result.
Just curious, how long does it take to warm the stock using only lamps? Using a combination of hot peanut oil and lamps the stock bent fairly easily after around 90 minutes. While the peanut oil did not hurt the finish on the wood or metal, it makes a mess. I had to disassemble the gun to clean any that may have seeped into the safety / trigger area. On top of that my shop stank like a cheap Chinese buffet for a week.


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2021 8:47 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Jan 23, 2017 9:08 am
Posts: 2469
Location: Central NH
If spring back while cooling is an issue, why not leave pressure on the stock as it cools?

I realize there would still be some, but wouldn't it be less?


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2021 9:00 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sat Jan 30, 2021 5:59 pm
Posts: 28
painter* wrote:
If spring back while cooling is an issue, why not leave pressure on the stock as it cools?

I realize there would still be some, but wouldn't it be less?


That’s exactly what I did, left the stock in the clamp until it was cool.


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2021 10:15 am 
Crown Grade
User avatar

Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:59 am
Posts: 6512
Location: Neosho, MO
painter* wrote:
If spring back while cooling is an issue, why not leave pressure on the stock as it cools?

I realize there would still be some, but wouldn't it be less?


That is the procedure. I'll now cover the rest of the story on stock bending.

The lamps are placed about 10-12" from the stock and I use a cotton patch saturated with canola oil to wet the wrist before turning on the lamps. The oil aids the heat transfer into the stock. I reapply the oil about every 5 minutes while heating.

Preheat the stock 35 minutes or so and then slowly apply the bend and approximately 50% extra springback allowance. Note how much effort it takes to bend the stock, if it's like a wet noodle, very little springback will occur, but if the stock takes a lot of effort, there may be more than 50% springback.

Once the bend has been applied, continue heating for an additional 20 minutes.

At the end of the heating time, turn off the lamps and allow the stock to cool to ambient temperature with the bending force still in place. I often use a fan to speed the cooling.

Once the stock is fully cooled, and I often allow several hours, remove the bending force and springback will slowly occur. After a couple of hours, whatever remains of your bend will be permanent.

Sorry about doing this piecemeal, but I had not intended to do a tutorial on stock bending.

The heat lamps are GE 250 watt red heat lamps. Don't use the Sylvanias, they are way too hot.

_________________
An elderly gentleman, his faithful dogs, and a 16 ga SXS. All is right with the world.


Last edited by Riflemeister on Fri Feb 05, 2021 10:23 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2021 10:18 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2016 11:45 am
Posts: 2170
Thanks for the effort, I may take an older gun out of the safe and give it a try.


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2021 6:16 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Jan 23, 2017 9:08 am
Posts: 2469
Location: Central NH
McFarmer wrote:
Thanks for the effort, I may take an older gun out of the safe and give it a try.

+1...

I really appreciate the explanation!

Another question for Riflemeister...have you ever had any luck bending up, and or, down?


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2021 7:28 pm 
Crown Grade
User avatar

Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:59 am
Posts: 6512
Location: Neosho, MO
painter* wrote:
McFarmer wrote:
Thanks for the effort, I may take an older gun out of the safe and give it a try.

+1...

I really appreciate the explanation!

Another question for Riflemeister...have you ever had any luck bending up, and or, down?


Very limited. The big issue is trying to support the head of the stock while putting in the bending force. It would be real easy to damage the stock trying to significantly change the drop. I did about 1/8" more drop on a 16 ga BSA Classic (Zabala) and a similar drop bend on a 16 ga Dickinson. Early on in my bending efforts, I did attempt to get some of the drop out of an older Savage Fox, but gave up the attempt when the head of the stock started to leave it's mortise in the action. I did consider trying to tightly wrap twine around the stock in the action tang area, but instead just started buying guns with my 1 1/2" DAC and 2 1/4" DAH.

_________________
An elderly gentleman, his faithful dogs, and a 16 ga SXS. All is right with the world.


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 Post subject: Re: First stock bending experience.
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2021 7:34 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Jan 23, 2017 9:08 am
Posts: 2469
Location: Central NH
Thanks again!

I guess I'll leave the Cheek-Eez pads on my old LeFever's. {hs#




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