Factory Grip Panel Refinish

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Factory Grip Panel Refinish

Postby GasGuzzler » 25 Dec 2016 11

As mentioned in the rifle/pistol combo topic I am going to match some factory Blackhawk grips to my SRC stock color. Here's the start. Got some untouched factory grips from the early 1980's.

I'll try to take pics as I go.

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Re: Factory Grip Panel Refinish

Postby akuser47 » 25 Dec 2016 23

Cool I always like to see if I can learn from others technique in stock finishes. +corn
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Re: Factory Grip Panel Refinish

Postby Archer » 26 Dec 2016 20

Those don't exactly look like they matched to start with...
Could be lighting or a previous user might have been left handed?
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Re: Factory Grip Panel Refinish

Postby akuser47 » 26 Dec 2016 22

I think they are 2 different guns sides as most handgun grips like theses I thought were cut from a single piece then shaped so they'd have same grain pattern I believe. I don't know though. I'm always learning. +corn
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Re: Factory Grip Panel Refinish

Postby GasGuzzler » 27 Dec 2016 06

Ruger is not consistent in wood finish after the early 70's.

They could be from different guns or from the same. When I'm done (and they're mounted on each side of a grip frame), they'll match well enough.

They look closer in person too.
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Re: Factory Grip Panel Refinish

Postby akuser47 » 27 Dec 2016 15

I have no doubt you'll get them matched up. I anticipate your process and the end results. +corn
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Re: Factory Grip Panel Refinish

Postby Archer » 27 Dec 2016 16

akuser47 wrote:I think they are 2 different guns sides as most handgun grips like theses I thought were cut from a single piece then shaped so they'd have same grain pattern I believe. I don't know though. I'm always learning. +corn


I've seen the same block have different colors and the grain not match side to side. I've got an old Garand stock that does this, dark on one side light on the other. Even if the block matches before milling the wood density may take stain or even varnishes differently resulting in a different appearance than expected.
Then there's the possibility that one grip side has a flaw that makes it less than acceptable, a crack or a void or something revealed in the machining while the other side is fine. Those mixed parts can be assembled into pairs and may be sold as seconds or blems or used on contract guns where the appearance takes second place to price.

There used to be a vendor on the net who was pretty reasonable at a site called pic-a-grip.com he used to sell Spiegel and Ahrends grips. The Spiegel grips in particular would vary in price with how well the color and grain patterns matched side to side. A set of BHP grips that didn't much match might be $35 or so while a premium match would be running $75 or $80.
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Re: Factory Grip Panel Refinish

Postby GasGuzzler » 27 Dec 2016 18

The grain sort of matches on the heel....?

I gave $20 for the pair shipped (vintage unused take offs) so the price is low for what they sell for....a lot less than the walnut Old Model grips I had to buy to correct my 1965 Single Six.

Next step is medallion removal followed by finish removal. I'll evaluate the wood then.

I've done a few sets of XR3-RED and the new version as well as several Ruger-mud "hardwood" (after they stopped using walnut) stocks for various friends and eBay buyers. Everyone has been happy....including one guy that lost the stock I sent for years but found it in the box it was mailed in.

He owes me a pic with his old action sitting in it. Maybe he'll post a pic.
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Re: Factory Grip Panel Refinish

Postby GasGuzzler » 31 Dec 2016 09

Drill out just a tiny portion of the flare on the backside of the medallion.

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Push the medallions off with a small punch and smith hammer.

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Carefully remove the ferrule and nut.

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Fill the four cavities with candle wax. This keeps the sludge from the finish stripping process from plugging up the machined cavities.

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Next I'll strip the finish but for now I'm out of all the chemicals I use.
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Re: Factory Grip Panel Refinish

Postby akuser47 » 31 Dec 2016 10

Nice your going to have me hunting grips for my vaquero to refinish now.
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