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I recently bought a 1971 Ruger M77 in .257 Roberts. During the initial disassembly and inspection I discovered the previous owne

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  • I recently bought a 1971 Ruger M77 in .257 Roberts. During the initial disassembly and inspection I discovered the previous owne

    I recently bought a 1971 Ruger M77 in .257 Roberts. During the initial disassembly and inspection I discovered the previous owner was a fan of WD-40. The residue has turned into a gummy varnish on the inside of the stock. The barrel and action were almost like they were glued into the stock. Beautiful rifle otherwise but I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions on how to clean up the goo in the inletted areas of the stock? Many thanks as always. - chuckles

  • #2
    Use extreme caution, but "acetone" will cut it.
    Start by using an el cheapo plastic "putty" knife to scrap out as much as possible
    .
    Acetone is "extremely" volatile! Soak, rub, rinse, repeat. You will never get 100% out, but you can get "most" of it out but I don't think you ever get it all. Maybe consider a custom stock. A Rhinehart/Fajen, perhaps a drop in synthetic?

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    • #3
      You have a treasure there so do be careful! Before you go with anything as harsh as acetone (which will remove that oil finish on Ruger in a heartbeat!) try good old fashioned rubbing alcohol. It may take a while to get the crud loosened up but that likely will do the trick. If that doesn't work use peanut butter. Yes, you heard me right. Peanut butter will go right after gunk like that. Also it's the only thing I have seen yet that will do a decent job of removing chewing gum. Understand though that most peanut butter has a fair amount of salt in it so be sure and wash things down good afterwards. I'd say the alcohol would work very well for that.

      I'd be very interested to see how it works out for you. Keep us posted.

      Comment


      • #4
        Why don't you glass bed it? You would have to remove some wood to do that anyway. Otherwise, I would probably use fine grain sandpaper or steel wool to get it out, then seal the wood with something.

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        • #5
          Chuckles

          Is the wrist of the stock dark? Stained with oil?
          If so, the oil has permeated the depths of the wood. Lubricants destroy the connective tissue in the wood. The wrist, being the thinnest part of the stock, AND, just below the action, soaks up most of the excess lubes applied to the action. ergo; the wrist becomes fragile. I'd ask a 'smith if the stock is salvageable, or how to clean it up.

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          • #6
            Ontario Honker hit it right on. I've used natural peanut butter that is low in sodium. A good wash in "HOT" water followed up with proper gun oil. I've also had great luck using lighter fluid. If you know the previous owner, tell them to put the WD-40 in the garage where it belongs and not in the gun room

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            • #7
              Maybe some brake cleaner on a rag or Rem Shotgun Cleaner? Should dissolve most of the crud. Once you get the gooey part out, the stain isn't hurting anything. I'd bet it was not WD-40, however.

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              • #8
                Sounds more like 3-in-One, huh WAM?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thanks to all for the replies. I figure it will either be a solvent or mechanical solution. I think I will try a graduated solvent approach first spot testing as I go. If nothing dissolves it I will go for the sanding.
                  The inletting is a bit uneven anyway with contact on one side and a very small gap on the other. Will have to see how it shoots as the barrel heats and go from there. I may try to free float it or at least have to only contact be the wood the factory stock has at the tip of the forearm. My understanding is that is there on purpose as a barrel shim.
                  FirstBubba and WAM, I am not positive about WD vs some other lube just know there is a sticky accumulation of something. The stock/wrist does not appear to be saturated. I have a old .22 from Granpa that is, so I looked for that but appears to be fine.
                  OHH I agree on the treasure factor. I did a clean up and scope mount on my friend's in 25-06 and started looking for one immediately.
                  They are sweet rifles.
                  JerryA I may go that route if necessary after I see how it shoots. Either that or the new stock as per FirstBubba. I really like the look of this rifle so I would stay with wood for sure and as close to original style as possible.
                  Thanks again to all for sharing the wisdom!
                  -chuckles

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Military surplus gun oil accumulates like that. Sounds more like grease to me but that would be weird. I agree it's likely not WD40. That useless stuff dissipates into nothing almost as fast as it's sprayed on. Keep this very special gun as original as possible. I wouldn't advise goudging the stock out for free floating. I doubt any insignificant improvement would offset the depreciation in value that would result. Also, I doubt anyone who doesn't have specialized inletting equipment for the purpose could do a job that would look anything less than ... crappy. Anyway, I have never been convinced of all the hype about free floating barrels. Is it necessary to hit a deer at 150 yards in the left ventricle or will just somewhere in the heart do the job just as well? Glass bedding might be a better alternative if some improvement proves to be necessary. If done properly (and it's not rocket science) the result should not affect the appearance from original condition very noticeably.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      OHH a lot is going to depend on how it shoots. I will be satisfied with hunting accuracy. While I like a nice group as much as the next guy I don't obsess about MOA. I have only taken two deer at over 50yds since moving to MN and most were under 30yds. It's thick here, at least were I can rifle hunt.
                      I do however enjoy tinkering with guns. This is definitely not one to practice on however so I plan on going slow and getting lots of expert advice.
                      I hope your grandson and daughter are doing well and you are enjoying being a grandpa.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I would use good clean kerosene and a parts cleaning brush. It always does a good job and won't hurt anything.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Baby Parker and daughter are doing well, thank you. I obviously don't obsess about MOA either. In fact I'm so unobsessed I don't even know what MOA stands for. True confession.

                          Didn't you say you planned to scope it? What do you think you'll put on it for optics?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Chuckles,

                            I have a 1976 Ruger 77 tang safety .257 Roberts. Clean barrel, no sights. Wears a 3-9x42 Sightron SII.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              OHH glad to hear mom and baby are doing well. MOA = minute of angle = one inch at 100yds = what every rifle on the internet shoots
                              This one has open sights but the astigmatism in my right eye makes that an iffy proposition. I am looking at a Leupold VariX-3 in 2.5x8x36 or 3.5x10x40. I have a couple good brush country rifles so this one is intended for more open country. I am hoping it shoots the 100gr TSX well. Double Tap is loading those to 3000fps +.
                              jhjimbo I will include kerosene on the list of potential solvents, thanks for the tip!
                              WAM I had seen you post about that rifle on another post. How does it shoot?

                              Comment

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