Now it is speckled with rust and the stock is quite badly damaged by damp.

The grain of the wood has been raised and is paler in colour than the rest of the stock. How can I restore the gun?

AIR RIFLES

John Knibbs

The first thing to do is remove the metalwork from the stock. However, you have not stated the type and model of air rifle.

If it is a conventional spring-operated, barrel or side-lever cocking model, the stock will be fixed to the metalwork by screws through the front of the fore-end and a screw in front of the trigger-guard.

Your local gunshop will advise you on how to remove the stock.

The rust spots can be removed by using very fi ne steel wool and a few drops of oil.

Any metal that is exposed can be touched up with Gun Blue Creme or another cold blue solution on a cotton bud.

If most of the original finish has gone, you can apply Gun Blue Creme, using a small pad of fine steel wool.

Give the metalwork a good rub down with a soft cloth and then use an oily cloth to apply a protective coating.

For the woodwork, as the grain has risen in a few places, this can be rubbed down using fine abrasive paper and steel wool.

Wet the wood and allow it to dry naturally, which will raise the grain again, and then rub the wood down as before.

You can now apply a suitable stain to the treated areas and a suitable oil to the stock, such as linseed oil with a few drops of French or button polish.

This should be applied several times to match the remainder of the woodwork.