tl;dr pic related the mosin of topic
>Bought a mosin from a guy's car
>Told me beforehand that he overheated the handguard piece, trying to pull cosmoline out with heat gun
>Fuck that, I can get that shit fixed no prob
>Go to /k/
>Guy tells me I can do this
"you can fix it easily OP, everyone else who posted is an idiot. just need to dissolve the varnish again. take a towel or rag soaked in some solvent like denature alcohol and wipe it around teh hand guard, dont use too much though. if alot of the varnish is missing, just get some shellac and put a little on. russian shellac is literally the easiest finish to maintain and redo, it takes like 1 second to revarnish and looks good as new"
Would rubbing alcohol work just as well as mineral spirits? If so, the most I can find at the store is 91%, should that be good enough to properly dissolve it and move it around?
Don't ask here, go to woodworking places (including taking the actual weapon stock to an actual woodworking store (like Rockler)). Those guys a) love weapons (as anyone working with wood and/or metal probably does) b) make stocks often c) know what to do with them.
Meanwhile, google up how to refinish shellac.
haha, that was me who wrote that OP. wow i feel so special for some reason. OP do you live in america? if so everything you need is at home depot, lowes, or ace hardware.
ok first of all, youre just doing a touch up not a full restoration. most of the shellac finish is still there, its just broken up/ugly right now. russians used shellac on their mosins for the varnish. shellac is literally one of the easiest finishes to maintain and touch up. rubbing alcohol will work just fine, although in my experience it tends to be a little stronger than mineral spirits. just use a little bit. you arent trying to strip a lot of finish off, the idea is to just dissolve a little bit of the varnish and wipe it around for the touch up.
>Take rag, put a little alcohol on it (little goes a long way)
>Rub evenly the longway along affected areas of handguard
>Youll see a brown red sludge paste form, use light strokes or youll pull off too much finish
>let it dry, you done
>well, after dry, rub with a dry rag just to make smoother
worst case, if too much finish is missing, just grab some shellac from hardware store and apply over affected areas, no need to strip the ugly areas, it will blend over when the undercoat dissolves with the solvent in the repair coat you are applying