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Plastic stocks

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Gumslinger View Drop Down
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    Posted: March-29-2019 at 8:13pm

Hello, newbie here. I picked up a mid-fifties Red Ryder and got the Daisy bug.

The gun itself cocks & fires, but the plastic buttstock is as flat & twisted as a toothpaste tube. Needing a replacement, I sought to ID what I had (and why it warped so badly). No visible markings, so I filleted it with a Dremel into two mirror halves. This stock is a four-piece item: The stock body itself, (no markings), a false-hammer insert (no markings), a butt plate: logo MPC 2, and a trigger-spring mounted on a insert also marked MPC 2. Oddly, the plastic fore end is a crudely marked MPC 3. A logo search took me to Multiple Products Corp, a former maker of all things plastic, but no apparent ties to Daisy. A Forum search did not yield any clues. So, is this such an old topic that it is no longer discussed? Has anyone ever tackled the evolution of these plastic stocks? By the by, I learned more about warped plastics researching this buttstock than anyone needs to know--including a warning possibly relevant to Daisy collectors. Thanks for any input.

JCN
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cobalt327 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cobalt327 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March-29-2019 at 10:32pm
I remember MPC from model car kits. I doubt there's much known about the evolution of plastic Daisy stocks, could be a tough nut to crack!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BSAGuy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March-30-2019 at 6:17am
Hello and welcome toDaisyTalk, Gumslinger.  Great to have you here.  If you can manage it, please post some pics of your dissected stock,  that would be interesting to us all.

I would like to read your "warning possibly relevant to Daisy collectors."  That might help some of us avoid future stock problems.

Like cobalt327, I also remember MPC model car kits from the 1970's.  MPC was a division of General Mills (think Cheerios, etc.) and MPC owned Lionel trains from 1970 to 1986.

Here is a link with more dope on that for anyone who is interested.


      
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bavaria55n Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March-30-2019 at 7:57am
When Daisy first started using plastic stocks they had problems with them warping.
I have a 97 that is a couple of inches to one side. Amazing that it could move that far without cracking or breaking.
Not sure if it was the composition of the plastic or improper curing or both?
They gradually got it under control. Fore ends are also seen with each end drooping away from the gun.
Gary
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gumslinger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March-30-2019 at 8:20am

Thanks for the replies. I’ll post the pictures soon.

 

The keyword is Cellulose Acetate (CA). This was the newest plastic concoction in the late 1940s. It applied well to the new ‘injection molding’ process. By the mid-1950s problems started to arise. Modern forums covering vintage CA warping include model trains, model cars, Legos, even poker chips and playing cards. The chemical giant Bayer in Germany warned CA products should not be stored above 150-degrees?! In Mr. Dunathan’s book he mentions Daisy’s failure with “Fibron plastic”. [One Google result for Fibron was for a knife handle company…]. But on a 1950s poster for the Red Ryder, it pointed out a “Fiberon” forearm & stock as a new feature. [Again, this word was a dead end, either as a 1950’s brand, a material, or a company]. Maybe it was a proprietary formula for Daisy? As I mentioned in the prior post, my twisted stock had MPC logos, source unknown. CA was also used in ‘modern art’ objects. This is where the true nature of CA is revealed. Plastic preservation has had some serious money thrown at it at the museum level.

To summarize, their findings are that once warping, etc, has begun, you can neither stop, or repair it. At best, you can store it in a way to slow down the process. According to the experts, one of the biggest factors in CA’s demise is moisture (humidity). Worse, the gases released from CA were destructive to other materials stored with it. Specifically, it “corroded metals, and damaged fabrics”. One museum lists it as a ‘malignant plastic’. Another site says the best environment for CA items is in a “well-ventilated area, with the temperature below 68-degrees, and humidity controlled between 30-40%.

Thankfully the next step forward in plastic was polystyrene, which was stable, and could be molded in even finer detail--think: wood grain plastic stocks. I suspect Daisy caught on quickly, as did the model makers and other commercial enterprises. As an aside, there is a model maker who still uses CA (maybe a more modern version?) to cast model horses. From their website:

 

Breyer Models are made of Cellulose Acetate.  The composition of cellulose acetate will not allow it to be glued with everyday adhesives like Elmer’s glue, model cement, or Crazy glue.             For best results, it is recommended that you use acetone to repair your models.  This will soften the plastic and allow the broken pieces to actually bond together. 

 

They go on to say the consumer can straighten bent parts of the model with the heat from a hair dryer.

JCN
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BSAGuy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March-30-2019 at 10:12am
Thanks for that information, Gumslinger.  Very interesting.  From what I have read here, warping of Daisy stocks also seems to be associated with long term storage (think a closet) of the gun with muzzle up/stock down.  It makes sense to me that if a gun is leaned against a wall or corner with the weight on the butt that would cause warping.

I wondered about all the drooping Model 94 fore arms that I have seen on eBay and your post and Bavaria55n's explains that phenomenon. 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cobalt327 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March-30-2019 at 12:12pm
Good info guys! Thanks Gumslinger for posting your findings- very interesting. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Iceman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March-30-2019 at 12:24pm
I have five Daisy rifles with plastic stocks.  Three are lever guns with the plastic forearms.  The other two are pump style guns.  I have had others over the years with the plastic forearms.  The forearms have warped enough that they come loose at the front.  I have managed to jerry-rigged them enough to stay in place.  I really do not like plastic stocks and forearms and avoid them as much as possible, however, there are some that I like well enough to put up with the plastic.  The "plastic" ones I have are the (1972) Model 25 pump, Model 107 Trombone pump, 1894 Texas Ranger, Model 142 Defender, and Model 98 Golden Eagle (Boxed Set).       
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gumslinger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March-30-2019 at 12:41pm

The reason I posted this info is because I could not find any other information on plastic stocks.

I found the possibility of further damage alarming. Number 1, there are no replica plastic stocks; so what is out there is all that there will ever be. Number 2, I’ve seen some beautiful, seemingly undamaged BB guns with CA stocks at sale or auction. I presume they were either well-cared for, or luckily well-stored all these years. BUT, if the new owner is not aware of the proper care needed, these stocks too, in their new environment, may warp into oblivion.

 

I am new to this Daisy stuff, but I would hope to preserve the remaining plastic-stock Daisy’s to be there for the next generation of collectors. Thanks guys.

JCN
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Airitis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March-30-2019 at 1:41pm
I've sen many lever guns with warped forearms but have only had a few straight ones. Now I know why.

Gumslinger, I'm so glad that you have found this information. It's like waiting for a bad event... as if one day we'll wake up to a train load of daisys without stocks or forearms and no hope of replacing them. On the other hand, if replacements were to be produced, the guns still would not be "original".

I think that reproducing original styled wood stocks and forearms would be valuable as a business venture. At least the guns would be in usable condition once again. Even plastic or fiberglass copies would be sometimes welcome. Any thoughts?
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