Article by Jamie Mangrum

My wife walked up behind me while I was searching on the computer in Google's Image directory for camouflage patterns. She asked me, "What are you doing?" I told her that I was thinking about taking an old fiberglass M14 stock and trying to see if I could camouflage it. She smiled at me and said, "Why are you looking at camouflage for the wilds? Shouldn't you be looking for patterns of buildings and sidewalks? Isn't that a more appropriate type of camouflage for your environment?"

I just shook my head and smiled.

I am not a painter. Let me repeat, I am not a painter. Like anyone I can kind of stencil. I searched around on the internet and creating my own stencils and trying to camouflage a stock for my M1A carbine.


camouflage: a noun:
The act of concealing the identity of something by modifying its appearance; "he is a master of disguise"
Device or stratagem for concealment or deceit
Fabric dyed with splotches of green and brown and black and tan; intended to make the wearer of a garment made of this fabric hard to distinguish from the background
An outward semblance that misrepresents the true nature of something.
Source: Wordreference.com


Rust-Oleum produces a line of camouflage spray paints that are available at most large hardware and paint stores. I found mine at Home Depot for less than $4 per can. I purchased some new blades, masking tape, and 5 cans of camouflage paint all for under $22. I had an M14 stock that someone had painted black and a hand guard that I am sorry to say was all that was left of another camouflage painted stock. The matching stock? Let's just say it had a very unfortunate mishap that it never fully recovered from.

It involved a hammer and a very angry owner. All because a pin in the trigger assembly had slipped out somewhat and prevented the stock from ever being removed again.

On with the project: I removed the butt plate and rear sling swivel before proceeding. I also washed the stock to remove any oil on the surface.

I started out painting both the hand guard and rifle stock outside with several coats of the earth brown color.





For my stencils I printed out a pattern I found online and used a cutting blade to cut out patterns. You can pick any color combination and search in the Google Image directory for the keywords of camouflage patterns. On the web you will find great and clear images of every conceivable military camouflage pattern ever made. I wanted something close to the typical U.S. military Battle Dress Uniform (BDU) camouflage pattern.

After I had allowed my base coats to completely dry I tried my first stencil layer of green. I started off very formal by taping the stencil in place. I then sprayed a light to medium coat of green over the stenciled area of the stock being careful to not spray too much to cause drips below the stencil.







I then removed the stencil and was pleased by the results. I continued on with the color green and then once the green layer had dried I switched to beige. Then I switched to black. After a while I became less formal and just held the stencils up and spray painted. I also found if you make a mistake you can cover it with another layer of color. The whole process took a couple hours.





What I ended up with is not too bad for a first timer just coming out of the gates. It is more of a German military type of camouflage pattern and color scheme, but overall I am pleased with the results. I would not do this and sell them - but they are good enough for home cooking.


I recommend trying out the stencils and paint on some cardboard before going onto a stock. I also recommend purchasing another stock and leaving your original stock in all original condition. I chose for my project to not camouflage the metal parts of the rifle. I just could not bring myself to do this but if you choose to do so it is your decision and your weapon.


If you are wondering what my carbine is exactly, no it is not a SOCOM! It was built up many years before I purchased it. It has an ArmsCorp receiver and the front sight and muzzle brake were made by Smith Enterprise, Inc. It is without a doubt one of my favorite firearms. And is it ever accurate? Heck Yes!
Well, according to my wife this is not an appropriate camouflage schema for my element or neck of the woods. You would think she knew me better after being married for 22 years. I may live in suburbia and work in the city, but it is not my element. Like most red blooded males, my place is in the forest! Living off the land, mud under my nails, and smelling like something out on the curb waiting for garbage day. That's me!

I have to admit that I did not do the prettiest job, but as we used to say in the military - it is serviceable. It does meet the basic definition of camouflage. I had fun doing it and I can always return my rifle back to its original stock.

I just walked up to my wife with my rifle hanging at my side and said, "I know you can't see it, but I am holding a rifle next to me!" She just smiled and said, "Where is it?"

Mission accomplished. If my wife can't see it, then I can bring in another one without her even noticing. Camouflage is good!