I have a German K98 that I got from a neighbor who brought it back from a German battlefield.The person carved his name and id number on stock and floorplate.Should I leaveThe Gunboards crowd tends to be of the "purist" nature and anything done to the rifle that takes away from it's originality is considered ruining the weapons. I subscribe to this belief, and if you did what was recommended above, I would believe the collector value would be greatly diminished.
But, in the end, it it your rifle. Do with it as you wish.
What a great answer. Ole'!Ask yourself what are you looking for in a gun like that. An inexpensive shooting device? Then yes, go ahead - sand, wood putty, polyurethane lacquer, etc.
If you see in this rifle a collectible weapon with rich history - don't even think about refinishing it.
Rebuilt many times over and often by multiple countries!Oh, they have been rebuilt alright. Maybe not all, but I would wager most.