Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Warminster, Pennsylvania
    (Bucks County)
    Posts
    131
    Rep Power
    2980997

    Default Getting started. Questions and advice.

    So, how did you guys get started with gunsmithing?

    How would you recommend getting started?

    Iím asking for advice not only from those whoíve been there done that, but also those who may have advice or suggestions who may not be in the field.

    Iíve always had a desire, but as Iím not getting any younger and the days are getting shorter and going bye faster....well, considering it more and more.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Levittown, Pennsylvania
    (Bucks County)
    Posts
    7,834
    Rep Power
    21474854

    Default Re: Getting started. Questions and advice.

    Gun-owning friends, family and acquaintances may recognize your abilities, come to you with needs, and word spreads if you are talented.

    I'd say knowing your limitations is important. In other words, if you are going to learn as you go, be up front that that is what you are doing.

    I think it fair to say there are levels of gunsmithing. Sort of like the difference between a watch repairman and a watch maker.

    So, there are levels of service you can provide. You may know how to use a lathe but not have one. That means farm out some projects.

    I don't know if people ask a gunsmith about their schooling. I'm guessing that if you hold yourself out to be a gunsmith to the general public, not having formal training might open you to legal issues should a project go south. Having that certificate hanging in a prominent spot should be very helpful.

    Good luck.
    Legislating to prevent people's acts is fantasy

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    DeepInTheWoods, Pennsylvania
    (Warren County)
    Posts
    2,097
    Rep Power
    21474850

    Default Re: Getting started. Questions and advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jkinpa1 View Post
    So, how did you guys get started with gunsmithing?

    How would you recommend getting started?

    I’m asking for advice not only from those who’ve been there done that, but also those who may have advice or suggestions who may not be in the field.

    I’ve always had a desire, but as I’m not getting any younger and the days are getting shorter and going bye faster....well, considering it more and more.
    My gunsmith apprenticed a young ,man.

    Dunno about compensation.
    American by BIRTH, Infidel by CHOICE

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    State College, Pennsylvania
    (Centre County)
    Age
    67
    Posts
    5,044
    Rep Power
    20711098

    Default Re: Getting started. Questions and advice.

    I started out by working on my own guns when I was competing and got advice from others far more knowledgeable than me. Slowly learned how to do other gunsmithing duties from several older gunsmiths. Read, joined and still read the American Gunsmithing Association magazines and built up my library of gunsmithing books, manuals and assembly/disassembly manuals. Took some classes on how to run/use a milling machine and lathe but I just don't have the room for a lathe so I give customers leads on where they might want to contact depending on what needs done. I have been a long time woodworker so working or stocks falls under what I have learned about wood and how to repair it. That said, don't give me a blank piece of wood and ask for a stock to be handmade, I'm just not left brained enough to do that I bought checkering tools from Brownells and practiced on old stocks that couldn't be repaired (long arm and handgun). I do Cerakoting and learned how to prep, spray and finish metals from my dad, 2 uncles and 2 cousins who were in the auto body repair business. I learned how to hot blue from a gunsmith friend but I again, just don't have the room for all the proper equipment, that's why I went the Cerakote direction 7-8 years ago and it is working out great. Bought and upgraded my tools as I needed throughout the years. Probably will only do it for a few more years then do a lot of shooting that I've been missing from running my one man business.
    Ron USAF Ret E-8 FFL01/SOT3 NRA Benefactor Member

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