Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #1
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    Dec 2009
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    Default How did you learn youre skills ?

    Im always curious about how people learn there particular skills especially those I envy. Are there Gunsmith schools ? I doubt any of you learned by trial and error....At least I hope not lol. Books? Classes? Apprentice? Please share with me how you learned youre skill. Thank you. das
    [SIGPIC]

  2. #2
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    Lubbock, Texas
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    Default Re: How did you learn youre skills ?

    Quote Originally Posted by das View Post
    Im always curious about how people learn there particular skills especially those I envy. Are there Gunsmith schools ? I doubt any of you learned by trial and error....At least I hope not lol. Books? Classes? Apprentice? Please share with me how you learned youre skill. Thank you. das
    There are gunsmiths schools that people can go to, although they're not cheap and usually for people that are looking to get pretty serious about building or servicing firearms. There are LOTS of different courses, and some specialize in certain platforms, etc. There are some things that many of us learn through trial and error. You would be pretty amazed at how much you can learn about function of firearms from detailed stripping, and learning how things move together. There are some modifications that you can learn from "trial and error" reasonably safe, notice I say reasonably safe. On some modern pistols, it's completely within people's ability to learn to do a trigger job, and to check it for safety. You have to make sure you have them pointed in a safe direction, try it with ONLY 1 bullet in the magazine, so you don't get a runaway pistol, etc. Lots of people do grip chops, although they're brave, because you can ruin a pistol frame this way. Lots of it just depends on what you're talking about.

    There are lots of other things that you can only learn from a gunsmith, due to safety issues. It's not safe to try to do lots of things, particularly with chambers, barrels, etc. unless you KNOW what you're doing. I initially learned a lot of the "head knowledge" from reading and seeing pictures and videos of the processes. Hanging out with a gunsmith, keeping your mouth shut, and watching will teach you a LOT. Most of the time, if you're not in the way, and not acting like a know it all, some are quite content to teach you their wonderful trade. It's fascinating to see a good gunsmith at work, it's art, science and machining all put together. Ask some questions when you absolutely can't figure out what's going on, but for the most part, just watch; they'll explain the really important stuff to you, and you'll start to get a feel for it. I think most of us have learned from VERY generous souls that were willing to walk us through some things, and be our friends. Do the same, pass on as much knowledge, in as humble of a way as you can for others; everybody starts at the bottom and builds, so be gentle as you share with others. I guess the best answer I can give is "good people is how I learned my 'skills'."

  3. #3
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    Aug 2009
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    Australia, Adelaide
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    Default Re: How did you learn youre skills ?

    Well how i learned mine was a mix of working for free with a gunsmith and reading up on the firearm that i was working on.....also youtube is really good

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Home, Pennsylvania
    (York County)
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    Default Re: How did you learn youre skills ?

    As a young kid I used to take things apart to "see how they worked" (at 5ish years old they never seemed to work right again)

    At 12 I restored my first car and drove it to high school (10th grade, 68' mustang coupe with a 302 and toploader 4 spd)

    Went to college to be a Ford Tech at 18.

    Got a job at a large printer and worked my way up to running a 30 million doller web offset press.

    I was always into guns, guns are just machines and I'm good with machines. Machines that are very precise and built to do fun and challenging things, so it works out well for me as a hobby.
    The smallest minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities.
    Ayn Rand

  5. #5
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    Mar 2008
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    Hanover, Pennsylvania
    (York County)
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    Default Re: How did you learn youre skills ?

    If you're interested in spending some time reading, there's a blog that chronicles a guy's adventures at a Gunsmith school. Don't forget the archives!
    Here: http://willsworkbench.wordpress.com/

  6. #6
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    Jul 2006
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    Pennsylvania
    (York County)
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    Default Re: How did you learn youre skills ?

    Quote Originally Posted by YBNORMAL View Post
    I was always into guns, guns are just machines and I'm good with machines. Machines that are very precise and built to do fun and challenging things, so it works out well for me as a hobby.
    amen.

    i have been a helicopter engine mechanic, an industrial mechanic, a structural mechanic, a quality auditor, etc. i am in nursing school now, because the human body is just a very complex machine.

    i have been gunsmithing for 15 years, and learned most of what i know by reading the greats, like roy dunlap, or by working with other amateur gunsmiths, or just by tinkering.

  7. #7
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    Oct 2006
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    Brookville, Pennsylvania
    (Jefferson County)
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    Default Re: How did you learn youre skills ?

    I learned the old fashion way - experience. I was raised with guns, with only a handful of family members not into guns out of 11 uncles and 3 aunts, plus their spouses, and scores of cousins - there were guns at every family function.

    I was also graced by the Lord and my parents with a good head on my shoulders. With it I learned much on my own along with what I was taught by family. I also picked up on other fields too like aeronautics, automotive, electrical/electronics, architectural, and communications. ...fully designed a jet airplane by the age of 11 and submitted it to the US Air Force(letters of proof 1 & 2), (2) houses by the age of 14 and sold the plans, (2) cable tv systems by the age of 17.
    RIP: SFN, 1861, twoeggsup, Lambo, jamesjo, JayBell, 32 Magnum, Pro2A, mrwildroot, dregan, Frenchy, Fragger, ungawa, Mtn Jack, Grapeshot.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    Easton, Pennsylvania
    (Northampton County)
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    Default Re: How did you learn youre skills ?

    Quote Originally Posted by knight0334 View Post
    I learned the old fashion way - experience. I was raised with guns, with only a handful of family members not into guns out of 11 uncles and 3 aunts, plus their spouses, and scores of cousins - there were guns at every family function.

    I was also graced by the Lord and my parents with a good head on my shoulders. With it I learned much on my own along with what I was taught by family. I also picked up on other fields too like aeronautics, automotive, electrical/electronics, architectural, and communications. ...fully designed a jet airplane by the age of 11 and submitted it to the US Air Force(letters of proof 1 & 2), (2) houses by the age of 14 and sold the plans, (2) cable tv systems by the age of 17.
    Got to say those letters are pretty cool! And you were 11 !

  9. #9
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    Dec 2008
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    Scranton, Pennsylvania
    (Lackawanna County)
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    Default Re: How did you learn youre skills ?

    I took the 'old' ICS course years ago (the new course from Penn Foster is better, and they have a newly updated one coming out pretty soon, written by people whose names you'll recognize), and coupled it up with ruining a lot of cheap guns, then making them right again.

    I also have good machining skills, but I don't consider myself a professional gunsmith, just a talented hack!
    "...a REPUBLIC, if you can keep it."

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania
    (Delaware County)
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    Default Re: How did you learn youre skills ?

    No exaggeration-lots of mistakes on guns / cars / boats.

    Best regards,
    CM
    "If you believe the term "militia" means the National Guard then you must believe that freedom of speech is reserved for the Government Printing Office." - Some guy, 2/2007

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