View Full Version : Gunsmithing Book?

February 24, 2005, 10:55 AM
I am looking for a good gunsmithing book for handguns. I dont need to go crazy, yet, but something covering the basics of tuning, polishing, and metal refinishing should hold me for awhile. I searched on the internet, but there where too many choices and I would rather get something that was recommended. I would appreciate any input and/or suggestions.

February 24, 2005, 12:42 PM
I would start by deciding what type of gun you would like to do some smithing on (revolver, pistol). Once decided, buy the workshop manual for it by Jerry Kuhnhausen. There are many he has authored and they are excellent. Remember safety is first and foremost. Doing your own smithing can be very rewarding and enjoyable. One caution, know your limitations. Don't get in over your head. And get the right tools for the job. Jerry's manuals can help out on that too. Most can be purchased through Brownells in Iowa (they have a web site).

Another good way to start is to get a "beater" revolver and make a restoration project out of it. If mistakes are made (bound to) you can recover from them and will not have spent a lot of money in the process

February 24, 2005, 07:07 PM
I have always felt that the gunsmithing books authored by Patrick Sweeny were good values. Lots of information, some humor, good to just read!

February 25, 2005, 01:21 AM
Agreed with gundoc on the Sweeney books, but Sweeney is not infallible and mentions a few things that could be done in better ways.

My personal source for gunsmithing books is the Los Angeles Public Library, believe it or not. (Yeah, I know, you can't get to the library over the internet, but some alone-time with books'll do you some good.)

March 1, 2005, 08:35 PM
The Gunsmith Kinks book series by Bob Brownell (available from Brownells at www.brownells.com) offer practical tips on a wide variety of gunsmithing topics, and are enjoyable to read, too. If I remember correctly, there are now a total of four books in this series.

Good luck, and good (reading about) shooting!

James K
March 1, 2005, 09:42 PM
The only problem with advising the use of Kuhnhausen's books and then saying to get the right tools for the job, is that Kuhnhausen uses a lot of tools that are unquestionably right, but are also darned expensive. They are fine for the smith who specializes in that gun, but would be high cost dust-gatherers in most general gunsmithing shops.


4V50 Gary
March 1, 2005, 09:48 PM
Howe's book, Gunsmithing, is one of my favorites.

Dave Sample
March 1, 2005, 10:30 PM
I have read a great many, but still find them lacking in a real world. I was building Custom Guns before Jerry was writing books and I am not a machinst, nor do I play one on TV. Most, if not all, of my online Students signed up becuase there is no good way to learn without proper, personal instruction and 24/7 support. Parts are expensive and easy to ruin. I wish I could be of more help but really do not have an aswer for the book of books about gunsmithing or pistolsmithing. I looked at Bill Wilson's videos many years ago and told him at a Shot Show that if you can't spell "barrel" and beat down frame rails on your knee in your blue jeans, that maybe you missed something, somewhere. Some smiths need a grunt to help them and that is the way I wouuld say to start. Check with "The Donald" and see about an apprentice gunsmithing program. Can't you see that on any major network. BRAND NEW PROGRAM "Learn how ot build a gun here!!!" I crack myself up sometimes.......................................