View Full Version : i want to work on my own guns....

Manos de Piedra
March 19, 2010, 02:50 PM
i would like some help getting started. i'm starting from scratch. i can't go to a school as work and family make such a thing impossible. I can; however, learn on my own. so, for any of you with experience, let me know what my first steps should be. reference materials and tools for beginners, and any advice would be great. thanks in advance....

March 19, 2010, 03:50 PM
You can buy a starter gunsmithing tool kit from Brownells that has a pretty good assortment of tools. You will need some shop manuals (assembly/disassembly, and repair "how-to" books), a good vise, and possibly some powered shop tools (grinders, drill, etc). For starting out, let the pros do anything that requires milling, drilling, cutting, or welding. Once you get good you can take on those things. And the primary tool you need is an open mind and some good judgement to keep you from needing the services of the pros very often.

March 19, 2010, 06:53 PM
mdp, 3/20/10

Good for you for wanting to learn more about your weapons so you can do much of your own work. I was in a similar position some years ago and found some ways which worked for me.

First- decide which weapon you are going to work on and then order or download an armorer's manual for that weapon, or a DVD explaining the normal workings, assembly and disassembly. I usually order the American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) dvd's from Midway or Brownells.

Second- find a forum dedicated to your particular weapon (eg- Sigforum for Sigs, HKpro.com for HK's, etc.) and look for pointers and advice. There is a wealth of info and good people at these sites willing to help.

Third- you are going to need some special tools and jigs which cost a bit of money. If you are only going to need that tool for one job then it is easier and cheaper to take it to your local gunsmith to do the work.

Fourth- Go slow when removing metal. You can't put back the metal you filed or stoned off very easily.

Fifth- most importantly- know what you can't do. The last thing you want to do is ruin a gun or make it unsafe to use. Get help when needed- we all had to do it.

Good luck- oldandslow

March 21, 2010, 09:48 PM
Old and Slow summed it up. There is a lot more to help today with the internet and all. If you are generally a "handy" person you should be okay. First pick a type of gun that you'd like to work on and start reading up.

March 22, 2010, 09:53 PM
Gun shows are a good soucre for shop and repair manuals, and don't overlook the various cd's and tapes available as well.

March 23, 2010, 08:48 AM
I wanted to learn gunsmithing.
15 years ago I was working at a start up as a consultant, and could take long lunch breaks.

Once a week I drove a route of pawn shops, where I dickered down the price of broken 22 rifles.

I took the guns apart, cleaned them, figured out how they worked, oiled them, and figured out what was needed.

I then bought the needed parts from Numrich Gun Parts Corp.

Then when the guns were fixed, I sold them on consignment at a pawn shop.
I made ~$3/ hour for my troubles, but I wanted to learn how to do gunsmithing.

Then 10 years ago I bought a lathe.
Then 8 years ago I bought a mill.
Then 4 years ago I bought a TIG welder.

What does it all mean?
It is cheap and easy to get started.

March 23, 2010, 09:56 AM
All of the above posts are excellent advice. For the very basics you need a good set of screw drivers & punches. When your disassembling/reassembling weapons you don't want your screwdrivers slipping & causing scratches. Also many weapons are held together with pins. Many of these pins have concave or convex ends. You need the proper punches for these pins. There are many available from different companies. Here is a set that I received as a Christmas present from my daughter which she purchased at Brownells.