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Posted: 9/15/2004 12:21:58 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/15/2004 12:22:52 PM EST by 556mm]
Can anybody shed some light on these for me? I'm wanting to get some some basic gunsmithing skills under my belt and have recieved info from FOLEY-BELSHAW Institute Of Professional Gunsmithing and from Modern Gun School.

From the literature i've received, i'm leaning towards Modern Gun School. They sent a complete lesson outline and their course seems to deal with all the needed basic skills and goes into depth on a variety of individual firearms. You also recieve alot of basic tools with the course.

Foley-Belshaw seems to have their act together also. The course doesn't include as many tools and extra's, but the tuition is a hell of alot more affordable. Their literature list a basic course outline but doesn't go into depth as to what each lesson covers. Also, there is no mention of specific firearms that will be studied.

Any pro's or con's that you can give me will be greatly appreciated.

thanks,
556mm
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 12:30:15 PM EST
Personally, I'd suggest to drop the "study at home" bit. Check out the Colorado School of trades course for gunsmiths.

The study at home bit never works well in techinical fields, IMO.
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 12:34:09 PM EST
I would love to be able to do that, but my work schedule and standing school commitments, not to mention my family, prevents me from being able to go out there and do that.

So my next best road in study at home.

556mm
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 12:41:47 PM EST
Tagged, as I'm going to need a new hobby after I move...
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 12:57:05 PM EST

Originally Posted By 556mm:
I would love to be able to do that, but my work schedule and standing school commitments, not to mention my family, prevents me from being able to go out there and do that.

So my next best road in study at home.

556mm



The best gunsmiths tend to be machinsts. They also tend to work specifically on certain models. So, get yourself down to the local community college and enroll in a machinists course. Start with the mill.

And really, working on guns isn't that hard. I do all the work on my own guns except for the stuff I don't have tools for. There's a bunch of books on gunsmithing that are available. The Gunsmith Kinks series from Brownells has a bunch of general info in them. If you're going to study at home, why not just buy books and some tools and get cracking.

Remember the Alamo, and God Bless Texas...
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 1:01:14 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/15/2004 1:02:00 PM EST by SteyrAUG]
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 1:06:40 PM EST
Become a decent machinist first before considering gunsmith work. Find an old retired tool & die maker and tap into his wealth of knowledge.

The home study courses are ok for someone that will do nothing more than replace parts and do some simple hand fitting. Real gunsmiths use lathes, mills and precision surface grinders.

I attended Yavapai College's gunsmithing program back in 92-93.
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 1:07:16 PM EST

Originally Posted By SteyrAUG:
Joke and a waste of time.

You don't need certification to be a gunsmith.

Get a FFL and list yourself as a gunsmith and BINGO you are now a gunsmith.


I can help you out if you want credentials though...

Print this:


CONGRATULATIONS

[Insert Your Name]

Has just completed the home study course in GUNSMITHING from the SteyrAUG Institute Of Pointless Certification.

Signed SteyrAUG - Master Gunsmith Extroidinaire


Then send me a check for $25.00 and promise to read a few books on gunsmithing.


Now you are all set.

Don't forget my check.



HOLY COW ! ! ! WOW ! ! ! That is such agret offer SteyrAUG, how much for your advanced course?

Always a clown in every thread! LOL!

556mm
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 1:19:33 PM EST

Originally Posted By SteyrAUG:
Joke and a waste of time.

You don't need certification to be a gunsmith.

Get a FFL and list yourself as a gunsmith and BINGO you are now a gunsmith.


I can help you out if you want credentials though...

Print this:


CONGRATULATIONS

[Insert Your Name]

Has just completed the home study course in GUNSMITHING from the SteyrAUG Institute Of Pointless Certification.

Signed SteyrAUG - Master Gunsmith Extroidinaire


Then send me a check for $25.00 and promise to read a few books on gunsmithing.


Now you are all set.

Don't forget my check.



Classic SA. my check in the mail
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 1:57:00 PM EST
OKAY, is there anybody out there who has taken one of these courses?

556mm
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 5:06:21 PM EST

Originally Posted By 556mm:
OKAY, is there anybody out there who has taken one of these courses?

556mm




I took the Modern School course. DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY. I was lucky my employer paid for it. I learned absolutely nothing.

If your interested in certain models get one of Jerry Kurhousen's (sp) books. I've got the first of the two 1911 books it will teach you more than anything else.

Paraord16
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 6:30:25 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 11:00:36 PM EST
BTDT . Got the peice of paper . I learned more on my own from reading than I did from the course .
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 11:10:24 PM EST
i haven't touched a bridgeport in over 13 years. I better practice first before I do anything serious
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 4:03:14 AM EST
[Last Edit: 9/16/2004 4:05:35 AM EST by GodBlessTexas]
Check out Roderus Custom Gunworks. Frank Roderus has got a few videos where he builds up guns from 0% forgings or 100% frames. I have his AR-15 video where he builds up from a 0% forging and it's pretty good. Gives you an idea of what goes into machining a lower receiver. His first video was on building up custom 1911's from WWII era guns. Frank's a good guy and I've spoken with him personally over the phone. He's also got a forum on his website that's full of info and garage gunsmiths.

There's also the AGI videos, but beyond showing you a little about how the internals function together they can be a complete waste of time if you're actually looking for something more informative.

Someone has already meantioned the Jerry Kuhnhausen books, and I agree. You can get them all, including the new ones at www.gunbooks.com. Other books worth owning are "Gunsmithing Rifles" by Patrick Sweeney, "Gunsmithing Pistols and Revolvers" by Patrick Sweeney, and "Gunsmithing Shotguns" by Sweeney. "Gunsmithing at Home Lock Stock & Barrel: Lock, Stock & Barrel" is a great overall general book, where the Sweeney books actually get into specific things to do with pistols, rifles and shotguns down the the specific models. And as previously mentioned, the four volumes of the Gunsmith Kinks books from Brownells are full of useful tidbits.

Get yourself a Brownells catalog. More general purpose and special tools than you could ever use. Tell them you are a student/apprentice gunsmith when you order. www.tanneryshop.com has blueprints for 10/22's, FAL's, AR-15's, 1911's and AK47s. They also sell 0%, 40%, 60% and 80% receivers and other assorted pieces for making guns.

First project: Get yourself a Ruger 10/22 and "Gunsmithing Rifles" by Patrick Sweeney. He's got a chapter on that specific rifle in there. The most relevant and cheapest thing you could do is start changing out the factory internals (hammer, sear, springs, etc.) for models from Power Custom or Volquartsen. You'll need a set of punches, which you can get at Lowes, Home Depot, Brownells, etc for ~$10. You'll probably want a set of files as well, and a good set of gunsmithing screwdrivers or bits which you can get from brownells.

Or, get the Kuhnhausen Mauser book and pick up a C&R Mauser. With the right tools you can do just about anything to one, and messing up won't set you back a lot of money.

Remember the Alamo, and God Bless Texas...
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 5:46:19 PM EST
I have an interest in this as well. I'm a Tool & Die maker by trade (office monkey now) and often thought of gunsmithing more as a retirement / tinkering kind of thing.

A buddy of mine (who was also a Diemaker) took an "at home" gunsmithing course. I sense he seems to think it was kind of a joke. Must of felt the certification was important.

It seems like the general consensus is that the Jerry Kuhnhausen books are the way to go.

If you don't have the machining skills, many junior colleges have decent courses in basic machining. I think you would need these kind of skills to be effective. Just my .02
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 5:55:39 PM EST

Originally Posted By SteyrAUG:

Originally Posted By 556mm:
OKAY, is there anybody out there who has taken one of these courses?

556mm




If you want to be a competent gunsmith home study courses are a dead end.

The best way is to apprentice under a very qualified smith but that isn't always feasable.

The second best option is to study on your own from existing materials.

In either case I certainly wouldn't want to stake my livelihood on it. Lots of guys who are extremely qualified gunsmiths with jobs on the side and still barely getting by.



Here is one right here. There is just enough from the business to pay the bills on the shop. I work full time as a network admin to pay my bills and keep my family alive. Dont get me wrong.. Its fun and it does sometimes pay for a few toys/projects. But doing that alone its hard to make a living.
I do have a degree in CAD/CAM and a secondary Degree in gunsmithing. Both from a Community College. Like others have said get some books and do it...
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 6:10:55 PM EST
Where is Sally Struthers
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 6:15:26 PM EST

Originally Posted By BobCole:
Check out the Colorado School of trades course for gunsmiths.



Is this really a good place to learn? I am considering starting there next summer.
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