Gun Smithing Career

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing' started by woolecox, Jul 11, 2009.

  1. woolecox

    woolecox Well-Known Member

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    Like most here I have been tinkering with and fixing my own guns for years. But I have never had any formal gunsmith training. About a week ago I pulled the trigger (pun intended) and ponied up for the first instalment of the American Gunsmithing Institutes Professional Gunsmithing Course. This is the first in a four series set of courses that takes the student all the way up through Certified Master Gunsmith accreditation.

    These courses are presented in video format. I decided to go this route because I have a full time day job that will not allow me to attend any of the classroom institutes. My plan is to complete the course work and pick up any work and training from local smiths and shops in the area that I can.

    I am 50 years old and I don't plan on getting rich doing this but I love the field and from what I have seen, there is a definite need to preserve the trade. I would however like to become a qualified and experienced gunsmith with a business that would be self sustaining.

    As I reach retirement age, possibly move into the business full time. I have run a couple of other businesses so I do have a little experience there.

    I was just wondering what words of wisdom you all had to offer and if you have any thoughts on AGI? Here is a link to their website. You kind of have to dig to find the accredited courses. Thanks!
    AGI - Home
     
  2. grit

    grit Well-Known Member

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    Congrats. Start with a caffinated beverage. That Darrell Holland will flat talk you to sleep.
     

  3. woolecox

    woolecox Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I bet some of those videos can get pretty dry. Thanks for the reply.
     
  4. AJ Peacock

    AJ Peacock Well-Known Member

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    Woolecox, where are you located?

    AJ
     
  5. woolecox

    woolecox Well-Known Member

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    I am in Magnolia, TX. Just NW of Houston.

    Wooly
     
  6. AJ Peacock

    AJ Peacock Well-Known Member

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    Thanks and good luck with your career.

    AJ
     
  7. woolecox

    woolecox Well-Known Member

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    Incidentally, I have been doing some preliminary shopping for a suitable lathe and mill. Can't find any made in America. And some of the manufacturers I have written tell me that I won't!

    That does not sit right with me. I will never buy equipment made in China or Taiwan.
     
  8. AJ Peacock

    AJ Peacock Well-Known Member

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    I have some contacts up here in Michigan and there have been a lot of shops closing up here. Their used lathe's sell at auction. Drop me a PM if you want me to dig up some contacts. Shipping would be a bunch, and the lathes up here might be too big for starting out.

    AJ
     
  9. woolecox

    woolecox Well-Known Member

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    Thanks AJ. It will probably be a while before I buy. We have the same thing going on down here. One of my local steel supplies has shut down their machine shop. They have alot of mills and lathes just sitting there. The problem for me right now is that I do not have adequate knowledge to make a good buy. I'm working on that! Supposedly that is part of the course work.
     
  10. prtaylor

    prtaylor Well-Known Member

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    I have completed the whole course from AGI and I am now gunsmithing on the side for extra money. The courses are great and you will enjoy them. I was fortunate enough to have enough of my own guns to work on while studying. If you do not I would strongly recommend getting some from friends so that you can follow along. This will make the courses much more beneficial and fun. As far as machines, watch the videos first and then shop. This will keep you from buying the wrong kind. I have been a machinist for 25 years so I was already up on that part but the video is quite good. If you need any help along the way let me know and I will be more than happy to offer my opinions.
    Good luck
     
  11. woolecox

    woolecox Well-Known Member

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    Thanks a lot there Mr Taylor. If you don't mind, I am going to send you a PM with my email in the clear. I do have a pretty good collection of guns. Most of them are not what you would want to experiment on. But, I am starting to shop the pawn shops for some "beaters". I would love to pick your brain from time to time. Exactly what I need! Thanks again.

    Wooly
     
  12. prtaylor

    prtaylor Well-Known Member

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    Send your email by PM and we can share ideas anytime. As for working on your own guns, getting old ones from pawn shops is fine but it adds to the cost. You can watch the course as many times as you like so the first time through you don't actually have to do anything to your firearms just take them apart so that you can phisically see what Bob is talking about and gain a full understanaing before attempting the procedures you are not sure about.
     
  13. linksmechanic

    linksmechanic Well-Known Member

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    If you buy one Use Saia freight. I had 4000 lbs. delivered to a buisness for $200.00.
     
  14. ramp

    ramp Well-Known Member

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    Woolecox

    How is the corse going. I've been thinking about taking it .
    What do you think of the corse.

    Thanks
    Ramp