Gunsmith Schools, which ones are good?

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing' started by Shockandawe1980, Sep 15, 2009.

  1. Shockandawe1980

    Shockandawe1980 New Member

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    Sep 15, 2009
    Hello all,

    I'm a semi-stay at home dad, that works two other jobs as well as watching my 3yr-old. I have recently become infected with firearms as a hobby. I'd like to see if I can turn it into a business.
    I have been looking a gunsmith schools, and I can't seem to find real info on the good vs. the bad. An online course works very well for me as I work odd hours. But are these course's worth it? Can I actually become a gunsmith and make a living with it? Which one's should I avoid? Many sound too good to be true.

    Example, PSU (phoenix state) claims to train you in 6 weeks to a master level with your choice of secondary like reloading, and get you a state and local license with an FFL for $250.

    Others charge alittle more, some much, much more. (4k+)

    Then there are community colleges with aren't in my area, so that would be a huge problem, housing, tuition etc.. I don't mind work hard for it, I just don't want to work in vain.
    Any info would be beyond helpful! Thanks in advance! :cool:
     
  2. NesikaChad

    NesikaChad Well-Known Member

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    Trinidad Colorado has one of the best programs in the country.

    Good luck. Be ready to starve for awhile!

    Cheers,

    Chad
     

  3. Boss Hoss

    Boss Hoss Well-Known Member

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    6 weeks is not enough to become a blacksmith.


    Trinidad is the Gold Standard with a new 3 year Program that does what no other has done for the 3rd year.
     
  4. lamiglas

    lamiglas Well-Known Member

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    Jesse,

    Glad to see you posted the question. I think this is the best place to get good advice on anything shooting related!

    Bill
     
  5. esshup

    esshup Well-Known Member

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    Gunsmithing is such a "hands on" field that I seriously doubt that an on-line course can do it justice, much less a 6 week course. There is so much to learn from actually seeing and doing, plus interacting with other people that have experience in the field.

    I've worked with Mechanical Engineers that have all the paperwork on the wall, but can't figure out why a 2 way locking nut isn't a good idea on a 5/16-18 x 1 1/2" rib neck bolt that's going thru .100" 5052 H32 aluminum, or why it's not a good idea to put a 2 way locking zinc plated nut on a 1/4-20 x 2" stainless phillips pan head screw when you're trying to bolt two pieces of .125" aluminum together.

    What do you mean you can't get it tight? WHAT?? What'dya mean you can't get it loose now? Which one is it, can't get it tight or can't get it loose? WHAT? What'dya mean it won't tighten up and you can't get it loose??? Well, how did you strip it out??? What'dya mean it's the wrong nut? You used the one that I called out, didn't you?

    Hands on experience is worth twice as much as book smarts.....
     
  6. mike33

    mike33 Well-Known Member

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    I think it would be hard to learn how to run a lathe on a computer. I have been in 2 trades and business in my life. It takes years to master a trade and then feel comforable to charge for a service. I was in the auto body business for 12 years then decided i wanted to learn excavating and landscaping. I did eventually but it took a lot of time and money and you dont have the time to hear my story. The gunsmiths you read about on this site are master craftmans. I would say it took them many years to get where there at like any other trade. These guys work in .0001 th. that is serious stuff.
    Mike
     
  7. Aldon

    Aldon Well-Known Member

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    At some point my current career will finally be taken off life support and with the kids grown I have been planning to go to gunsmithing school. I plan on doing something I really enjoy to augment whatever lower pay mundane work I get since I have turned the corner agewise and am likely on the downhill slide as far as salaried positions. It is cheaper to pay a couple young graduates than an older guy etc...So I am getting used to the idea of laying tile in my own business or working at home depot until I get a smith business going. I have been doing some research and the colorado school has been referred to me by other gunsmiths/friends but the quality of instruction is cyclical and based on the instructor. I found this one in Pittsburgh which seems good as well. Any of the Smiths on this site have any opinion of it? Pennsylvania Gunsmith School: Pittsburgh PA
     
  8. TAP

    TAP Well-Known Member

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    Don't have any opinion on the Penn school, however, I am curently enrolled in the program at Yavapai Community College and like it very much. Seems to be a good school with some very knowledgable instructors.
     
  9. Shockandawe1980

    Shockandawe1980 New Member

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    Sep 15, 2009
    Well thank you all for your input. I thought that 6wks and $250 was to good to be true.:D However its just not possible to do a 3 year course out of state for me right now. So that means I'll have to find something else.

    Yeah Bill, its me I took your advice! This website is awesome!

    Thanks again everyone!

    Jesse gun)
     
  10. NesikaChad

    NesikaChad Well-Known Member

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    Not hard, just a different language:

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    LOL!
     
  11. mixerdriverm

    mixerdriverm Active Member

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    I would recommend the Colorado School of Trades. I went there several years back and really enjoyed it, learned ALOT. It is 1 1/2 year get an associates out of it and you learn about, work with guns everyday. It is a real world gunsmith shop. I would highly recommend it it is not cheap though about (14000.00). I had a few offers of work from people I never heard of just from them hearing about work I had done.
     
  12. moore00

    moore00 New Member

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    If your really serious about getting into it modern gun
    School (mgs) has a advanced gunsmithing course an
    they send you training supplies an in contact with actual
    gunsmithing mentor an it only 1500 an you can pay
    payment, it a really well laid out course, be the best way to really grasp the basics an,
    who knows you might change your mind afterwards
     
  13. Hapcustoms

    Hapcustoms Member

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    I went to Colorado school of trades but honestly they don't teach a lot important stuff like making a rifle shoot.. I do know in last few years they have went down hill in the instructor category..

    If I had to do it over I would have went to a machine shop school and practiced. But I had a knowledge base going into it..
     
  14. ctbreitwieser

    ctbreitwieser Member

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    Ill be finishing up my last day of class tomorrow at Wabash Valley College in Mt Carmel, IL. It was a 1 year course and I have to say it was the best decision Ive ever made (except for asking my current GF on ourfirst date:D). The class touches on many aspects of gunsmithing and isnt meant to make you a full out GS upon graduation, but rather show you the basics of everything and let you expand into what you're most interested in. The class includes a 1911 build, AR build from barrel blank, and a bolt action rifle build of your choice (I built a .358 hoosier on a Marlin action for mine). The tuition is very reasonable, although I dont know what it is for sure since GI bill covered mine, but I believe its around $6000. The instructor has been GSing for over 30 yrs and is extremely knowledgable, and to be honest has become a role model of mine. Feel free to PM me if youd like anymore info.