Ok, I'm a small time gun mechanic (not a certified Gunsmith) and I get plenty of work (not enough to live on and most of it I do gratis for buddies). Here are my recommendations for you to see if this is really for you:
1. Go to YouTube and watch everything there is on gun smithing, i.e. tearing a 1911 down to the frame, trigger jobs, building AR-15’s from scratch, tricking out Glocks.
2. Using these videos borrower all your buddies guns and tear them down and put them back together.
3. Once you feel this is for you them contact the different gun manufacturer and find out if they have online Armorer courses. S&W, Diamond Back and maybe Glock does this. A couple of months ago Diamond Back sent me an email on this and the only requirement was access to a Diamond back and but a small spare parts kit. Once the course is completed you get a certificate and Diamond Back list you as an Armorer. None of this really requires any machining capabilities.
4. If you are thinking military (which is a very good thing, because of all the training available + discipline) every fighting organization has an Armorer. This is another duty. You’ll do field repairs, modifications to M-4’s, M-9’s, like putting scopes on, changing out bolt carrier groups. But remember if you are doing this in the field you will be where people are shooting at you.
5. As stated above, you’ll need a machining background. You can get this at your local community college. This will require Algebra/Trigonometry, geometry, blueprint reading and machining. For a small Gun Smith CNC is only required if you are building one-off guns (which means you’ll need more than a 01FFL). CNC is not cost effective for the small gun smith. You can get by with the same system I have a combo lathe/mill, 24” lathe. A lot of the stuff you’ll be doing will be by hand. I contract all of my wood work out to a local furniture repair guy, for finish work.
If your plan is to open a gun shop having armorer certificates will put you way ahead of other gun shops. I work in a gun shop and we make a lot on
quick fixes and installing sights, scopes and the kitchen sink on AR’s.
these sites out:
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