NRA short term classes

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing Forum' started by krosskelt, Jan 22, 2013.

  1. krosskelt

    krosskelt New Member

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    I have been looking in my area and have been unable to find a gunsmith close enough to apprentice under. That and a combination of classes would be my ideal vision for learning. I work full time and have a family, so attending school full time is a difficult choice for me anyway. But, since none of the schools around me actually offer gunsmithing it makes the decision even more difficult. My dream is to have my own gun shop and range, weather that ever happens or not I would like to increase my knowledge, feed my addiction, and expand on my hobby. I have been looking at the short term NRA classes. I live in Kansas and could attend either Colorado or Oklahoma, and possibly convince the wife to let me out of the cage for a week at a time :rolleyes: Was wondering if anybody had any experience with these types of classes. I have been looking in my area and have been unable to find a gunsmith close enough to apprentice under.
     
  2. John_Deer

    John_Deer New Member

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    Most of the really successful gunsmiths that I use were machinists before they were gunsmiths. The most sought after gunsmith in this area is a retired tool and die maker at Colt. He is usually booked 2 months in advance. Sometimes 2 months is optimistic. If you want something done right it's worth the wait. He won't even look at black guns (AR-15's). So he is sending 75% of the people that come in his shop down the road.

    I can tell you right now the market is flooded with parts assemblers. Everywhere I go there is a parts assembler on every corner. There is a huge difference between a gunsmith and a parts assembler.
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2013

  3. krosskelt

    krosskelt New Member

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    I currently work in the automotive field and originally attended school in the 90's for electrical and mechanical engineering, later finding I did not know what I wanted to do with it. I do not want to be an assembler I want to be a trouble shooter, customizer, and optimizer of people's firearms. Assembly I have messed around enough with to realize that is not enough to develop a product I can be proud of. That is why I would like to apprentice with somebody that I know/hear is good but I am unable to find anybody except one guy that does strickly black guns. Which would be great to learn but I'm more in the semi-auto double and single action pistols. With a lust for learning I would like to learn all I can, of course but that is where my interest is.
     
  4. Aperez

    Aperez New Member

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    Have you ever given a thought about learning to gunsmith from home?
     
  5. hiwall

    hiwall Well-Known Member

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    A gunsmith is mainly a parts installer for at least the first half of his/her career. But local metal working and woodworking classes would be a great first step. And books then more books.
     
  6. krosskelt

    krosskelt New Member

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    I am a very visual learner. If I see somebody do something then I can usually repeat it well. I can usually work it out from reading about it, but the little tips and tricks you learn just by watching and listening sometimes is invaluable. I have DCOA most of the guns I own. But I do not fully disassemble the slides on the striker fire pistols because I do not have enough confidence. The trigger groups and lower half is no problem. I have completely disassembled my model '94, 870, AK, and Mosin. I have replaced an extrator on the 870. The variety of weapons that I could learn on at a school or actual shop would be much greater also.

    I work at a bodyshop so I get metal working and basic machining. I have talked to the shop we outsource our major machining and welding to and he is more than willing to apprentice me when we have time. Which is good because he makes fireproof gun safes I can not afford, so maybe we will work a deal out on one of those while I'm at it. I am going to be getting books over the next year instead of my current method of research. Which is I try to find 3 sources on the subject before I begin. If there is a discrepancy between them I try to find another source and verify correct procedure. If I find videos I will watch as many has I can stand.
     
  7. Aperez

    Aperez New Member

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    I'm sorry sir but you are completely incorrect if you are a real gunsmith you will know how to trouble shoot and repair as soon as you graduate. Anyone can change parts but a true gunsmith does not just change the part he goes deeper to see y that part broke in the first place and fix the origin of the problem. And further more some parts like extractors and barrels and such need to be fitted correctly. The way I was taught is if you know how it works you know how to fix it even if you've never seen nor worked on that specific firearm. That is why a real certified gunsmith is knowledge able in any gun you give them because they were taught every type of system.
     
  8. hiwall

    hiwall Well-Known Member

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    This is all true but they still are parts installers.