Most gun enthusiast love all things related to firearms, however, if you intend to make gunsmithing a career, you may choose to specialize in a particular concentration. Although general knowledge in gun repair is advisable, you might like to focus your efforts on being an expert in one area.
There are several questions to ask yourself when considering a specialization in a certain area as a Gunsmith. First and foremost, where do your interests lie? What tasks, in the realm of gun repair or restoration, do you enjoy doing the most? Which task is relaxing or cathartic? Which task stresses you out and you dread doing? Which part of gunsmithing fulfills your creativity? As you consider your strengths, as well as, your weaknesses, below you will find a few options to consider and the description of duties involved. Perhaps you will find a concentration that you can sink your teeth into.
The Stockmaker’s expertise involves creating patterns and cutting gun stocks, often from raw wood, designed to fit a gun. This position perhaps takes a generous amount of creativity and talent, especially if asked to carve intricate designs. You will need to be familiar with the use of woodworking and finishing tools, in addition to, knowledgeable in a variety of staining and finishing techniques.
Engraver’s must have artistic abilities, as well. They are often asked to create designs on the metal surface of a firearm so, if you enjoy metal working, perhaps this will interest you. An Engraver also may use gold or silver inlays to embellish a design. In this specialization, you must be familiar with pneumatic and hand engraving tools. Oh, and a steady hand helps!
If you have patience and the affinity for detail, you may enjoy the tedious duties of the Checkerer. A Checkerer creates the grips for rifles and shotguns at the hand grip and front-end areas of the piece, in addition to, the grip area of a hand gun. The diamond pattern allows for better gripping. The raised, lightly cut series of lines must be attractive, in addition to, being functional. For this specialty, you will need specific tools designed just for checkering.
The Custom Gun Designer and Builder must be extremely skilled in all aspects of gunsmithing. Their clients often come to them with design ideas and the builder must create a firearm from raw materials and parts according to the customer’s request. While constructing one-of-a-kind custom guns, you must be competent in woodworking, metallurgy, carving, checkering, engraving and finishing, as well as, having a creative mind with artistic abilities.
In addition to specializing in gunsmithing construction techniques, you may prefer to also specialize in a certain brand name or type of firearm. For example, a Pistolsmith will only work on pistols. They are experts in customizing, repairing and improving pistols only. In addition, some may focus on certain name brands only, such as Smith & Wesson, Colt, Beretta or Winchester.
If you decide to pick an area of expertise, be sure to choose what you love to do. Turning your hobby into your profession is the best! We have compiled a list of Online Schools for Gunsmithing Programs to help you in your endeavors.