Are you a "DIYer" when it comes to guns?


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effengee
November 16, 2010, 09:58 AM
I do all general maintenance myself...
I don't know too many people who love to clean a gun as much as I do. Perhaps I'm just weird that way, but I actually enjoy and get very "zen" about it when I run a solvent-soaked patch down the bore. Then comes the "nirvana" when I reassemble the firearm and give it a good once over with the gun-cloth and it's not just clean, it's pristine.

Things like fixing scratches and dings in stock wood, fitting/zeroing scopes, complete disassembly cleaning, re-blueing, diagnostics, small repairs and tweaks, and even a few accurizing jobs are easy for me and have been performed succesfully on many different firearms, both on mine and family/friends...

I have yet to drill and tap, but I do have a drill press with a soft-jaw vice block for other stuff which may one day soon get used to install a scope mount on my son's M-N 91/30...

Unlike BP, I'm a bit nervous about the ramifications of drilling too deep:evil:

Most gunners are a "Do-It-Yourself" type in one form or another, but I was wondering where do you guys and girls draw the line?

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jmorris
November 16, 2010, 10:07 AM
Most of my firearms are job specific tools. I use or work them and take care of them but there is no “love”, marks from use are just that. I do have my safe queens but I don’t shoot them pretty pointless actually. I have build my own firearms from scratch too, up to 50 BMG, it’s still in the white and over 10 years old.

huntsman
November 16, 2010, 10:13 AM
nope I only find joy in the shooting everything else is a nessesary evil.

mcdonl
November 16, 2010, 10:15 AM
Depends. I mounted a scope on a sears 30-30 for my daughter and ground the bolt handle so it cleared the scope. I have also made grips.

I would never do anything that would alter the way the gun shoots, reloading excluded of course :)

bannockburn
November 16, 2010, 10:22 AM
effengee

My DIY experiences pretty much mirror yours. I've worked on any number of guns, my own as well as others. Anything from a basic trigger job to fitting custom parts to quite a few M1911's. I've also built and finished several black powder guns as my annual winter time projects. I especially enjoy working with wood, be it making a pair of handgun grips or refinishing a rifle or shotgun stock.

jimmyraythomason
November 16, 2010, 10:32 AM
I do my own hot bluing, drill and tap, stock bedding and finishing,barrel cutting anything except re-chambering. I had a shop install and align a scope ONCE, had to re-do it to suit my needs.

Zach S
November 16, 2010, 10:32 AM
I hate cleaning guns, and feel cleaning a gun after every time its shot its akin to changing my oil every time I drive...

For the most part, I do it myself. I'm like that with my cars and around the house too. Unless it needs milled, turned, TIGed, welded with a 230V MIG, has more than 12 to 16 volts, or has a hard drive, I could probably handle it.

Jack of all trades, master of none.

CoRoMo
November 16, 2010, 10:39 AM
I'm cheap... er... frugal... yeah, frugal.

I won't pay someone to do something that I can do myself.

mcdonl
November 16, 2010, 10:43 AM
Oh thats right. I did restore/re-blue my revolver... duh... forgot about that.

I am with you coromo... That goes for home repairs, auto repairs (Limited to my skills) and about anything else I cannot afford to do :)

stan rose
November 16, 2010, 10:43 AM
I enjoy working on guns of all kinds, and like some of you, alot of my friends ask me to look at their gun problems. The key is knowing when you are in over your head, hasn't happened yet, thanks to on line forums, books, and articles, but if there was ever an operation that I did not fully understand before comencing on it, I would send it off to the gunsmith. I have sent some Ithaca 37s off to Diamond gunsmithing to have barrels fitted, they were pre 855,000, and I am sending off a barrel to have tubes installed because it is very thin and the gunsmith said it was right on the edge of being possible.

Onmilo
November 16, 2010, 10:44 AM
Jack of all trades, master of none pretty well covers it for me too.
I am capable of building a gun from scratch given the right tools and the capability to weld and heat treat as well as metal finish.

BBQLS1
November 16, 2010, 11:11 AM
The OP made me think of the scene in Full Metal Jacket where Private Pyle is cleaning his weapon and has obviously gone crazy. :lol:


Anyways, yes I work on all kinds of stuff. Building Engines and working on cars, building Tube Guitar Amps, I need to finish my second guitar build, guns too. I like working with my hands.

effengee
November 16, 2010, 11:11 AM
I definately feel that given the right tools, and proper amounts of time and money, I have the skills to quarry the ore, smelt it, forge it, and make a barrel and action. I have more than enough experience and tools for working with wood to be certain that I could carve a stock. I'm reasonably sure that if it came down to it, I could produce gunpowder and even primitive ammunition...

Geez, what's stopping me???

Oh yeah, time and money...

But me and my brother in law are thinking about building a forge next year.

Project #1 is definately going to be a hand cannon.

Yeah, they don't call me the resident gun-nut for nothing LMAO

ScottsGT
November 16, 2010, 11:12 AM
I've been known to do some tinkering with my guns. here's one that I installed a beavertail, trigger, thin grips, ambi safety, dehorned all the edges. had a 'smith mill the top of the slide and sights. Sent small parts and slide to Tripp Research for hard chrome when they did that. I painted the receiver with GunKote.
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y157/ScottsGT/_MG_1452b.jpg
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y157/ScottsGT/_MG_1443b.jpg
This one I built from parts my Dad had using a Caspian frame with his initials and DOB as the SN. It was a Christmas present I gave him a few years back.
I sent it out for bluing.
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y157/ScottsGT/Dadsleftside.jpg
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y157/ScottsGT/SNUpclose.jpg
And I've done a couple of Garands. here's one I did (my first gunsmith attempt) that was low key. I just filed out a few nicks in the metal and had it reparked by a local 'smith. Wenig stock I finished myself with BLO from Brownells and lots of mineral of spirits and various grits of sandpaper.
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y157/ScottsGT/M1b.jpg
Here's another Garand I did that started as a woodless Dane. Again, filed out small nicks and dings, replaced worn parts and sent it in to Springfield for a parkerizing job.
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y157/ScottsGT/receiverrightside.jpg
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y157/ScottsGT/cartouche.jpg
I was building it for my youngest son, but a friend of mine liked is so much he traded me a still unfired by him, a CMP Special Grade rebuild by the CMP. The boy will get the CMP special grade now....
And I'm currently working on my Colt Stainless GCNM that I fitted a Wilson beavertail on and doing a high polish buff job on. No photos on that one yet, still in parts!

Chopdoktor
November 16, 2010, 11:25 AM
I love DIY stuff. There is almost nothing I won't mess with, unless the replacement parts cost more than I'd have to pay a gunsmith, or if I'm dealing with a super high-dollar piece (which usually don't get enough use, or are built well-enough to not break under civilian conditions). I am a blasphemer to the "purists", I'm sure, but I don't think I've ever owned a firearm that I didn't modify in some way to suit me better (hence the moniker, "Chop Doktor"). The best thing that I ever got into was building AR's. I am now thoroughly convinced that anybody with the slightest mechanical inclination should never need to buy a complete AR off the shelf again. Just don't forget to use the internet; whatever you wanna do, there's likely someone who's done it before...and posted helpful pics! :-)

HOWARD J
November 16, 2010, 11:40 AM
http://a.imageshack.us/img21/6177/partscleaningtable.th.jpg (http://img21.imageshack.us/i/partscleaningtable.jpg/)

I work on my guns if necessary--8" lathe & milling machine I can make small parts. I even do a little rebuilding on weapons.

http://a.imageshack.us/img367/4320/dsc02826.th.jpg (http://img367.imageshack.us/i/dsc02826.jpg/)

I leave the tough stuff to the experts////////////////:):)

At one time I did my own rebluing ( when you could walk in a hardware & pick up a reblue kit for a couple bucks)
Later--Uncle Sam said it was too dangerous for us to reblue & took the chemicals off the market----usual goverment crap////////////////////////////

jimmyraythomason
November 16, 2010, 11:48 AM
At one time I did my own rebluing ( when you could walk in a hardware & pick up a reblue kit for a couple bucks)
Later--Uncle Sam it was too dangerous for us to reblue & took the chemicals off the market What kits and chemicals were those?

HOWARD J
November 16, 2010, 11:57 AM
Back in the 50's
You sanded down to the bare metal.
Boiled the gun in salt water.
Hung the gun like a deer & swabbed it with cotton swab soaked in a chemical ( ? )
It gave a pretty blue finish...............just like factory///////////// :):):)

hirundo82
November 16, 2010, 12:09 PM
Absolutely, I love working on my guns. I'm currently an apartment dweller which limits the work I can do on my own, but if it is at all possible I do it myself.

Bubbles
November 16, 2010, 12:32 PM
I'm not. The hubby is a gunsmith, so he handles all that stuff. I just reap the benefits. :D

CraigC
November 16, 2010, 01:01 PM
I am. I do my own action jobs on revolvers, particularly single actions. Swap parts. Not afraid to drill & tap a few holes here and there. Fit oversized grips. I set myself up with an old screw-cutting lathe and milling fixture to do some milling on a 10/22 scope mount. Which entailed flipping a Volquartsen picatinny rail backwards and milling a recess to fit over a Tech Sights rear peep sight, drilling & tapping five extra holes. Then doing the spray-on finish with Brownells Aluma-Hyde II. Turned out great. If my setup was rigid enough to mill steel, I would be dangerous!
http://photos.imageevent.com/newfrontier45/clifton/large/IMG_0761b.jpg


I hate cleaning guns, and feel cleaning a gun after every time its shot its akin to changing my oil every time I drive...
I agree, Zach!

joshk-k
November 16, 2010, 01:10 PM
I'm not, in the way you describe, a gun DIYer.

BUT: I often describe gun ownership to my liberal friends as a major part of my general
DIY ethos, i.e., food provision and self defense.

Josh

BLACKHAWKNJ
November 16, 2010, 03:48 PM
Drilling and tapping, hot bluing, etc, are way beyond me. Everything I will tackle. My Iron Rules for any DIY project are:
1. Have all the books and manuals you can find.
2. Read the instructions thoroughly at least 3 times.
3. Have all the proper tools. Follow the authors recommendations.
4. Take your time-don't rush.
5. Put it aside if you are getting nowhere or something doesn't seem right.
6. Know your limitations.

MikeS63301
November 16, 2010, 03:57 PM
Those are great rules to live by, especially #6.

FruitCake
November 16, 2010, 09:48 PM
I went from not knowing nothing about gunsmithing to quite a bit just by reading and searching on THR. There's quite a bit I learned just by reading other members weapons repairs and modifications

supham
November 17, 2010, 11:37 AM
I like cleaning them, but I'm lost beyond a simple field strip.


s

Caliper_RWVA
November 17, 2010, 11:20 PM
I am not a DIY'er when it comes to guns. I am a DIY'er when it comes to anything...

First car I bought myself needed an engine rebuild. So I read up and rebuilt it. Figured that nobody else was born knowing how to rebuild an engine, so I wouldn't let that stand in my way.

Naturally when I got to guns, words like "no further disassembly is needed" did not stop me.

justgoto
November 18, 2010, 02:22 AM
I have some homemade parts in some of my guns. I have a 22 scope that has cross-hairs made from my own hair. That same 22 has a part that is a modified nail. I made my own scope mount for my Eddystone. I've made some sight elevation blades to get some more distance out of a few rifles.

Mainly general gun maintenance with a little oomph.

Xfire68
November 18, 2010, 02:39 AM
I am a DIYer and enjoy doing the work myself. The first job was redoing the stock on my new (1991) Savage 110 in 30-06.

I did the $.25 trigger job on my CZ 75B as well as on my brothers CZ SP01 Phantom.

I did a complete strip down, sanded and re blued a friends old Savage 340 in 30-30 which turned out fantastic!:p

I am working on a old Winchester model 64 pump .22 now.

kaferhaus
November 18, 2010, 08:33 AM
Well, I'm a gunsmith with a machine shop out back.... Mostly build custom Target/Varmint rifles and do a lot of re-barreling for same.

I'm a retired engineer so I work at my pace so I can still have time to enjoy shooting/hunting and more importantly the grand kids.

Equestrian
November 18, 2010, 08:58 AM
depends on what kind of mood im in. ive always been one to take apart and reassemble things just to see what makes em it ticks same applys here. plus i think its neat to take something old and make it new again. im restaining an old m44 right now its neat where it was held so much that the wood has been stained darker

kayak-man
November 21, 2010, 02:33 AM
I actually enjoy and get very "zen" about it when I run a solvent-soaked patch down the bore. Then comes the "nirvana" when I reassemble the firearm and give it a good once over with the gun-cloth and it's not just clean, it's pristine.
Lately, I've been thinking that Clint Smith and Jeremy Clarkson should do a show together. I can't help but imagine James May saying that.

ScottsGT, that is an amazing 1911. I was going to buy a RIA (I turn 21 in'11, and I liked the idea of buying my first 1911 100 years after it was introduced) but now I'm thinking of saving up and building one. I had no idea about Caspian ( Edited to add: nevermind, that seems like a bit more skill/money than I have right now)

I'm a DIY guy for the most part. With guns, I feel like its kind of a pride thing - I don't just want to shoot an AK, I want to shoot a Saiga that I converted. I did some MacGyver like stuff to my archery gear when I was shooting competitively, but when it comes to the boomsticks, I try to stick to established methods (That being said, the arrow rest I made out of a paper clip has outlasted and outperformed any arrowrest I've ever bought.)

I like fixing stuff, and I see doing your own work on your own gear as a major step towards self sufficiency and progression towards the guru side of the scale.

Zach S
November 21, 2010, 03:43 AM
Naturally when I got to guns, words like "no further disassembly is needed" did not stop me. The only time I really paid attention to that was in my Para LDA manual. When I saw the exploded diagram, I said "No f-ing way..."

I know curiosity is going to get the best of me one day though.

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