Post your Homemade Tools for Guns


February 8, 2003, 08:13 PM
I made this little tool to put the sear spring back in when reassembling my 226 after a detailed field strip. The little notch helps push the pin back in. :) Very handy, prevents me from cutting my fingers on the reciever. :)

The little notch can be cut with a small file. I used a dremel.

What other inventions have THR guys come up with to put back together your favorite toys.


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February 9, 2003, 12:42 PM
I don't have a digital camera but my home-made snap-cap-rod is probably not worthy of a great photo.
At any rate, for all of my milsurp rifles I have a wood dowel rod that I put down the muzzle after cleaning to allow for the dry fire before putting the gun away. On the end of the rod is glued a pencil eraser. Insert the rod, push hard and dry fire.
I also have one for my shot guns. The rod is a piece of rigid copper pipe with a circular piece of hard rubber attached to the end.

Badger Arms
February 9, 2003, 02:43 PM
ACK, I'm away from home right now. I took some tubing, a hacksaw, and a file and made a tool to remove the firing pin from the Enfield SMLE. It's crude, but it works.

DT Guy
March 2, 2003, 09:24 AM
Don't really need a photo...

I keep a few .308 cases (with the neck crushed flat in a vise) around my cleaning kit. Good for scraping lead and gunk off a gun without hurting the bluing, and perfect for depressing the plunger when putting on the safety and slide stop of a 1911.

And did I mention...CHEAP....?


March 2, 2003, 11:17 AM
I have several drawers full of shop-made tools, accessories and fixtures that are not comercially available. Perhaps we should begin a collection and publish a book on the subject. I know a publisher who is willing to cooperate.

March 2, 2003, 04:13 PM
I used a wood lathe with a Jacobs chuck to make a case spinner
for starting shoulders on my wildcat belted cartridges.Used a
sharp edge file in a holder, to start belt and then swaged the
rest. Cartridge is the 458 Hubel Express.It is 3.45 in long, with
a straight side, and headspace length of .235.Here is picture
of cartridges next to 458Win--

I will have to get a picture made of the lathe also.Ed.

March 3, 2003, 05:25 PM
My favorite is a paper clip I use on those occasions I strip my Ruger Mk II. Slip it under the mainspring takedown hook, pull, and you're golden (and didn't scratch the frame).

March 5, 2003, 10:21 PM
It is made from wood lathe with jacobs chuck running low
rpms.I start belt shoulder with a file in a special guide to
get headspace right.The swage brass to get rest of belt and
case shape.Shown is BMG brass for my big .625 belted wildcat

March 8, 2003, 06:47 PM
I keep a Hockey Puck in my range tools box. It's great when you have to move a sight in a dovetail etc. The rubber is soft enough to keep from scratching the gun, and hard enough to support the barrel when using a hammer and brass punch.

DT Guy
March 10, 2003, 12:05 AM
I like the hockey puck! The ultimate cheapo bench block, here I come!


March 10, 2003, 10:41 AM
This is a bolt head holder, so I can put a 303 bolt head in a big lathe chuck.

I solder on a shim and then machine it all flat and round, so that I can control headspace.

March 10, 2003, 10:45 AM
This is a spider I built, which is to center the barrel muzzle that sticks out of the left side of the headstock when rebarreling.

Master Blaster
March 20, 2003, 09:50 AM
I took an old tooth brush and cut the head off I then shaped the plastic stub so it would fit into the slide grooves of a 1911 with a patch wrapped around it. Makes cleaning out the crud easier.

May 11, 2003, 10:29 PM
I knew this was here, just took a while to find this subject. One little thing I have made and used over the years is a pin punch made out of a 4"or so piece of cold rolled mild steel with a smll hole drilled in one end about 1/4" deep and a RCBS size large replaceable primer decaping pin wedged into it. It gives you a pin about 5/8" long that is handy for lining up parts to insert the retaining pin. You can not pound on them very hard. They bend.

I have two of them usualy. One with the normal rounded end on the pin and another that I have stoned the end of the pin flat. Good luck

4 eyed six shooter
May 13, 2003, 12:25 AM
If anyone is interested, I have quite a few plans for making tools for working on winchester firearms as well as some others. I would be happy to copy and mail them for a couple of bucks to cover my costs. E-mail me if interested. Brownells Gunsmithing Kinks series of books also contains plans for many tools.
The last tool I made was for holding the shell stops in a Rem shotgun for staking. Just take a medium size bolt and cut it about one quarter of an inch shorter than the inside of the receiver. Turn a pin to .180" and make it about 1 inch longer than the width of the receiver ( I put a knob on one end ). Drill a hole thru the center of the bolt just over.180". Then get a nylon tube that will that you can tap the inside of that will screw over the bolt ( the building supply stores have the nylon tubes ). Cut the tube shorter than the lenth of the threads on the bolt. To use, place the bolt with the nylon tube threaded onto the bolt into the receiver and put the pin thru the receiver and bolt, then tighten the sleeve until tight against the receiver and shell stops. Holds them in place tightly so that you can stake the stops. You can buy a commercial tool to do the same thing, but this one costs less than a buck.
When buying pin punches, get them at Sears. When you bend em and break em you can get them replaced for free.
Good Shooting, John K
P. S. The idea of a book of plans would be great. Even common gunsmithing tools would be great if measurements were included.

4 eyed six shooter
May 13, 2003, 12:41 AM
Yea, I know, I posted the last one twice:banghead:

One other cheap tool for removing stock bolts. Cut several lenths of 1/2" aluminum electrical tubing for differant depths. Drop the tubing into the bolt hole of your gunstock and the your screwdriver into the tubing. Keeps you from blowing out the side of the stock if your screwdriver slips off of the screw head. Just don't forget to remove the tubing before putting the pad back on.
John K

May 18, 2003, 07:35 AM
Aside from various sized cut-off bolts with the cut end rounded and buffed to be used in straightening out deformed case mouths, I haven't made anything else.

Something I am working on is a quick unloader for 94 Carbines. I made one out of a split-down-the-middle '06 case with a lip to go inside the loading gate. I need to figure out some sort of an escapement to unload one cartridge at a time, because right now, when you get the little "gutter" thing lined up in the loading gate, you unload the entire magazine in about a sixtieth of a second. You also don't want to do it around your wife's figurine collection. I would like to get this gadget right, because it is a pain in the patootie unloading lever actions. :mad:

February 13, 2004, 12:24 PM
My brother's spider

February 13, 2004, 12:31 PM

February 17, 2004, 10:08 AM
The flatened 308 case neck mentioned by Larry earlier in this thread, also works wonderfully for cleaning files. Much better than a file card as the brass conforms to the profle of the file.
If a person uses a file much it is good to know that by "loading the file with chauk" it will eliminate much of the galling on your work piece and you will achieve a better finish.


December 26, 2004, 11:55 PM
This shows how a spider is used to dial in the muzzle on the left hand side of the tailstock for cutting chambers and threads on a rifle barrel.

December 30, 2004, 03:06 PM
I made a tool for removing the slotted nut from Ruger single action cylinder pin retainer. I took a hollow-ground screwdriver bit and removed the center of the bit with my Dremel tool. Voila!

December 30, 2004, 10:27 PM
You could use that to take appart your microwave oven as well:)

Black Snowman
December 31, 2004, 10:50 AM
I made a spanner the same as Tinkerer but I used a cheap chinese screwdriver as a base. I use it to install and remove the front sight in my Glock 24P. I also had to slot the hex head screw it came with. There just wasn't enough clearance for the intended socket driver with the extended slide.

January 2, 2005, 11:28 PM
I made a scope mount/ring welding fixture to put a FAC AK47 cast steel mount [cut down to 1/3 it's size] on a 91/30 reciever.

January 8, 2005, 11:48 PM
Here it is welded.

January 9, 2005, 05:43 PM
Mount modifed with sales page
picture of the mount

January 26, 2005, 11:41 PM

January 27, 2005, 10:58 AM
"I need to figure out some sort of an escapement to unload one cartridge at a time,"

Sounds like all you need is to punch out a metal tab a little ways back, round comes out under pressure, stops on the tab, you pick it out, next one comes out...

March 28, 2005, 07:49 PM
This is my home made steady rest.
It came with the lathe, 90% finished.
I made it fit the ways and made the under plate.
I am proud that it torques down in 1/8 turn, and so is no springy.

April 16, 2005, 02:25 AM
I made an action wrench and barrel vice with Alluminum collets.

These tools cannot get every rusty barrel off, I also need Kroil and a 20 pound sledge hammer.

April 17, 2005, 01:58 PM
I make a lot of 7.62x45 Czech brass for all those surplus VZ-52 rifles that showed up years ago. But before I got one of those Chinese benchtop mini-lathes, I used this trim bushing to fix the parent brass into position. The brass is shoved into the aluminum bushing until it hits the internal shoulder. The bolt is tightened in the threaded bushing until it locks the brass in place against that internal shoulder, leaving the right amount of neck and shoulder exposed. I chuck it into a vise, then either hacksaw or Dremel-tool off the excess. Voila', I run it into the sizing dies, kiss it with the electric case trimmer, then anneal and ship.

April 28, 2005, 09:10 PM
This is an action wrench I made per the old Mcfarland gunmsithing book.
It works well on Mausers, 91/30s, and Arisakas.

December 10, 2005, 11:21 PM
I made a mandrel for a Turk today from a piece of 3/4" RC30 4140 steel.

I drilled and tapped a 10-32 hole in the mandrel for a set screw to keep the reciever from spinning on the mandrel.

December 25, 2005, 12:21 PM
This is how I keep my ham fists from smacking the scope.

December 27, 2005, 08:54 PM
I snip the end off a round (not flat) toothpick and use it to push a small patch with grease along the rails of my 1911. I also use chopsticks to push rags into hard to reach places.

December 28, 2005, 01:20 PM
Does this count??? :) (

December 28, 2005, 02:29 PM
First some real simple oddments - left to right - a) simply modified old drill, for large nipple removal on Musketoon.
b) Next a turned piece of heat treated aluminum sized to exact fit in N frame 357 cylinder - its fwd section has a slight concavity turned into it so it has a ''sharp'' edge. Used for easing out lead build up when needed.
c) Very simple hammer with brass working head.
d) Simple jig made up for BHP rear sight drifting - ''business'' ends brass capped.

This bunch of stuff - just some examples of lathe accessories I have made over time - only partly for gun applications.

a) Rear left - #2 Morse taper on this center block. Takes up to about 1 1/4" - and suits cross drilling, in fact any center oriented op's - fits in tailstock for most use tho can go in headstock spindle for slow revolutions. Has an end stop.

b) Rear right - Another center block - this for bench use in drill press. I made a number of guide bushings which are hardened and mostly for small sizes. It has an end stop.

c) Front - Just a knurling jig - fits in tool post.

December 29, 2005, 10:36 PM
Some of your tools are like things in Home Shop machinist magazine:
Not only is the workmanship fancy, so is the photography.

December 29, 2005, 10:44 PM
Clark - I'll admit to more than once seeing an item in a magazine and thinking it was worth making - or at least basing something on. IIRC the drill press center block was one of those but the big tail stock one was my own original - made I admit in part by ''seeing what was in the scrap bin'' :)

I have a degree of perfectionism - which is never satisfied and so sometimes I make more pretty than needed - OTOH many items are strictly functional and not very photogenic! Plenty of those!

I have enjoyed seeing many of your various items pictured for which thanks, here and at other times. It is sometimes an interesting challenge to make something specific which succeeds and makes a job either feasable or just way easier.

I think we could have fun together in the machine shop!

September 20, 2006, 02:03 AM
I made a spider for this old 1938 Craftsman 101.07402 lathe 12x36.

The threads are 1.25 - 20 internal.

The old lathe with change gears made it's own spider.

I needed a .25" diameter round disc of copper to protect the spindle's 1.25x20 threads from the 5/16-24 set screw.

I cut the base off a .257 Roberts bullet.

The hole through the spindle is a little less than .8" [#2MT] and the hole I made in the in the spider is a little more than .8".

September 20, 2006, 02:04 AM
I also found a 10" steady rest and built a 1" riser so it will fit on the 12" lathe.

I am now ready to chamber rifles with the old lathe.

September 20, 2006, 09:10 AM
Here are some tools I made to build 1911's:


February 18, 2007, 12:21 PM
I made another action wrench [the one on the top].
There are some improvements over the one I made in 2000 [the one on the bottom].
I realize now that I want the flat underside of a Mauser receiver that lines up with the large ring on top to be between the two bolts in the wrench.


So I cut into the action wrench so that the flat space on the bottom of the receiver just behind the recoil lug could get into the wrench far enough to be between the bolts.

November 8, 2007, 08:06 AM
This is a top side clamping fixture I made to hold 1903 Turkish Mausers.

November 8, 2007, 10:56 AM
The first one is a tool I built for filling moon clips the feed tube is also cut to demoon (in action) The second is a tool I use to remove the main spring of a 1911 without sending it in into orbit. Third is another 1911 tool, this one is for extractor tension with the stop it’s great for setting up spares. For quickly swapping out scopes and maintaining a decent zero I rigged up the double split V block and laser set up shown in the 4th photo. Just line the laser up with the already zeroed scope, swap them and run the new scope to the dot. The last one was built because I always hated looking for the right torques bit to remove the grip panels and the Allen for a 2 piece guide rod (at an angle for increased torque) that I don’t use much anymore, now that I use one piece rods.

November 9, 2007, 06:32 AM

OK, I watched the video 10 times, and I can't figure out where those cartridges are popping up from.

Dave Markowitz
November 9, 2007, 09:18 AM
I made from a piece of 1/2" copper pipe this demooner for .45 full moon clips used in my S&W Model 625.

November 9, 2007, 09:50 AM
I have some blueprints for equipment, from barrel wrenches and action vices, to various other equipment... If anyone is interested, I will scan and post... Just let me know.

November 9, 2007, 10:51 AM
I have sent several of you e-mails concerning your tools and fixtures being used in the competency booklets for the Gunsmith Apprenticeship Program but so many of the tools here would be useful and I don't like writing E-mails I thought I would just kill all the birds with one stone, and ask the same of all of you.
We would like to put together a collection of tools and fixtures the apprentices could make as part of their competency in mill, and lathe work, we would give you credit for any of your info we use in the booklet. we would appreciate any tips in using the tools as well
Thanks JP Campbell

November 10, 2007, 08:38 AM
The carriage that slides back and forth has a “roof” on top to keep the next round in the tube from falling while mooning the previous. The feed tube is long enough to hold six rounds and is notched as above to demoon as well.

November 10, 2007, 09:31 AM

jmorris The carriage that slides back and forth has a “roof” on top to keep the next round in the tube from falling while mooning the previous. The feed tube is long enough to hold six rounds and is notched as above to demoon as well.

They are coming down from above.
The part that pushes the cartridge into the moon clip also blocks the next round from falling.
It is so obvious now that I know the answer.

November 10, 2007, 01:19 PM
Neat suff you all have done.

I built a lot of things for non-gunsmith application. Things like flywheel removers, etc. I do a lot jigs & fixtures at work. My two favorites were a tool to disassemble freewheels on bicycles and a tool that would make a whole roll of wire into a stack of wire that was bent, measured & cut.

About the only thing I did was make a bore guide for shotguns using an empty shell. The shell is of the 1 piece design. No big deal & not an original thought. It does keep the rod from scraping. I doesn't need to seal as the barrel is removed. I was too cheap to buy a bore snake for shotguns.

Nothing hard core like what y'all do.


November 11, 2007, 04:08 PM
This drawing from the 1965 book, Introduction to Gunsmithing by Macfarland, was an inspiration for me to build action wrenches for myself and friends.

I have now improved upon that design, by cutting a relief to get the tightening bolts in the same plane as the rear of the large ring. This keeps from putting a side bind on the bolts in their clearance holes in the V block.

If you enjoyed reading about "Post your Homemade Tools for Guns" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!