How do I choose a good gunsmith?

Not open for further replies.


Dec 13, 2011
Hey guys,

So I'm looking for a gunsmith to do a trigger job on my ruger blackhawk convertible. But, thanks to the fine folks on the board, I know that certain gunsmith specialize in certain things.

My question is how do I find out if my gunsmith can competently do the work on my blackhawk? What should I look for in a good gunsmith? How do I make sure I'm not just handing my gun over to some Dr. Frankenstein?

Thanks guys!


Also, anyone know any good smiths near Pensacola, Florida?
Word of mouth and credentials, I guess. Look for somebody who is recommended by people you know and has some "sheepskins" on the wall from major manufacturers.

I can't help you with Florida, but I can vouch for this guy:

You'd have to ship him your gun, though.
I'm in Panama City and I use a guy that smiths part-time. He is good with 1911s, S&W triggers, and I think he told me that Ruger single actions were within his realm.

He has done a couple of S&W triggers for me, a couple of 1911 triggers for friends of mine, and a 1911 barrel, compensator, trigger, and refinish(Cerakote) for another friend. He uses his own guns that he built to show off his capabilities.

He came to my private range with a friend of mine and I was blown away with his 1911s.

In the Brownells catalog he sells a ball bearing trigger for the 1911. Brand name Castillos.
Last edited:
One easy way is to ask. Obviously, not many gunsmiths are going to admit that they can't do the work, and that job is a fairly easy one, but it is often possible to tell from the reaction and his questions if the gunsmith knows what is involved.

For Ruger single actions, there are parts availiable that will improve the triggers a lot and installation is a DIY job for anyone with some mechanical skill.

Not open for further replies.