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What is the difference?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by jondar, Oct 20, 2006.

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  1. jondar

    jondar Member

    Jun 10, 2005
    Between an armorer (or armourer) and a gunsmith? I infer from what I read that one is military and the other civilian, but it must be more complex than that. Any ideas?
  2. Amish_Bill

    Amish_Bill Member

    Nov 29, 2003
    atl ga
    I'd guess that the Armourer has the duty of maintaining a large collection of weaponry in-house while a gunsmith is a fixit guy?
  3. Bruce333

    Bruce333 Member

    Aug 22, 2005
    Smithfield NC
    I don't claim to know what I'm talking about here. 2c.gif

    My take on it is that an armorer services, cleans and repairs to factory specs, and is more limited to the firearms they know how to work on (certain brands or models), ans is an employee of the owner of the firearms.

    Gunsmithing would add to that, custom work, that is, non factory parts and mods, and working on a wide range of firearms. Works on firearms of individual owners. Has an FFL.

    (How'd I do?:confused: )
  4. repsychler

    repsychler Member

    Aug 11, 2003
    Garland, TX
    I agree with what the others have said. An armorer would be in charge of a certain stock of weapons (such as for the military, police or security firm) and a gunsmith is more along the lines of doing repairs, upgrades etc for different customers guns.
  5. Fosbery

    Fosbery Member

    Jun 21, 2006
    Great Britain
    Some armorers are just to clean, maintain, repair guns etc. But many will also be gunsmiths who can do custom jobs.
  6. 44AMP

    44AMP Member

    Sep 9, 2006
    upper US

    In the military, the person in charge of a company arms room is the armorer. He does NOT clean the weapons, the users are responsible for that. The armorer inspects them for cleanliness when they are turned in. And he is also responsible for performing certain limited maintenance. He is allowed/required to replace certain parts to maintain servicability. Repairs beyond those allowed to the armorer go to a support level maintenance company where a Small Arms Repairman will perform the work. having been both, I know this is how it works.

    A Police armorer is nearly but not exactly the same. He is responsible for the weapons storage, and for limited maint. Often he has been trained/certified by the factory for performing this work. He generally only works on a small number of weapon types.

    A gunsmith is a civilian term that covers people who work on guns. The range of services varies widely. A gunsmith can be faced with (literally) anything. Customers come in with everything from repair/refinish to conversions/custiomizations. One guy might need a spring made for a 150 year old revoler, another could want a peep site put on his rifle, or to repair/replace a cracked buttstock, etc, etc. Some gunsmiths are school trained, some are aprentice trained, others are self taught, and some are combinations of all three.

    Not every smith can (or will) do it all. Many gunsmiths specialize in a certain aspect only.

    A guy who makes his living tuning target handguns won't be too keen on trying to figure out why your old Hi Standard pump 20ga jams every other shot. The guy who works in the back room of the gun shop replacing firing pins and mounting scopes might not be the best guy to rechamber your wildcat varmint gun. There are vast differences, but all fall unter the term gunsmith.
  7. 10-Ring

    10-Ring Member

    Dec 24, 2002
    From my understanding, an armorer is one that can detail strip a firearm, make repairs as necessary (using factory parts) and rebuild the firearm to factory spec. A gunsmith can detail strip a firearm, make modifications to it...ie trigger work or fitting a barrel..., rebuild it that firearm and maintain perfect reliability w/ his work.
  8. Flak_Jakett

    Flak_Jakett Member

    Sep 6, 2006
    44AMP hit the nail right on the noggin. An MOS qualified armorer can perform limited reparations. Some armorers, however, are not qualified, and all they can do is hand in and out weapons and keep the paperwork neat. They technically wouldn't be armorers then would they? I guess they would be weapons hander outers/ slash butt of all of the jokes. After your weapon passed his feeble white glove test anyway.

    A gunsmith is a guy who works on guns.

    And if you were our old armorer AMP, no hard feelings right?
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