Gunsmiths


Overview

Gunsmiths

Introduction

Gunsmiths use machines and hand tools to build, repair, and modify firearms of all sorts to meet blueprint orders and customer specifications. They also clean firearms to keep them in good operating condition.

Quick Facts


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Median Salary

$30,000

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Employment Prospects

Fair

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Minimum Education Level

Apprenticeship


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Experience

Apprenticeship or other training program required


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Skills

Math


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Personality Traits

Hands On

Earnings

Gunsmiths earned hourly salaries that ranged from $11.48 to $25.88 in 2020, according to Payscale.com. This translates to a annual salary range of $23,878 to $53,830. Expert gunsmiths earned $30 or more per hour. According to the Colorado School of Trades, gunsmiths can earn an additional 15 to 30 percent from repair work performed, in addition to their base salary.

Apprentices and trai...

Work Environment

Gun shops and gunsmithing operations are usually clean, compact, and efficient. Many gunsmiths work in one-person operations such as a small shop at the back of a gun or sporting goods store. Others work in repair shops. Volatile solvents are used, so proper ventilation is necessary. Some of the machinery used can be noisy, as are firing ranges. Handling guns requires special attention and care...

Outlook

The small arms repair industry is not a large sector of the economy and, as a result, little or no change in employment is expected during the next decade. 

Many trained gunsmiths are unable to find full-time employment, so they combine gunsmithing with working as machinists or precision metalworkers. Gunsmiths who specialize in a specific area have the greatest chance at steady work.

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