A good gunsmith may not be part of your shooting gear, but it’s certainly an essential component to keeping your shooting life smooth-running and fully functional. From critical repairs and precision help updating and accessorizing to annual detailed cleanings of your firearms, a gunsmith can ultimately be a key factor in keeping a fine shooting firearm from turning into a paperweight or museum relic. But just as you wouldn’t trust your important car or home repairs to just any random person, you should do a little homework before your gun breaks or you need help mounting a sight, rail, stock or other item before a hunting trip or shooting outing. It’s not enough that a guy (or girl) calls themselves a gunsmith and works in a gun shop; you’ll want to be sure they have the right skills and can perform the work you need with your specific firearm(s).
Specific gunsmithing experience is just as important as knowing how to use a wide range of tools. You’ll find that the best gunsmiths are real craftsmen, and they’re proud of their handy work. That’s another important quality to look for when selecting a gunsmith. A common mistake (and sometimes very costly) is to select a gunsmith just because he lives nearby. It’s far better to select someone that has earned a good reputation doing the specific type of gunsmithing that you’re looking to have done.