Kids In The Shop: A Gunsmith’s Legacy, Part Two

This final article in the series concludes with tips and pointers on helping a student on the way to beginning a career in gunsmithing.

by Wendell Deaner

We began with a tool usage overview and will continue there, wrapping up with business how-to.

How to use a dial caliper, a micrometer and their different types needs to be addressed. Hopefully our public schools have blessed our young minds with the knowledge of how to distinguish 0.004 inch from 0.04 and 0.4 inch. If not, it’s up to us.

The use of chemicals is very important to a lot of gun work. Finishing oils and other substances, especially the spray-on type, can be inhaled. Others, such as acetone and caustic strippers, that can damage the skin should be introduced and safety must be emphasized by insisting on protective glasses, gloves, and a good shop apron when working with toxic products. Many bluing preparations need special consideration, especially when working inside. Also, describe which chemicals must be used outside. I use flammable materials inside my shop and don’t allow smoking. Make sure to store and dispose of all potentially harmful substances properly. Insist your student reads labels and takes the warnings seriously.


Read more in our February 2012 issue. Back issues are available.

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