Gunsmiths will inevitably acquire plenty of tools. It’s sometimes useful to look in to new offerings.
by RK Campbell
Beginning gunsmiths need to take a hard look at tool choice. The usual light table tools such as a variety of drivers and punches must receive some thought. Purchasing a good set with as much coverage as possible is economically sound. By the same token the mature gunsmith that has plenty of tools must realize the time comes to replace and discard some tools. I recently did so. Some of the kits and boxes I had accumulated over the years were missing key drivers or taps, others contained bent punches. The odd assortment had become an aggravation. Some of the gear wasn’t first class in the beginning and should have been ditched long ago. Some of the boxes were a mismatch of makes of varying quality. This kind of thing happens after a few decades even if you make it habit to return things to their proper resting place after cleaning.
There are a number of chores that we perform on a regular basis. As your skills improve and the number of jobs you want to be able to accomplish increases so does your need for more tools. Tools may last a long long time but they need to be replaced at some point. Sometimes better tools come along, often appreciably better ones. Customizing, personalizing, and smoothing is typically done with smaller hand tools.
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