Any one of us who enjoys the shooting sports knows how hard it is to find ammunition after the school shooting in Connecticut. Even the .22 Rim Fire which used to be easy to find and cheap to shoot is hard to find today by the brick. Hopefully now that the US Senate voted down the Gun Control Act of 2013, people will feel more at ease and the hording of ammo will slow down and allow gun shops to restock their shelves. I know there’s a lot more to the issue but that’s not the intent of this article.
Moving on, I would like to share with you gift I purchased for my preteen daughter’s Christmas Gift this past Christmas. Yep, a pink Ruger 12-22 Rifle. They really do make a wonderful gift and you don’t have to attend a gunsmithing school to be able to customize them. I purchased it at a gun show in December just before the school shooting took place in Connecticut. The NICS check took all but five minutes and out the door I went. With just a few additional parts installed to customize it to her liking I had the perfect gift for her. The look on her face was priceless. I am very fortunate to have a daughter who loves to shoot with her father.
The Rifle is a Ruger 10-22 and it came with a pink stock and a stainless steel barrel. Unfortunately, it did not have any provision to attach a bipod. I had two choices to choose from as to how I was going to attach the bipod. The first was to drill a small hole
into the stock and insert a swivel to attach the bipod and the other was to change the barrel band out for one that had a picatinny rail integrated into it. As you can see in the picture, I went with changing out the barrel band. Although it works ok, there is a little play in the bipod that allows the rifle to cant to the right side slightly making it harder to sight the rifle. In the near future I plan to go ahead and install a swivel into the stock and change out the bipod.
The only other thing I added was a Center Point 3-9 x40mm scope. Fortunately Ruger provides a rail with their rifles to accommodate mounting a scope. The scope did take a little more time to mount because I tried to set the eye relief the best I could to suit my daughter without her being there as it was for her Christmas gift. Needless to say, I did clock the scope but I didn’t lap the rings since the rifle is only being used for plinking. The real beauty of the 10-22, as well as with many other brands, is that they are very customizable without having to be a gunsmith.
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Most workers if asked if they are satisfied with their job will say no. Therefore it is no surprise that many people are planning to change careers. One area that is showing an increase in interest is gunsmithing. Today’s outlook on firearms is changing in favor of firearms as more and more states are relaxing their laws and allowing more law abiding citizens to carry firearms. Additionally, Television shows that are centered on firearms and gunsmithing are being aired on prime time television and resulting in a higher interest. What does it take to become a gunsmith and what should one interested in becoming a gunsmith consider?
One of the first questions asked before starting a new career is; how much money will I earn as a gunsmith? And rightfully so! The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics doesn’t keep statistics for gunsmiths however it is believed they earn between $30K and $6oK annually depending on location, if you’re self-employed or work for a manufacture or retailer. There are a few tips to help increase your in which we will talk about in a little bit.
Another question asked is how much will school cost? The cost really depends on the type of school you plan to attend. Your choice ranges from attending a University and receiving a Bachelor’s Degree, trade school or simply takes an online course. Although the type of training will vary from each type of school there is an option that will fit your budget.
An area of learning that will be impacted depending on the type of school you choose will be the type of equipment you will have access to and the ability to learn how to operate them. For example, if you attend a trade school or take a gunsmithing class at a College or University you will have access to lathes and other pieces of large equipment. On the other hand, if you choose to take an online course you will have access to course material but not the larger pieces of equipment.
As I alluded to earlier in this article, there are a few ways you can increase your income as a gunsmith but first I want to discuss two different types of income. The first being linear income, this type of income is best described as trading hours for dollars. You are limited by the hours you can work in a day and the amount of money someone is willing to pay you for that hour of work. The other is Passive Income and is a far better model for earning money. The idea here is to create something one time and get paid for it over and over. Let’s say as a gunsmith you create a video on How To Do A Trigger Job”. Now say you place this video for sale on the internet or at various gunsmith businesses. You created a product one time but keep getting paid for it over and over again.