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In the past, local gunsmiths had the ability to manufacture customized firearms according to a customers specifications as well as work on existing pieces. Nowadays, firearm manufacturers produce these custom pieces. Modern gunsmiths continue to be experts in restoring, customizing, modifying, and repairing handguns, rifles, shotguns, rifles, and muzzleloaders. Each gunsmith is licensed, regulated, and regularly inspected by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms. They are responsible for keeping detailed records including all gun repairs, serial numbers, firearm descriptions, and owner information. The busiest time of the year for this profession is prior to and during hunting seasons. Professionals in this field can be found working in gun manufacturing facilities, sporting goods stores, gun shops, and their own shops. In addition to a passion and knowledge of historical and modern firearms, a gunsmith has completed courses at a trade school, technical school, or community college. There are even courses available online thanks to the internet and through the National Rifle Association. The military also provides training pertaining to firearms to those enlisted. Being an apprentice for an experienced gunsmith is also a valuable aid to learn facts not taught in classrooms or books.
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Knowledge of woodworking and metalworking including soldering and welding are also required to be successful in this field. The ability to use hand tools and machines such as grinders, drills, lathes, and saws is also essential. These experts check the safety of all firearms including ensuring its correct assembly by first disassembling the firearm. Close inspection will reveal any cracked, damaged, or defective parts. Once the repairs or replacements are in place, it is necessary to remove any rust, dirt, and debris. The firearm can then be properly reassembled and lubricated. The timing will be checked on each finished piece, and it will be test fired to ensure the task was accomplished correctly. Experience in designing is also necessary especially if a consumer desires designs engraved on the metal or wood of the firearm. Many gunsmiths have the ability to carve and attach newer wood stocks to firearms according to the customers specifications. Communicating well with the public is vital to ensure a good working relationship and repeat customers. Explaining pertinent information regarding repairs is also necessary for the patron to understand the detailed attention and service that was awarded their possession. There are many local gunsmiths to choose from to perform tasks ranging from routine maintenance or repairs to customized alterations of priceless firearms. Rest assured that each piece is given the utmost attention to every detail to ensure the safety of the user.