Refinishing guns with DuraCoat

SiersBy John Siers
FFL and AGI Certified Gunsmith

Time was when a customer wanted a gun “refinished” a gunsmith had only a few choices – blue or parkerize for the metal, and if the stock needed some work it was time for sanding, steaming, and maybe some Tru-Oil.

Nowadays, there are still a lot of black guns out there, but many of them are not parkerized, and blued finishes are getting harder to find. More often than not, you have to turn to the “Used Guns” section of your local gun shop to find one with wood furniture, and in case you haven’t noticed, guns are now appearing on the market in some pretty strange colors. Continue reading


Ring of Fire Revisited – The Jennings J-22

SiersBy John Siers a.k.a. “Gunsmith Jack”

Some time ago, I wrote an article about gunsmithing the Raven MP-25, the granddaddy of all of the cheap little “Ring of Fire” pistols from the 1970s and 80s. At one time, these guns were the best-selling guns in the USA. They went out of production decades ago but there are thousands of them still out there. Most gunsmiths never get to see one because they cost so little it just isn’t economical to have a gunsmith repair one of them. Continue reading


Strange Problem with a Select-Fire AR

SiersBy John Siers a.k.a. “Gunsmith Jack”

I love ARs because they bring me so much business. On the other hand, I hate ARs because everyone who owns one thinks he’s a gunsmith. Can’t begin to tell you how much time I’ve spent (and money I’ve made) fixing really silly problems created by weekend warriors trying to “tweak” or “improve” or just “dress up” their ARs. Fortunately, none of these people have gotten hurt… yet. Continue reading


Test Firing the Easy Way

SiersBy John Siers a.k.a. “Gunsmith Jack”

There will always be gunsmith jobs that require you to test fire the gun after the work is complete, and if you don’t have a suitable bullet trap or firing range near your shop, that can be a hassle. There’s also the question of ammo, especially if the gun shoots an uncommon caliber you don’t happen to have handy. You can always ask the customer to supply some ammo, but otherwise you end up buying some and adding that to the bill. Continue reading


AR-15 Issues… You Never Know What’s Going to Walk Through the Door

SiersBy John Siers a.k.a. “Gunsmith Jack”

As a gunsmith, I have to love the AR-15 just because of all the business it brings me. Probably a third of the customers that walk through my door are bringing me an AR with some silly problem or other. Of course, there are a lot of ARs out there, and a lot of unqualified people trying to assemble and/or “customize” them. That’s a little scary, but so far most everything I’ve seen has been a “fail safe” problem – in other words, no shooters were injured in any of the incidents described here. Continue reading