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Thread: In need of a gun smith for decent trigger jobs.

  1. #1
    Boolit Master
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    In need of a gun smith for decent trigger jobs.

    While I could do it I don't want to invest in $250+ worth of tools in order to do my own trigger jobs unless I absolutely have to. I am seeking a decent full time gun smith in the Iowa area between Des Moines and Dubuque. This person need not be a wanabe from the local big box gun store but a bonified real gun smith capable of doing gun bluing or competition trigger jobs. I've had my fill of the "local" talents that deem themselves as being capable simply because they can say put a AR-15 together.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    You can find a really good gunsmith any where and send them the gun to work on. If they have an FFL, you can send it to them and they can send it back to you. You don't need an FFL to mail or receive the gun on your end. If you don't mind paying the postage and getting a truly great trigger job, do it that way. It's possible you'll find one within driving distance also if you ask around. I've done it both ways with good results. I don't let "Bubba" work on my guns either. A word of caution about buying the tools and doing it yourself. If it were just a case of having the right tools, no one would be doing it professionally. It's an expensive lesson doing it yourself if you don't know what you're doing when you start. I'd guess that when that happens about 95% of the time it doesn't get done correctly and makes the problem worse. Use caution there. Good luck.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master

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    Finding a good gunsmith is hard. Then there is the trust and confidence factor that takes time to develop. Since most gunsmiths now specialize in certain things, guns, work you may need more than one for everything you want. If you belong to a local club range ask some of the members who they use, use discretion and ask the competitors and better shooters recommendations. When you find one ask for references if possible, people he has done work for in the past.
    You may find some listings in the gunsmiths guild online also. then use the above and get references or online reports on the work. Find out their specialties and also what they wont work on.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    Well, not knowing what you want trigger jobs done on, and potentially how many, makes the question quite open ended.

    Using Brownells Shop Price Survey the following is what I found:

    Rifles-TRIGGERS (INSTALLATION OR ADJUSTMENT)
    Shilen, Timney, Dayton-Traister, Moyer type. 45.00. . . . 90.00
    Double-Set. 100.00. . . 250.00
    Single Set. 50.00. . . 140.00

    Revolvers-REVOLVER ACTION JOB - Clean, smooth action,
    not including replacement of parts . 70.00. . . 140.00

    Pistols-SEMI-AUTO PISTOL ACTION JOB - Clean,
    smooth action, not including any parts. 65.00. . . 175.00

    Now if one takes even the cheapest of the above in each category, it would not be long till the tools you purchased would be paid for. However, if you are only doing 1-2 jobs then it would probably be worth the effort to try to find someone to do the work. Generally speaking, most of the folks I know tend towards the higher end of the price scale, especially for trigger work. In fact I know a couple of fellows that will only replace with after market triggers because of the liability, at least so they claim.

    As far as bluing/blacking: good luck with that. I still have my tanks and once in a great while heat them up but it is a LOT of work and if it is done properly, will COST significantly. The preparation is everything and if done properly, very labor intensive and time consuming. The actual bluing/blacking, especially the hot caustic blacking, is pretty much simple enough even a democrat could probably do a decent job. Hot bluing and rust bluing not quite so easy.
    OK folks, there is only two ways to do this. My way or my other way.

  5. #5
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    I have worked on several of mine. Sometimes a simple stoning of surfaces to smooth them can take a mediocre trigger to one that is decent. And it will lower the pull force some without messing with any springs. And you can buy lighter springs and install them yourself...

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
    Plate plinker's Avatar
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    Why not just replace the ignition set with Harrison parts. Many top level gunsmiths do this now. I have been told by a very high end guy that its just as good as a custom job and cheaper. The gunsmithing world I believe has changed do to the availability of high grade replacement parts.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master
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    I would have no problem doing a trigger job without replacing the parts. I don't consider dropping in new parts a trigger job. Dropping in parts is for when you screw something up. I need a smith for a decent blue job or to mill some lightening slots into it. I still don't have my own mill at home yet.

    I'm after a trigger pull of less than 2lbs.

  8. #8
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    nekshot's Avatar
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    if I needed a true gunsmith especially for his bluing skills I would got to Tim Malcolm(Goodsteel) in Arkansas.
    Look twice, shoot once.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by nekshot View Post
    if I needed a true gunsmith especially for his bluing skills I would got to Tim Malcolm(Goodsteel) in Arkansas.
    Trying to find someone in my own state first per post #1. Also finding someone in my state would eliminate sending the gun and paying two ways. Sending it out of state and paying for it to come back adds about $50.00 to the cost of any work I had done.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master

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    Les than 2 pounds on what? No one today will do 2 pounds on a revolver too many safety issues. 2 Pounds on a stock Remington trigger is also not safe. A 2 pound second pull on a SMLE or a Mauser is doable but there is that liability issue.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
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    Not to tweak your nose but make sure your parts can accomplish what you seek. My Springfield Loaded had parts which were marginal. I did the trigger and did good but then wish I had went the other way. My gunsmith buddy pointed out why the stock parts are usually tossed after he cleaned up my work, since I went a but light and accomplished hammer follow. Cool thing was I learnt some things. Good luck with your endeavor. Just my experience and I understand the desire to do it your way.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plate plinker View Post
    Not to tweak your nose but make sure your parts can accomplish what you seek. My Springfield Loaded had parts which were marginal. I did the trigger and did good but then wish I had went the other way. My gunsmith buddy pointed out why the stock parts are usually tossed after he cleaned up my work, since I went a but light and accomplished hammer follow. Cool thing was I learnt some things. Good luck with your endeavor. Just my experience and I understand the desire to do it your way.
    I'll try the stock components first. I know what can be done with stock Colt Gold Cup national match parts. I'm going to purchase either the power stoning fixture series I or series II and then good quality stones. Years ago I was able to get a 2.5 lb trigger in my Gold Cup national match series 70 with the original parts. I'm thinking I will probably end up tossing the original hammer to get where I want to be.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by KCSO View Post
    Les than 2 pounds on what? No one today will do 2 pounds on a revolver too many safety issues. 2 Pounds on a stock Remington trigger is also not safe. A 2 pound second pull on a SMLE or a Mauser is doable but there is that liability issue.
    Here I was thinking that I mentioned it and I didn't. Its on a 1911 Springfield Range Officer.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by 6bg6ga View Post
    While I could do it I don't want to invest in $250+ worth of tools in order to do my own trigger jobs unless I absolutely have to. I am seeking a decent full time gun smith in the Iowa area between Des Moines and Dubuque. This person need not be a wanabe from the local big box gun store but a bonified real gun smith capable of doing gun bluing or competition trigger jobs. I've had my fill of the "local" talents that deem themselves as being capable simply because they can say put a AR-15 together.
    Give Jon Tank a call at 402.737.1217. He's just across the NE line in Fremont, at Tank's Rifle Shop. He does handguns, as well as rifles and shotguns. He's worked on many of my guns over the years.
    Boycott YouTube

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    Thanks, but I'm trying to find someone closer to me.

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    Decided that I would pop for the tools necessary to obtain a decent trigger job on several of my 1911's. There is a custom stoning fixture series I that has my interest. Sure, there are cheaper units on the market but I think this one appears to be better. I think this fixture along with a fine stone and some Dykem bluing should yeald some decent results.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master



    Tazman1602's Avatar
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    If you don't want to spend a lot of money, and your Springfield is *really* a 1911 (sorry, not familiar with Springfield..) these have been a Godsend for me personally with my 1911's:

    https://www.brownells.com/handgun-pa...prod16419.aspx

    I can measure trigger pull if you wish. Liability as mentioned will stop most 'Smiths in their tracks as far as a 2-pound handgun trigger is concerned..


    Art
    Last edited by Tazman1602; 02-05-2018 at 07:55 AM. Reason: Formatting
    ________________________________
    "Only accurate Rifles are interesting"
    "Calling criminal invaders Illegal immigrants is like calling dope dealers unlicensed pharmacists"

  18. #18
    Boolit Master
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    Yes, its a Springfield Range Officer 1911. I'm going to try the stock internals first and see if I can clean them up first before buying additional parts. I will however keep the part numbers handy. Mine has the same type hammer and I simply cannot fathom the idea that it went out the door feeling so gritty. Where the hell was quality control? One of the reasons I bought one was they were supposed to be so good.

    I used to have a good smith a few years back. Unfortunately he passed away. He is missed around my neck of the woods. He used to put the tweeks on my Gold Cup national match triggers that no one else could come close to.

  19. #19
    Boolit Master



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    Quote Originally Posted by 6bg6ga View Post
    Yes, its a Springfield Range Officer 1911. I'm going to try the stock internals first and see if I can clean them up first before buying additional parts. I will however keep the part numbers handy. Mine has the same type hammer and I simply cannot fathom the idea that it went out the door feeling so gritty. Where the hell was quality control? One of the reasons I bought one was they were supposed to be so good.

    I used to have a good smith a few years back. Unfortunately he passed away. He is missed around my neck of the woods. He used to put the tweeks on my Gold Cup national match triggers that no one else could come close to.
    Not to be a smart aleck but out of curiosity have you put a trigger pull gauge on that to find out *exactly* what poundage it DOES break at?

    Art
    ________________________________
    "Only accurate Rifles are interesting"
    "Calling criminal invaders Illegal immigrants is like calling dope dealers unlicensed pharmacists"

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
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    Art,

    Fifty plus years of having 1911's and 8 that I can put in front of me with 3lb or less triggers guarantees that I can tell a 6lb-7 trigger from a 3 lb. But, I will borrow a gauge so I can back up what I am saying. I'll put money on its 6-7lb.

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