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Old 02-14-2015, 01:17 PM
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Anyone have a gun that was worked on by Gary Reeder? I am trying to convince myself that $1800 plus the cost of the gun is reasonable for an Urban Survivalist. I know he does a lot with big bore single actions but I am curious about DA/SA Smiths and the like.
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Old 02-14-2015, 01:44 PM
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Once never again! I had to pay a real gunsmith Andy Horvath to correct the issues and had to deal with Reeder's lousy personality and excuses!


There are a number of quality pistol smiths Reeder is not among them
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Old 02-14-2015, 02:13 PM
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Gary did a Vaquero for me way back in 2000. Prices were much more reasonable in those days. Work was excellent. Action is smooth as silk.
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Old 02-14-2015, 02:45 PM
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When I lived in Arizona and did cowboy action shooting he did 2 Vaqueros for me. They looked and functioned great. The price then was $900 and your gun.
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Old 02-14-2015, 03:11 PM
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IT HAS ALWAYS BEEN MY IMPRESSION THAT SINGLE ACTION REVOLVERS ARE HIS FORTE. I WOULD DO MORE RESEARCH, BEFORE DROPPING THAT KIND OF CASH WITH HIM……

IF YOU ALREADY HAVE A WEAPON CHAMBERED IN .44 SPL, I WOULD CONSIDER SENDING IT TO CYLINDER & SLIDE. THEIR WORK IS EXCELLENT, THEIR PRICES ARE MUCH MORE REASONABLE, AND THEY WILL BUILD TO YOUR SPECS. IF YOU DON'T OWN A SUITABLE REVOLVER, I WOULD LOOK FOR A GOOD DONOR 29/629 (.44 SPLs ARE SCARCE AND EXPENSIVE--.44MAGS ARE MORE VERSATILE), AND SEND IT TO THEM. HERE IS A LINK TO THEIR WEBSITE. CHECK OUT THEIR "CUSTOM SERVICES AND PACKAGES"……..

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Old 02-14-2015, 03:26 PM
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He did some single action work for me in the late 90s.
It went back twice, and I was never more than 80% happy.

Communication seemed to be the root of the troubles I had.
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Old 02-16-2015, 07:22 AM
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It was about 30 some odd years ago that I sent two of my guns to a well known, high priced Pistol-smith that they were ruined. Of course he denied it and since he was in a different State it was not worth the cost of legal fees and aggravation to peruse legal actions. Truthfully, I would not let him touch my guns ever again anyway! Not only did it cost me $1600 Bucks to get them right again, but that was the last time I sent a firearm out for work - other than for hot bluing which I do not do myself. I now do ALL my own work with the exception of re-bluing.

Not saying all GS's are "Butchers" or "Crooks" but I now have the satisfaction of doing all my own work in the comfort of my own home workshop, I take my time and do exactly what I want at my pace and the job comes out better than any GS would do because I don't take just OK - - it has to be precisely what I want and since I am not paying myself, time is not an issue for me. If it's not perfect I will make it perfect - haven't failed yet.

Obviously this takes time, money, many tools and equipment, patience, skill and knowledge. I did not get these magically over night and still love to learn the nuances of different firearms - it's now just as an important part of the hobby as shooting and reloading is to me. I do not do this for anybody but myself but it has been very satisfying and has given me many hours of learning session - if you will. Never had any complaints either - -

Obviously this is not for everybody but just fuel for thought if you have the inclination, mechanical ability and are not afraid to spend some time and money to develop skills and knowledge.

Oh, I don't have to pay ridiculous shipping fees, wait many months (or even years) for my guns to be worked on and hope and pray they do not get ruined, damaged or lost!

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Old 02-16-2015, 10:51 AM
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It was about 30 some odd years ago that I sent two of my guns to a well known, high priced Pistol-smith that they were ruined. Of course he denied it and since he was in a different State it was not worth the cost of legal fees and aggravation to peruse legal actions. Truthfully, I would not let him touch my guns ever again anyway! Not only did it cost me $1600 Bucks to get them right again, but that was the last time I sent a firearm out for work - other than for hot bluing which I do not do myself. I now do ALL my own work with the exception of re-bluing.

Not saying all GS's are "Butchers" or "Crooks" but I now have the satisfaction of doing all my own work in the comfort of my own home workshop, I take my time and do exactly what I want at my pace and the job comes out better than any GS would do because I don't take just OK - - it has to be precisely what I want and since I am not paying myself, time is not an issue for me. If it's not perfect I will make it perfect - haven't failed yet.

Obviously this takes time, money, many tools and equipment, patience, skill and knowledge. I did not get these magically over night and still love to learn the nuances of different firearms - it's now just as an important part of the hobby as shooting and reloading is to me. I do not do this for anybody but myself but it has been very satisfying and has given me many hours of learning session - if you will. Never had any complaints either - -

Obviously this is not for everybody but just fuel for thought if you have the inclination, mechanical ability and are not afraid to spend some time and money to develop skills and knowledge.

Oh, I don't have to pay ridiculous shipping fees, wait many months (or even years) for my guns to be worked on and hope and pray they do not get ruined, damaged or lost!
Thanks chief. I sense a pattern forming with regards to this GS. It's a shame but I think the skilled GS is going the way of the typewriter repair man. To your point, I wish I had the time to learn the skills and do the work as you have. Unfortunately time is my most valuable commodity. Paying someone for theirs is less costly to me than using mine.

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Old 02-16-2015, 12:53 PM
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Thanks chief. I sense a pattern forming with regards to this GS. It's a shame but I think the skilled GS is going the way of the typewriter repair man. To your point, I wish I had the time to learn the skills and do the work as you have. Unfortunately time is my most valuable commodity. Paying someone for theirs is less costly to me than using mine.
I used to think exactly like you! That thought pattern stopped when it cost me $1,600.00 bucks and years of steaming to un-do the damage caused by a "Professional GS". Seriously - it not only saves me tons of $$, but more importantly it saves me tons of aggravation. Unfortunately the guys who have stellar reputations charge absurd prices, make you wait just about forever and are usually very poor with communication skills. Those attributes are not something I wish to deal with anymore.

If I knew a REAL GOOD GS who was reasonable, timely and had good communication skills I would be more than glad to recommend him - but I don't - sorry.
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Old 02-16-2015, 03:53 PM
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I know for a fact that many gunsmiths charge less than the time they have in a firearm. I do some gunsmithing but I mostly do refinishing and rebluing. Most people have no idea how much time it takes to do the metal work on an old beat up pitted and rusty firearm. If I were to charge the hours that I put into a firearm it would cost well over $1000 to refinish and reblue a gun.
I just refinished a Model 94 30-30 that I had 32 hours in metal work. Add another 10 hours on the stock woodwork and 2 hours on the actual rebluing plus the time it took to disassemble and reassemble it adds up to over 46 hours!! I charged the guy $350!! That adds up to around $7.60 an hour. I made more than that in high school! But I don't do it to get rich. I do it for the love of restoring a firearm back to as good or better than original.
I guess my whole point is there are a whole lot of the same gunsmiths out there. They are not going to get rich doing what they do. Please don't clump all gunsmiths into the same mold as the hacks. Good ones are out there, just find them.
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Old 02-16-2015, 04:56 PM
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I have a Model 57 that Reeder converted into a 41 GNR. The revolver is flawless; his back chrome is absolutely magnificent, and although the engraving isn't really my thing, it was very well done.

So: here I am being the outlier again. I note that the "bashing" of Reeder typically was over work done back in the 90s. Well, the man is still in business... you ever do something for almost 20 years and not get better at it? I say give the man a break; take a look at his website, and if you like what he does, spend your money. I sincerely believe he does excellent work, but so does Allan Harton of Single Action Services in Houston, as does Jack Huntington, as does Cylinder and Slide, Robar, John and Dustin Linebaugh, etc.
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Old 02-16-2015, 05:08 PM
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There are a number of very qualified revolver smiths Bowen, Horvath, Clements, Cylinder & Slide, Harton, Gemini, SSK

NOT REEDER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 02-16-2015, 05:22 PM
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There are a number of very qualified revolver smiths Bowen, Horvath, Clements, Cylinder & Slide, Harton, Gemini, SSK
Don't forget Karl Sokol
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Old 02-16-2015, 06:05 PM
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An interesting topic........there are lots of Dr's and Lawyers that all are to be professionals but you will find bad experiences and good experiences both from their customers. Word of mouth is a powerful tool.

I have a great deal of respect for the true art of gunsmithing as I continue to learn more about what makes a gun tick and what can be done to get it to run smoother or shoot more accurately or be more reliable. Somewhere along the line maybe I missed my calling, I would love to learn from the experienced gunsmiths the 'secrets' of the trade. I have been heckled for being a perfectionist at many things but that makes me proud. I would consider it an honor for someone to request me to work on their revolver if I had the talents.

I read where communications were lacking, for me matching the character of the gunsmith to my character would be important to putting us on the same thought process and expected end result. If you get a grump who has too much work and does not have enough time to appreciate your willingness to give him the money he is requesting you might not be happy with the whole process overall.

Speaking of Andy Horvath, he is local to me though I have not met him or been to his shop, that is on my list of things to do very soon!

I ask, has anyone had work done by Grant Cunningham? I sent a lengthy email to him a few months ago but never got even a 'thank you' or 'not at this time' response.

My hat is off to the professional gunsmiths and I hope they find someone to absorb their art and carry it on.

Leonard............Wow that Reeder guy must have done you wrong!
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Old 02-16-2015, 06:45 PM
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An interesting topic........there are lots of Dr's and Lawyers that all are to be professionals but you will find bad experiences and good experiences both from their customers. Word of mouth is a powerful tool.


Leonard............Wow that Reeder guy must have done you wrong!
Karl

Yes there are people that will swear by him and there are people like me who will swear at him!

I am not going into the issue except to say the gun he built was poorly and incorrectly done, his proprietary caliber dies where not correct.

The biggest issue was how he tried to get out of dealing with the problem the first of which where the dies by giving me very bad advice I'm no novice to reloading and a very good friend of mine is one of the top ballistics experts in the U.S. Gary feed me pure BS I still have his emails.

To me the true test of a company is how they handle a problem Reeder failed miserably and it has become my quest to warn others.

On a more pleasant note Andy Horvath is a superb smith very talented while a quite man he is very much a gentleman and quick to correct any issues or misunderstandings any one can make a mistake its how you handle it that counts. By the way with over a dozen custom projects I have never had an issue with his work but observed a finish color issue on someone else s gun that he immediately took back and corrected.
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Old 02-16-2015, 07:24 PM
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If you send enough guns off for "gunsmithing," sooner or later you come to the conclusion I did 20+ years ago. That conclusion is that gunsmith money and replacement parts money is far better spent on ammo. You will kill two birds with one stone. You will learn to shoot AND your gun will become butter smooth the "old fashioned way."
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Old 02-16-2015, 10:49 PM
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If you send enough guns off for "gunsmithing," sooner or later you come to the conclusion I did 20+ years ago. That conclusion is that gunsmith money and replacement parts money is far better spent on ammo. You will kill two birds with one stone. You will learn to shoot AND your gun will become butter smooth the "old fashioned way."
shawn, THERE IS A TENDENCY TO ATTEMPT TO COVER UP SHORTCOMINGS IN PERSONAL PERFORMANCE WITH IMPROVEMENTS IN EQUIPMENT. IT IS SEEN IN THE SPORT OF GOLF, AS IT IS SEEN IN THE SPORT OF SHOOTING. A GREAT OPERATOR WITH ORDINARY EQUIPMENT WILL FARE BETTER THAN AN ORDINARY OPERATOR WITH GREAT EQUIPMENT….

THIS IN NO WAY IS A CRITICISM OF THE OP, OR ANY OF THE POSTERS ON THIS THREAD. IT IS JUST A PERSONAL OBSERVATION, MADE DURING 60 YEARS OF SHOOTING. I APPRECIATE A FINELY TUNED WEAPON, AND TAKE JOY IN OWNING AND SHOOTING ONE. THE VAST MAJORITY OF MY WEAPONS ARE BONE STOCK, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF GRIPS OR SIGHTS. A FEW HAVE BEEN SLICKED UP BY MY LOCAL 'SMITH--A TALENTED GUY THAT I TRUST--TO ENHANCE FUNCTION OR RELIABILITY. I'M NO JERRY M. MOST S&Ws , IF THEY WERE FUNCTIONING AS THEY SHOULD FROM THE FACTORY, SHOT BETTER THAN I COULD HOLD THEM…..

WHEN I WAS COMPETING IN BULLSEYE YEARS AGO, I DID SHOOT AN ENHANCED SERIES '70 GOLD CUP, AND A RUGER MK II GOVERNMENT TARGET MODEL, STUFFED WITH VOLQUARTSEN TRIGGER PARTS. NEITHER ONE WAS BUILT GROUND UP FOR BULLSEYE BY A "BIG NAME" SMITH. MY PERFORMANCE WAS NEVER BEING HELD BACK BY THE QUALITY OF MY EQUIPMENT. IN THOSE DAYS, I WAS ALWAYS A "A PRETTY GOOD SHOOTER, SHOOTING A PRETTY GOOD GUN". NOW I'M JUST AN OLD GEEZER, WHO STILL ENJOYS SHOOTING…..

IN ANY EVENT, I CERTAINLY WOULD NOT GIVE GARY REEDER $1800. TO BE ABLE TO FLASH HIS NAME INSCRIBED ON THE BARREL OF MY GUN…....
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Old 02-24-2015, 03:33 PM
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He does better work than he did in the past.
He does have an attitude problem and won't admit when he is wrong. I had a die that was not finished correctly and ruined almost 100 cases trying to form 256 GNR. After I polished the die, it worked fine but his response was there is a lemon occasionally.

I just got a 657 PC that was converted to 41 GNR. So last night I wanted to use the 41 Mag cylinder that came with it but it looks like it was never timed for use with the gun.

The best way to buy his guns is a used one. Buying a new one is similar to buying a new car and watching the value drop when you drive it off the lot. Custom work costs money so let someone else take the hit.

He seems to be doing well since he has hired more people to work and train putting out his custom guns. He has a lot of experience hunting and knows what works when killing game. He was formally a disc jockey so he has no formal training in gunsmithing that I know of. He does stumble onto some good ideas at times like pinning the ejector housed so it doesn't break the holding screw on heavy recoiling guns. But he doesn't polish the locking bolt which can greatly reduce the turn ring. Even S&W has sharp edges on the locking bolts that cut a groove in the cylinder whereas in the old ones you won't see that.

So sometimes you have to look past some of a persons faults. He is very opinionated and has asked me not to post on his message board. But in the end, I guess I admire his capability of building your own caliber and handgun as you want it.

I now have four of his custom guns to play with when I get time. After all it is just an expensive hobby to keep your mind straight and something to test out to see how they perform.
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Old 02-25-2015, 11:38 PM
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I started discussing Gary's 440 GNR with him with an eye on lengthening the neck a little (it's way short for heavy 44 bullets).
He declared to me that keeping the base (and lube) of a cast bullet out of the powder was "an old wives tale"
and that he would not make a die that lengthened the neck.
He DID send me some reloading data which was nice.
I gave up and will have someone else chamber a barrel and dies.
Basically I am looking for a 44 Alaskan.
I am sure SSK, Bellm, and a couple of others will do it as I ask.
Probably end up as next winter's project as I am now looking to break in and find some loads for my double rifle in 444.

===
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Old 02-26-2015, 02:27 AM
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That would be expensive to make a die for a new configuration plus the cost of the reamer.

Most of his designs have a short neck and seemed to be designed for light bullets. The neck is a double radius design like the Weatherby cartridges.
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Old 09-28-2018, 05:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flundertaker View Post
Anyone have a gun that was worked on by Gary Reeder? I am trying to convince myself that $1800 plus the cost of the gun is reasonable for an Urban Survivalist. I know he does a lot with big bore single actions but I am curious about DA/SA Smiths and the like.
Gary Reeder built a 500 Linebaugh revolver for me. Terrible accuracy, so I measured the cylinder chambers, which should have been .510" +/- 0.001". They were all 0.500". Also, the casting flaws on the grip frame were so bad, they could not be covered by the grip panels. Also, the rear sight blade broke off within 35 rounds. Gary told me they built a 500 S&W revolver at the same time they were building my 500 Linebaugh and got the cylinder specs mixed up. I had to pay for return shipping as well. He later posted a comment labeling my penchant for perfection as "anal".
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Old 09-28-2018, 05:23 PM
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He is not a quality gun smith I got rid of my .510 Spend your money with someone like Andy Horvath. Read the above posts and if you use him you will have no one to blame but yourself.
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Old 09-28-2018, 06:19 PM
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Now that all makes me glad I stayed away from the 440 GNR.
I ended up with an Encore (now a S&W product with their serial #s)
and a couple of Pac-Nor barrels from Bullberry in .445SM (see my avatar).
One is for handgun configuration and one as a rifle.
Very satisfied with the results.
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Old 09-28-2018, 06:48 PM
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I had Gary Build a Ruger "Long Colt Hunter" single Action,everything was better than I expected. I would have another one built by Gary Reeder. That was back in the 90's, I'm guessing he has gotten better with time.
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Old 09-29-2018, 06:16 PM
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It's funny reading this. One of my brothers is a PhD, and a Professor at a very large University. He claims that in any profession, half of the practicioners are incompetent.

Not uninterested in doing a good job, but incapable of doing a good job. Yet, they continue in that profession.

The older I get, the more I tend to agree with him.
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Old 09-29-2018, 07:21 PM
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This thread is three years old -- OP has probably made his decision and gotten on with his life.

Also, Leonard: I'm sorry you had a bad experience with a gunsmith, but there ought to be a limit to how many times one can complain about the same thing in the same thread; it's a lot more convincing when a fellow speaks his piece once let's it stand at that.
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Old 09-29-2018, 07:21 PM
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Quote:
It's funny reading this. One of my brothers is a PhD, and a Professor at a very large University. He claims that in any profession, half of the practicioners are incompetent.
Now that's kind of scary to think about if you apply it to professions and jobs that have to be perfect.
Examples might be surgeons, motorcycle mechanics, nuclear engineers,
rocket and space scientists, bridge builders, tattoo artists, you name it!
Here's a somewhat on topic example; missile handlers.
Bidganeh, Iran, Nov.12, 2011
Place blowed up good, then they completely razed it.
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Old 09-30-2018, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Hapworth View Post
This thread is three years old -- OP has probably made his decision and gotten on with his life.

Also, Leonard: I'm sorry you had a bad experience with a gunsmith, but there ought to be a limit to how many times one can complain about the same thing in the same thread; it's a lot more convincing when a fellow speaks his piece once let's it stand at that.
No I will do all I can do to warn others about this guy, he is that bad!
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Old 09-30-2018, 04:08 PM
TheGrimReaper TheGrimReaper is offline
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Originally Posted by tlay View Post
I know for a fact that many gunsmiths charge less than the time they have in a firearm. I do some gunsmithing but I mostly do refinishing and rebluing. Most people have no idea how much time it takes to do the metal work on an old beat up pitted and rusty firearm. If I were to charge the hours that I put into a firearm it would cost well over $1000 to refinish and reblue a gun.
I just refinished a Model 94 30-30 that I had 32 hours in metal work. Add another 10 hours on the stock woodwork and 2 hours on the actual rebluing plus the time it took to disassemble and reassemble it adds up to over 46 hours!! I charged the guy $350!! That adds up to around $7.60 an hour. I made more than that in high school! But I don't do it to get rich. I do it for the love of restoring a firearm back to as good or better than original.
I guess my whole point is there are a whole lot of the same gunsmiths out there. They are not going to get rich doing what they do. Please don't clump all gunsmiths into the same mold as the hacks. Good ones are out there, just find them.
True story!!!
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