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S&W-Smithing Maintenance, Repair, and Enhancement of Smith & Wesson and Other Firearms.


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Old 08-12-2020, 06:49 PM
russp1 russp1 is offline
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Default Gun Smith Classes

Now that I'm retired and have more time for guns and other things, I was wondering if anyone has taken the Penn Foster gun smith course. Is it worth the time and money?
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Old 08-12-2020, 08:38 PM
Hondo44 Hondo44 is offline
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How much money; what's the cost and time investment?

Depends on how many different types of guns you will be working on after the class. Because I presume the class will cover a multitude of firearms.

If you're only interested in wheel guns or semi-autos, or shotguns, etc., you'll pay for a lot of instruction you may never use. Or forget much of what you learned about a particular firearm if you don't get to work on one like that till a year later.

If there's a workbook covering everything in the class, consider just buying the book. Or take the class for the fun of it and learning a little about the guns you like. Again, depends on if you can afford the class and time commitment.
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Old 08-12-2020, 09:39 PM
Phantom1 Phantom1 is offline
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Look for NRA short term classes at community colleges in your area.
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Old 08-13-2020, 10:18 AM
russp1 russp1 is offline
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Course runs about $900 and can be completed in 3 months. I'd be using it mainly for my own guns but that covers a few revolvers, shotguns, a lever rifle and pistols from .22 to .45.
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Old 08-19-2020, 11:07 AM
rhm0351 rhm0351 is offline
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I don't know what is in the Penn Foster class, but as Phantom 1 said, look for the NRA Short Term classes. Montgomery Community College in NC usually offers an S&W class taught by Mark Dye, who worked for Hamilton Bowen for many years, among his other qualifications. I think cost is $201 for a week, so with motel (I often camp), food, and travel, you still come out less and complete a semester's worth of class hours in a single week.
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Old 08-19-2020, 11:12 AM
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I have had very good experiences at Montgomery County Technical College.
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Old 08-19-2020, 11:37 AM
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Default Gunsmith classes

I would recommend The American Gunsmithing Institute for your gunsmithing classes. You work with a student advisor and depending on the level you desire, the package includes your video's and FFL licensing forms, tool guidance and a wealth of first class master Gunsmith instructors to help you with your course. They have been around a long time and many of the major gunsmithing companies honor their certificate for discounts. You learn the Design, Function and repair they have been teaching for many years and the method works. They are offering a few free lessons to see how the courses work. I have taken many courses from them and certified as phase 1 gunsmith handguns. The final exam is tough and the instructors are there to help you disect the question and help you understand the problem that you will solve and not give you the answer. Log in their web site and view the many testimony's from different graduates that have a successful business and are earning the six figure mark.

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Old 08-19-2020, 12:05 PM
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AGI

I bought a bunch of their disassembly/assembly videos a long time ago when Midway had them on sale. Even got coupons for really nice bore lights (gave them to friends)
Very detailed. It is not Smithing" but covers many of the guns I own.

Beats the heck out BoobTube and listening to all the banter about here is my cat and loud music playing!

PS:
When I lived up around New Port Richey it was all underdeveloped farms , citrus and horses.But so was most of Fl.

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Old 08-19-2020, 01:06 PM
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I never heard of Penn Foster - but then I've never taken a formal GS course. I am just a personal self taught "Junior GS" working on and knowledgable only on the models I own and enjoy.

Ask me about AR's, AK's, Glocks, HK's, tactical guns etc. - and I couldn't tell you much! Don't own any, don't care for them much. Ask me about Colt SAA's & 1911's, S&W Revolvers & M41, Marlin's, Browning SG's - those I know pretty much anything I would ever need to service & repair them.

It all depends on how you learn ....... Some learn better when an instructor guides you through every aspect while some learn better as they go with hands on. I find that when I encounter a problem, I do the learning at my own pace and never forget. Once you get in to a certain class or type of gun, (let's say a modern striker fired compact pistol) aside from a few minor differences they all tend to be pretty similar. I've adopted certain rules for myself in that I never force anything, I always use the proper tool for the job and if I hit a wall - I will think more and do less until I figure it out.

Before signing up for any course I'd do my research first and make sure they are accredited, on the up & up, and are reputable.

Last edited by chief38; 08-19-2020 at 01:09 PM.
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Old 08-19-2020, 02:02 PM
gmarshall99 gmarshall99 is offline
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Default Trinidad State Junior College

I just finished a 5 day class on single action revolver tuning. It was a great class and cost $400.
That is in Trinidad colorado.

They are part of the NRA summer gunsmithing program. I believe next year they may hav a class on fine-tuning double action revolvers. check it out.
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Old 08-19-2020, 02:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chief38 View Post
I never heard of Penn Foster
FWIW, they originally started out as a correspondence course for people wanting to get their high school diplomas. Then they started expanding to college courses and vocational training. I used to see their ads on late night TV, back when I watched TV. They have a lot of different programs. Just from what I can remember, they had programs in police science/criminal justice, court reporting, I think they might've had a paralegal program, too. I'm sure their website will have more current info.

I did a quick check, and their programs are accredited, for whatever that's worth. Don't know anything about their gunsmith program, but in general their programs seem to get mixed reviews.

Also, they're a for-profit school. I've always been a bit leary of for-profit colleges and universities, and some vocational schools, as they seem to be the ones that end up getting accused of fraud, overcharging, and/or misrepresentation. But I don't know if Penn Foster is one of these troublesome schools/programs. For all I know, they could be one of the good ones.

OP, make sure to check them out thoroughly before sending them any money, if you haven't already.

Just my opinion.
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Old 09-04-2020, 08:27 PM
russp1 russp1 is offline
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I used Penn Foster for a veterinary assistant certificate. Penn Foster was about the only online course accepted by the National Associations of Veterinary Technicians, most others were courses at county colleges. I have also used them to get a basic understanding on a number of subjects (electrical, electronics, etc). I think they are a decent program, just wasn't sure if online smithing would work or if it needs hands on teaching.

A side note, they were originally the International Correspondence Schools that Sally Struthers advertised on late night television.

Last edited by russp1; 09-04-2020 at 08:28 PM.
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