Tools for Gunsmithing

Updated February 21, 2017

Gunsmiths rely on the proper tools to do quality work on a variety of different weapons. If you want to be a good gunsmith you should not only possesses plenty of tools, but also know how to maintain them properly to avoid damaging a gun while working on it. Knowing what types of tools to own and how to take care of them will help you do your job consistently.


Different size screwdrivers are needed to match the many different screws used in guns. You want to make sure the tip of the screwdriver properly fits the screw's head to avoid slipping or scratching the gun's finish. Gently file the edges of your screwdrivers to slightly round them off. This helps prevent scratching the screw head.

Pin Punches

Prepared gunsmiths own a variety of pin punch sizes. Have plenty in the 3/32-inch and 1/16-inch size, since most pins in guns fit this size pin punch. Use a striking punch to get the pin to begin moving. Polish and file the ends of punches to where they feel smooth and flat.


Generally, smaller-sized hammers work best for gunsmiths. Ball peen hammers work well with pin punches. For sensitive spots, use a wooden mallet. Keep the striking face of hammers and mallets clean and smooth to avoid transferring marks to your gun.


Experienced gunsmiths own quality pliers, since gunsmithing work tends to abuse pliers. Invest in several types of pliers, including needle nose, parallel jaw and padded jaw pliers.


Save money and find an old hacksaw at a garage or yard sale. Purchase new blades for the saw at a hardware store. Have plenty of saws with new blades so you don't waste time sharpening them or having to purchase a new blade when one becomes dull.

Cleaning Rods

A gunsmith shop should offer different size rods for different calibre guns. Stainless steel rods last longer and will rarely scratch the bore of the gun. Store cleaning rods in a dry place, and keep them wrapped to avoid moisture and dust.


Owning various files to keep tools sharp helps them last longer. Clean your files with a wire brush.

Power Tools

Gunsmiths use a variety of power tools. Use lathes when shaping or resizing a gun barrel. A power buffer helps polish the gun barrel. Hand drills help operate brushes and steel wool bobs to speed up cleaning and polishing guns.

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About the Author

Greg Stone began writing professionally for various websites in September of 2010. He lives in Branson, Mo. and is the marketing director for Doulos Discipleship of Doulos Ministries. Stone holds a Bachelor of Science in journalism from Central Missouri University and a Master of Ministry from John Brown University.