If you live in Minnesota or are willing to relocate for a while, the gunsmithing program at Pine Technical and Community College will absolutely blow your mind. In my opinion, it’s one of the best and most complete in the entire country.
First of all, for those who don’t know, gunsmithing is a specialized form of machining that deals specifically with firearms. Handguns, shotguns, rifles, any kind of firearm. A gunsmith knows how to diagnose and repair a wide variety of guns. They also design and build them and they can customize them. Gunsmiths are usually self-employed or employed by sporting goods stores or gun shops. It’s the ultimate career for a gun enthusiast, let me tell ya!
And Pine Technical and Community College’s gunsmithing program can take you all the way from an absolute beginner to proficient rookie who’s ready for an entry-level position with a top gun manufacturer.
Let me tell you a little about the program.
The Gunsmithing Program at Pine Tech
First off, this is a certificate program, not a degree program. Upon completely you’ll receive a certificate in Gunsmithing and Firearms Technology. Sounds pretty bad ass right? It is! The program is rigorous and hands on, so that certificate means a hell of a lot. The program itself focuses on building and customizing guns based on blueprints and customer specifications. You’ll learn machining fundamentals, including how to use manual and computer-aided machining tools and how to write and read blueprints. Machining fundamentals are the cornerstone of gunsmithing.
You’ll also learn how to finish and refinish metal, how to diagnose and repair a massive variety of problems across many types of weapons, and how to create custom stocks and completely custom guns.
The gunsmithing program at Pine Tech is so popular there’s a waitlist. Also, be prepared to complete additional paperwork as each student is required to have a criminal background check due to the nature of the course.
One Major Upside
There are lots of good, real-world, traditional gunsmithing programs out there, but you always run the risk of finding one attached to “traditional” college curriculum. If I’m going to school to study gunsmithing, I want to study gunsmithing. I don’t want to have to burn through (and waste money on) a bunch of general education classes like math, writing, etc.
At Pine Technical and Community College, that ain’t a problem. If you go for gunsmithing, you focus on gunsmithing. No liberal arts nonsense, just unadulterated firearms technology! The only couple classes that don’t seem to be directly related to gunsmithing are a class in Microsoft Office and another in Job Seeking, but obviously these are incredibly important for new gunsmiths who want to start and run a business or get a job with a major manufacturer, so they are definitely worth your time.
In the end, the choice is your whether or not Pine’s excellent gunsmithing program is right for you. No matter what you decide, I have no doubt that you will succeed and become the gunsmith you dream of being. Good luck!