Greenwood Gunsmiths
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NEW - HOW TO BECOME A GUNSMITH
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NEW - Five recently published articles in Clay Shooting Magazine.
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GUNSMITHING, WHATS IT ALL ABOUT??
General maintenance, the do's and don'ts.
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PROJECT GALLERY
Photos and information on my latest projects
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CHOOSING A SHOTGUN
One of the first questions you need to ask yourself, is what am I going to use my shotgun for?
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GUNSMITHS HEROES
Lisa Seargent is my latest addition to my "gunsmiths heroes" section..
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BARREL REPAIRS / ALLTERATIONS
Unless you are very lucky, or very careful, at some time you will need to have some work done to the barrels of your gun.
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ACTION WORK
Around Christmas, I was given a Perazzi case, with the repair label saying "clean thoroughly". It did not prepare me for what I found inside.
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GUN FITTING
If you have a younger shooter who is still growing, a lady with a long neck or high cheekbones, or indeed anyone with a none average shape.
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STOCK REPAIRS
Apart from fitting, most shooters, at some time, will damage their stocks.
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STOCK WORK
Ok! This is where things can get complicated. Apart from the usual cracks, dents, chips etc.there is also re‐finishing, re‐chequering and, of course, fitting, and it is here I will start.
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GUNSMITHS LINKS

Other services offered to clay pigeon shooters which I highly recommend
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GUNSMITHING, WHATS IT ALL ABOUT?????

General maintenance

When a shotgun is discharged, 2 to 3 tonnes of pressure per square inch is xploded about a foot in front of your nose. It is therefore wise to have the gun checked and serviced by a competent gunsmith. Every 1 to 2 years, it should be completely stripped to its component parts, cleaned, checked and reassembled.

When the action etc. Is completely stripped, I use an ultrasonic cleaning tank to ensure all parts are as clean as possible. If there is rust, each part is then polished, to restore the surface. Trigger sears, springs etc are then checked for wear and cracks, before re assembly with light, multi purpose grease. Here are some pictures of shotguns I have recently been asked to service. If it’s been a few years since yours was last serviced, yours could look like this!!!!???


Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

Believe me when I say, these are by no means the worst I have seen, and truly represent only a few years of neglect. A special note for game shooters at this time. After a seasons shooting, I would recommend you have your game gun serviced at the end of the season, but most of you leave it to the beginning of the next season, or don’t bother at all.

Every year I am besieged by shooters esperate for their guns to be repaired for their first day. They always get so upset when you can’t help as others have got into the queue in front of them. Game shooting is expensive and to miss a day due to neglect of your gun is false conomy.

UPDATE

On recent forays into the world of the internet, I have been worried by the number of sites offering a “one price for all “, servicing for shotguns. The last time I counted, a box lock, none ejector 12 bore had approx 14 moving parts, not including securing pins. An assisted opening Holland & Holland, single trigger ejector has, if my memory serves me correctly, at least 30, plus 13 assorted springs and in excess of 17 screws and pins. 0/U’s, depending on the make, lie somewhere in between. Therefore, how can one price serve all, if all the guns are checked with the same diligence?

I am not saying the people who offer this service don’t do a good job, I don’t know, I have never used one, nor do I know anyone who has!

If you have, or you know anyone who has, please let me know, I am very interested.

Tim


UPDATE 29/01/09

First of all, Happy New Year to you all and apologies for taking so long to update the website.

Guess what I have been doing, no, not that! Nor that either! Yes, you guessed, I have been working very, very hard!

Over the last month, with only a few days of game shooting to go, I have had so many guns to repair that have just stopped working properly. The wet weather earlier on in the season has really played havoc with the guns that weren’t serviced.

Here are a few pictures of some of the worst offenders.

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands


The top leaver from an Italian over and under. Notice the dirt in the cut out of the stem. There was enough of it to slow the strike of the firing pin, causing misfires.

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands


The top leaver, locking bolt, return spring and cocking rod of a Perazzi. All of the dirt and rust, coupled with a weak top leaver spring and heavy game loads was causing the gun to partially open when fired.

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

The difference between the old Perazzi top leaver spring and a new one.

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

And, for now, perhaps the best picture for last! This, admittedly cheaper Italian over and under, had got so wet without any protective lubricant, the top leaver had rusted solid in the action and could not be opened. Very dangerous as the owner could not and did not know how to check or remembered if it was loaded or not!

If you are ever in the position of not being able to open a gun to check if it is loaded, here is a quick simple method. Point the gun in a safe direction, obviously keeping your hand away from the trigger. Take a cleaning rod and mark off the full length of the barrel. Keeping your hand out of the way, and still with the barrel in a safe direction, insert the rod into the barrel from the muzzle. If it goes in to the mark you have made, you know there isn’t a loaded cartridge in the breach.


UPDATE 15/09/09

So, here we are again, another game season, another English sidelock in very poor condition bought in at the last minute and needed urgently.

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

In this case, a quite rare Army and Navy 20b, sidelock.


Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

As you can see, not in the best possible condition???
This was only brought to me because it had finally stopped working due to the “ s “ link breaking in the right hand lock which was nearly seized, putting undue strain on this tiny, but vital part.

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

The old broken “s “link and the part finished new one. They are cut from solid bar, shaped and fitted by hand. As you can imagine, cutting and filing a part as small as this is quite time consuming, and therefore quite expensive.

The additional cost of replacing this part could have probably been avoided if the gun had been regularly serviced.

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

This is the gun just prior to re-assembly. It is a tribute to the quality of these old English guns, that with a bit of t.l.c. their original splendour still shines through, even when they are not a “ best make”.



UPDATE 13/12/09

Back in September, I showed you pictures of an old Army and Navy 20b, which over a period of some 80 years had become somewhat neglected!!!

The following pictures are, however, of a Perazzi, less than 5 years old and just plane neglected.

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

The internal working (or in this case not working parts of a MX12. I am sure you can all spot the problem?? And yet the owner of this gun had “no idea” why it had stopped working.

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

This is the locking bar, top leaver and top leaver spring, believe it or not, the gun would not open and close properly!

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

The top leaver spindle tunnel, complete with rusted in firing pin return springs.

Greenwood Gunsmiths in the West Midlands

And this is the firing pins, top leaver catch return spring and floor plate.

So don’t forget, bearing in mind how wet it has been this year, please, get your gun serviced, or yours to could end up looking like this, and letting you down.

Tim