Gunsmith Online Program Curriculum | Penn Foster Career School
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Program Details

Gunsmith Course Details

Our gunsmithing program includes over 50 short how-to and instructional videos to supplement your reading materials, covering topics like disassembling and assembling a firearm, to stock finishing and engraving.

Program Goal and Outcomes

Program Goal

To provide students with a working knowledge of basic gun repairs and modifications and to allow students to gain an entry-level career in the gunsmithing field.

Upon completion of the program, students will be able to...
  • Develop a full awareness of the rules for the safe handling of firearms
  • Identify and evaluate firearms by type, manufacturer, history, and physical characteristics
  • Know how to disassemble and reassemble various firearms; correctly identify and qualify the fit and finish of each part
  • Identify the correct replacement or customization parts required for a job, and properly order them from key suppliers
  • Know how to modify, custom-fit, and install stocks, sights and optics, and accessories on various firearms
  • Be familiar with the design, assembly, and fit of the modern sporting rifle, modern revolver, and modern semi-auto sidearm
  • Know how to identify, evaluate, apply, and repair various metal finishes, including blue and Parkerizing
  • Show familiarity with basic machine tool operations required of a gunsmith
  • Show basic knowledge of cartridge loading specifications and basic ballistics

Succeed by learning how to use your Penn Foster program.

Objectives:

  • Understand how to use your Student Portal.
  • Access the Penn Foster Community and use it to find answers.
  • Connect with Penn Foster on various social media sites.
This course identifies firearms and caliber. You’ll determine if a firearm is safe to shoot. You’ll also explore gun stock function and design. You’ll learn to make, inlet, finish, and repair gun stocks. You’ll also study glass bed, checker, stipple, or carve a gun stock, as well as install recoil pads and buttplates.

Objectives:

  • Identify career opportunities.
  • Outline basic firearm assembly and disassembly procedures.
  • Describe government licensing safety, personal safety, and liability insurance.

This course identifies firearms and caliber. You’ll determine if a firearm is safe to shoot. You’ll also explore gun stock function and design. You’ll learn to make, inlet, finish, and repair gun stocks. You’ll also study glass bed, checker, stipple, or carve a gun stock, as well as install recoil pads and buttplates.

Objectives:

  • Identify firearms and caliber.
  • Determine if a firearm is safe to shoot.
  • Explore gun stock function and design.
  • Make, inlet, finish, and repair gun stocks.
  • Glass bed, checker, stipple, or carve a gun stock.
  • Install recoil pads and buttplates.

Practical Exercise

This practical exercise will help you learn how to locate sources of information and perform business research that will improve your probability of becoming a successful gunsmith.

Additional Unit Material:

Learning Aids:

  • Cartridge Wall Chart
  • Using a Micrometer
  • Modern Gun Values

Supplement:

  • Firearms Glossary

In this course, you’ll study the history, design, and function of rifles. You’ll learn to repair and modify various rifles and explore re-barrel safety, headspacing, go gauges, and no-go gauges. You’ll also study the military and civilian roles of the modern sporting rifle. Finally, you’ll describe the design, function, and installation of various gun sights.

Objectives:

  • Understand the history, design, and function of rifles.
  • Repair and modify various rifles.
  • Explore re-barrel safety, headspacing, go gauges, and no-go gauges.
  • Explore the military and civilian roles of the modern sporting rifle.
  • Describe the care, cleaning, maintenance, troubleshooting, assembly, and disassembly of modern sporting rifles.
  • Describe the design, function, and installation of various gun sights.
  • Install, mount, and alter mounting scopes.
  • Explore installing new safeties.
  • Install new safeties.

Practical Exercise

This practical exercise will guide you in familiarizing yourself with gunsmith work, gun hardware and tool stores, and your workshop layout.

Additional Unit Material:

Supplements:

  • Customizing Rifles
  • Firearms Record Book

In this course, you’ll study the history and development of shotguns and muzzleloaders. You’ll learn to install, modify, and repair chokes and ribs, as well as how to load, fire, troubleshoot, repair, and customize muzzleloaders.

Objectives:

  • Outline the history and development of shotguns.
  • Install, modify, and repair chokes and ribs.
  • Outline the history of muzzleloaders.
  • Load, fire, troubleshoot, repair, and customize muzzleloaders.

Practical Exercise

In this practical exercise you'll research and design a blueing shop, purchase an inexpensive military surplus rifle to sporterize, and familiarize yourself with Brownell's catalog.

Additional Unit Material:

Learning Aid: Customizing Shotguns

Supplement: Gun Parts Catalog

In this course, you’ll study the history and identification of handguns, revolvers, and single shot/specialty pistols. You’ll also study basic ballistics and reloading and bullet casting procedures.

Objectives:

  • Outline the history and identification of handguns.
  • Describe revolvers and single shot/specialty pistols.
  • Understand basic ballistics.
  • Describe reloading and bullet casting procedures.

Practical Exercise

This practical exercise will help you become familiar with gun shows, shooting ranges, as well as becoming involved with safety training.

Additional Unit Material:

Supplements:

  • Customizing Handguns
  • Firearms Assembly: The NRA Guide to Pistols and Revolvers
  • Firearms Assembly: The NRA Guide to Rifles and Shotguns
  • Reloading Manual
  • Smith & Wesson® Wall Chart

This course outlines basic metallurgy and the welding process, soldering, brazing, and heat treatment techniques. It also describes metal preparation, touch-ups, finishes, and electric counter mounted buffers. You’ll also study sales and services, types of ownership, licensing requirements, and seasonal issues. You’ll learn to navigate Internet auction sales sites.

Objectives:

  • Outline basic metallurgy and the welding process.
  • Describe soldering, brazing, and heat treatment techniques.
  • Describe metal preparation, touch-ups, and finishes.
  • Identify electric counter mounted buffers.
  • Outline sales and services, types of ownership, licensing requirements, and seasonal issues.
  • Navigate Internet auction sales sites.

Additional Unit Material:

Supplements:

  • Drill and Tap Wall Chart
  • Applying for Your Federal Firearms License

Access online to instructional videos:

  • AR-15
  • Checkering
  • Clearing a Firearm
  • Disassembling and Assembling a Firearm
  • Engraving
  • Glass Bedding
  • Metal Finishing
  • Reassembly of a Colt 45
  • Removing a Live Cartridge
  • Stock Finishing

Additional Details

Licensing and/or certification requirements for jobs in this field are not the same in every state and may include educational, testing, and/or experiential requirements beyond those offered in the Penn Foster Program. Prospective students should contact the state professional licensing board or similar regulatory body in the state(s) where they plan to work to determine their requirements before enrolling in this Program. Click here for contact information for state licensing/regulatory boards and certain industry licensing information.
Students enrolled in the Gunsmith Career Diploma Program are eligible for discounted rates for the Personal Defense Network premium online how-to videos. This video resource site can serve as a supplement to your Penn Foster program, but is not required to complete your coursework. Learn more about this offer here.
Penn Foster Career School Accreditation & Licensing Details
Penn Foster has been accredited for over 50 years. Penn Foster Career School has been thoroughly reviewed and has earned several important accreditations, certifications, and licensing. Most importantly, Penn Foster Career School is both regionally and nationally accredited.

DEAC
MSA
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Penn Foster Student Community
Student Community
Looking to connect with other Penn Foster students? Our Student Community is the perfect place for you to interact with your peers - as well as Penn Foster faculty and staff - to discuss your online learning experience, congratulate fellow students, and share your Penn Foster experience.

Sample Gunsmith Lesson

Penn Foster courses are written in a way that is easy to understand, and materials are broken down into manageable lessons. Take a look at what a gunsmith course would look like.
Penn Foster Auto Repair Technician Sample Lesson
Computer Specifications
As you know this is an online academic program. This means you will need high-speed internet access to begin your program. In addition, you will need access to a Microsoft® Windows® based computer running Windows 7® or later or an Apple® Mac® computer running OS X® or later, and an email account to participate in and complete your program.
We reserve the right to change program content and materials when it becomes necessary.
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offer ends 3/7/17

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