Whatever your reason for owning a firearm, you’ll eventually need to start maintaining it if you want it to continue to perform at optimal levels.
If buying a brand new gun isn’t an option for you, you may find yourself wanting to modify your weapons or even feel the desire to build your own handgun.
In all of these instances, you will need gunsmithing tools. These are specialized tools for repairing, modifying, and building guns.
In Hurry? This Is The Best Gun Smithing Tool Kit
Pachmayr 03085 Master Gunsmith Tool Set
Why is it the best?
- Ergonomic design
- Great Control
- Perfectly cut slots
Our Top Picks For Gunsmith Tool Sets
With that in mind, let’s now take a closer look at our top picks.
Let’s dive into the specifics and review each gunsmith tool setindividually. You can use the list below to jump and review specific models, or you can read along and go through all the information.
1. Best Overall: Pachmayr 03085 Master Gunsmith Ultimate Gunsmith Tool Set
Featuring a blend of different turnscrews for gun maintenance and a brass hammer, Lyman Products’ Pachmayr kit gives you a little bit of everything you need to get started.
With soft-touch handles featuring an ergonomic design on the larger turnscrews, you’re granted dexterity and control when you need it the most.
While the tools are good, the case they come in could use an upgrade. All the slots are cut perfectly, so your tools will fit easily and the case will close without a problem.
However, the latches are bent plastic. They’re not really meant to hold on for very long.
As a result, I personally recommend grabbing a different carrying case, even if it’s not intentionally designed to be used for such tools.
You could get a metal case and separate the two halves of this one, affixing them into place so they’re protected, and in precut slots.
For more product information and the cost of this fantastic kit, please visit the respective Amazon link.
2. WEAVER 849719 Deluxe Gunsmith Tool Kit
Gunsmithing may be a skill you want to learn, but you might not know the right kit to get you started.
The WEAVER Deluxe Kit is designed to be the perfect starting point for newbies. Since it features a brass tip hammer with a sturdy wooden handle, you’ll get the most important part of gun maintenance right off the bat with this set.
This kit includes a total of 88 pieces, many of which are screwdriver tips that attach to the ergonomic handle located in the case.
High-quality steel punch sets like the one included in this kit aren’t exactly commonly found in one inclusive space.
The case itself is also designed to be a miniature fortress to keep everything secure and well protected.
With this gun maintenance set, you’re equipped to deal with cleaning and smithing parts on hunting rifles more than any other weapon. However, some of these tools meet the requirements you need to alter and adjust handguns as well.
Main disadvantage: The small pieces in this set don’t come with size markings.
For more details and the price of this excellent set, please visit the respective Amazon link. If you want to receive this kit as soon as possible, make sure to select express shipping at checkout.
3. NcSTAR Essential Gun Smith Tool Kit
NcSTAR is a recognized brand for tactical gear. Their simple essential gun maintenance kit offers an excellent starting point for any enthusiastic armorer.
Compared with the other hard plastic cases we’ve seen, this manufacturer took a different approach.
The soft case with a wide carry handle is something you can stow away without worrying about it being too bulky.
The low-profile case includes ample room for additional parts as well as the designated tool slots for the brass tip hammer, a turnscrew, pliers, and more.
This company was able to make all of their tools (along with the case) weigh only 68 ounces! Talk about practicality!
Whether you’re looking for a gun maintenance kit that you can stow in your hunting case for on-the-go repairs or a compact one for your bug-out bag, this set may be the perfect choice for you.
For more product information and the cost of this amazing kit, please visit the respective Amazon link.
4. Wheeler 55 Piece SAE/Metric Hex and Torx Screwdriver Set
Torx and hex screwdrivers are the blood and nectar of gun maintenance.
You know why?
You always need the one you don’t have. Getting bulked up on a kit like this one ensures you’ll never be met with a challenge that you don’t have the right turnscrew for.
This set includes a dense plastic storage case with sturdy latches, so you won’t have to worry about getting a separate space to keep all your tools.
You’ll get a soft touch turnscrew handle to hold onto each bit, while the guide along the inside of the case will keep tabs on every single size and its proper place.
One of the most aggravating things about gunsmithing, even for those who enjoy it, is that you sometimes think you have the right gauge when you’re a single number off.
This bit guide is a lifesaver, and in time, you’ll realize how much you’ve come to rely on it.
This particular kit is for avid armorers, but with a price like this, it’s something that even a beginner can grab to prepare for the long road ahead.
For more details and the price of this set, please visit the respective Amazon link.
5. Birchwood Casey Weekender Professional Gunsmith Kit
We all have to start somewhere.
This kit is labeled as professional, but I’ll be the first one to tell you that it’s a moderately good kit that comes with a lot of the things you need to get started. However, it doesn’t provide everything.
I like including budget-friendly options in every buyer’s guide I write, especially when I find one that does more than you initially expected.
You’ll find yourself pulling this simple case out of your tool bag to take the petite-sized hammer and turnscrews.
I would say that this is a good place to start, but it’s not the only kit you need to actually learn and practice gunsmithing.
If you’re trying to gather different kits to get everything ready for your first project, this inexpensive kit should definitely be an item on your list.
For more product information and the cost of this set, please visit the respective Amazon link.
6. Lyman Master Gunsmith Multi Tool Kit
This gun maintenance kit offers great value for money. It’s suitable for both beginners and experienced armorers because it provides all the key pieces.
This 68 piece set consists of numerous specialty bits, including a Glock front sight bit, a Weaver scope ring bit, and Phillips screws.
If your budget is a bit too small for this option, you might like the 45 piece alternative.
Main disadvantage: It’s made in China.
For more details and the price of this set, please visit the respective Amazon link.
7. Wheeler Engineering Gunsmithing Screwdriver Set
The Wheeler Engineering tool set provides the ultimate versatility and ease of use. All the screws in it have been tested on more than 100 firearms, both antique and modern, to ensure the kit has everyone covered.
Additionally, this set features 54 hollow-ground, concave-shaped bits for maximum contact. No wonder it’s such a popular set.
It’s made of S2 tool steel and comes with 2 slip-resistant plastic handles with a practical storage case.
It deserves a place on every armorer’s workbench.
For more product information and the cost of this kit, please visit the respective Amazon link.
If none of our 7 top picks gunsmithing tools ticks all your boxes, this section’s for you. Our three special selections are:
- Wheeler Hammer and Punch Set
- Grace USA – Gun Care Tool Set
- Winchester 51 Piece Gunsmith Screwdriver Set
The first set consists of brass, steel, and nylon punches and comes with a practical plastic storage case. If you’re looking for a small but functional kit to help you drive pins and drift sights, this one might be ideal for you. Plus, it weighs only 1.88 pounds, which means you’ll be able to bring it along at the shooting range!
As the name suggests, the Grace USA – Gun Care Tool Set is made in the United States. It’s a 17 piece kit that comes in a sleek vinyl pouch and includes 8 hollow-ground turnscrews, 8 solid brass pin punches, and a brass hammer. With its 2.5 pounds, this set won’t be a burden on the field.
The Winchester Set is manufactured by DAC Technologies — a respected name in the gun safety and cleaning industry. Some of the pieces this 1.38-pound kit features are 12 flat head bits, 8 hex bits, 2 long Phillips bits, and 2 spline bits. This gunsmithing tool kit comes with a warranty (the same one its manufacturer provides).
Table of Contents
Gunsmithing Tools FAQ
Q: Why Should I Work on My Own Guns?
A: Why shouldn’t you? At the very least, servicing your own guns for cleaning and mild to moderate repairs is something you should be able to do.
If things go south for you, you could have your firearms locking up on you, not knowing how to analyze and fix the problem.
Gunsmithing at home is different than becoming a true employable gunsmith. Yes, you can do online certification programs, which I’ll get into later, but a gunsmithing station has tens of thousands of dollars of permanent equipment.
Lathes, CNC machines, and a ton of other things that you’re not going to find on Amazon.
At the very least, you should know how to work on your own guns (which you will get from your gunsmithing experience), and you should have the necessary tools handy in case of an emergency. It’s a wonderfully useful skill to have.
Q: What Should My First Gunsmithing Project Be?
You should take advantage of something called A and B testing. This allows you to pit A against B in terms of effectiveness and determine what’s best.
It’s usually a marketing term, but when it comes to gunsmithing, you should get a gun or pick a project you aren’t familiar with and one that you are wholly familiar with.
A newer gun versus your trust 9mm that you’ve had forever, for example. Work on both, one after the other. This will tell you if you love gunsmithing or just the idea of gunsmithing.
Q: What Tools Are Needed for Gunsmithing?
When beginning your gunsmithing journey, there are basically ten tools you absolutely need. Without them, some rather common tasks might end up being extremely difficult to manage. Those ten tools are:
- Gunsmithing Screwdrivers: Universally designed to work with most guns.
- Pin Punches: This includes a brass punch — a common gunsmithing tool.
- Bench Block: Ideal for meticulous tasks that would be quite difficult without this tool.
- Gunsmith Vise: If you plan on gunsmithing on your own, then you must invest in a high-quality gun vise.
- Brass Hammer: Typically oblong in shape.
- Hex Keys: You always need these, but sometimes at random intervals.
- Torx Head Drivers: Made of steel, hard to break.
- Micrometers: Measurements and mathematics are everything in gunsmithing.
- Feeler Gauge: Used for measuring metal thickness.
- Needle Files: For cutting new screw slots during repairs.
Q: What Is a Brass Punch?
It’s a tool that comes in many sizes and is primarily used to fix trigger mechanics in pistols and assault rifles.
Because brass punches are used to remove pins most of the time, you’ll notice that they are sometimes referred to as brass pin punches.
Q: Why Do I Need a Torque Wrench in My Gun Kit?
Incorporating a top-notch torque wrench into your gun maintenance set is a smart decision because this tool will save the day when regular turnscrews can’t. These tools increase the rate of accuracy while working, meaning you won’t have to worry about under- or over-tightening screws, bolts, and nuts.
Q: Is Gunsmithing a Good Hobby?
‘Good’ is a subjective way to look at it, but I can tell you this — it certainly is rewarding. I’m not just someone who owns a gun for protection against home invasions — I enjoy using, shooting, cleaning, and augmenting guns. If you’re anything like me, then it’s a fun hobby that’s worth putting your time into.
Also, gunsmithing doesn’t have to be an expensive hobby to pick up. Most people can begin this journey for a few hundred dollars, and after that, upkeep costs will go down.
When you’re gunsmithing, you’re actually manipulating metal and using applied mathematics and chemistry to clean, repair, and refurbish firearms. It’s a fascinating activity, and some of the skills you learn from it can “spill into” other parts of your life.
Q: How Does One Become a Gunsmith?
What starts as an amateur’s hobby can turn into a full-fledged passion where you can get certified (and even work for major gun companies!). Most gun shops need gunsmiths to keep their repair service moving. This comes in handy for guys that love shooting but don’t have the time to learn gunsmithing on their own.
Another option is to work for the big bucks at Smith & Wesson and other similar places. They also have repair and return services where you may be required to fix or alter malfunctioning or otherwise improperly manufactured guns.
Penn Foster has an excellent online education course where you can learn the ropes of gunsmithing and get certified in a very short amount of time. If you want to turn a hobby into a career, I personally recommend Penn Foster.
If maintaining your firearm is a challenge you aren’t afraid of, then investing in quality gunsmithing tools is something you should definitely consider. To be able to do the job properly, you’ll also need a gun vise and a gun cleaning kit (a cleaning rod, gun oil or lubricant, cleaning solvents, brushes, cleaning patches, and cotton buds).
Learn the ABCs of gun cleaning and maintenance to avoid any accidents. Reading books written by experts, watching YouTube videos, and consulting a professional armorer are some of the best ways to familiarize yourself with this subject.