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262 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm curious about the design, manufacture and sale of pistol parts by several of the major pistolsmiths and custom shops.

1) Is this much of a money maker? It seems as though at one extreme, you could design a slight modification to a popular part, arrange to have a factory in China crank them out by the thousands, put your name on them, and sell them to Brownells for two or three times what you're paying the Wang Foo Widget Company for them. :wink: At the other extreme, if you spend years on research and development, then personally hand craft and inspect each part, you'll have to price your parts so high that you'd never sell enough to make a living.

2) If you actually do invent a better mousetrap, can you afford to sue the inevitable imitators who will sell low cost copies of your design?

3) How concerned would you be about problems with your name brand parts reflecting poorly upon your abilities and integrity as a gunsmith?

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218 Posts
I do know a little about the parts business. I make and sell parts and tools. The magic name in parts is TITANIUM, which in my opinion is a way of parting you with your $. No one seems to want to tell you what percentage of titanium is in the part, its usually mostly aluminum. When you sell parts to people like Brownells that are marketing experts, there is 3 tier pricing. the price they pay you, then their is dealer pricing and then their is retail pricing. Most of the big names do not make all their own parts they just buy the part and put it in their packages. Everyone gets their cut. As for foreign Guns they are all made to metric specifications and american parts do not always work well. As with any business if you buy low and sell high you can become rich. The key is marketing, you can sell any product good or bad if its marketed right. I know a lot of parts are made in the phillipines for the market out there. Its a major business. My parts are all hand finished by me personally and there fore I could never make enough of them to make a lot of money. As for my tools I make and sell most people or gunsmiths do not think about things like I do such as polishing a breech face, which took me a long time to make and perfect a tool that would work flawlessly. The average gunsmith does not polish a breech face to a mirror finish like I do. Should you have any questions email me. Now that videki is going out of the trigger business there is a perfect opportunity for someone to duplicate his trigger. Years ago I wtote videki a letter telling him that I could show him how to improve his trigger a great deal and he would blow away the competition and he never had the courtesy to even answer me.

Teddy Jacobson / pistolsmith
281 277 4008
email= [email protected]

· Registered
46 Posts
Parts manufacturing takes some pretty solid
capital to start up a production run.

You could start with smaller shops for machined
parts but your per piece cost is higher.

Most of your small parts will be rough cast
then machined.

To do initial set up for precision dies for one
part will run around 5k.

Keep adding-for heat treat-clean up-prep-finish-
packaging. not cheap to start.
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