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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
At the risk of exposing myself to ridicule by other smithies, I recently had a discussion concerning test firing vs. function test after gunsmithing repairs were completed. One point is that a function test, with drop-fire check, should always be a part of the completed work. The other point is that the repaired gun should always be test fired as well. There are several problems with test firing a repaired gun before giving it back.
One being that if your shop is located in a city without a handy indoor range available for handguns and rimfire rifles, the gun must be removed from the shop, possibly logged out of the logbooks to do so, and taken to a range where it can be fired. Rifles other than rimfire, and shotguns, must go to an outdoor range. This can incur an admission fee to use the range, besides the time and fuel it takes you to drive out there. You would have to collect up a bunch of them to test at one time. Your insurance coverage may demand that the guns be test fired prior to return to the customer. Now you are driving all over town with a trunk full of guns that don't belong to you.
Another problem, whether you are city-bound or have easy access to open countryside, is that a gunsmith does not necessarily have any ammo on hand to fit the gun in question, and must buy a box of 20 of some oddball caliber just to shoot 6 rounds out of the box. That is, if the customer neglects to bring you their own ammo with the gun. Now you are stuck with a partially used box of oddball ammo that will sit on your shelf for another 20 years. At this point I would demand that the customer buy the whole box and get it out of the shop. Next, do you charge the customer a fee for test firing or bury the cost for your time and trouble in the service?
The other point is to only function test the gun and let the customer test fire it themselves. This is what I am most accustomed to, being from the "big city." Your constructive comments are welcome.
 

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As a customer. I'd be willing to pay extra for test firing and for any ammo consumed in the test firing. If my calibre was unusual, I'd be willing to bring the ammo or to buy the box. I'd appreciate the target in return.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
test firing target?

Test firing is not sighting in, therefore no target. It's just blasting a few shots into the ground to make sure it cycles correctly. A function test with live ammo. Yes, I will do sighting in for a fee. That takes time, after all.
 

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I'm not a gunsmith, in the fact I don't do it for a living. Had breathed on a few guns that weren't mine, mostly friends and family. If dealing with parts that could affect function, they all get tested for feed, ejection and are test fired. Since I seldom charge for my labor any material, parts and supplies are charged for which includes ammo and any range fees.
If doing it as a vocation, think function testing would have to be charged as part of the job. Otherwise I could see customers telling you to forego testing if it was charged separately.
 

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I think there are two issues here, on one hand you have the "repair" issue, the other is a structural issue.
If it is the former, eg a trigger job, restocking, blueing, drill and tap for scopes etc etc then a simple function test is adequate.
If you change barrels, rechamber or alter the bolt/locking mechanism in any way then you should be bound to do a proof test. At the least this would entail discharging an overloaded cartridge through the gun to ensure it doesn't blow John Doe to bits.
I don't know how US manufacturers proof their products, but before a gun that is made outside the CIP sphere of influence can be legally sold in the UK it must undergo a proof test by either https://www.gunmakers.org.uk/the-proof-house/ or one of the CIP proof house if the gun is imported via a different country.
The last time I used them was to have my winchester mod 23 sbs 3" 12 gauge proofed for HV 3" steel shot shells, it was the £ equivalent of $60 a barrel, plus shipping both ways.
The proof test is described in the above link well enough so I won't repeat it.
With all the bs in the US re Lawyers running companies I'm amazed that there isn't a universally credited system in place to safeguard buyers - or lawyers , as the case may be.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
regulation test?

Interesting thought. But the last thing US owners need is more gun regulation. The lawmakers would probably regulate guns illegal if they DID fire correctly. But you made one point, that a new barrel should require a live-fire test. How often would one expect a brand new barrel, diligently inspected, to blow up on correct ammo? I would think no chance. At the same time, we all know triggers can delay or break components, so a trigger job in my thinking should require a test firing. Comments? :rolleyes:
 
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