How Does CNC Gunsmithing Work?
CNC gunsmithing is a term that is often associated with home-made guns. Through the use of a computer program ran by a software such as Mastercam and a CNC milling machine, you want to accomplish at least three things with CNC gunsmithing. First, you want to make a reproduction of an old gun like the RP46 (which is so old you can’t buy it anywhere anymore). Second, you want to make your own version of an existing gun that you can’t afford. Lastly, you want to create a new gun that’s unlike any other in the market. And if after some time, you can be an expert at CNC gunsmithing, you may want to turn this hobby into a profitable business.
CNC gunsmithing is not something that you can learn by yourself alone and at an instant. The process is complicated, and you need someone to guide you every step of the way. You will have to go to a school that will teach you the basics of CNC machining. This course can be a brief one, lasting to at least 90 hours. You will learn how to program, set up, and operate mills and lathes. You will also learn how to use Mastercam software, and are required to submit a project demonstrating your understanding of its features and functionalities.
What are the processes involved in CNC gunsmithing?
The first step always involves the design. Since you need precise and accurate parts, you will need to use Mastercad CAD/CAM to draw your designs on a 3D or 2D projection and program your milling machine during the manufacturing process. With Mastercad, you can enable the machine to contour, drill, peel, and engrave your product.
Then, if the program is set up, the next step involves the usage of the CNC mill. CNC mills come in a variety of sizes. There are bigger ones, which are also more expensive, and then there are smaller machines that can fit a cramped space. For instance, the Grizzly G0704 is the machine to order if you live in a tiny apartment. Most of the machines you’ll be ordering from a dealer in the United States are ordered off somewhere in China, so if you have the means, track a supplier or manufacturer directly from China.
In the next process, the CNC machine is put to good use. Depending on the parts of the gun, blocks of steel or aluminum materials are contoured, surfaced, and drilled according to what the mill is programmed to do. This process is the most time-consuming part because there will be different machining processes for each of your gun’s parts, from the receiver up to the buffer tube.
When all the parts of the gun are created, the next step may be to coat the parts with an anodized paint for gun. Then, this is followed closely by the installation or assembly of the gun parts to get them all in place. After everything is done, the gunsmith puts his new creation to the test.