In order to participate in the GunBroker Member forums, you must be logged in with your GunBroker.com account. Click the sign-in button at the top right of the forums page to get connected.
Options

pricing question

bullin82bullin82 Member Posts: 74 ✭✭
edited December 2014 in Ask the Experts
So I've been doing some minor gunsmith work for years and just started to "branch out" a little more recently. A work friend recently just had me replace a broken charging handle on his nylon 66 and strip down, clean and blue the rifle (it's an old farm rifle with 40 years of rust and carbon). So I was originally happy with him just covering parts but he insists on Mr charging him for the labor as well and that is the difficult part for me. I only used the cold bluing process, if someone would know what I should be charging him about it would be greatly appreciated, if I under charge him he won't accept it (stubborn like myself) and I definitely don't want to over charge. Again any and all help is greatly appreciated.

Comments

  • Options
    duckhunterduckhunter Member Posts: 7,686 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    $40.00 an hour.
  • Options
    bullin82bullin82 Member Posts: 74 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by duckhunter
    $40.00 an hour.


    Thank you for the help.
  • Options
    Smoky14Smoky14 Member Posts: 531 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Unless he is shilling for the ATF and you don't have a license.
    One tried to get me to reload for him.
    YMMV
    Smoky
  • Options
    nononsensenononsense Member Posts: 10,928 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    bullin82,

    There's more to this than just charging for a service.

    You need to read the rules and regulations about FFLs from the ATF. Technically you need to have a license and operate a business in order to charge as a gunsmith. The ATF has a website where all this is discussed clearly.

    Also be sure to familiarize yourself with the insurance requirements for gunsmiths.

    Best.
  • Options
    MIKE WISKEYMIKE WISKEY Member, Moderator Posts: 9,988 ******
    edited November -1
    just to note; if you accept a firearm to do work on it and keep it 'over night' you have to have a (at least)01 ffl.
  • Options
    bullin82bullin82 Member Posts: 74 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    This is why I ask these questions because I want aware of the needed license. Thankfully I've only worked on his one rifle so I would assume as long as I don't accept any money for the service I can't be considered in "doing business"?
  • Options
    beantownshootahbeantownshootah Member Posts: 12,776 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Call me a contrarian, but I really do *NOT* think that fixing up a pal's gun by replacing a broken part, cleaning, and bluing it constitutes "being engaged in the business" as per FFL directive, requiring Federal licensure.

    Here is the definition of same from the BATFE:

    quote:
    (21) The term "engaged in the business" means-

    as defined in section
    921(a)(11)(A), a person who devotes time, attention, and labor to dealing in firearms as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit through the repetitive purchase and resale of firearms, but such term shall not include a person who makes occasional sales, exchanges, or purchases of firearms for the enhancement of a personal collection or
    for a hobby, or who sells all or part of his personal collection of firearms;

    (D) as applied to a dealer in firearms, as defined in section
    921(a)(11)(B), a person who devotes time, attention, and labor to engaging in such activity as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit, but such term shall not include a person who makes occasional repairs of firearms, or who occasionally fits special barrels, stocks, or trigger mechanisms to firearms;

    My read of this is that the BATFE is OK with someone who occasionally does minor repairs to guns NOT needing an FFL to do them, or even to accept money for doing them, to the point where they've created an explicit carveout for this category.

    IMO cleaning a gun isn't "gunsmithing"; you're not making ANY mechanical alterations to the gun in question. Refinishing a gun probably isn't either. Repairing a broken charging handle? That one is borderline, but to me it clearly falls into the exception listed above of "occasional repair".

    Now, if you're really doing this sort of thing on a regular basis for various individuals (even if they're all friends) and getting paid cash or some other consideration in exchange, regardless of the amount of money, then yes, you'd need an FFL.

    Barring that, no, I don't think you do. As above, what you described seems to be exactly what the BATFE describes as OK.

    As to how much to charge. Eh. . .I'd say $50 + whatever your actual costs of parts and materials would be perfectly fair. But that might depend a little bit on what the market for gunsmithing looked like in your particular location.


    Edit: Responding to below.
    quote:Originally posted by lcdrdanr
    I've always thought it a 'catch 22' because if you don't charge for the work, just doing a favor for a friend, then you get known as the neighborhood go to guy for anything that needs fixed, cleaned, or upgraded. But, if you charge too much, then you are 'gouging' your buddies.
    Dan R
    Well, short of you or them blabbing about it, I don't know how anyone would even know if you only did a limited amount of work for a friend.

    Assuming your friends know you do rudimentary gunsmithing work, I don't know why they'd assume you'd be willing to do it for them (at all), let alone for free. EG, just because you work on YOUR car, doesn't mean you'd be willing to work on your friends cars! I don't show up at my friends places of business and demand discounts, nor would I show up at their home and request the same of their hobby.

    If someone approaches you to do some sort of work for them, you can always say "no". Nothing wrong with saying "I don't know how to do that", or "I'm not licensed as a gunsmith and I'm just not comfortable doing for you what you're asking of me", or "there are risks involved here, and I'm just not comfortable working on anyone else's guns", etc.

    On gun CLEANING, I'm happy to show any of my friends how to strip and clean their guns (assuming its a model I'm familiar with, and they're novices) . . .and I've done so. But I'm not going to clean their guns FOR them! They can clean their own GD guns! [:p]

    As to "gouging" your friends, well, the answer to that is simply not to "gouge" them! If they're happy to pay what you're asking, you're not "gouging" them, right?
  • Options
    lcdrdanrlcdrdanr Member Posts: 439 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I've always thought it a 'catch 22' because if you don't charge for the work, just doing a favor for a friend, then you get known as the neighborhood go to guy for anything that needs fixed, cleaned, or upgraded. But, if you charge too much, then you are 'gouging' your buddies.
    Dan R
  • Options
    charliemeyer007charliemeyer007 Member Posts: 6,579 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I have never charge for my work on real guns or my ammo. I'm really selective these days who I'll give stuff to. I have barter some and I usually make folks buy the parts or components.

    If you swat your thumb with a hammer or the knife slips, I'll give you an Advil or a Band-Aid and think I'm practicing medicine without a license. Same with free advice and psychology; you get exactly what you paid for.
  • Options
    yoshmysteryoshmyster Member Posts: 21,342 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    That's why you should just take payments from dude in booze. Easy stuff in beers and Pappy Van Winkle 23 for the hard stuff.
Sign In or Register to comment.