Careers information

What does it involve?

Gunsmiths need to have:

  • good toolmaking, fitting and welding skills
  • an understanding of the properties of different types of woods and metals, and their applications in making firearms
  • knowledge of the working mechanisms of different models and makes of firearms
  • knowledge of different types of ammunition
  • knowledge of firearm restoration and conservation
  • ability to dismantle, inspect, assemble and test firearm components safely.

What kind of jobs could I do?

Gunsmiths may do some or all of the following:

  • design, repair, alter, clean, conserve, restore, and test firearms
  • select and prepare metal and wood for making and repairing firearms
  • use machines to cut and shape metal, wood and composites
  • assemble and disassemble firearms
  • carry out valuations on firearms

How much could I earn?

Icn Money

Per year

$40k - $80k


Click here for more details on the Careers NZ website.

National qualifications

This is a trade qualification for people in the engineering industry. It combines a broad, common foundation of mechanical engineering with more specialised skills and knowledge in the form of strands to suit the nature of the particular trade or enterprise the individual is engaged in. It is intended to provide training for people in occupations traditionally referred to as Fitters, Fitters and Turners, Fitters and Welders, Maintenance and Diagnostics Engineers, Maintenance Fitters, Power Station Fitters, Toolmakers, Precision Machinists, and Machine Tool Setters.

The General Engineering strand is for those employed in a general engineering workshop, where the work may involve fitting, machining, welding, maintenance, repair, hydraulics, pneumatics, marine or rail engineering, fabrication, or gunsmithing. Often the work will be of a one-off or contractual nature.

Click here for the NZQA qualification overview.