Top Pistolsmiths List attempt

flyer

Unicorn hunter
Banned !
Minuteman
Apr 25, 2018
2,278
1,323
I suggest an in memoriam section.

There were great pioneers in pistol smithing who are no longer with us.

Two off the top of my head are Bob Chow and Armand Swenson.

Legends in their field.

I couldn't afford a Valtro so I jumped when I had a chance to buy one of his uncle's guns. I really like my Swenson custom.
 

Kweo53

Private
Minuteman
Sep 6, 2018
5
1
Gang, brand new here, but I thought I'd add a couple of holster makers who do superb work that I did not see on the list. Mike "Doc" Barranti does great work. He is a Shootist and a dedicated student of all things gun and holster related; website: https://barrantileather.com

Another first-class holster maker is Von Ringler: Von's work is stunningly beautiful. His "Wyoming Combination Holster" is very popular with outdoorsmen and women from Wyoming to Alaska. https://ringlercustomleather.com

I'll warn you, however, both of these gentlemen are backordered for custom work.
 

damoncali

Gunny Sergeant
Belligerents
Minuteman
Mar 19, 2011
1,378
71
46
Omaha, Nebraska
bisonballistics.com
I need to find one on the list that will take on two 1911 projects that another gunsmith on the list started but appears to have no desire to finish. I know that is going to be a challenge because a lot of smiths don't want to work on something that someone else has messed with. I don't blame them since it's no different turning wrenches and getting someone elses half finished bullshit.
I know that Joe Chambers has fixed some less than optimal work done by other smiths - he's worth giving a call. He's very detail oriented and stubborn (in a good way) about getting things right. You may have a long wait ahead, though. I'm not sure what his backlog is like these days.
 

Sam Dunham

Private
Minuteman
Jan 22, 2019
95
67
Wilson Combat! I worked with them and several of them have never had but one job from HS on and they are still at that one job they had when out of Machinists school in their late teens or early 20's. Several have been there 30 plus years and the volume of guns they have laid hands on and hand checkered from the start is staggering!
 
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Odysseus1911

Piled higher and Deeper
Belligerents
Minuteman
Feb 14, 2019
219
229
Arkansas
I think Brandan Bunker definitely earns a spot on the list. The precision of his builds takes to the .0001 what other smiths take to the .001, not to mention the option of PVD coatings that look like traditional bluing.

https://www.bunkerarms.com/
 
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Hogrider2000

Full Member
Belligerents
Minuteman
Feb 23, 2017
554
46
Dave Gregor, former head gunsmith for the FBI hostage Rescue team
now located at
US Trinity Customs
in Northlake, Texas
 
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nikonNUT

Gunny Sergeant
Belligerents
Minuteman
Oct 6, 2019
589
1,580
48
Arkansas
On the holster front I can suggest The Southern Trapper. Quality gear, lots of exotic hides (croc, gator, elephant, ostrich, shark, ray, etc.), and they offer a 100 year, generationally transferable warranty.

 
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Robin 03A3

Private
Belligerents
Minuteman
May 22, 2017
6
2
Jim Garthwaite passed away last week.
He built two great guns for me.
RIP Jim,
R
 

Choid

Private
Belligerents
Minuteman
Feb 13, 2017
636
557
Jim Garthwaite passed away last week.
He built two great guns for me.
RIP Jim,
R
Very sad. Jim built me a couple of guns, showed me how to build my own, and basically taught me how to shoot. I'd lost touch with him over the last two years, but he was very healthy last time I saw him, or seemed so.
 
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Choid

Private
Belligerents
Minuteman
Feb 13, 2017
636
557
John makes some really nice pistols. Good, classic stuff.
 

4Certain

Banhammer
Banned !
Minuteman
May 15, 2020
85
69
Little Rock, AR
I would Add Bob Serva of Fusion Firearms to your list. He was president of Dan Wesson Firearms for about ten years. I have two of his pistols. a 2011 Commander and a 1911 Bobtail Commander. 4Certain