Retired in 2001
Hi all looking for a good NJ gunsmith to fix my S&W model 19...Thanks:wavey:
What part of Jersey are you in?? I only know of one - located at www.bulletholenj.com - This is directly from their site:
"Our firearms service can’t be beat-Owner Manny Cerca is one of the most experienced gunsmiths in the New York metropolitan area. He has over 40 years experience and is a certified Glock Armorer and Smith & Wesson Armorer. Contact our gunsmith here:
Depending on your location, it may be worth the trip...
Retired in 2001
New Gun Glock I live in Monmouth County so I think he is about a our to the south.I found the gunsmith who worked in Harrys. Going to make a appointment with him>
Happy New Year.
No problem. Happy New Year to you also!
Four little notes about the Bullet Hole. It is less than a mile from my parents house and was my main dealer/range for years. Between me and my shooting buddy (GT name Turbonatr), we easily spent $20K between us in that place in the span of 2 or 3 years. We knew Manny, his family, and their friends better than anyone. We were on a first name basis with everyone and were there a minimum of 3 times a week for YEARS:
1) We never got a discount for anything. I'm not really sure why it didn't bug us at the time. We were young then, that maybe it, but I remember distinctly when I bought my first case of .223 and was told that I get 5% off for buying by the case I was shocked and elated. Looking back at that now, that makes me sick.
2) They definitely have a book-keeping problem. I'm shopping the gun-case one day and notice a gorgeous full-size Springfield 1911 in .40S&W. I don't remember the exact model (I didn't know as much about 1911s then as I do now). Anyway, I held it in my hand and put a deposit on it instantly. It was pure sex appeal. It was expensive for me at the time, $1400 IIRC ... so I put a couple of hundred down and, as was common with Turbonatr and me, they held it in a safe until I could finish payment - I was allowed to shoot it at the range as much as I'd liked in the meantime. So the day I purchase it I put 200 rounds through it. I go back 2 weeks later with some more cash and shoot it again .. another 200 rounds. Then 9/11 happens and as someone who supports the financial markets in downtown NYC, I "move" into my cubicle for a couple of weeks and don't get to shoot at all. I return with final payment in hand to pick up my Springer and they can't find it. They check the back, they check the safe .. they check everything. Finally, Manny's wife checks the log book and sure as poop, they sold it as a NIB gun to some other guy about a week earlier. Manny had gotten P.O.'d about the stack of guns in the safe (of which mine was one) and decided to just put everything back out for sale. This was a dirty gun, a used gun .. they sold it as new. I got my money back but that left a sour taste with me.
3) Sighting in ... isn't so. I buy my first rifle, a bare-bones Bushy 20" A3, from Manny. I shoot it with iron sights 1 time, decide I need an optic. Go buy POS $150 Bushnell scope from Manny. He offers to "sight it in". Brings my gun over to the counter, sticks some contraption down the barrel, this contraption has 3 adjustable parts that he doesn't line up in any sort of way. As I'm watching him adjust my scope, I notice that he runs out of "clicks" in the windage adjustment which makes perfect sense to me since the contraption isn't centered in any way vertically or horizontally with the rifle. Manny calls it "Close enough" and sends me on my way. Get to the range ... shoot at 8.5x11" sheet of paper at 100 yards. Can't find paper at all. Paper is stapled to giant board ... bullets not finding board at all from what I can tell. Go over to 50 yard range, finally find the edge of the paper. Ended up having to shim the scope to get it to zero @ 100 yards without leaning heavily to one side of the adjustment knob .. but suffice it to say my "sight in" was worthless. Fast forward a few months. The tighter I make myself, the less accurate my AR is. Every time I go for groups, my groups go to hell. This is before I realize that me tightening my sling is pulling my non-free-floated handguard enough to change my POI. Anyway, dummy me decides to get more accuracy by buying a bolt-action. Go the standard Remington 700 in .308 route ... buy a nicer $300 scope this time. Get both of these through Manny and they get "sighted in" again. This time, Turbonatr is with me and he's watching as Manny is doing this. This bore sighter isn't even close to on-axis with any part of the gun in any way and me and Turbo are just giggling at this. Suffice it to say, nowhere near paper again.
4) The best of 'em all by a long shot. They mangled my Kimber, which I bought through them, and sent me on my way. My stainless Classic used to have this chronic issue - after 250 rounds it was start failing to feed. The slide action would slow down and eventually it just wouldn't go into battery. It seemed as though when it would get dirty it would get fouled up and that would slow down the slide action. Anyway, I had no idea how to detail strip a 1911 so I handed it to Manny to put it in the sonic bath (which I was to pay $35 for when I picked it up). He puts the whole thing in, grips and all (rubber Hogue's). I go back a day or two later to shoot some more again and pick up the Kimber - Manny remembers putting it in the bath, but can't seem to find it. 20 minutes spent checking everywhere. Finally goes downstairs and comes back up after a few minutes with the gun (the bath is downstairs). The gun, which sat in water for a day or two, looks like hell. Rust on the barrel, rust on the slide, rust on the hammer, the aluminum trigger is oxidized. The aluminum frame is somewhat spared, though I later find some oxidation/rust under the grips. Luckily there was no magazine in the gun. I can tell by the expression when he comes up the stairs and hands me the gun that he knows he royally screwed up. The rust on the frame/slide is clearly superficial, but the barrel is not in good shape, neither is the hammer or trigger. Does he offer to replace said parts? Offer to buff out the rust on the frame/slide? No, he walks over to the register, rings me up, and asks me for $35.
I didn't stop going to Manny after that ironically. Remember this is Jersey and having a full-out shop and range less than a mile from my house for some reason seemed more important to me than my dignity (remember too, I was young and naive).
There are other stories about that place but don't really have the awe-inspiring impact of those above. I spent a few hundred a week in this place. One day I'm at the range by myself and a flyer hits my metal target carrier and shrapnel from it hits a $2 light in the ceiling, shattering it. There's no range-master on duty and no one else using the range. I walk back out front, ask Manny for a broom, and proceed to go clean up the mess I made. I bring the broom back, ask Manny where he keeps the spare bulbs, and I go replace it. I finish my range session, and as I'm paying my typical $80 for range time and ammo (I never shot less than 4 boxes, usually 6, and always bought from Manny since I didn't reload and he didn't allow bringing ammo bought elsewhere) ... I remind him that I broke a light, and politely ask how much I owe him for it. Maybe I was expecting too much, but when he tacked $2 onto my bill I was floored.
I had Manny order up and install Mepro's onto my Glock 23. When I get them, the rear sight is obviously not centered in the slide and as expected, she shoots to the right. I bring it back to the front to be adjusted ... but Manny's on the phone. One of his workers (in Manny's defense, this guy was a complete idiot, I mean a top-shelf moron - Turbo and I could go on all day about this guy) says "I'll take care of it". Takes my pristine G23 and 10-minute old $105 Mepro's back to the range where he grabs a target carrier - lays my G23 on its side, and smashes, with full force, the carrier into the side of my new sight. If he didn't have my gun at the time, I would have shot him. Did I mention he did this on a loaded pistol?
Jersey is about as un-gun-friendly as they get. And if you're lucky enough to have a range nearby ... use it. But if you can avoid the Bullet Hole - do so.
The only good things I have to say are:
1) I heard somewhere Manny knows his way around hunting rifles - big bore stuff (he goes on African safari every year or two, or at least he did IIRC). I would never give him a handgun though.
2) This was years ago when all my crap happened. I moved to NYC shortly after 9/11 to live with my now-wife and haven't been back to the Hole since. So it's been about 7 years and for all I know, he's revamped his shop, his skills, and his attitude towards loyal customers. Who knows.
Retired in 2001
Many thanks for all of the re ponces,Dropped off my beloved Model 19 since I could not get a center pin on my own.Also two other members from the S&W forum sent me there center pin to try to help me out.My gunsmith used to work out of Harrys sporting goods on Rt 130. His name is John Trout and his phone number is 609-894-2727 and he works out his house.Hopefully I will get to the range soon.Again many thanks for all yous guys help and Happy New Year
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