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Lamar Gunsmith Excels at Old World Hobby - KOAM TV 7

Lamar Gunsmith Excels at Old World Hobby

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LAMAR, MISSOURI -

Lee shaver isn't your average shot

“An example of just how far we shoot. A thousand yards is approximately where that house and barn is over there. The target is not much bigger than the door on the house,” says Shaver.

He builds and shoots long range muzzle loader guns competitively all over the world.

“I don't like to brag about myself or my shooting. I let my medals do that. I don't know...eight or nine national records, a world record or two, and have placed high in the last several world championships."

If just passing through town, you wouldn't even know this business is in Lamar. There's no sign on the outside of the building, that's because shaver says there's no need to. Customers from across the fifty states and in 17 foreign countries find him by word of mouth."

“The ones I work on personally and build from scratch are long range muzzle loaders from the 1860s-1880 era. They were made to shoot thousand yard competitions that were popular in this country during the middle and later 1870s,” says Shaver.

And it's a family business.

“It's a passion, it's a hobby, it's a business. He's done it for thirty years or more,” says his wife Andrea.

His wife Andrea doesn't shoot guns but says she likes working on them.

“It's amazing. Being able to put a piece of blank steel to one of the machines be it the mill machine or the blade and come up with a screw or a base, or just a gun part that we need."

She's making the screws that attach the specialty sight pieces to shaver's guns that make up most of the business.

Lee fishes out the finished metal sight pieces from the oven and says just like any sport it's all about concentration.

“It's not hocus pocus. It's just do the mechanics right and they shoot well. And that's what I enjoy, making one shoot well. And doing things with it that nobody's ever done before."

Shaver compares his shooting to golf. It takes three seconds for the bullet to reach the target, but he says just one mile per hour of wind will move the bullet a foot from the target.

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