Bozeman Trail Arms, Mfg.
'Duke' Venturino and myself having our picture taken by his wife Yvonne while doing a photo shoot for one of his first books.
A little history on how I accomplished these things....After graduating from Lane Technical High School (trained in Drafting and Machine Shop) in Chicago, IL., I got a job as a design/detail draftsman. Those were the pre-CAD/CAM days. I then worked my way up to a "JR" Mechanical Engineer specializing in Automated Machinery Design. All my life my Father was a Tool & Die maker and we had two lathes in our basement and all the lathes and mills at his job I occasionally played with. I own a lathe and a milling machine now and can cut chips with the best of 'em! I have to thank him for all that he taught me including my love of guns and love of country. He served on the BB62, USS New Jersey Battleship during WW II. He was a good Father, a member of the greatest generation in my opinion. He had me shooting 22's at age 6 or 7 (a Colt Challenger and a Marlin Mdl. 81) and I've done the same with my son and daughter. My Grandfather fought in Europe during WW I. I personally just missed the 'conflict' in the 'Nam and never joined. Anyway, with this exposure and training as a kid and my love for guns it was only natural to take every gun I owned apart and fix them myself, whether they needed it or not! My very first gun was an Armi San Marco Colt Navy clone from good ol' EMF in California and it needed it! I have traveled many routes through the gunsmithing experience. My personal firearms collection starts in the Revolutionary War period and finishes up in modern times. I've shot BPCR and reloaded and cast my own match ammunition for many years. I've built many FN-FAL's, AR-15/M-4's, and AK47/74's. I got into hot bluing, rust bluing, browning, paint refinishing, parkerizing and case coloring for a while but never had the time to properly devote to the refinishing aspect (especially case coloring). It has always come back to working on the Colt SAA, etc.. So now, long story short, after doing hundreds and hundreds of barrel turnings, action jobs, action repairs, and grips, etc., I'm a Colt SAA man! It's that simple really. Not to sound arrogant, I know what I do, I'm good at what I do, and I do what I do right. Your guns are safe in the hands of Bozeman Trail Arms! And that my friends is quite simply what Bozeman Trail Arms is all about.
The kind of guns that got me started on this adventure!
So to where and to whom are you thinking of sending your prized firearm(s)?
My name is Tom Sargis Jr. I run a one man shop here in rural Livingston, MT., about 60 miles north of Yellowstone National Park, 20 miles east of Bozeman and 11 miles west of "downtown" Livingston. I live on the Bozeman Pass, elevation 5350 ft. above sea level right on the old "Bozeman Trail" (which is now I-90). I have a little over 10 acres with my 15 yd. pistol range and some steel plate targets set up out to 100 yds. Plenty of space for testing, adjusting sights and point of impact, just blasting away, etc. I live here with my wife, son and daughter.
If the need should ever arise I can pop over to Mike Venturino's place and shoot out to 300 yards from his fancy new shooting shed. Speaking of Mike (or Duke as many know him), he's the real reason I do this for a living now. I met Duke back in 1993 (he, Steve Garbe and myself shot BPCR as a "team" for a few years together) and he once asked me to try and fix a Colt Lightning D.A. he couldn't get done by anyone, and I did it. He was amazed (I just thought I was lucky). He proceeded to funnel me more things and I did them well. He had around 30+ Colts back then. He let me disassemble a couple of Colts that Eddie Janis had done actions on and one done by Bob Munden and completely examine them. He was very happy with what I was doing and that isn't easy to make happen! He started to write about me in some articles. The rest as they say, is history. People started contacting me, I started getting work and getting paid for it (as compared to doing it for free for Duke) and ended up being able to actually pay my bills, so I started up full time (and started charging Duke too!).