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News Brief

Discovery Debuts New Show: “American Guns”

by Guns & Ammo News   |  October 5th, 2011 49

Discovery’s back with an all-new effort to let their audience in on what we already know: Guns are more than a hobby, they’re a lifestyle. Earlier this year, Discovery rolled out “Sons of Guns” to some pretty hefty fanfare, and the show has taken off ever since. Now, we get “American Guns,” a show that touts the all-American Wyatt clan as the crew responsible for a pretty unique gun shop in Colorado.

For 18 years the Wyatts have owned Gunsmoke, turning the small business into a firearms enterprise. Rich Wyatt is a master firearms trainer and former police officer with more than 22 years experience in law enforcement. He is one of only six people in the world certified by Colonel Jeff Cooper, a master firearms instructor and one of the 20th century’s foremost experts on the use and history of small arms. They say you can give Rich a block of steel and he’ll create art.

While this new show has a different feel, “American Guns” and “Sons of Guns” are definitely television cousins that should pull in most of the same viewers. Check it out:

We caught with Gunsmoke’s owner and the father of this shooting family to find out what he’s all about, and what shooters can expect from Discovery’s new gun-driven show.


G&A: How did this show “American Guns” come to be?

Rich Wyatt: It’s a funny thing. I had the idea for this show for a long time.  And then I got a call from a production company called Gurney Productions.  They came, filmed us and loved us.  Next thing we knew, we were shooting a show for Discovery Channel.

G&A: What can the serious shooter and/or gun guy expect to see on the show?

RW: We are serious shooters so I think people will appreciate that.  I taught with Col. Jeff Cooper for a long time.  People can expect to see things they’ve never seen before.  For someone who has been in the gun industry for over 30 years, I’m even surprised at some of the guns we’re able to build and in the time frame we need to build them.  And if I’m excited, I know people watching the show will be excited too.

G&A: When did you start shooting? How did your love of firearms come to be?

RW: I loved guns before I ever had one.  I watched cowboy and police shows on TV.  I lived in Connecticut growing up and my family wasn’t really into guns.  So I didn’t get one until I was 12 or 13.  I was given a winchester model 6922 rifle.  And I still have that gun to this day.

G&A: Talk about your shop and what has made it successful.

RW: You know, our shop is like a museum.  People come in every day and look around.  And everything is for sale.  We love that people are excited to see what we have at Gunsmoke.  What made our business successful is nothing less than pure American hard work and sweat.  We put the same hard work in every day and will continue to keep it up.

G&A: Our guys will be very interested in how you take a block of steel and turn it into a working firearm. Talk a little bit about that and how you learned the gunsmithing trade.

RW: I learned the trade by going to gunsmithing school and working for several different manufacturers.  Learning to cut a gun from a block of steel took a lot of experience.  Some of it is trial and error.  We do it and try it and fail.  And then we do again and again until we get it right.  Everyone in the shop has their niches they they are best at what they do so together, we work as a team and get it done.

G&A: Now, let’s go through some quick hitters:

G&A: Favorite Handgun?
RW: 1911 Colt .45

G&A: Favorite Rifle?
RW: Jeff Cooper Scout Rifle

G&A: First Firearm you purchased?
RW: Winchester 94 .30-.30

G&A: Firearm Mentor?
RW: Col. Jeff cooper

G&A: .270 or .30-06?
RW: .30-06

G&A: 1911 or Glock?
RW: Given the name of the show, if you don’t know the answer to this question you got problems.


Now, after finding out about Rich Wyatt and his crew at Gunsmoke, our only questions is….are you going to watch?

  • Bruno

    It's about time someone started putting programs on TV real men want to watch.

  • Tony Calabrese

    I have bought many winchesters at GunSmoke and have to say Rich and the boys have always treated me good. Thanks GunSmoke!!!! Good luck with the show!

  • Ray Sayre

    I love "Sons of Giuns" and this looks like another real winner of a show..We need to show people that guns are fun,as long as you know what you're doing. And that there are alot more good people with guns, then bad people

  • tina

    no way I'll miss it – already taped ahead!

    Proud Sis!

  • Jermanator

    I see that he likes the 30/06 over the .270– Good man! I don't normally watch television, but might make an exception to check this out. Good luck with the show.

  • Bud Rowland

    Bring it on , hell yes

  • Colorado

    I've was inside Gunsmoke about two years ago. When I saw how rude Rick was, to myself and the other customers, I swore never to set foot inside his store again. I will not watch the show, but do hope that this production company brings along a group of people who can show this man manners.

  • AndrewK714

    I watched the first episode and I will not be watching the rest of the season. The family seemed to be very rude to their costumers and to each other.

  • tom

    Well, there is always that 10%.

  • Mike

    Caught the show last night by accident as I didn't know about it until I was flipping through channels. Until I read this article I thought this show ripped off Sons of Guns as I thought SoG was on History for some reason.

    Why do we need explosions every time someone shoots something? It makes a little more sense with Sons of Guns but not with this show, at least based off of the 1st episode.

    Keep the gun shows coming but lets keep the goofiness down. I;d rather see more people shooting, more info about the guns, or more of the gunsmithing than watching a motorcycle blow up or watching grown men argue (Top Shot).

  • Untacticool

    This is "real man" television? Another shoot-em-up show with T&A and things exploding? Does show gun owners as responsible adults or overgrown, testosterone-soaked semiliterate little boys?? At the range I frequent, most of the shooters' adjectival vocabulary contains only profanity.

    It's not surprising that the image promulgated by most gun aficionados scares non-owners into becoming rabid antis.

    Grow up and realize you're your own worst enemies for anti-gun legislation.

  • ET

    Once again another lame reality show that makes most gun owners & manufacturers look like simple minded fools. Discovery needs to find someone with brains who can produce something positive about the industry and those of us appreciative of the second amendment.

    • Gary R. Martin

      Totally agree…I watched the show last night with some apprehension based on the "trailer" they have been showing. "Don't touch my gun… Don't touch my dog" That is enough for me…can't stand such drama queens. Whole family of them. Another soap opera with guns. Like two postings above, i am not into such crap. Love to see some professionalism, whole less white trash with firearms, blasting and littering the countryside. It is enough to turn my stomach and certainly does not do our industry and sport any favors. Oh, the kids and rednecks will love it, and same goes for all the T&A also, or vast sums of money, or flying out in Bell Jet Ranger to impress a seller, and then act like a blowhard. I doubt I will be watching much of this show, if it continues to turn me off. I do enjoy Top Shot, at least they are pitting skills and luck against each other, but this season it maybe a little over the top also. They are all just expensive soap operas with firearms…Wyatt hires gunsmiths that can't even run his machine equipment, and he screams and threaten his employees…something weird going down there. The show won't last long, I give it one season..

  • Gunner777

    Get the daughter some more clothing appropriate to a gunshop not a bar. That detracts from the show which is about GUNS not anatomy.

    The show had it's good points with the Winchester segment and building the small revolver.

    • Gun Store Guy

      Is it just me, or is our society sinking so low that we have to display 14 yrs. old girls like hookers, to get ratings. These reality GUN SHOWS should be promoting our sport in a positive light!!! ???????? Gunner , I couldn't agree with you more! This makes our sport look childish and irresponsible.It apprears to me the producers of these so called reality shows, have chosen the worst type of people, to represent the shooting Industry.If one was to look in the background of the producer of this show, you'll probably find the Liberal Left in charge…………Like most of Hollywood………..

      • wideglide

        You're both GAY!!!

  • Mark, PR

    Hey, hey, hey… Give the show time to grow. Let’s help the ratings. If not; we’ll get sissy programs. Don’t forget, “at the beginning everything was dark and then the light appeared.”

  • Pete Sheerin

    The first two seasons of Top Shot were very good, but this season was way to much drama. Sons of Guns has been pretty good, but they started with the drama when one employee wanted to date the daughter. Now we have this show where the drama is going to take center stage, instead of the firearms. ENOUGH! I'd love to see a responsible, professional program with mature people discussing and using firearms in the many different areas (hunting, target shooting, military, ect) they are used in. Humor and fun (keeping it safe) is a plus. Most of us have a great time (fun) shooting, especially with others. Humor of course adds to the enjoyment. Lets get REAL and show people (especially those who are not shooters) that we are people they can feel comfortable being around. As mature, responsible people who love and enjoy our chosen sports involving the use of Firearms. Retired US Air Force "AMMO" NCO.

  • Mike

    I sure hope the folks without unlimited funds are included in your program.

    Most folks can't afford or justify spending several thousand on a gun.

    You could include what each project would cost the average American!

    Remember the reality factor…most folks only have average incomes.

    Happy trails

  • Mike

    Second thought, as Pete mentioned lots of folks don't like Guns in general

    because they don't understand them or the fun you can get just shooting a

    little .22. Do more to attract "NEW SHOOTERS" than scaring them away!

    The concept that we all drive a 4X4 with twin 50 cal. machine guns mounted on the roof has to be dispelled or your just helping the Government

    to seal our coffins….

  • Shawn O'Loughli

    Unfortunately, while the above posters have valid points, they are forgetting the fact that this show is made by Hollywierd. Those Hollywierd producers don't care about the image of shooters or the 2A, only about riding the ratings while they last. Always bigger and more dramatic with every episode. I can deal with T&A :) but can't deal with watching people on TV that I couldn't stand to be around. More guns, less "TV Personality". Put the Reality back into reality TV.

    • Untacticool

      What is really forgotten is that if you find shows like this insulting rather than entertaining and don't care to watch "grown" people behave like bald orangutans, the intellectually challenged producers of this kind of claptrap will eventually stop airing them. They continue because while some will condemn this programming in print, they'll also keep tuning in. Programming like this is geared to the lowest common denominator and helps the "dumbing down of America" that's only too evident every day.

  • Semperflyboy

    Sons of Guns meet the Dukes of Hazard? As much as I love gun shows, I don't think this one has legs, at least of the kind that will keep the show on the air. Getting giddy over "blowin' stuff up" and reveling in rudeness is not entertaining.

  • http://windstream Dan

    Is this show an updated version of the three stooges? Why not call it "Wacos with Weapons"

  • LoneOak

    Paige has some nice T's but could stand to put a little more meat on her A!

  • robert38-55

    This is the first I have heard of the new show American Guns.I am going to try to watch this show. I moved to Co. in 1987 out of NC. I bought my first gun in Co. from Gunsmoke gun shop and bought guns there up until 2010 when I relocated to NM. Rich Wyatt and his team have always treated me good and all the others to whom I have recomended his gunshop too also… These guys are great!!!!!!!!! I have know Rich a long time, and I know he is on the level…I can't wait to watch an episode on the Discovery channel. The only question I have is for my buddy Rich Wyatt is: Why did ya wait so long to do the show? hahahahh Nice going Rich & team!!!!!!!!! Make it successful and remember: "Fear not failure Fear only Regret."

    • robert38-55

      OH!!! I almost forgot Rich, Man you look as young now as you did back in 1987, when we first met!!!!! Don't ya ever age?!!!!!!!!!!! hahhahahhahah Whats your secert? Robert.

  • Tom

    I watched the first episode last evening and I must agree with some of the other comments…too much drama. My friend Bob is a tool and die maker with 35 years experience and does a lot of work on a CNC. He watched the episode and couldn't understand how some "bozo" couldn't get it right without a verbal lashing. It is totally bogus.

    I'm sure the family are nice folks but I would prefer to see a serious show that imparts so degree of knowledge to its audience. The mom and daughter although very nice looking should stay in the backroom.

  • Tom

    I watched the first episode last evening and I must agree with some of the other comments…too much drama. My friend Bob is a tool and die maker with 35 years experience and does a lot of work on a CNC. He watched the episode and couldn't understand how some "bozo" couldn't get it right without a verbal lashing. It is totally bogus.

    I'm sure the family are nice folks but I would prefer to see a serious show that imparts some degree of knowledge to its audience. The mom and daughter although very nice looking should stay in the backroom.

  • Suzanne

    oh good god. no.

  • Terry

    I loved the 'old-stuff'…I'd be very surprised if 'Bob' (the historian) did not refer the 'Sheriff's SAA' to 'Colt' for a 'factory -letter'…I'm looking forward to the following episodes………"aim small – miss small"

  • Southern Okie

    Common sense comment: When the owner prepared for the gun auction in Texas, the camera showed him loading up a sports bag with stacks and stacks of $100 bills!!!!! I said to myself he must have been a machine shop owner earlier in his life, sure enough he's got two CNC machines. Few people realize machine companies make this kind of money. Being so open about his monetary habits invites diaster from people who have nothing to lose or are feeling very greedy. Not too smart!!!!!!

  • Jay Kelley

    Agree with everything he said in the Q&A except the Glock question (have a 1911 and a Glock – prefer the Glock to shoot, the 1911 to look at) Am also seriously planning an African dangerous game hunt in the near future.

    Still, I won't watch the show. Don't have to be a sexist idiot with a fetish for blowing things up to be a gun nut or like adrenaline.

  • Tom

    I watched the first show; will keep watching. Litenup people; the producers throw in some 'drama' stuff to attract people. The father, Rich, has a sucessful business, so give him due credit. It is a family; the brother and sister act like 'brother and sister'.

  • MAS4956

    Another idiotic show like SOG's, "

    "hey man, let's build a supergun with an AR, an AK, an M1, a 12guage and a 1911 barrel all together along with a holder for your beer can on it too"

    I'll stick with Larry Vicker's TacTv , Gun's n' Ammo, American Rifleman etc. thank you very much!

  • Colorado

    Although I promised myself not to watch it, I later felt that I must in order to fairly evaluate it. As an fellow shooter and collector, I agree with what another poster how this will serve the anti gun movement to she that we gun supporters are a bunch of ignorant, backwoods hicks. I watched the show with this expectations, but praying for something better to represent us. I guess I was right. Who else but a Hick has to show the money going into the bag as to show off that he has a few dollars. Wo else but a Hick would dress the Wife and the Daughter like street hookers to gain the ratings. Who else but a Hick would place the Duaghter dressed like that in front of a bunch of Bikers kust to make a few sales. And then that are surprised that the Daughter outsold the Son. I wonder what special favors they asked the Son to offer the Bikers for their cash

  • Sniper 991

    Watched the show and like a lot of other posters I felt that Hollywood played it's "ratings ride" again and made everyone fit the mold that they think will sell products during the commercials. If the business is truly run as portrayed, with multi dollars going into a gunny sack and then flying off in a helicopter all the while the money control person protesting I don’t see how it could have survived for 18 years. A father that would allow his daughter to dress as she does in public really shows a lack of control in the family in my opinion, and it’s just that an opinion. I would like to think that the producers have a lot to do with that but we will never know. If Gunsmoke is really that successful they must be doing something right along the way and for that more power to them but let’s get back to basics. Don’t let Hollywood portray responsible FFL holders and their employees as idiots or people that do not respect themselves enough to dress, talk and work as professionals. We don’t need a show that makes it all look like a big joke, we need one that shows real insight into what it takes to make, market and distribute good quality firearms and accessory's in today’s market place. And then of course there is always the one sure way to take it with a smile and that’s to push the off button on the TV controller which is what I will continue to do. Just my two cents.

  • Robert38-55

    I got a chance to view the show this week Discovery channel had it own Tues @10:00pm or so. Anyway nice going on the show Rich, and nice going to all of your family… I thought the show was pretty good…..

  • Somethingsburnin

    I think the dad is way to rude he wants to be a little like will and slot like Paul Sr. Won't watch it again.

    • bruce

      Ur right this guy is arrogent and act like he is the only one that can build a gun from a block of steel. Hello how to gun manufactures make them………………………. this show needs to go. Bring back Sons of Guns

  • 1stmar

    I can't believe the prices he is charging for what seems like incompetent gunsmiths. These guys struggled to put a picatinny rail on a rifle. 10k for a SAA? 10k for a couple ppks? How come everything is 10k? Everytime they build something they need Rich to solve some issue for them. They did a trigger job on a rifle and didnt chech the safety? I have several custom hand built guns and wouldn't let these guys blue a gun.

  • bruce

    Yep….this zombie thing is realy a bit much. Lack of trust in the goverment and the economy rising we need to get off the zombie crap & worry about our zombies in congress….RIGHT

  • Mac Taylor

    The last show they did on the diamond encrusted 1911 made me sick. To take an iconic firearm and turn it into some kind of ghetto bling is the worst. I'll wager that if John Browning saw this piece of crap he would probably shoot them with it and then throw it in the nearest sewer.



  • Jimbo

    When I heard some of the prices he quotes for simple work I just about fell off my chair. Watching his so called gunsmith try to chamber a barrel made me cringe. I have chambered thousands of barrels and know ahead of time how deep to go. It is not a guessing game when it comes to proper head spacing. Charging a customer $3500 to convert a 7 mag to a 455 Lott was insane. The shop I work at would have done it for less than a grand.

  • chip morgan

    Love the show, I haven't seen any new shows in awhile….I hope it's still in production! It would be a shame if it went off the air…keep up the good work guys!

  • Chris

    Stupid for a lot of reasons, but fun to watch.

  • Ron J.

    I have been a gun owner for over 70 years ,and have been a hand loader for over 40 years,loading for 40 different cartridges,for guns that i own and i saw things on american guns that are not possible. like one of the gunsmiths test firing a barreled action in 458 winchester magnum by holding onto the barrel with one hand. not possible with full power loads. there were other inaccuracies depicted in the shows. saw enough B.S.

  • Pete Williams

    Geezus….. If you don't like it don't watch… You must all be geriatric or a little on the challenged side of things. I have been into guns and hunting and trapping since I was 13. Thanks to this show I got my wife and kids shooting and into guns!!!! They are advocates now for gun safety want to take hunter safety courses and are looking for knowledge wherever they can. It is just a show guys holy hell lighten up and realize not everyone is gonna think like you do. That is what makes America. We are all different but you don't have to bash them. Dang..

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