Precision Matters, LLC is Carlton and Julie Chapman of Hamilton, Texas. Carlton does the gunsmithing, manufacturing and refinishing and Julie (aka “Pants”) handles the hard work – administration, bookkeeping, accounting, etc.
First and foremost, we are Christians who believe that our most important function is to further the Kingdom of God to the glory of Jesus Christ. While it’s not popular in today’s culture to proclaim one’s religious views, we do so boldly without regard for the consequences. Our view is very simple: If you can’t take a stand for Jesus Christ, what do you take a stand for? In line with these beliefs, we will never shy away from talking to anyone about Christianity. Occasionally I will see someone who knew me before I became a devout Christian, and they will seem a bit shocked. I like to point out and remind them, “Well, Jesus didn’t come here to save the pious and the “found”…He came here for the lost and the sinners like me!”
In 1995, I began an apprenticeship with Action Sports of Texas under Bob “Tootie” Miller, which ended with a move to the D/FW area approximately eight years later. Tootie was formally trained in gunsmithing and was the Midland Police/SWAT armorer for 26 years. While primarily focused on competition firearms, I gained a great deal of general gunsmithing knowledge during my time with Tootie. One thing, though – he did have a habit of handing me a box of tools (that I didn’t know how to use) and parts (that I had never seen) and getting me to ‘figure it out’ as I went1. Around 1998, I got my own lathe and mill and was certainly able to ‘figure out’ more and more of what I was being taught. Perhaps not as glamorous as sophisticated classes, but my apprenticeship taught me how to think for myself with no constraints. I maintained a small shop of my own during this time, and developed several new procedures for 1911 ‘smithing that I still use to this day. Although I did gunsmith on a smaller scale after my move to D/FW, it wasn’t until 2008 that I started a full shop in Plano, TX…and Precision Matters was born. My primary interest at that time was long range gas guns and 1911 raceguns. I decided to see how far I could push a large frame AR and developed a design using an extra-long gas tube and 28” barrels. As a practical matter, however, I had more demand for long range bolt rifles for both competition and hunting. So ultimately, the bolt gun became my de facto specialty…and I eventually switched to a bolt gun because it’s easier to make velocity with less barrel.
Precision. The company name says it all, and your gunsmith is all but obsessed with it. Accuracy means being able to hit one’s target; and precision simply means that one’s firearm repeats the bullets’ paths consistently. The sole goal is to put some combination of powder, bullet, case & primer into the chamber such that it sends some bullet (usually chosen before the build) downrange, at least to its transonic limit, on the same flight path over and over and over, ad nauseum… Think of your barrel like a tuning fork. If you change its mass, length, contour or what it attaches to – it will oscillate in a different manner than before. Most competitors will experiment with different gear and components during a barrel’s lifetime, and we recognize that. This is why it is so critically important that we maintain the tolerances we do. We must eliminate as many variables as we can for the competitor/shooter. We are also avid shooters who have been known to change bullets, scopes, mounts and chassis in the middle of a season and all at once! When the rifle is built correctly, performance changes due to a change of gear are non-existent, or at least minimized. As an example, a point of impact change may occur due to a different chassis’ bedding area, but precision is still maintained.
Most important to us is being able to help our customers with comprehensive advice and real-world, empirical solutions to a customer’s build requirements. If you can dream it up, chances are that we’ve tried it ourselves. If you’re wanting to figure out a budget for a future project, that’s fine too. I’ve talked to innumerable customers who are curious about what it takes financially to get started in long range shooting. I don’t mind at all. Please also see our FAQ page for some more in-depth detail on gear and build questions that will also help guide you to your goal. At the very least, I’m willing to talk to you about long range shooting, gear and gunsmithing whenever you need me. It wasn’t until years later that I fully appreciated the way I was taught. I wouldn’t change a thing.