Armament fitters are responsible for inspecting, servicing and repairing firearms, artillery weaponry, and weaponry equipment. They also have knowledge in the use of ammunition and explosives.
Their tasks are as varied as the diversity of weapons used in modern warfare. The modern defence force consists of various divisions, each with its own special types of weapons, and so the nature of the work will depend on the division in which they are employed. Learner armament fitters are trained in the basic principles of fitting, including filing, sawing, chiselling, screw-and-nut threading, drilling and turning. Knowledge of metals is required for work with iron, steel, carbon steel, aluminium, alloy steel, copper and its alloys and magnesium and its alloys.
Armament fitters are expected to have a thorough knowledge of a wide range of arms, ammunition and explosives, warheads and specialised weaponry such as hydraulic and pneumatic weaponry systems.
Although most weapons are based on the same principles, learner armament fitters are expected to dismantle and reassemble a wide variety of guns and pistols until they know the general description, names of parts and the loading, unloading and cleaning process of almost every conceivable weapon.
The main task of armament fitters is the servicing and repairing of firearms in order to keep them in sound working condition. They are sometimes expected to manufacture small parts, but an armourer usually does this.
As firearms cannot function without ammunition, and bombs and mortars are useless without warheads, it is essential that armament fitters have a sound knowledge of the chemistry of explosives as well. They need to be familiar with different types of explosives, as well as their properties and uses.
Armament fitters specialise according to their working environments:
Coastal KZN TVET College, College of Cape Town , Eastcape Midlands TVET College, Ekurhuleni West TVET College, Lovedale Public TVET College, Motheo TVET College, Tshwane North TVET College, Vuselela TVET College, Windhoek Vocational Training Centre