Steven Grove, owner of Sigwo Arms, in the showroom of his Commercial Street business with some of the custom guns his company manufactures in Springfield, MO. (Photo by Jym Wilson)

When commuting past the big industrial building on West Commercial Street donned with the name “S-I-G-W-O,” one might catch a glimpse of a bubblegum pink or red-and-white striped AR-15 between the glass block windows.

Commercial Street recently got a new neighbor in Steven Grove, and his three businesses Sigwo Arms, Sigwo Technologies and Sigwo Industries, a firearms manufacturer, a software developer and “all the other things that deal with metal” manufacturer, respectively.

While Sigwo Technologies has been around for several years, the other two businesses just came along in recent months, and Sigwo Arms just rolled out its retail storefront in late February. 

A Springfield M1A repeating sniper rifle is being customized for a local customer with an M81 woodland camo design on a workbench at Sigwo Arms. (Photo by Jym Wilson)

Although narrowly outside the Commercial Street Historic District, Grove purchased the building in November 2022 to house and grow his young businesses, and has since set out on renovating it.

Grove plans on replacing the existing “Sigwo” sign with six-foot tall aluminum lettering with lighting, making Sigwo’s new presence on the street even more noticeable, especially at night.

“It’s going to look really cool,” he said.

Grove said once he saw the building, he knew “this is where I want to do my thing,” and likes to frequent nearby businesses and be a part of the “exciting” growth of Commercial Street. 

In addition to operating his businesses out of the building, some parts of which are still a work in progress, Grove is starting to host meetings and provide spaces for other organizations. On Feb. 22, the U.S. Concealed Carry Association held its first monthly workshop.

Steven Grove, owner of Sigwo Arms, a custom gun manufacturer, in front of his Commercial Street business in Springfield, Mo. (Photo by Jym Wilson)

A long-time member of the National Guard, Grove added firearms and metal manufacturing to the Sigwo brand for his kids

Grove, a Harrisonville native, has been in the military since he was 18, and is closing his 23 total years of service this year in April. He has served in multiple different capacities, including in the Active Guard Reserve, but is retiring as a traditional National Guardsman.

Naturally, in his line of work, Grove has traveled around for much of his career, and first moved to the Springfield area in 2018. 

Much of his work in the military has been in network engineering, where he did “backbone infrastructure” for various units.

“I got my first computer at 12,” Grove said. “I was immediately hooked, I had it broken in two weeks and had it rebuilt in three weeks.”

With the experience and knowledge in computers and software development, Sigwo Technologies, which specializes in blockchain, was an easy choice for his first company. But Grove wants to be able to leave a more diverse portfolio of businesses for his four children.

“I want to build this thing into something larger, mostly for my kids,” he said. “My kids may not like to do software development.”

Kurt Marlette sprays a piece of machinery for a job outsourced to Sigwo Arms. (Photo by Jym Wilson)

New businesses focus on customization, replacement parts

While he initially founded Sigwo Arms in 2022, he only debuted the retail storefront last month, and has since seen a surge in business.

Sigwo Arms offers a variety of products and services, but their customization of firearms is what makes them stand out. Customers can purchase firearms, firearms parts and equipment or have their personal firearms serviced, repaired and customized.

The “Code of the Sith” from the Star Wars series is engraved on the magazine of an employee’s Sigwo Arms AR-15 and displayed in the company’s showroom. (Photo by Jym Wilson)
A .45 ACP “We the People 1911” model handgun made in Turkey by LSF Gunworks and customized with an American flag design and a quote from the Second Amendment by Sigwo Arms in Springfield, Mo. $950, as pictured. (Photo by Jym Wilson)

They primarily use a product called Cerakote, a thin-film, protective ceramic coating. It can be used on everything from firearms to car parts to electronics. Employees that apply the Cerakote had to get applicator certifications in Oregon, where the Cerakote headquarters are based.

In an industrial toolbox, they have a wide array of different colors of Cerakote, which allows them to do numerous color schemes, logos, designs and patterns on firearms.  

“We have 300 different colors we can do,” Grove said while showing off a glistening purple gun and one that had designs resembling a topographic map.

In addition to color schemes, they also have the tools to add etchings into firearms as well.

Since opening, they have fulfilled orders with themes related to the American flag, Star Wars and the Kansas City Chiefs.

Steven Grove, owner of Sigwo Arms, custom gun manufacturer on the shop floor of his Commercial Street business in Springfield, Mo. Sigwo is an acronym for signal warrant officer, Grove’s rank in the Army National Guard. (Photo by Jym Wilson)

With the exception of a few pistols they had on display, Sigwo Arms buys the vast majority of its products in the U.S. and assembles — and customizes — firearms right there in the shop. AR-10s and AR-15s of various designs and color combinations lined the display wall, available for purchase. 

In the workshop, AR-15 lower receivers were sat up against lasers and custom-designed black walnut grips, of the few non-metal items, sat across from the Cerakote toolbox. 

Grove said that while they have seen a small increase of walk-in customers recently, the business relied on individuals seeking custom designs and sales to other retail operations.

Some Cerakote colors can be used to customize guns manufactured at Sigwo Arms. Cerakote is a high-performance material used to color and coat various metal products. (Photo by Jym Wilson)

While color and design have been a focal point of Sigwo Arms, they also produce, along with Sigwo Industries, replacement parts for firearms, cars and other metal projects. 

“We didn’t want to get roped into doing just one thing, because the seasonality of arms manufacturing [is] up and down, up and down,” Grove said. “People need stuff built all the time. Sigwo Industries kind of bloomed from that.”

Grove said they’ve done everything from exhaust headers for a 1965 Cadillac to parts for a BMW motorcycle. Similarly with firearms, they’re able to color and customize some car parts as well. 

Sigwo Arms — and sister companies Sigwo Industries and Sigwo Technologies — is located at 522 W. Commercial St. They are open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. Orders can be placed on or they can be contacted through the website.

Jack McGee

Jack McGee is the government affairs reporter at the Springfield Daily Citizen. He previously covered politics and business for the Daily Citizen. He’s an MSU graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in journalism and a minor political science. Reach him at or (417) 837-3663. More by Jack McGee