Legality of a .410 pistol


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PAC 762
December 9, 2005, 09:01 PM
I'm building a single shot pistol and am thinking of chambering it for .410 shotgun shells. My understanding is, is that it needs to be rifled, but straight rifling is OK. Am I correct? How much attention needs to go into the "rifling"? Can I just machine two shallow grooves in the bore and call it rifling? I was thinking of a 4" barrel, so only the last inch would be rifled. Is this a concern only having the last inch rifled? I only plan on using it for informal plinking, so performance is not really a concern.

Thanks,
PAC

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Hkmp5sd
December 9, 2005, 09:14 PM
Not really sure about the technicalities regarding the rifling, but you can always make it for in .45LC, which just happens to accept a .410 shell.

I have this animal chambered for the .410/.45LC. It has about 1" or so of rifling right at the end of the barrel.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v495/Hkmp5sd/410a.jpg

Third_Rail
December 9, 2005, 09:41 PM
Is that one of those put it together yourself kits? Where'd you get it?

Kurush
December 9, 2005, 09:50 PM
I have heard this theory before, and while it seems logical the ATF doesn't obey logic, it obeys the US Code. If I were you I would write up a design and submit it to the ATF firearms technology branch. If they say it's an AOW, you have the option of paying the AOW tax and suing for a tax refund, which will get a court to rule on whether it's an AOW or not. Going ahead with it based on an unproven loophole would be ill advised.

Azrael256
December 10, 2005, 02:28 AM
but you can always make it for in .45LC, which just happens to accept a .410 shell. Er, no. A .45LC chamber will definitely not accept a .410 shell. This is why it's a gray area: A .410 chamber will, however, accept a .45LC, and with a little rifling you have a pistol. Sort of. I'd submit the design to avoid any potential hassles.

steveno
December 10, 2005, 04:33 AM
buy a TC Contender and be done with

Hkmp5sd
December 10, 2005, 10:49 AM
Is that one of those put it together yourself kits? Where'd you get it?


No, it's one of the derringers made by Cobray. They make a dozen or so designs in .410/45LC. Due to the rifling, they are all non-NFA items.

A .45LC chamber will definitely not accept a .410 shell.

Ok...a .45reallyLong&sloppyColt chamber.

boofus
December 10, 2005, 12:17 PM
http://www.thunder5.com/docs1.html

Those Thunder Five revolvers will take .410 and .45LC

X Who
December 10, 2005, 12:49 PM
How would polygonal rifling perform in a .410 pistol? Maybe with a slow rate of twist?

PAC 762
December 10, 2005, 02:17 PM
HK- Is your derringer rifled straight, or with a twist?

Does anyone else have a .410 pistol barrel that they can check the rifling for me?

Steveno- A T/C is big, heavy, expensive, and requires no skill or imagination to acquire. My homemade pistol will be small, light, cheap, fun to build, and lacking any silly serial numbers or other garbage .gov mandates from licensed manufacturers..... I just want to make sure I'm following the law prior to going forward.

I think I'll write the ATF with a description of my project and get an opinion, but I'd still like to know if other manufacturers are using straight or twist (or other) rifling.

k_dawg
December 10, 2005, 03:33 PM
Bond Arms sells deringers with the .410/.45LC.

The version I have seen, has only two very fine, almost straight ( but not quite ) grove on the last 1" of the barrel.

And that's legal for sale [ at least in Florida ] with no NFA.

I believe they do sell one, only for the .45LC, which has standard polygon rifling.

Hkmp5sd
December 10, 2005, 04:13 PM
HK- Is your derringer rifled straight, or with a twist?

Very slight RH Twist

GEM
December 10, 2005, 04:49 PM
I think that some states have laws that mandate a 410 pistol has to be rifled but some don't. CA maybe one - this is is all a vague memory and should be checked out.

Kurush
December 10, 2005, 05:32 PM
I think that some states have laws that mandate a 410 pistol has to be rifled but some don't. CA maybe one - this is is all a vague memory and should be checked out.
No. Under federal law, a gun without a stock and with an unrifled barrel under 18" is an AOW ("any other weapon") and is papered just like a machine gun. There may be additional restrictions under state law but the NFA applies to the whole US.

newfalguy101
December 10, 2005, 05:49 PM
A barrel that short will only have about half a twist or so anyways, so the sraight rifling "should" work, I would most certianly contact ATF to be safe though.

PAC 762
December 10, 2005, 06:29 PM
Thanks everyone. I already drafted a letter inquiring about the rifling requirements. I think I will use 2 very thin and very shallow grooves that have a noticable twist, so I will be on the safe side, but they will not affect patterning much.

lbmii
December 11, 2005, 04:25 PM
Hey Hkmp5sd please tell us how that thing shoots.

I wonder what the velocity of the 410 rounds are out of that thing.

bubbygator
December 11, 2005, 07:40 PM
Try this one.

http://www.taurususa.com/products/product-details.cfm?model=4410TrackerSS&category=Revolver

Sheldon J
December 11, 2005, 08:12 PM
Bersa thunder, 6 shot .410 3" chamber, TC in .410, American arm's derringer in .410 there are a lot of pistols out there in .410 they just have to be made and certified that way.:cool:

PAC 762
December 11, 2005, 10:54 PM
I wrote a letter to the BATFE and will mail it tomorrow. I will post the response when it comes. I'm fairly confident this is a doable project given the multiple examples in production. I'm going to start my build, but wait for formal opinion before making the barrel.

Hkmp5sd
December 12, 2005, 06:44 AM
Hey Hkmp5sd please tell us how that thing shoots.


It isn't real pleasant to shoot. The grip is too small and rounded, making it hard to hang onto.

armoredman
December 12, 2005, 10:42 AM
I like that Taurus! Nifty!

Camp David
December 12, 2005, 10:52 AM
I'm building a single shot pistol and am thinking of chambering it for .410 shotgun shells. My understanding is, is that it needs to be rifled, but straight rifling is OK. Am I correct? How much attention needs to go into the "rifling"? Can I just machine two shallow grooves in the bore and call it rifling? I was thinking of a 4" barrel, so only the last inch would be rifled. Is this a concern only having the last inch rifled? I only plan on using it for informal plinking, so performance is not really a concern.

Thanks,
PAC


Forgive the stupid question but how are you going to go "plinking" with a .410 shot? That's not really your normal "plinking" round!

TC Contenders and numerous derringers are offered in the .45 LC/.410 caliber/gauge. You can also buy shot loads for the .45LC; though not true .410 loads they offer the same charge... The reverse, however, is not recommended; i.e., shooting a .45LC caliber round in a .410 gauge bore shotgun...

...as far as the "legality" of which you spoke, I can't help you... can't see as that would be a major issue....

PAC 762
January 8, 2006, 09:05 PM
I received a 3 page response from the ATF. To sum it up, it requires rifling. There is no standard for length, depth, width, or amount of grooves, but they must impart spin on a projectile. I will be using two grooves, each 1" long, and with a shallow RH twist.

Maybe I'll take up trap shooting when it's done. :)

Suhler
March 7, 2007, 08:41 PM
PAC 762,

Did you go ahead with your pistol project? If so, could you give us an update?

Also, would you consider scanning your BATF letter (with your name and address blocked out, of course), and posting it here? Alternatively, would you consider emailing me a copy?

I'm considering an almost identical project and the above would be very helpful.

Best regards

musher
March 7, 2007, 08:52 PM
Well, there ya go. I'd suggest the Enfield musket rifling twist, an excellent choice for round ball at 1:78. You've got a historical standard AND I'm guessing an inch or two of that wouldn't impart much spread to the pattern.

I'd be interested to hear the results of your experiment when you complete it.

PAC 762
March 7, 2007, 10:52 PM
Suhler- No. I chose to do a 9x19mm rifled (pre-fab barrel), instead. I found someone with a .45/.410 derringer kit and did a partial trade. Still haven't gotten around to building the derringer, but it's factory made and atf approved.

I'm very paranoid about following atf regs as close as possible and became concerned that I did not have objective guidelines as to how much/deep/aggressive the rifling needed to be to "impart a spin" on the projectile. Without starting a flame, let's just say I was concerned about that branch's prior action against people that thought they were obeying the law and ended up dead or in jail. I like building guns, but not enough to risk something that may be deemed questionable by big brother. I'm not trying to scare others away; it's just that I try to err very far on the side of caution.

PM me your email address and I'll try to find the letter, scan it, and send it to you.

LawBot5000
March 7, 2007, 11:23 PM
Er, no. A .45LC chamber will definitely not accept a .410 shell. This is why it's a gray area: A .410 chamber will, however, accept a .45LC, and with a little rifling you have a pistol. Sort of. I'd submit the design to avoid any potential hassles.

Uh, being in a "shotgun caliber" only really matters above 50 caliber. Basically anything that is handheld, short barreled and rifled below 50 caliber is a title 1 handgun, even if that chambering can accept a shotgun shell. There is no legal requirement about the length of 45LC chambers- they can be 4 inches long if you want. If you really wanted to be prissy about it, you could always make a new handgun cartriedge that used 410 sized brass and then you wouldnt be making changes to accomodate the 410 shells.

If you make pistols in the larger shotgun calibers (all of which are over 50 caliber) you get into the tricky problem of them being either:
a) a large bore destructive device, especially if it is rifled and you can't claim it is a sort of shotgun). 200 dollar tax to make
b) a short barrelled shotgun 200 dollar tax to make
c) a smoothbore pistol AOW 200 dollar tax to make, 5 to transfer

410 pistols are below 50 caliber (ergo not a DD), not shotguns per-se (not SBSes) and are not smoothbores (not AOW) so they are not in any of the above NFA categories. They are just 45LC pistols with really long cylinders.

Suhler
March 8, 2007, 10:06 AM
Quote: "410 pistols are below 50 caliber (ergo not a DD), not shotguns per-se (not SBSes) and are not smoothbores (not AOW) so they are not in any of the above NFA categories. They are just 45LC pistols with really long cylinders."


While the above seems to be accepted by the ATF, they also seem to be very concerned about HOW the "410 pistol" was made. If it's a commercially available pistol like the TC Contender, then no problem. If one were to build a copy of the TC Contender "from scratch", then presumably, no problem. BUT, if one were to start with a rifled "long gun" 410 shotgun, shorten the barrel to say 6", and replace the shoulder stock with a pistol grip, then BIG PROBLEM (i.e. a NFA AOW). Even though one ends up with a "410 pistol", the ATF considers it a (rifled) short barrelled shotgun. Same situation if one cuts down a rifle to make a pistol.

Am I understanding the above correctly, if anyone can completely understand all of these regulations??!!

Regards

LAR-15
March 8, 2007, 10:52 AM
There used to be a number of SMOOTHBORE 410 pistols made for hunting before the NFA.

The H&R Handi-Gun was one such model.

Make sure your 410 pistol is rifled and your good to go.

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