Is handloading AP ammunition legal?


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ROBO4642
February 24, 2006, 02:00 AM
There are some Tungsten steel core .30 cal bullets floating around and I would like to purchase and load a few for plinking purposes. I live in VA and Im not sure if it is legal here. Does anyone know?

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ReloaderFred
February 24, 2006, 02:26 AM
I'm not familiar with Virginia statutes, but under the Federal statutes, AP can't be loaded in 7.62x51 (.308), or any handgun round. I've forgotten why 7.62 was included in the ban on handgun armor piercing ammunition when it was passed, but other calibers are ok, if I remember correctly. Someone may be able to quote the law and give you the specifics.

Hope this helps.

Fred

1911user
February 24, 2006, 03:05 AM
I'm not familiar with Virginia statutes, but under the Federal statutes, AP can't be loaded in 7.62x51 (.308), or any handgun round. I've forgotten why 7.62 was included in the ban on handgun armor piercing ammunition when it was passed, but other calibers are ok, if I remember correctly. Someone may be able to quote the law and give you the specifics.

Hope this helps.

Fred
It was a fed ban on AP ammo for pistols and 308 pistols existed at the time.

Fed-wise, I think 30-06 is OK since that's where much of the AP bullets came from.

loadedround
February 24, 2006, 08:45 AM
This could also fall under a "don't ask, don't tell" situation. I have seen both AP and tracer ammo and bullets sold on the internet and they were legal to ship.

ATAShooter
February 24, 2006, 08:47 AM
Owning and posessing the UN-assembled A.P. parts is NOT illegal, when they are assembled then it IS illegal.

748
February 24, 2006, 03:40 PM
I have read on the ATF web site that M2AP (.308'') and SS109 (.224'') bullets are AP. But for some reason there wavered.
Federal law dose not ban them. Loaded or other wise.
So as long as it is Ok to have them in your state then every thing should be good.

trickyasafox
February 24, 2006, 07:00 PM
wait so are steel core bullets considered AP? i almost bought a poop load in 223 cause they are so cheap

Clark
February 24, 2006, 10:27 PM
There were some bullet laws, but not much.
Then the 1994 assault weapons ban was passed that made making the ammo illegal [not handloading it] with the exception of 223 green point and 30-06 black tip. This meant one had to hand load his own .308 black tip, complicated by the ATF ruling that 308 is handgun ammo, even though Olympic Arms destroyed the 308 prototype handgun.

Then the 1994 assault ban sunset kicked in, in 2004

Now that it is legal, no one seems to want it anymore.

lonniemike
February 24, 2006, 11:09 PM
Don't sell AP ammo. Make your own. The Feds are into controlling the manufacture and SALE of AP ammo. And they are into stopping you from possessing pistol AP ammo. Best-o-Luck

Don't Tread On Me
February 25, 2006, 07:24 PM
You cannot own, manufacture, buy, or sell AP ammunition that has been chambered for a pistol.

.308's been made into a pistol.


The reason 7.62x39mm was banned was because Olympic Arms made a 7.62x39mm pistol.


There are a LOT of gray areas though. Virtually everything has been made into some form of "extreme" pistol. I'm sure some nuts have made a .300winmag pistol. But these are often 1 of a kind custom jobs. It really comes down the very confusing and ARBITRARY BATFE interpretations/rulings.

ReloaderFred
February 25, 2006, 09:48 PM
The entire 1994 Assault Weapons Ban didn't sunset. Some of the restrictions are still in place. I suggest reading the law to see what is still on the books, including the restrictions on armor piercing ammunition for pistols and .308. I don't like them, but they are still the law.

Hope this helps.

Fred

MNgoldenbear
February 25, 2006, 10:41 PM
I'm sure some nuts have made a .300winmag pistol. But these are often 1 of a kind custom jobs.
Well, they're not necessarily nuts. Several years ago, I recall a gentleman on our range shooting a Remington XP chambered in .300 Win Mag. Thickest barrel I think I'd ever seen. Very accurate. Usually shot reduced loads, but the fireball was quite a spectacle when he used the occasional full power load.

The whole concept of banning "AP" is an example of legislating based on fear. What would truly be AP would depend on many variables, including the load, range, type of armor, angle/specific location hit, etc.

The_Antibubba
February 26, 2006, 01:27 AM
So it is legal to own .308 AP bullets, but illegal to load them into .308 rounds-but if I loaded them as 7.62X54R (for a Mosin with a .308" to .309" barrel) they're legal?

748
February 26, 2006, 11:17 AM
Yea that's what were saying.
I have seen AP .308 rounds for sale in Maine, it must be a gray area.
Mill surplus by the case.
I guess they enforce what every they feel like.
They way the law looked like it was writen to me was that they were wavering the bullet it's self. Not the round it was loaded in.
I'll go see if I can find it again and link it.

ReloaderFred
February 26, 2006, 11:20 AM
Under Federal law, that's correct, but since you live where you do, you need to see if they outlawed them in the last 15 minutes, since they pass a new gun law about that often.

Fred

748
February 26, 2006, 11:34 AM
It starts on page 164...
http://www.atf.gov/pub/fire-explo_pub/2005/p53004/gen_info.pdf

The_Antibubba
February 26, 2006, 07:23 PM
Should have clarified, ReloaderFred, that I was asking about the application of law in the Free States. Here, mere possession of the bullets, let alone the ammo, is a felony. :mad:

ReloaderFred
February 26, 2006, 10:14 PM
The Antibubba,

Yep, that's why I escaped from there 11 years ago. Lived there for 50 years and just couldn't take it any longer. You have my condolences.

Fred

confed sailor
February 27, 2006, 04:28 PM
Do they consider the Mild Steel core Soviet LPS AP?

Sam Adams
February 27, 2006, 05:21 PM
Check out the following article: http://www.cs.cmu.edu/afs/cs.cmu.edu/user/wbardwel/public/nfalist/ap_ammo.txt

Though it is from 1996, nothing has changed that I am aware of. Basic conclusions****:

1) AP ammo is, unless specifically defined in the law by name, the AP bullet itself. Thus, if you are able to own the bullet, then you can own any ammo that fires it.

2) The 30.06 AP bullets that are out there are perfectly legal for anyone to own - at least federally, though state & local laws differ. ATF has specifically ruled on that issue, same as with the .223 "AP" rounds (the green tip stuff). I say "AP" for the .223 since that round is really not armor piercing in the truest sense of the phrase, but is meant to ensure the penetration of Kevlar helmuts.

3) Because of #2, it is OK to own the .30-06 ammo, loaded with the AP bullets.

4) Because of #1 and #2, it is OK to reload the AP bullets into any .30 caliber case. DON'T, however, SELL IT TO ANYONE - that is NOT legal.

****Given that this is a legal issue and I am a lawyer (Estates & Trusts, Business Law - but NOT Firearms law), I issue the following disclaimer: The above does NOT constitute legal advice, and is NOT to be relied upon for any reason. Consult with your own attorney on this matter before undertaking any actions concerning firearms or any ammunition or bullets. ALSO, what is legal for federal purposes MAY NOT be legal in your state, county or city/town - consult with your own lawyer about this. I absolutely take NO RESPONSIBILITY for any actions taken by any person who reads this post.

Sorry for the legal mumbo-jumbo, but I don't want to be sued or otherwise held responsible for the acts of others, especially when I am not an expert in firearms law, nor do I want someone to jeopardize their freedom based on my spotty knowledge of this area of the law.

mp510
March 14, 2006, 08:02 PM
There is handguns in all sorts of calibers now, including .308. EAA has a .223 on the market, of course there are sveral makers of those.
Go to TC and look at their possible contender and encore options...
http://www.tcarms.com/TC_HTML/tc_enc_p.htm

pcf
March 15, 2006, 07:51 AM
Federal Code:
921(a)(17)(B) the term 'armor piercing ammunition' means --

(i) a projectile or projectile core which may be used in a handgun and which is constructed entirely (excluding the presence of traces of other substances) from one or a combination of tungsten alloys, steel, iron, brass, bronze, beryllium copper, or depleted uranium; or

(ii) a full jacketed projectile larger than .22 caliber designed and intended for use in a handgun and whose jacket has a weight of more than 25 percent of the total weight of the projectile.

(C) The term 'armor piercing ammunition' does not include shotgun shot required by Federal or State environmental or game regulations for hunting purposes, a frangible projectile designed for target shooting, a projectile which the Secretary finds is primarily intended to be used for sporting purposes, or any other projectile or projectile core which the Secretary finds is intended to be used for industrial purposes, including a charge used in an oil and gas well perforating device.

929(b)
LIST OF ARMOR PIERCING AMMUNITION (BANNED BY NAME BY THE BATF):

KTW AMMUNITION, all calibers. (Identified by a green coating on the projectile)

ARCANE AMMUNITION, all calibers. (Identified by a pointed bronze or brass projectile)

THV AMMUNITION, all calibers. (Identified by a brass or bronze projectile and having a headstamp containing the letters SFM and THV)

CZECHOSLOVAKIAN manufactured 9mm Parabellum (Luger) ammunition having an iron or steel core. (Identified by a cupronickel jacket and headstamp containing a triangle, star and dates 49, 50, 51, or 52. The bullet is attracted to a magnet)

GERMAN manufactured 9mm Parabellum (Luger) having an iron or steel bullet core. (Original packaging is marked Pisolenpatronen 08 m.E. May have black colored bullet. This bullet is attracted to a magnet)

MSC AMMUNITION, Caliber .25. (Identified by a hollow point brass bullet. NOTE: MSC ammunition Caliber .25 identified by a hollow point copper bullet is not armor piercing)

BLACK STEEL ARMOR PIERCING AMMUNITION, All Calibers, as produced by National Cartridge, Atlanta, Georgia.

BLACK STEEL METAL PIERCING AMMUNITION, All Calibers, as produced by National Cartridge, Atlanta, Georgia.

7.62mm NATO AP (Identified by black coloring in the bullet tip. This ammunition is used by various NATO countries. The U.S. military designation is M61 AP)

7.62mm NATO SLAP (identified by projectile having a plastic sabot around a hard penetrator. The penetrator protrudes above the sabot and is similar in appearance to a Remington accelerator cartridge)

PMC ULTRAMAG .38 Special caliber, constructed entirely of a brass type material, and plastic pusher disc located at the base of the projectile. NOTE: PMC ULTRAMAG 38J late production made of copper with lead alloy projectile is not armor piercing.

OMNISHOCK, a .38 Special cartridge with a lead bullet containing a mild steel core with a flattened head resembling a wad cutter. (NOTE: OMNISHOCK cartridges having a bullet with an aluminum core are not armor piercing.)

7.62x39mm with steel core. (NOTE: these projectiles have a steel core. Projectiles having a lead core with steel jacket or steel case are not armor piercing)

NOTE: THE FOLLOWING CARTRIDGES HAVE BEEN REMOVED FROM THE DEFINITION OF ARMOR PIERCING AMMUNITION:

5.56MM (.223) SS109 and M855 Ammunition, Identified by a green coating on the projectile tip.

U.S. .30-06 M2 AP, Identified by a black coating on the projectile tip.

Virginia Code:
18.2-308.3. Use or attempted use of restricted ammunition in commission or attempted commission of crimes prohibited; penalty.

A. When used in this section:

"Restricted firearm ammunition" applies to bullets, projectiles or other types of ammunition that are: (i) coated with or contain, in whole or in part, polytetrafluorethylene or a similar product, (ii) commonly known as "KTW" bullets or "French Arcanes," or (iii) any cartridges containing bullets coated with a plastic substance with other than lead or lead alloy cores, jacketed bullets with other than lead or lead alloy cores, or cartridges of which the bullet itself is wholly comprised of a metal or metal alloy other than lead. This definition shall not be construed to include shotgun shells or solid plastic bullets.

B. It shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly use or attempt to use restricted firearm ammunition while committing or attempting to commit a crime. Violation of this section shall constitute a separate and distinct felony and any person found guilty thereof shall be guilty of a Class 5 felony.

(1983, c. 602; 1988, c. 530.)

IANAL, I wouldn't handload anything in a configuration already banned by law.

T-Bone
March 5, 2007, 08:14 PM
So since the end of the assault weapons law is it now legal to manufacture armor piercing bullets and ammo and sell them in a business?

Clark
March 5, 2007, 08:49 PM
When the 1994 assault weapons ban sunset 'ed in 2004, most of the amour piercing laws went away.

There is still small amount of laws that existed before the 1994 ban.

To my knowledge no one ever got busted for putting black tip 30-06 bullets in 308 cases for personal use even during the ban.

I don't believe that seating a bullet in a case was ever considered manufacturing.

The place that really keeps track of laws, BATF rulings, and court case presidents on gun law is "small arms review".

When I subscribed to that rag, it seemed that the BATF would rule about anything, like Contenders are all pistols, and then loose in court, so contenders can be rifles now.

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