Can I manufacture my own GUN ???


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eric.cartman
February 25, 2008, 07:29 PM
Well, I just had an idea!
Why don't I make my own pistol. Find a sponsor. And start my very own gun company :what:

Is it legal for me, in FL, to manufacture my own gun? Something I could test myself and present to possible sponsors?

Thanks!

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El Tejon
February 25, 2008, 07:32 PM
Are you going to take a class first?

Several THR members have machined their own 1911s. Why not contact them and get signed up?

highorder
February 25, 2008, 07:58 PM
I was kicking around the idea of making a bolt action .22lr... what # form do I need from the BATFE?...

LickitySplit
February 25, 2008, 08:13 PM
Yes... as long as it's for your own use, no paperwork or BATF involvement is necessary (unless it's NFA related). If you're building from an 80% frame or receiver, a serial number isn't even required. A NICS check will be required if purchasing a completed frame or receiver from an FFL.

Your State laws might differ.

The only catch is that you can never sell or transfer it.

Zoogster
February 25, 2008, 08:42 PM
Your State laws might differ.

The only catch is that you can never sell or transfer it.

Actualy under federal law I believe you can sell or transfer it, you just cannot make it for that purpose. That makes prosecution very discretionary.

If you build one legaly, and it was never a firearm to begin with, and it is legal under state law you can sell it at a later date if you no longer wish to keep it.

So it really is all about intent at the time of creation. Do you intend to sell it? Do past or will future sales give the impression you forsaw selling it at the time?
If you sell it someone could make the argument that is what you intended to do with it while building it, which would be a crime.

If someone made one and sold it several years later, did not have a history of selling homemade firearms, and was not under scrutiny for illegaly conducting that as a business or source of spare income etc it is unlikely they would be in violation under that law.

Correct me if I am wrong, but that is how I understood it.
That building one for the intended purpose of selling it is illegal, but that selling it at a later date is not.

Wasn't the restriction on transfering homemade firearms for NFA items?
Imagine, prior to 1986 you could build your own machinegun as a weekend project.


There is however "zip gun" laws in some states, which like many weapon laws were designed to target undesirables. However the definition of a zip gun, and a homemae firearm has a wide grey area of law in it. A break action shotgun is little more than a smooth pipe/barrel fitted on a hinge to the a flat piece of metal through which the firing pin can strike the primer. A pipe, a nail and a couple springs, some bluing, some wood, a lot of elbow grease and tools and you could make a shotgun that had the appearance of a cheap break action time and effort.
Yet without that time and effort it could be called a "zip gun" crudely assembled. At what point is it no longer a zip gun, and is a firearm? That depends on who you are asking.

ieszu
February 25, 2008, 08:48 PM
I think the question is slightly different than we are answering.

You need to apply for a type 07 FFL which allows manufacturing. You can sell those firearms, and there are regulations as to serial numbers and place of manufacture and the like. Call your local ATF agency and ask... they will know best.

But yes, Florida state law allows a gun manufacturer to operate in their state. Local zoning may change that, check the local rules.

Zoogster
February 25, 2008, 09:03 PM
Why don't I make my own pistol. Find a sponsor. And start my very own gun company
Somehow I missed that part. No that is illegal. You would be creating the firearms for the purpose of selling them. You need to do a bit more research to legaly begin manufacturing firearms for profit without breaking the law.

The ability to build your own applies to people who really are just making them for thier own use, soley for thier own use.

LickitySplit
February 25, 2008, 09:25 PM
Actualy under federal law I believe you can sell or transfer it, you just cannot make it for that purpose. That makes prosecution very discretionary.

If you build one legaly, and it was never a firearm to begin with, and it is legal under state law you can sell it at a later date if you no longer wish to keep it.

So it really is all about intent at the time of creation. Do you intend to sell it? Do past or will future sales give the impression you forsaw selling it at the time?
If you sell it someone could make the argument that is what you intended to do with it while building it, which would be a crime.

If someone made one and sold it several years later, did not have a history of selling homemade firearms, and was not under scrutiny for illegaly conducting that as a business or source of spare income etc it is unlikely they would be in violation under that law.

Correct me if I am wrong, but that is how I understood it.
That building one for the intended purpose of selling it is illegal, but that selling it at a later date is not.

I believe you're correct (or at least very close).

There is some gray area WRT to the manufacturing/transfer question (the exact details escape me at the moment).

It's one of those things that one should be careful/wary about depending on the mood, budget cuts of the BATF.

Example... it's illegal to manufacture/assemble an imported "non-sporting purpose" firearm (922r), without the proper number of US manufactured parts, BUT... it's not illegal to posses any such firearm.

CPerdue
February 25, 2008, 09:42 PM
What about unusual or experimental actions, etc.? If you are building up a 1911 from an 80% kit it is pretty clear what is going on, but say you have a home-brew batch of caseless ammo and an electrical ignition system?

Zoogster
February 25, 2008, 09:50 PM
What about unusual or experimental actions, etc.? If you are building up a 1911 from an 80% kit it is pretty clear what is going on, but say you have a home-brew batch of caseless ammo and an electrical ignition system?

That is when the "zip gun" laws really rear thier ugly heads.
You almost have to be a "respectable licensed firearm manufacturer" to build new custom designs that are legal but do not follow some existing design to not be making a "zip gun".
If you got arrested for it, it would be a "zip gun", and if you did not it would be a legal homemade firearm.

Really cuts down on American innovation and product design in a free market when the average person cannot just build things, test them out, and submit a new product. If you look through American history many technological imrpovements were created in just that way. Some guy tinkering in his "garage" at the time.
When "tinkering" becomes heavily legislated few new spontaneous improvements from the private sector make it to market. It leaves most product design and creation up to existing companies' research and development departments and not in the hands of the public.
The free market is what made America progress so rapidly, however it is being legislated away on many fronts. That slows the advance of technology or the creation of controversal and ground breaking designs. People stick to what works, big companies stay with what is a safe sell, and we keep using 50-100 year old technology with a few slight improvements here are there.
It was the man that made something in his garage/shop, got a loan, and took a leap of faith believing in thier product, often making or breaking them that gave us many of our revolutionary designs though. No wonder we do not have many anymore.

CPerdue
February 25, 2008, 10:03 PM
Citation please? I realize State laws differ - I just took a quick look at Korwin's books for Va. and Fed., didn't find the word 'zip'.

I guess this whole discussion includes binary and gaseous propellants, and maybe multi-stage gas guns as well.

geekWithA.45
February 25, 2008, 10:30 PM
"zip guns" are sort of like "daggers" and "dirks".

Nobody really knows what they are.

There are clues, however, to what they aren't.

We do know is that, for example, knives with one edge are probably not daggers or dirks. Usually.

We also know that guns with rifling are less likely to be zip guns, especially if they are made with some level of craftsmanship and engineering.

Also, you'll find that NFA '34 has some traps in it for the unwary who try to make guns without rifling.

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