Whats the real reason Class III is so expensive?


PDA






KBintheSLC
March 16, 2009, 06:21 PM
I just saw a fella selling a used MP5 for $18,000 and I got to thinking... why is this so expensive? How in the world did Class III guns get so artificially bloated on the civilian market? I understand that we have to pay the $200 tax for them, but what really made this MP5 cost $18K, when there is a semi-auto version selling for $1500 right next to it?

This may be a dumb question but...

Is there an underlying political force that I am not aware of? I find it impossible to believe that it costs an extra $16,500 to manufacture one with select fire options. Will you Class III guys enlighten me please?

If you enjoyed reading about "Whats the real reason Class III is so expensive?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Tommygunn
March 16, 2009, 06:25 PM
Any class 3 weapon must be made before 1987 if it is legal to sell to a civilian, as the registry was closed then. There's a very limited supply of these on the market, and that is what drives up the price.

JWF III
March 16, 2009, 06:30 PM
GCA '86 made it an artificially limited supply.

If you really want to get sick, look at the cost of post '86 dealer sample prices. That's what we should be able to get the guns for.

Wyman

Onmilo
March 16, 2009, 06:31 PM
As stated, supply and demand, simple as that.

divemedic
March 16, 2009, 06:33 PM
Supply and demand. Due to breakage, supply is dwindling. Demand is slowly increasing. This causes price increases.

A successful court challenge of 922(o) would bring down prices.

Shung
March 16, 2009, 06:43 PM
from a noob foreigner.. Is the 86 ban fully constitutional, and is there any way to cancel/change it ?

To me it seems totally absurd to make a certain type of gun legal, but to make it virtually unnafordable by increasing its price artificially, forbiding new sellings...

Zundfolge
March 16, 2009, 06:46 PM
Any class 3 weapon must be made before 1987 if it is legal to sell to a civilian, as the registry was closed then. There's a very limited supply of these on the market, and that is what drives up the price.
That's sorta right.

Any full automatic firearm entered into the registry before its closure in 1986 is legal to transfer. Suppressors, short barreled rifles, short barreled shotguns, "AOWs", these are still transferable regardless of when manufactured.

But anything full auto made after '86 can only be transferred to properly licensed dealers, and to military and law enforcement agencies.


The 86 "ban" isn't really a ban, the ban happened in 1934 with the National Firearms Act (which made certain class of firearms illegal to own unless you register them with the Fed.Gov and pay your tax stamp).

It would require an act of congress to get the registry opened up again. I don't know of a presidential order would be enough.

MaterDei
March 16, 2009, 06:52 PM
Is the 86 ban fully constitutional

No it's not constitutional but it's legal until it's challenged and overturned. I could be wrong but I don't think there is anything working its way through the courts right now with a serious chance of making it to the SCOTUS and getting this wrong righted. Anybody know of anything?

CapnMac
March 16, 2009, 06:56 PM
In fact "post 86 dealer samples" tend to be cheaper than "market" price.
That's because they have little use beyond being shot out to unservicability. That's because they can only go to another dealer, who then has to log them as having some sort of sales utility. They really can't go to LE or even to museum collections, either--that's how picky the rule is. So, they are nearly a "throw away" item. No profit in them at all, unless an agency buys up a batch of them from you.

Worst part of M-V '86 which banned any future F/A manufacture is that there is no more experimentation permitted in the US. Used to be, you could get the Class II MFG license and pay the SOT and be good. Nowadays, that's just too much work unless you are a huge corporation anymore. And huge corporations tend to not be cutting edge, as that "risks" too many dollars on items that might not pay out at all. Knight's is about the last of the innovators out there. The Knights still being from the era where Gene Stoner and Mitch WerBel could make things in their garages before bringing them to big-time manufacturers.

USAFNoDAk
March 16, 2009, 06:56 PM
With the current make up of the USSC, any challenge to the 86 ban is like one of the three Chance sisters. One is fat, one is slim and one is a "Nun".

Mike OTDP
March 16, 2009, 07:05 PM
CapnMac brings up an excellent point...one which could help us.

Firearms design involves a lot of experimentation. Without a commercial market, there is no way for a designer to pay for development other than charging high prices on the few Government contracts...usually on a cost-plus basis.

Take MGs...few designers, little innovation. Contrast with suppressors - there is a small but healthy suppressor industry that is very innovative. Because if you don't innovate, your competitors will. The result is that when the military wants to buy suppressors, they can hold a shoot-off between eight or ten bids. Buy a MG? Far fewer bids, and you wind up buying not the best, but the least worst.

Kind of Blued
March 16, 2009, 10:09 PM
from a noob foreigner.. Is the 86 ban fully constitutional, and is there any way to cancel/change it ?

In my opinion, it absolutely is not Constitutional, but my opinion doesn't matter on the subject.

American jurisprudence is organized in a way that nearly everything is negotiable. Our First Amendment right to "the freedom of speech" and our Second Amendment right to "keep and bear arms" could be repealed at any time, although it would take the approval of three-quarters of the 50 states.

Something like repealing the machine gun ban would be easier procedurally, but fighting the lies, stigma, and misconceptions associated with them would be the hard part in my opinion.

rfurtkamp
March 16, 2009, 10:14 PM
It would require an act of congress to get the registry opened up again. I don't know of a presidential order would be enough.


President can order the Secretary to declare an amnesty and re-open the registry that way, no act of Congress required.

Fat chance it'll *ever* happen but it's there.

Kind of Blued
March 16, 2009, 10:26 PM
President can order the Secretary to declare an amnesty and re-open the registry that way, no act of Congress required.

That's like giving 19th century Mississippi slaves two days off in March. It's the Constitution, not an occasional stroke of good luck. It's supposed to be actualized 100% of the time.

Prince Yamato
March 16, 2009, 10:47 PM
It's not that expensive if you think about it in proportions.

Full Auto = expensive. Period. It's a simple case of inflation when purchasing the gun. They are also expensive to shoot.

Destructive devices= expensive because they are rather rare and the ammo is rare too. Finding places to shoot them is difficult as well.

DDs and FA are basically toys for rich boys.

SBRs and SBSs aren't that bad. Think about it. You can basically get an SBR AR-15 today for the same (or sometimes less) than a standard AR, due to the Obama panic. SBSs aren't really that much if you Form 1 them and make them yourself. You can buy a Norinco double barrel, Form 1 it and hack it down yourself for ~$450-500, including the $200 tax

Suppressors are a mixed bag. .22 suppressors, are relatively cheap $400-500, when including the NFA stamp. I just bought a AAC Pilot. It was ~$500 including the tax. I'm looking at 9mm suppressors next. I expect to pay about $1000 total for the can, the threaded barrel, and the tax stamp.

Another reason class 3 items cost so much is because dealers can get away with charging whatever they want. Many people, including those on THR erroneously believe that there is some sort of exotic process to owning these. There's not. The paper work is stupidly simple. Anyone who says it is not, like unscrupulous dealers, is just trying to get you to buy into the "mystique". Many times, you are also at the mercy of whatever dealers in your area have in stock. Unlike regular FFLs, many Class 3 dealers charge enormous transfer fees, like $100-200 per weapon. You'll hear boogie-man stories about the ATF: "oh! Now they can enter your bathroom while you're showering and inspect your toilet tank for hidden short-barrels and vertical grips!" and other garbage too. It's all bull.

So here's a summation of why class 3 is so expensive:

1) Rarity
2) Idiots in Congress
3) Idiots who run gun shops
4) Idiots who buy into the dictum of the above mentioned idiots.

CoRoMo
March 17, 2009, 10:00 AM
...but what really made this MP5 cost $18K
Congress decided, according to the GCA of 1986, that only the wealthy can play.

freakshow10mm
March 17, 2009, 10:26 AM
In fact "post 86 dealer samples" tend to be cheaper than "market" price.
That's because they have little use beyond being shot out to unservicability.
No it's because of supply and demand. Huge supply, low demand. Prices low.

That's because they can only go to another dealer, who then has to log them as having some sort of sales utility. They really can't go to LE or even to museum collections, either--that's how picky the rule is.
False. Transferring them to LE is perfectly fine. Any machine gun made after 5/19/86 can only be transferred to an SOT with demo letter, LE, or government.

So, they are nearly a "throw away" item. No profit in them at all, unless an agency buys up a batch of them from you.
Wouldn't go that far. I've made and sold a one off machine gun for LE agencies. Made a few hundred dollars off it like a normal AR15, except these ones were full auto.

Worst part of M-V '86 which banned any future F/A manufacture is that there is no more experimentation permitted in the US. Used to be, you could get the Class II MFG license and pay the SOT and be good. Nowadays, that's just too much work unless you are a huge corporation anymore.
False. I'm a home based 07/02 with a shop built off my garage. The FFL took 6 weeks to get and the SOT I paid was a 3 week turnaround from when I mailed the check to when the approved form was received in my mailbox. I think I spent about an hour doing all the paperwork required for the FFL and SOT. It was actually pretty painless.

KBintheSLC
March 17, 2009, 04:17 PM
from a noob foreigner.. Is the 86 ban fully constitutional, and is there any way to cancel/change it ?

To me it seems totally absurd to make a certain type of gun legal, but to make it virtually unnafordable by increasing its price artificially, forbiding new sellings...

When they can't win the battle legally, they win it through manipulations of this nature.

Kind of Blued
March 17, 2009, 05:35 PM
So here's a summation of why class 3 is so expensive:

1) Rarity
2) Idiots in Congress
3) Idiots who run gun shops
4) Idiots who buy into the dictum of the above mentioned idiots.

Reader, suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.

... I wish Mark Twain had a THR account, but you get the point.

makarovnik
March 17, 2009, 08:03 PM
As a deterrent. It is to punish you.

Zundfolge
March 17, 2009, 10:18 PM
from a noob foreigner.. Is the 86 ban fully constitutional,
Honestly the 1934 NFA (which created the machine gun registry that was closed in 86) is not constitutional.


...SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED...

Gord
March 17, 2009, 10:28 PM
Suppressors are a mixed bag. .22 suppressors, are relatively cheap $400-500, when including the NFA stamp. I just bought a AAC Pilot. It was ~$500 including the tax. I'm looking at 9mm suppressors next. I expect to pay about $1000 total for the can, the threaded barrel, and the tax stamp.


That brings me to a question I've had in my head for awhile now, but never felt was important enough to start a thread over:

Why the heel is there such wild fluctuation in suppressor pricing? .22LR suppressors can be had for $200 - which is already a travesty, but I understand that economy of scale forces it so. What I don't understand is why a .223 (or any other centerfire caliber, rifle or pistol) suppressor then lists at $700-1000. I understand that it's trickier to suppress a 5.56 muzzle blast than a .22LR muzzle blast, but at the end of the day they're all just tubes with baffles in 'em. I'd expect them to all be within $100 or so of each other, even with whatever extra engineering/machining voodoo is required to suppress centerfires...

ShadyScott999
March 17, 2009, 10:30 PM
It's not that bad until you get one. Try about $20 per second shooting one.

freakshow10mm
March 17, 2009, 11:08 PM
My centerfire suppressor line is retailing for $400-450.

Centerfire pressures are a lot more than rimfire pressures. It takes much more R&D than one would think to properly design and test from the ground up to production.

Prince Yamato
March 17, 2009, 11:20 PM
Why the heel is there such wild fluctuation in suppressor pricing? .22LR suppressors can be had for $200 - which is already a travesty, but I understand that economy of scale forces it so.

There's a couple things that manufacturers will charge more for. I don't know how much this increases actual production cost but it enables the manufacturer to charge more. The first is the metal the gun is made out of. Some suppressors are made out of titanium, which is more expensive than steel or aluminum. Second, centerfire pistol suppressors for 9mm and above semi-autos require the assistance of a Nielson device, which is a fancy term for a glorified spring that adds from $50-200 to the overall price of the suppressor. A third thing that can add cost is the rarity of the suppressor. 50bmg suppressors are $1000+ because they're not very common. Not many people own 50bmg rifles. So, therefore the number of people buying 50bmg suppressors is even less. Hence, a manufacturer can charge what he wishes.

Little of this is actual justification for the overall high prices of silencers though. Again, half of what you're being charged for is novelty. Which is something I complain about constantly. Class 3 should not be this huge "rich man's only" game. I also despise those that keep it that way.

In the case of some companies, you are buying into an attitude or culture (specifically AAC). Advanced Armament is like the Harley Davidson of the suppressor world. There's a culture that surrounds it. Register on Silencer Talk, you'll see what I mean. The recently had a "tattoo yourself with one of our logos and get a free suppressor" promotion. Photos are on Silencer Talk. Pretty interesting. Note, though, I payed cash for my AAC Pilot... no tattoos for me :). Like Harleys, you'll often pay more than you would for a comparable product, but what you overpay in dollars, you make up for in attitude/corporate culture. For a price point: I could buy a Gemtech .22 can for ~$250 but I payed ~$350 for the AAC can. I figured the extra hundred was worth it for "bragging rights".

freakshow10mm
March 18, 2009, 12:48 AM
Aluminum is very cheap, steel is a bit more and titanium is more than that. Inconel 718 is crazy expensive.

Ease of machining is also a factor. Aluminum is very easy to machine and is a reason why it's used by suppressor manufacturers so much. Stainless is gummy, Inconel is pure hell, as is titanium. Some metals require special, expensive tools. Some companies use welding in their designs, some being manual welders and some employ $200,000 robotic welders. Larger companies with deep pockets have a few of these.

There's a lot of overhead that needs to be paid that has to be accounted for in the price. I'm lucky to make 30%.

Gord
March 18, 2009, 01:30 AM
Thanks for the responses, guys - lots of insight between you two!

I realize that Ti is hellish to machine (and I'm gonna have to wiki Inconel) but IIRC, most centerfire suppressors I've seen have been steel.

It just doesn't seem like the materials/machining cost should be that much higher for centerfire suppressors in relation to rimfire. Freak, yours are the first I've seen that have been below $575-600 - and your prices are right in line with where I'd expect centerfire suppressor prices to be given the general ~$250 average for rimfire suppressors. I don't want to accuse mfrs of gouging just for the heck of it, but when your centerfire line is $400-500 more than your rimfire line, one can't help but wonder...

As for R&D, perhaps my naivete is showing, but they all look pretty much the same to me (internally, I mean). If nothing else, it would be nice to have separate "cheap older tech" and "expensive cutting-edge" lines from suppressor manufacturers.

$250 is perfectly acceptable to me, to acquire a new toy in the form of a rimfire suppressor. $600+ for a centerfire suppressor, on the other hand, represents a lot more potential purchasing power for things that could serve much more practical use (ammo, mags, a couple of training classes, a new handgun, most of an AR, a nice holster or some combination thereof).

freakshow10mm
March 18, 2009, 10:35 AM
Well, here's my price breakdown.

.22LR is $150 for aluminum and $175 for stainless steel. You can use either on a rifle or pistol, but the aluminum is designed for a pistol in mind and the SS for rifles in mind. They will work on both.

The centerfire suppressors are all $425 except the .50 BMG which is $800. Depending on the actual costs involved, that price might come down.

All my suppressors come with a Lifetime Service policy that is quite simple. If you want to send your suppressor to us for cleaning or a "check-up", just send it in. We will clean it, check it, test it, and send it back as well as include $20 cash to cover the shipping to send it back to us. All of our suppressors easily disassemble for cleaning by the owner.

Like was mentioned before, demand controls pricing too. If you have 250 hours tied up in R&D for a .50 BMG can, but expect to sell 25 per year, you have to charge enough to break even on your investment (R&D, time) plus make profit. The suppressors that sell well are usually the .22 rimfire and 9mm pistol. .223 and .308 suppressors are about even with each other.

There is a lot of time invested in designing, prototyping, and testing a suppressor design. To get a professional engineering analysis it costs about $2-3,000 per design. If you test 3-4 designs, that adds up. Your production model has to pay for that testing of the failed designs, plus normal overhead in running a business plus your profit.

In dealing with suppressors you are designing a vessel to contain pressures in the 10s of thousands of PSI. This vessel also needs to slow the gases and allow them to cool before releasing them out the muzzle. Material selection is pretty easy, it's the baffle design that's the bugger.

Now the why. I personally would have a hard time paying $700 for a centerfire suppressor. Most people I talk to have a hard time forking over the $200 tax alone. For a $700 suppressor with a $200 tax and a $100 transfer fee if their dealer doesn't have it in stock is a lot to pay for a suppressor.

Price can be an indicator of quality, but it can also simply be a higher price. I'm trying to bring suppressors to more mainstream use and make them more affordable for people, especially first time buyers. If we get more people involved in NFA weapons that can only help to further our cause.

A lot of suppressor companies employ teams of people and run full on CNC lathes and mills. My company is myself and a machinist using a manual lathe and manual mill. That's how we roll. I'd like to get CNC some day, but it's going to take a lot of suppressors to buy that stuff.

Gord
March 18, 2009, 12:32 PM
Again, great info - thank you for taking the time to share. Are all these designs unique enough to be patented? - otherwise, I'd think that suppressor mfgs would share at least basic design notes, or that it'd be possible to license or reverse-engineer a design to save on R&D costs.

I wish NFA were a bigger business, period - the economy of scale would come down, and the common presence of suppressors on plinkers (I'm of the mind that everyone should at least own a .22 suppressor!) at the range would go a long way towards dispelling the "only assassins use those" BS, spreading awareness of NFA items and demystifying things a little.

freakshow10mm
March 18, 2009, 01:58 PM
The Class 2 industry is very cutthroat. It's like a soap opera gone bad. A lot of drama, taking sides, pitting one against the other. Like being in high school. I stay away from the Class 2 culture as much as I can get away with.

None of my designs are patentable. It's a waste of money anyways. A patent costs about $8,000 all said and done. You get a certain time of protection, up to 17 years. All this does is give your competitors a 17 year string on R&D. If you're patent isn't done right, it's useless. If you don't have to money to fight to protect it, the patent is useless and it's "public domain". Look at SWR's patent for cross drilling. Seriously. They have a patent on a basic manufacturing technique that has been used for hundreds of years in all industries before them. They have a patent, but it's useless.

From my research, there isn't much left to be done with suppressor design. They are all pretty much the same basic structures, utilizing monolithic stacks, K baffels, M baffles, crimping the baffles in place instead of welding, etc. Change dimensions here, have an expanding or constricting bore hole as you near the exit hole.

Materials have all been explored. There's a reason 6061,7075, 303, 304, are used. There's a reason why Inconel is used primarily for blast baffles in high blast guns or full auto cans. There's a reason why titanium used should be grade 9 and why grade 2 is crap.

Aluminum is primarily used to save weight, but there is a trade off in corrosion resistance. The safety factor of 7075 Al is double that of the 6061 alloy and is nearing the 303 SS strength and will be much lighter than the SS but not as corrosion free. SS is used where weight isn't much of a consideration (but always is) but where corrosion resistance is high on the list.

The only things that really change much are the mounting options. Nielson devices, threaded endcaps, sealed designs, lug mounts, etc are about the only thing innovative these days. I can't wait for Silencer History and Performanc vol 3 to come out. That's the last of the series when they really take a look at in depth design from current manufacturers.

Safety factor in engineering, typically a number between 2-8 for 98% of buildings, etc, refers to the breaking point of the design. The threshold is always 1. The safety factor is the "overbuilt" factor. It is usually 2-8 times stronger than the pressures and forces that need to be contained or held. My .22 LR suppressor, the Midget, has a safety factor of 22 with using 6061 T6 aluminum and using 7075 T6 or 303 SS the safety factor is 52. The .22 LR peak chamber pressure is 7500psi, so let's use that number for easy math. A safety factor of 1 equals 7500psi. A safety factor of 22 would be 165,000psi and a safety factor of 52 would be 390,000psi. Theoretically, my design can handle 165,000psi in the aluminum model and 390,000psi in the stainless steel model. This isn't a license to play with catastrophic failures and run a Beta mag of .223 full auto through the .22LR Midget suppressor but tries to give a picture that designing a suppressor is more than drilling and milling a few holes in metal.

MagnumDweeb
March 18, 2009, 04:17 PM
Umm sorry for the dumb questions, but what is an 'SOT'. I'm just not finding it. Thanks.

So if you became an SOT and built a machine gun for marketing purposes, but at anytime in the future lost your SOT identity, would you have to destroy your FA production/s. I do a lot of kit builds(Stens, PPSH41, working on finishing a Suomi, and am tackling a DP28 next and doing a reweld on the receiver, FALs), and have started saving again for my own machine shop when I get out of law school (blew the last $3,500 I had saved up for it exclusively on A couple CETMEs, Two AR kits and two AR receivers[good shooters], Tokarev pistols, revolers, etc. and a whole bunch of ammo and reloading what have you). A lot of my family does firearm refurbishing and homebrews. I've built gun drills, not fancy ones mind you, and will get one one day hopefully, a couple lathes, a mill, Drill Presses, Kilns, yeah my finacee has agreed to this ahead of time thankfully.

I'm also an NRA certified pistol instructor and get my rifle instructor certification over the summer. So I think I can satisfy the trade affiliation commonly wanted by those okaying FFLs. I don't really want a FA but it'd be fun to have one, one day. A big old .30 BMG in .308 Nato hey I love running it through my CETMEs and South African FAL kit builds).

I can't understand how there hasn't been a challenge to the 86' act for so long. Guess one day after I've opened a few businesses, been in practice for a couple decades, I'll have to take that hydra on.

Gord
March 18, 2009, 05:37 PM
Freak,

You oughta write a book - seriously. I do believe this is the most informative and intriguing thread I've seen on THR in a good long while. And I kinda want a Midget now. :cool:

Jim K
March 18, 2009, 07:04 PM
Actually, CapnMac is wrong. I know of several small outfits with manufacturers licenses and SOTs. And they do do experimentation; they can't sell an MG to an individual, but they are free to develop a product that they can propose to the big companies, just as John Browning did before the NFA was even thought of.

Jim

CapnMac
March 18, 2009, 08:05 PM
Well, actually, I should have said that there are fewer small firms out there, not none. And some dealer samples have value, too. But, there are folk out there wearing them out. if you have a budget for new, there's not a huge need for wore out.

CapnMac
March 18, 2009, 08:07 PM
but what is an 'SOT'

Special Occupational Tax(payer)

Collected by the tax folk at BATFE.

ShadyScott999
March 18, 2009, 09:13 PM
Actually, CapnMac is wrong. I know of several small outfits with manufacturers licenses and SOTs. And they do do experimentation; they can't sell an MG to an individual, but they are free to develop a product that they can propose to the big companies, just as John Browning did before the NFA was even thought of.

Jim

That is true. I know a couple locally as well. My brother knows a bunch in his neck of the woods.

RDCL
March 18, 2009, 09:22 PM
I think it is expensive because......most obviously supply & demand, but also...

Criminal mis-use of such weapons only fed fire....so to speak...to the anti-gun mentality. One word: RESTRICTIONS.

It all began with the gun control act of 1934.

We can all pretty much point our finger to Al Capone and his minions.

(Thanks alot Al!:cuss:)

freakshow10mm
March 18, 2009, 11:13 PM
The reason suppressors are controlled items is because the NFA 1934 was passed during the Great Depression and the Fish and Wildlife Dept was worried about poaching. That's it.

Since 1934, there have only been two documented cases where a legally owned NFA weapon was used in a crime, one of them was in 1934 or 1935 and it was a cop.

freakshow10mm
March 18, 2009, 11:23 PM
Umm sorry for the dumb questions, but what is an 'SOT'. I'm just not finding it. Thanks.
No problem. Not a lot of people know and even more so don't know the correct terminology.

The SOT is a Special Occupational Taxpayer. These are people (and companies) that pay a yearly tax to engage in the importation, manufacturing, and dealing in NFA firearms. There is no such thing as Class 3 weapons. They are NFA weapons. Class 3 is a type of SOT. Sort of like the clip v magazine thing.

Class 1 SOT: Importer of NFA weapons. Also allows dealing.
Class 2 SOT: Manufacturer of NFA weapons. Also allows dealing and i]occasional importing for R&D purposes only[/i]
Class 3 SOT: Dealer of NFA firearms.

There's the three classes of SOTs. Most large firearm manufacturers like Mossberg, Ruger, Remington, Browning (FN Herstal), and Savage are Class 2 SOTs (manufacturer) as well.

The Class 1 and 2 SOTs are $1,000 yearly but small manufacturers with gross sales receipts less than $500K only have to pay $500 yearly. The Class 3 SOT is a straight $500 yearly no discounts. As a class 2 manufacturer I have to register with the US state dept under the ITAR rules even if I don't export. All manufacturers must register. Many are not, but they are shooting themselves if caught. The law is extremely crystal clear.

The ITAR fee is $2250 yearly, so if you break down the $150 3yr FFL, the yearly $500 SOT tax, and the ITAR, my yearly licensing fees are $2,800 per year. If I make 30% profit on my suppressors, that's $45 per Midget or just over 62 Midget suppressors to pay my licensing fees for the year, not including other overhead.

OcelotZ3
March 18, 2009, 11:24 PM
Congress decided, according to the GCA of 1986, that only the wealthy can play.

The President of the US at the time decided the same thing, don't forget...

Trebor
March 19, 2009, 03:00 AM
Anyone else find it ironic that we have a suppressor manufacturer based in Michigan, a state where private citizens can not own suppressors?

If I could, I'd pick up one of your products. Maybe someday.

Prince Yamato
March 19, 2009, 04:01 AM
If I could, I'd pick up one of your products. Maybe someday.

If his .22 suppressor works as advertised, you can pick it all up for $350.

Form 4s are easy. Anyone who tells you that the paperwork is difficult or charges more based on that line is telling you a lie. The paperwork is easy. Most of the time, the dealer types your info into a .PDF file and prints out the Form 4 in triplicate. All you have to do is sign all three forms (plus this fourth "federal bill of sale" or something like that). Take 2 Form 4s down to CLEO. Get two sets of fingerprints on blue federal cards. Get signed forms back, send with $200 check to ATF, wait, get approved, get forms. 80% of the work is done by the gov't.

freakshow10mm
March 19, 2009, 09:40 AM
Anyone else find it ironic that we have a suppressor manufacturer based in Michigan, a state where private citizens can not own suppressors?

If I could, I'd pick up one of your products. Maybe someday.
Yep, I'm the only Class 2 manufacturer that's ever been in the UP.

I'm trying to start a grass roots effort to get Cox to get the law changed to allow individuals to own suppressors. He's fine with MGs but for some reason the ATF people I talked to, which are in favor of allowing suppressors in MI, said for some reason he's got a bug up his ass about suppressors. I wrote a letter to him inviting him up to my place to shoot some NFA weapons and suppressors. In it, I told him hearing protection wouldn't required as the suppressor make it hearing safe so there's no need to worry about uncomfortable ear muffs or ear plugs that don't fit him. We'll see if he responds.

Prince Yamato, individuals in Michigan can't own suppressors, only SOTs. As an SOT I'm exempt, but I am not exempt from making SBS or SBR so I can't do those. I can make machine guns, suppressors, and AOWS; DDs too but that FFL is $3,000.

Only reason I made a machine gun was to get around the SBR law. If it's a MG, I can put whatever barrel length I want on it.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v239/freakshow10mm/P3060271.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v239/freakshow10mm/P3060274.jpg


25 tubes and rods cut to length for my Midget suppressor. When my line launches in a few weeks I'm going to give away one aluminum Midget suppressor free every month for a full year. Should be a blast.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v239/freakshow10mm/P3040266.jpg

Trebor
March 19, 2009, 10:13 AM
If his .22 suppressor works as advertised, you can pick it all up for $350.

Nope, no suppressors for me. I'm in Michigan and state law does not allow private citizens to own suppressors.

(Yeah, a SOT Manafucturer is still a "private citizen" but they get an exemption. I believe if they give up their SOT status though, under state law, they'd have to get rid of all their suppressors).

So, Freakshow is in Michigan, making suppressors that he can't sell to Michigan residents. It's just ironic is all.

Btw, Freakshow, don't expect any movement from Cox on the suppressor issue anytime soon. Theire are bunch of guys lobbying for him to make a ruling allowing them ever since his ruling on MG's, but he's resisted making a ruling so far. The consensus is he must think it would be politically bad to do so.

freakshow10mm
March 19, 2009, 10:29 AM
What pisses me (and others) off is that the letter that was sent to him to opine on the machine guns was also asked of him to rule on suppressors since they are in the same statute. He only opined on machine guns.

I don't think it's politically bad. I think he's just a ******. The self defense package got through no problem. Why is this different? Two things the MI economy needs: manufacturers and spenders. Suppressors offer both.

750.224 Weapons; manufacture, sale, or possession as felony; violation as felony; penalty; exceptions; "muffler" or "silencer" defined.

Sec. 224.

(1) A person shall not manufacture, sell, offer for sale, or possess any of the following:

(a) A machine gun or firearm that shoots or is designed to shoot automatically more than 1 shot without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger.

(b) A muffler or silencer.

(c) A bomb or bombshell.

(d) A blackjack, slungshot, billy, metallic knuckles, sand club, sand bag, or bludgeon.

(e) A device, weapon, cartridge, container, or contrivance designed to render a person temporarily or permanently disabled by the ejection, release, or emission of a gas or other substance.

(2) A person who violates subsection (1) is guilty of a felony, punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years, or a fine of not more than $2,500.00, or both.

(3) Subsection (1) does not apply to any of the following:

(a) A self-defense spray or foam device as defined in section 224d.

(b) A person manufacturing firearms, explosives, or munitions of war by virtue of a contract with a department of the government of the United States.

(c) A person licensed by the secretary of the treasury of the United States or the secretary's delegate to manufacture, sell, or possess a machine gun, or a device, weapon, cartridge, container, or contrivance described in subsection (1).

(4) As used in this chapter, "muffler" or "silencer" means 1 or more of the following:

(a) A device for muffling, silencing, or deadening the report of a firearm.

(b) A combination of parts, designed or redesigned, and intended for use in assembling or fabricating a muffler or silencer.

(c) A part, designed or redesigned, and intended only for use in assembling or fabricating a muffler or silencer.

bababooey32
March 19, 2009, 11:07 AM
I don't know much about firearms (which is why I am here). I know even less about suppresors and the like. I am FERVENTLY against gun control of any kind.

But I have to ask, what is the legit use of a suppresor? I certainly don't need to be quiet when defending my home. My understanding is that suppresors wouldn't be very good for hunting (?). That leaves only nefarius activities?

Please don't flame me. I am sure I have something to learn here. :confused:

regal
March 19, 2009, 11:14 AM
I just saw a fella selling a used MP5 for $18,000 and I got to thinking... why is this so expensive?


The thing I don't understand is why there isn't a semi MP5 available. I could care less about automatic fire, but the closest thing to an MP5 I could find in semi was a Keltec Sub2K, but after buying one it just looks like a toy gun.

Shung
March 19, 2009, 11:16 AM
what is the legit use of a suppresor? I certainly don't need to be quiet when defending my home.

two main reasons ! To avoid damaging your ears (earmuffs aren't 100% safe, you still have the blast coming in from you nose or mouth) , and keep it quiet for the eventual neighborood of a shooting range.

Also, if you are using a rifle like an AR-15 for self defense, a SBR with a suppressor isnt a bad idea... Everyone who already shot 5.56 or more in a closed room without earmuffs know what I am talking about..

Suppressors are not silencers.. they just reduce the noise, don't make it disappear.

rfurtkamp
March 19, 2009, 11:19 AM
The thing I don't understand is why there isn't a semi MP5 available.


There is.

You can buy HK-94s all day long if you have the cash, or clones ranging from the atrocious to the near-perfect.

freakshow10mm
March 19, 2009, 11:21 AM
Hearing protection
Noise pollution control
Reduces muzzle blast
Reduces recoil

The main use is hearing protection. It reduces the gun shot to a noise level that is below the threshold for pain. This has several advantages. Since the firearm is suppressed, the bystanders don't have to be concerned about ear muffs that don't fit, ear plugs that hurt their ears, not having adequate hearing protection.

In a LE role, firing inside a building will only amplify the sound back to the shooter. If the shot is suppressed, communication can be executed effectively amongst the officers. It also helps to ID the good guys on a SWAT event. If shots are being fired from suppressed weapons, it's most likely that's a good guy and not a bad guy as a bad guy will not care if his shot is being heard when there are 12 cops in his drug house.

For hunting purposes, again, reduction in noise protects your hearing. I wear ear muffs when I go hunting because I want to protect my hearing when I shoot. If I could hunt with a suppressor, that would be ideal.

For noise pollution, what's the most common complaint about a gun range? It's loud. If suppressors were in wide spread use, like in Finland, hearing damage and noise pollution would go down significantly. A gunshot is a disturbing sound, no way around it.

Reducing the muzzle blast and recoil is a great training aid. It's also a good way to introduce new shooters to the shooting world. It allows them to hear range commands, reduces that scary and loud muzzle blast as well as lowers the recoil of larger calibers so they can concentrate on the principles of marksmanship instead of worrying about how loud the shot is going to be or how much it's going to kick this time. Reduction in shooter fatigue allows the shooter to shoot more and be a better marksman.

Think about it. The law MANDATES muffles on cars, trucks, vans, snowblowers, ATVs, lawn mowers. Their noise level is far less than a gunshot yet sound suppressors for firearms are severely restricted. Doesn't make sense does it?

bababooey32
March 19, 2009, 11:58 AM
Freakshow - Thanks...You make many good points...

It also helps to ID the good guys on a SWAT event. If shots are being fired from suppressed weapons, it's most likely that's a good guy and not a bad guy

This one, however, is only valid if suppresors are not widely used. If Suppresors were widely used, as you advocate, LE could not be as certain that suppressed fire = friendly fire. It works now BECAUSE of the limited availability and use of suppresors.

In any case, I am not against having or using them, just curious as to their benefit. No muffs at the range would be great!

freakshow10mm
March 19, 2009, 12:20 PM
Even in the 31 states that allow suppressors, the criminals that commit shooting crimes don't use them. In interviews with professional assassins that I've read, not a single one of the 300 that were interviewed ever used a suppressor and thought it was actually stupid to use one.

People who are going to shoot and kill someone already do it without a suppressor. Having them in widespread use will not result in an increase in violence using suppressors. Most criminals will use something cheap like a maglight and washers or use a soda bottle (they suck by the way) and not a professionally made suppressor. Think of a suppressor as a carry permit. There is no blood running in the streets. The criminals who would carry a gun already do carry a gun and don't bother to get a permit. Criminals do what they want to do.

KBintheSLC
March 19, 2009, 05:22 PM
Criminals do what they want to do.

I wonder if criminals are paying $18,000 for select fire weapons like we have to... ones made before the registry closed.

I highly doubt it.

They are likely getting illegal shipments of newly manufactured guns brought in by dinghy from Cuba.

Its so much easier to own weapons when you are a criminal. That is the only thing that keeps me optimistic about this administration... if they make us all into criminals, we don't have to care about their rules anymore.


...

Sam Adams
March 19, 2009, 06:01 PM
Supply and demand. Due to breakage, supply is dwindling.

I thought that the purchase of replacement parts for full autos was allowed, so long as the original is actually destroyed (so as not to increase supply). What say any of you knowledgable about this?

Trebor
March 19, 2009, 09:14 PM
I thought that the purchase of replacement parts for full autos was allowed, so long as the original is actually destroyed (so as not to increase supply).

Not exactly.

For every NFA registered "machine gun" there is one part that according to the ATF *is* the machine-gun. And it's not always the receiver.

All the *other* parts can be replaced, but if that one, specific part that is legally the gun is damaged beyond repair, the MG is lost.

So, for example, if it's an UZI with a "registered receiver", which means the receiver is the legal MG,all the other parts can be replaced and the receiver can be repaired as long as possible.

But, if the receiver should ever be completely destroyed or somehow made unrepairable, that's it, that specific machine gun is GONE.

Now, obviously, owners go to great lengths to repair the registered part so repairs that wouldn't be practical or economically feasible on a semi-auto would be done on a registered MG.

But, ultimately, the registered part can only be repaired, not replaced.

This is more of a concern for owners of guns where a less durable part is he "registered" MG. A registered UZI bolt conversion or an registered AR auto-sear would both be *the MG* in those cases. If the autosear broke and was unrepairable, for instance, you couldn't build a new one to replace it.

Btw, my understanding is that at some point in the past building new gun with the same serial number for replacement purposes was allowed, but is not allowed any longer.

Prince Yamato
March 19, 2009, 10:11 PM
Btw, my understanding is that at some point in the past building new gun with the same serial number for replacement purposes was allowed, but is not allowed any longer.

No, that's still done, just not legally. Case in point, if your lightning link breaks and you get a new one with your name engraved, who could tell the difference? Is it legal, no, to most people, a piece of steel looks like a piece of steel.

Yellowfin
March 19, 2009, 10:53 PM
The single thing I regret more than anything else in moving from AL to CA is that I didn't know about civilian availability of suppressors early enough to buy some before moving. It's going to be quite a while before I get the chance again and I really hope it won't be too late.

ida34
March 20, 2009, 01:37 AM
The opinion that Cox made in reference to Machine Guns does seem to also apply to silencers. Cox formulated an opinion and being he is the one that would bring the charges it is a safe bet it would not be tested by a prosecution. If he does not think it is illegal then he would not prosecute the case. The other way to get this done is by a courts decision. Given the opinion by Cox on the Machine Gun issue is should be fairly easy to get a court to apply the same opinion to silencers. The problem is someone would have to step up to be charged with a violation to get a court to decide this. There may be a civil way to get a court ruling but non that I know of. A court ruling would also be more lasting for the long haul. I have read the law more than a couple of times and I agree that based on the law if machine guns are legal so would silencers based on Cox opinion.

freakshow10mm
March 20, 2009, 08:36 AM
You would think so but that isn't the case. In MI, the AGs official opinion is treated as case law and that is how the law is enforced and does actually hold legal weight. Since the opinion ruled only on machine guns and not suppressors, even though they are bound by the same exact statute, the opinion for machine guns does not apply to the suppressors in any way shape or form. That's why Cox only opined about suppressors. Which is stupid because the same requirements for an FFL or a Form 4 for machine guns is the same as a Form 1 or 4 for suppressors.

If you enjoyed reading about "Whats the real reason Class III is so expensive?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!