Gun prices and innovations without restrictions, bans, and laws


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leadcounsel
September 21, 2010, 02:17 PM
So -

My theory is that we lose out on significant innovation in firearms technology because of the prohibitions to ownership, both legally and economically.

Say the various Gun Control Acts (GCAs) and various bans were lifted.

How would that materially improve innovation in areas of fully automatic weapons, SBRs, short shotguns, etc.?

I suspect that it would drive up innovation and drive down costs dramatically, particularly for Class III type weapons. But I think that all weapons would benefit if, say, you could eliminate the FFL middle men and just buy straight from the manufucturer or wholesaler.

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lions
September 21, 2010, 02:23 PM
I'm not sure about the extent to which I agree with you about all weapons, but I completely agree that the regulations on class III limit ownership and therefore make it less profitable for manufacturers to invest time and money to improve the technology.

MinnMooney
September 21, 2010, 02:33 PM
I suspect that laws and prohibitions do limit innovation but lawsuits - as bad as they are - may have accidently caused innovation and improvement.

Triggers are but one item that has recently actually benefitted from lawsuits. Lawsuits caused triggers to be absolutely horrible for many years but are now safer and much better.

rocky branch
September 21, 2010, 02:58 PM
I thinkthe govt provides plenty of incentive for class 3 manufacturers.
The resulting products are military specific.
Chain guns and auto grenade launchers as examples.

I spose we are behind the curve on lazer rifles and pocket disruptors.

waterhouse
September 21, 2010, 03:19 PM
I think prices would certainly come down, especially on things like suppressors. I have no idea what the quality is like, but I've seen some pretty cheap suppressors for sale in other countries that have strict gun laws but no regulations on cans.

Based on comments from people who have shot my suppressed guns, without the paperwork and tax I think a lot more people would own them. If a lot more people were buying them, companies would make more, prices would likely drop, more barrels would come threaded, etc.

Bubbles
September 21, 2010, 03:25 PM
I thinkthe govt provides plenty of incentive for class 3 manufacturers.
The resulting products are military specific.

Nope, there's nowhere near enough volume or profit in LE/MIL sales to make up for the loss of public sales wrt recovering R&D costs for updates to full-auto technology.

As an example look at the improvements in suppressor technology since 1986, when the Hughes Amendment to FOPA passed. While subject to other NFA regulations, new suppressors are still permitted for sale to the public, and there have been some great strides made in both design and materials technology since then. Not so much for new machine guns.

ETA: The reason we don't have cheaply-made suppressors in this country is that no one wants to pay a $200 tax on a $100 purchase. People who are shelling out hundreds of dollars on a firearm accessory (and really, that's all a suppressor is) expect to purchase a quality product.

essayons21
September 21, 2010, 03:28 PM
I think you would see a flood of purpose built FA .22lr firearms. Especially dedicated .22lr M-16s, AKs, G36s, SAWs, etc.

Hatterasguy
September 21, 2010, 03:31 PM
War drives firearms innovation, right now we are still riding the wave of WW2 and the Cold War.

The next big war will dive technology along.

leadcounsel
September 21, 2010, 03:38 PM
I thinkthe govt provides plenty of incentive for class 3 manufacturers.
The resulting products are military specific.

I have to respectfully disagree.

Gun makers spend millions of dollars on R&D to bring a gun to market with military specs, but rarely get awarded contracts. And a military contract is only for a few hundred thousand guns whereas the civilian market may be for millions of guns. And finally, what happens when a gun maker DOESN'T get the contract...?

Look at the plight of the Keltec RFB for instance.... two decades in the making... Look at the SCAR... the military is baulking at adopting it and with the end of the wars and huge military budgets I doubt it will... despite the time and money FN spent developing it.

Yes, these things have civilian applications, but things like barrel length, design, mag capacity, etc all come into play...

oneounceload
September 21, 2010, 04:06 PM
Supply and demand drive markets - period. Since Title II weapons are in serious short supply in relation to demand, their prices appear very high to some, but they are prices at what the market is willing to pay - no more, no less. This is true for ANYTHING you buy.

All those failed designs or ones not adopted are paid for by you - the companies are going to recoup their R&D from somewhere.

As to the comment about suppressors - remember, in many other countries they are sold OTC with no paperwork - their cost is very reasonable

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