Things I would like the ATF to clarify


PDA






Arizona_Mike
August 26, 2013, 04:59 PM
The ATF has clarified a ton of things in the last 4 years, but I still have some questions.

1. Given the 2009 ruling that PGO shotguns are firearms but not shotguns, what on earth keeps them (those over .50 cal) from being Destructive Devices (since the shotgun exception no longer applies) other than the ATF's unwillingness "to go there"? Perhaps this is a question better unasked.

2. Given the 2009 ruling that PGO shotguns are firearms but not shotguns, do the recent rulings changing "one a rifle, always a rifle" to "first a rifle, always a rifle" (pistol or firearm can be configured as a rifle and changed back without being "made from a rifle") also means that a PGO could be converted to a shotgun and back?

3. Would an integral silencer on a muzzle loader or a pre-1898 antique (both non-firearms) be acceptable in the same fashion some integral air gun silencers which have been marketed recently (Gamo Wisper, Stoeger X20)? This could be accomplished by permanently attacking the main body tube before adding internal parts (or even before completing the machining of the main body tube to accept the parts).

Interesting thoughts . . .

Mike

If you enjoyed reading about "Things I would like the ATF to clarify" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Sam1911
August 26, 2013, 05:11 PM
Pulled from the other thread where we're discussing this:

However, and here is the really tricky part, if they are no longer shotguns, then they no longer fall under the shotgun exception for destructive devices with a bore over one half inch. The ATF has not taken the next logical step and announced that they are all DDs, although they don't seem to have any statutory discression in the matter like they do with shotguns.

Many PSGs were sold as shotguns before the 2009 decision and as "firearms" since. The only thing preventing these non-shotguns from being Destructive Devices appears to be the unwillingness of the ATF to "go there".Probably because that would be a pointless battle, galactically unenforceable across a nation filled with those guns already in private hands, and so extremely hard to "sell" to anyone as an appropriate exercise of their power.

It's not like they'd be sending a thousand or two letters to Akins Accelerator owners. They'd have to notify MILLIONS of private citizens, and quite a few LEO users as well and then try to get registration compliance and enforcement. It would be a total debacle and embarrassment. And then what? Try to force them to put on a full stock and throw the PG away? Or does that constitute destroying evidence of an illegal unregistered Title II firearm?

Yeah, they don't want to "go there" -- AT ALL.

2. Given the 2009 ruling that PGO shotguns are firearms but not shotguns, do the recent rulings changing "one a rifle, always a rifle" to "first a rifle, always a rifle" (pistol or firearm can be configured as a rifle and changed back without being "made from a rifle") also means that a PGO could be converted to a shotgun and back?That has always been ASSUMED. As several manufacturers have sold combo kits of shotguns with PG and standard stocks and a pair of barrels for years -- without being challenged in court like TC back in '92.

Assumed isn't the same thing as stated, of course, but many things with law are what they are due to common use. If these things did NOT exist widely and the question was asked "can we?" -- the answer might well be "no." As they've been in common circulation for decades, in the hundreds of thousands or potentially millions, the matter becomes COMPLETELY un-actionable. The ATF couldn't try to make a stand on that if they got the nutty idea that they should. It would be like the Mayor of New Orleans walking down to the bank of the Mississippi and loudly ordering it to turn around and go the other way.

dogtown tom
August 26, 2013, 05:18 PM
Arizona_Mike The ATF has clarified a ton of things in the last 4 years, but I still have some questions.

1. Given the 2009 ruling that PGO shotguns are firearms but not shotguns, what on earth keeps them (those over .50 cal) from being Destructive Devices (since the shotgun exception no longer applies) other than the ATF's unwillingness "to go there"? Perhaps this is a question better unasked.
What 2009 "Ruling"?
"Shotgun" was defined decades ago. Nothing happened in 2009 to change that definition.

They are not DD's because the firearm expells a shotgun shell.

2. Given the 2009 ruling that PGO shotguns are firearms but not shotguns, do the recent rulings changing "one a rifle, always a rifle" to "first a rifle, always a rifle" (pistol or firearm can be configured as a rifle and changed back without being "made from a rifle") also means that a PGO could be converted to a shotgun and back?
Once you place a shoulder stock on a PGO, it is now a "Shotgun".......remove the shoulder stock and put a PGO doesn't change its "type" from "Other Firearm".

Midwest
August 26, 2013, 05:58 PM
The USAS-12 ,Striker 12 and Street Sweeper also shot shotgun shells. Originally these were sold as a regular rifle over the counter.

Then the BATF reclassified it as NFA because it didn't have a sporting purpose (according to the BATF). And then they had the amnesty for that and it closed May 1 2001.

http://www.atf.gov/regulations-rulings/rulings/atf-rulings/atf-ruling-2001-1.html



"Thus, although the classification of the three shotguns as NFA weapons
was retroactive, the prospective application of the tax provisions allowed
registration without payment of tax. ATF has contacted all purchasers
of record of the shotguns to advise them of the classification of the
weapons as destructive devices and that the weapons must be registered.
ATF has registered approximately 8,200 of these weapons to date."

Sam1911
August 26, 2013, 06:27 PM
What 2009 "Ruling"?
"Shotgun" was defined decades ago. Nothing happened in 2009 to change that definition.No no. He's saying that the ATF changed the 4473 form to indicate that PGO shotguns (and stripped receivers, and belt-fed, stockless semi-autos, etc.) are "Firearms" -- not shotguns or rifles.

So, a PGO is not technically a 'shotgun' in the eyes of the BATFE. Or, at least it isn't until you put a full stock on it to make it "designed or re-designed to be fired from the shoulder" as the wording of the NFA actually says.

They are not DD's because the firearm expells a shotgun shell.Well, that's at least part of the answer.

The ATF's FAQ says this:

Destructive Device

26 U.S.C. 5845(F)

For the purposes of the National Firearms Act, the term “Destructive Device” means:

A missile having an explosive or incendiary charge of more than 1/4 oz.
Any type of weapon by whatever name known which will, or which may readily be converted to expel a projectile, by the action of an explosive or other propellant, the barrel or barrels of which have a bore greater than one-half inch in diameter.
A combination of parts designed and intended for use in converting a device into a destructive device and from which a destructive device can be readily assembled.
Various destructive devices including a M79 grenade launcher, grenades, and artillery.

Exemptions:

A shotgun or shotgun shell which is determined by the Attorney General to be generally recognized as particularly suitable for sporting purposes.
a device which is neither designed nor redesigned for use as a weapon,
a device which is designed or redesigned for use as a signaling, pyrotechnic, line-throwing, safety, or similar device,
surplus ordnance sold, loaded, or given by the Secretary of the Army pursuant to law such as antique, obsolete bronze or iron cannon,
a device which the Attorney General determines is not likely to be used as a weapon.
An antique firearm, or
a rifle which the owner intended to use solely for sporting purposes.

But, if the device you're holding does not meet the legal definition of a "shotgun" how is it then able to be exempted?

The law actually states:
(4) The term “destructive device” means—
(A) any explosive, incendiary, or poison gas—
(i) bomb,
(ii) grenade,
(iii) rocket having a propellant charge of more than four ounces,
(iv) missile having an explosive or incendiary charge of more than one-quarter ounce,
(v) mine, or
(vi) device similar to any of the devices described in the preceding clauses;

(B) any type of weapon (other than a shotgun or a shotgun shell which the Attorney General finds is generally recognized as particularly suitable for sporting purposes) by whatever name known which will, or which may be readily converted to, expel a projectile by the action of an explosive or other propellant, and which has any barrel with a bore of more than one-half inch in diameter; and
(C) any combination of parts either designed or intended for use in converting any device into any destructive device described in subparagraph (A) or (B) and from which a destructive device may be readily assembled.

The term “destructive device” shall not include any device which is neither designed nor redesigned for use as a weapon; any device, although originally designed for use as a weapon, which is redesigned for use as a signaling, pyrotechnic, line throwing, safety, or similar device; surplus ordnance sold, loaned, or given by the Secretary of the Army pursuant to the provisions of section 4684(2), 4685, or 4686 of title 10; or any other device which the Attorney General finds is not likely to be used as a weapon, is an antique, or is a rifle which the owner intends to use solely for sporting, recreational or cultural purposes.
(5) The term “shotgun” means a weapon designed or redesigned, made or remade, and intended to be fired from the shoulder and designed or redesigned and made or remade to use the energy of an explosive to fire through a smooth bore either a number of ball shot or a single projectile for each single pull of the trigger.
(6) The term “short-barreled shotgun” means a shotgun having one or more barrels less than eighteen inches in length and any weapon made from a shotgun (whether by alteration, modification or otherwise) if such a weapon as modified has an overall length of less than twenty-six inches.

So, again, if the law says SHOTGUNS can be exempted, but this device ISN'T a shotgun, ... well, that's what Arizona Mike's hung up on. The fact that it "expels" a shotgun shell (or something like that) doesn't really define it as a "shotgun" because all PGOs do and they AREN'T "shotguns!"

Once you place a shoulder stock on a PGO, it is now a "Shotgun".......remove the shoulder stock and put a PGO doesn't change its "type" from "Other Firearm".Say again? Once you put a full stock on a PGO, it is now a "shotgun." (That's the "redesigned" aspect.)

Recently the ATF changed it's mind on the results of the old Thompson -vs.- US case and decided that as long as you start with a pistol (or a non-rifle "firearm") you can make it into a rifle and then back into a pistol at will. If it started as a RIFLE, you cannot do that without first registering it as a Title II weapon.

What Mike is asking is, does that new understanding translate to PGO-style "firearms" as well as rifle-style "firearms."

I'd say that since they are both "firearms" then how could it not?

dogtown tom
August 26, 2013, 07:20 PM
Sam1911 Quote:
What 2009 "Ruling"?
"Shotgun" was defined decades ago. Nothing happened in 2009 to change that definition.

No no. He's saying that the ATF changed the 4473 form to indicate that PGO shotguns (and stripped receivers, and belt-fed, stockless semi-autos, etc.) are "Firearms" -- not shotguns or rifles.
ATF only updated the 4473, they didn't change Federal law or ATF regulations. (and the update occured in 2008, not 2009)


Say again? Once you put a full stock on a PGO, it is now a "shotgun."
When a dealer logs in a PGO it's logged into my books as an "Other Firearm and listed on the 4473 as "pistol grip shotgun" oddly enough. (see Instructions to Que.18 on page 5 of the 4473)

If that customer removes the PG, adds a shoulder stock and sells/trades/transfers that firearm to another dealer.........he'll log it into his books as a "shotgun". If he records it as an "Other" he's wrong.

Arizona_Mike
August 26, 2013, 07:46 PM
I was referring to the changes announced in the 2009 newsletter. My understanding is that they added "firearm" for virgin receivers in 2008 but then put PGOs in that category in 2009.

The 2009 newsletter warned that PGOs could not be sold to minors or residents of contiguous states as regular shotguns could.

Mike

Sam1911
August 26, 2013, 07:53 PM
If that customer removes the PG, adds a shoulder stock and sells/trades/transfers that firearm to another dealer.........he'll log it into his books as a "shotgun". If he records it as an "Other" he's wrong.
Sure! Same as if someone buys an AR-15 receiver, builds it as a pistol, rebuilds it as a rifle, (and back and forth 37 times), and then sells it to a dealer in rifle configuration. The dealer logs it as a rifle. However, a new buyer wouldn't be breaking the law, or even the atf's interpretation of it, if he then rebuilds it into a pistol. Uninforcable. But I think we're getting off track.

Sam1911
August 26, 2013, 07:58 PM
The 2009 newsletter warned that PGOs could not be sold to minors or residents of contiguous states as regular shotguns could.
Right, because it isn't a "shotgun" in their eyes.

I like to think of these little conundrums as just nails in the eventual coffin of the NFA and GCA. When enough judges acknowledge that these laws are arbitrary,capricious and unencorcable, as well as being pointless, they'll be struck down. Unfortunately, for now, few judges want to have to think about it.

dogtown tom
August 26, 2013, 08:10 PM
Sam1911 .....I like to think of these little conundrums as just nails in the eventual coffin of the NFA and GCA.
I'm 56............it won't happen in my lifetime.:cuss:

If you enjoyed reading about "Things I would like the ATF to clarify" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!