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Thread: "Accidental" NFA Firearm

  1. #1
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    "Accidental" NFA Firearm

    Hypothetical question here (Mods please move/delete if inappropriate)

    What is the best course of action if someone inadvertently creates an NFA firearm? With an AR, it is as easy as separating the upper from the lower; a shotgun is almost the same, just remove the barrel(s). What if you have something that does not come apart so easily...say an early 92 or 94 Winchester that was converted to a mare's leg way back in the day? Destruction is not an option (well not a good one!). Could/should a gunsmith be able to remove the offending parts or would they be legally and/or ethically required to report?

    Again, a thought exercise only!

  2. #2
    Site Supporter Gray Ghost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bajasr100 View Post
    Hypothetical question here (Mods please move/delete if inappropriate)

    What is the best course of action if someone inadvertently creates an NFA firearm? With an AR, it is as easy as separating the upper from the lower; a shotgun is almost the same, just remove the barrel(s). What if you have something that does not come apart so easily...say an early 92 or 94 Winchester that was converted to a mare's leg way back in the day? Destruction is not an option (well not a good one!). Could/should a gunsmith be able to remove the offending parts or would they be legally and/or ethically required to report?

    Again, a thought exercise only!
    Consult a lawyer who is knowledgeable about NFA issues. Your conversations with said lawyer will be privileged.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by bajasr100 View Post
    Hypothetical question here (Mods please move/delete if inappropriate)

    What is the best course of action if someone inadvertently creates an NFA firearm? With an AR, it is as easy as separating the upper from the lower; a shotgun is almost the same, just remove the barrel(s). What if you have something that does not come apart so easily...say an early 92 or 94 Winchester that was converted to a mare's leg way back in the day? Destruction is not an option (well not a good one!). Could/should a gunsmith be able to remove the offending parts or would they be legally and/or ethically required to report?

    Again, a thought exercise only!
    How early ? There are exceptions for pre-1898 guns that left the factory as SBRs etc. Iím aware of pre-1898 Winchester 1894s with 14Ē barrels and ATF exemption letters.

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    Quote Originally Posted by HCM View Post
    Iím aware of pre-1898 Winchester 1894s with 14Ē barrels and ATF exemption letters.
    If you look at the C&R list, the ones in the list are specifically exempted by serial number. IIRC those guns are all owned by government-funded museums.

    To the OP's original question, one way to "solve" the problem would be to submit a form 1 to make it into an SBR or SBS or whatever. But submitting a form 1 is asking for permission to make an NFA firearm once the form is approved. It's not to register a firearm that already exists in NFA-regulated form. I'm sure more than a few people have registered such firearms after the fact, though.

    The method with least potential for legal problems would be to strip the gun down to a bare receiver, then get a torch and chop up the receiver. Sell the other parts later if desired.

  5. #5
    Site Supporter ST911's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bajasr100 View Post
    Hypothetical question here (Mods please move/delete if inappropriate) What is the best course of action if someone inadvertently creates an NFA firearm? With an AR, it is as easy as separating the upper from the lower; a shotgun is almost the same, just remove the barrel(s). What if you have something that does not come apart so easily...say an early 92 or 94 Winchester that was converted to a mare's leg way back in the day? Destruction is not an option (well not a good one!). Could/should a gunsmith be able to remove the offending parts or would they be legally and/or ethically required to report? Again, a thought exercise only!
    In each of some examples I'm aware of that were legitimate errors, the smith immediately removed and destroyed (or lawfully repurposed) the offending component and repaired the firearm. When shenanigans were afoot, the smith refused the work. The times that LE or BATF was called, if the problem was resolved (and sometimes when it wasn't) they weren't interested unless there were other qualifying offenses or thresholds.

    Legal and ethical reporting requirements are local and vary, but tend to not be an issue. This happens a lot.
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  6. #6
    Hillbilly Elitist Malamute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CleverNickname View Post
    The method with least potential for legal problems would be to strip the gun down to a bare receiver, then get a torch and chop up the receiver. Sell the other parts later if desired.
    Gads NO! Once the barrel is removed, theres no earthly reason to destroy a good receiver, especially something like an early 92 or 94, the receiver isnt the offending part, the barrel is. A bad barrel could be removed with a bench vise padded with brass on the jaws to hold the front end of the receiver and a pipe wrench used to remove the barrel. No need for special tools to remove a barrel thats junk, certainly not at the expense of the receiver. If nothing else, a piece of pipe could be welded to the end of the barrel to make it proper length until proper tools were available to replace it with a good one.
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  7. #7
    What if I didnít tell anyone whatís in my pocket.......


    The gummy bears arenít going to jump out and give their position away to passers by

    Iíd take the gummy out before handing the pants off to a dry cleaner. Besides that Id feel the issue is well handled

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    Quote Originally Posted by CleverNickname View Post
    If you look at the C&R list, the ones in the list are specifically exempted by serial number. IIRC those guns are all owned by government-funded museums.

    To the OP's original question, one way to "solve" the problem would be to submit a form 1 to make it into an SBR or SBS or whatever. But submitting a form 1 is asking for permission to make an NFA firearm once the form is approved. It's not to register a firearm that already exists in NFA-regulated form. I'm sure more than a few people have registered such firearms after the fact, though.

    The method with least potential for legal problems would be to strip the gun down to a bare receiver, then get a torch and chop up the receiver. Sell the other parts later if desired.
    Iíve seen at least one for sale at Cabelas gun room.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Malamute View Post
    Gads NO! Once the barrel is removed, theres no earthly reason to destroy a good receiver, especially something like an early 92 or 94, the receiver isnt the offending part, the barrel is. A bad barrel could be removed with a bench vise padded with brass on the jaws to hold the front end of the receiver and a pipe wrench used to remove the barrel. No need for special tools to remove a barrel thats junk, certainly not at the expense of the receiver. If nothing else, a piece of pipe could be welded to the end of the barrel to make it proper length until proper tools were available to replace it with a good one.
    I guess I should clarify, "bare receiver" in the sense that it would still have a barrel attached to it. If our theoretical gun owner can remove a barrel, then there's no problem, he can save the receiver. But if he can't remove the barrel, a short barrel on a rifle receiver is still a problem, so the only solutions that don't involve taking the gun to a gunsmith are registration or destruction. I guess he could try removing the barrel himself and if he screws it up too badly, then he's no worse than if he just sets out to destroy the receiver in the first place.

  10. #10
    Site Supporter Lon's Avatar
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    I donít think registration at this point is an option. Look at section 3.2.1

    https://www.atf.gov/firearms/docs/gu...53208/download

    Maybe it can be removed from under the NFA - see section 2.4.

    Best bet is to check w a good NFA knowledgeable attorney.
    Formerly known as xpd54.
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