Can you legally build a silencer for your air rifle?

Forums General Discussion Can you legally build a silencer for your air rifle?

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    Richard300
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    I know you need a license to build a silencer for a powder burner in the U.S.A.
    Whats the law for building one for a air rifle or air pistol?
    I am talking about building one in the U.S.A. 
    I have some ideas how I would like to build one ….but I’m not sure if I would end up in the big house…if you know what i mean.
    Thanks Richard

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    gorgata
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    you can legally build one for you air gun unless the state in witch you are shooting has a law that stipulates other wise as most states do not see air guns as fire arms
    ​neil who is one here custom laces ldc for guns contact him for more info  

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    I_Like_Irons
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    It is not a license that you need to build one for a firearm, it is an approved Form 1 with returned $200 tax stamp.   You file the Form 1 (you can do this electronically) send in your fingerprints (I’m not sure if you have to get your Chief Law Enforcement Officer to sign off on it still, or not—that part is changing), pay the tax, and wait. 

    One of the problems with building one for an airgun, is that it must be of a design that cannot be put onto a firearm.  Any screw threads that allow attachment to a barrel, is construed to be an NFA controlled firearm.  See here for the ATF’s opinion on the matter:  https://www.atf.gov/firearms/qa/are-paintball-andor-airgun-sound-suppressers-nfa-firearms

    ETA:  You can always ask to make sure your design is O.K. or not.  Here is the link on who to contact at the ATF:  https://www.atf.gov/firearms/qa/if-i-have-any-further-questions-classification-paintball-or-airgun-silencer-who-should-i

    This is one very dark grey area that I personally don’t want to venture into without filing the Form 1 and paying the $200 tax.  Going this route ensures that it cannot come back to bite you. 

     

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    Richard300
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    Thanks for the info…. good to know
    richard

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    danhor7
    Participant
    Member

    Interesting.
    “Numerous paintball and airgun silencers tested by ATF’s Firearms Technology Branch have been determined to be, by nature of their design and function, firearm silencers. ”

    Guess I “owe” the tax man.

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    NeilClague
    Spectator
    Spectator

    Danhor I would not even joke about owing the Tax Man, if you make a statement like that you might get a knock on your door lol This saga never ends! Neil.

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    amoxom
    Participant
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    So most suppressors for powder burners are threaded for 1/2″ UNF with 28tpi thread as standard for most rimfire and 5.56mm center fire suppressor fittings. For larger calibers, threads go from 5/8″ UNF and 28tpi threads.

    Most air rifle manufacturers use a 1/2″ UNF with 20tpi threads as standard. That means they should not fit each other by these specifications.

    Am I missing something??

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    I_Like_Irons
    Participant
    Member

    “amoxom”So most suppressors for powder burners are threaded for 1/2″ UNF with 28tpi thread as standard for most rimfire and 5.56mm center fire suppressor fittings. For larger calibers, threads go from 5/8″ UNF and 28tpi threads.

    Most air rifle manufacturers use a 1/2″ UNF with 20tpi threads as standard. That means they should not fit each other by these specifications.

    Am I missing something??
     

    
Yes.  One can easily thread a barrel for any thread form you want.  In fact, there are some quick detachable suppressors that have unusual multi-pitch thread forms.  The muzzle is either threaded to accommodate or an adapter is made.  Plus, it is not hard to make an adapter either.  The ATF has it’s opinion published, and that essentially becomes the rule of law. 

    The mere fact that it is threaded for attachment to the muzzle, means to the ATF, that it can be attached to a firearm as well.  The ATF has also ruled that even if the thing cannot withstand the pressures of a firearm, if it reduces the sound for even one shot, it is a silencer and thus falls under the NFA (National Firearms Act). 

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    hammerforged
    Spectator
    Spectator

    “I_Like_Irons”

    “amoxom”So most suppressors for powder burners are threaded for 1/2″ UNF with 28tpi thread as standard for most rimfire and 5.56mm center fire suppressor fittings. For larger calibers, threads go from 5/8″ UNF and 28tpi threads.

    Most air rifle manufacturers use a 1/2″ UNF with 20tpi threads as standard. That means they should not fit each other by these specifications.

    Am I missing something??
     

    
Yes.  One can easily thread a barrel for any thread form you want.  In fact, there are some quick detachable suppressors that have unusual multi-pitch thread forms.  The muzzle is either threaded to accommodate or an adapter is made.  Plus, it is not hard to make an adapter either.  The ATF has it’s opinion published, and that essentially becomes the rule of law. 

    The mere fact that it is threaded for attachment to the muzzle, means to the ATF, that it can be attached to a firearm as well.  The ATF has also ruled that even if the thing cannot withstand the pressures of a firearm, if it reduces the sound for even one shot, it is a silencer and thus falls under the NFA (National Firearms Act). 

    
That last section of the ATF viewpoint:

    if it reduces the sound for even one shot, it is a silencer and thus falls under the NFA (National Firearms Act). 

    remember they have unlimited resources for lawyers if they decide to go after somebody

    that said their view would include many things like plastic soda bottles, oil filters, potatoes , pillows rolled up carpet etc etc if they want to push it if they can show you had intent to use it as a NFA item ur screwed ….actually even if you fight it and win ur screwed as it will cost you a stack of cash to fight it 

    I would love to see if Crosman or anybody else got a legal opinion from BATF b4 the built rifles like the Marauder …..I just dont see a company proceeding with production and sales if they didn’t have it in writing that the design was totally legal 

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    gamyrick
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    This question has been debated for many years on many forums. The only opinion that you or anyone else has to be concerned with, is that of the prosecutor who is handling your case. There are no guarantees and that’s why air gun retailers such as AOA and Pyramyd Air have disclaimers on their web sites and will not sell them. 

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    NeilClague
    Spectator
    Spectator

    Sorry but what the ATF publishes is NOT the rule of law, what is ruled by the courts is the rule of law and the ATF was clearly put in their place by a federal judge. They were told that they do not have any control over air rifles so they have no control over silencers made for use on air rifles. There are still too many back yard lawyers posting on these air gun sites trying to outlaw silencers on air guns by trying to frighten people for using them. The ATF was also told that they could not include anything that can be altered for use on a gun is a silencer, it is too vague and encompasses too many things, they can only include silencers that are made for fire arms. Where air  guns are legal to use, so are silencers on them, unless there is some other ordinance laid out by their city against their use. The ATF does not control what is used on  air guns, they might like to include them but they were told by the judge  they can not. So please lets put this to rest, it has been hashed out way too many times and there are still going to be those who do not like them and will try and stop them being used. I have it from lawyers and police officers, that they are perfectly legal for using on air guns! Neil.

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    hammerforged
    Spectator
    Spectator

    I respect what you know and totally agree ATF should be aisles at Wal Mart not a government agency 

    Problem with our legal system is each district can make rulings :( until the Supreme Court rules its not country wide and expensive to prove it out in a new district …It sucks 

    all it takes is one ATF or LE type worker to decide to pursue it even if they are totally wrong and major hassle 

    would be great if a national Air rifle company would start to market versions and settle this once and for all country wide

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    NeilClague
    Spectator
    Spectator

    As far as I am concerned it has been ruled on by a federal judge who trumps the ATF, I have been told by lawyers who have read the ruling that the ATF clearly has no control over anything made for use on air rifles, and I have also had them inspected by my local Sheriffs department. I have sold them to police officers, serving and retired and also sold one to a deputy police chief, as well as a couple of them to attorneys, so I hardly think the ATF is going to purse anything made for use on air guns. They might blow a lot of hot air and try and dissuade people from using them, but their rules apply to fire arms and not air guns. If you look at Brococks they are now importing them with screw on silencers, and these are being sold over here with them on the guns, so they are being marketed openly over here, Neil.

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    AZBOBCAT
    Participant
    Member

    I think where people miss the boat is anything can be construed as illegal in a court room,  if you commit a felony the Law will try and use anything against you, a potaoe…..silencer a pillow…..silencer  a pop bottle…..silencer …. Now how many of you carry a screwdriver or a hammer in your car?  Both of those are B&E tools if you are on the wrong side of the law and are being prosecuted.  Neil trying to get people to understand facts is impossible . I have been involved with Class 3 firearms for the last 20 + years you just can’t believe the nonsense some people come up with and swear it is fact…..I try and stay out of these debates let those that are incorrect think what they want you won’t change their mind. They are missing out……. guess I will tell my neighbor the BATFE agent to put the cuffs on when we go shoot the airguns LOL

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    RonDriessen
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    Correct me if i’m wrong but is it against the U.S. / State law to put a silencer on your Airgun? I always thought America did invent the silencer.

    Ron

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    Goodtogo
    Participant
    Member

    Well many air guns come with a barrel that will reduce the sound. And they are sold in the US. Most don’t call them a “silencer” since they don’t really do away with all sound.
    Gamo even named a line of air guns “whisper” and then made them able to shoot past the sound barrier which made them pop. It seems if its made on the barrel and you can’t remove it they let it go? Gamo calls them “Non-removable noise dampener (with up to 52% reduction) in the ad for the rifle.

    And even if you put one on a powder burner its not that big a deal. Just paperwork and $200 for the tax stamp…………and then months and months of waiting.

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    hammerforged
    Spectator
    Spectator

    to ripp off a quote from a famous American

    “government is not the solution…government is the problem” 

    seriously MONTHS to process a simple form?? 

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    gamyrick
    Participant
    Member

    Ron,
    The United States is exactly that – 50 individual united states. There are local, county, state and federal laws. Although federal law (by omission) may permit the use of a silencer in conjunction with an air rifle, local, county or state law may prohibit it. Currently, there is no Federal Law that clearly defines the use of silencers on air rifles and therefore some risks is involved with the use of such devices. Most air gun manufacturers handle this issue by permanently affixing the silencer to the barrel or barrel shroud for the US market.  

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    RonDriessen
    Participant
    Member

    Hi Gamyrick,

    Thanks for your clarification. We, here in the Netherlands always thought that everything is possible in the States. Here is everything possible I mean for Airguns. We use extremely powerfull Airgiuns against the Somalian pirates. Why? For firearms we have all kinds of regulations and it’s not allowed for private security guards to use firearms. So, we invent the most powerfull Airguns in the whole world with more 1000 joules of energy. The only problem with our Airguns is that you only may used them in your own backyard and as you maybe know the Netherlands is a small crowded country and our backyards are also not so big. Try to picture this with a 300 joules Airgun in your 12 yard garden. Wow, thats a lot of fun. One day I hope to visit the States for some Airgun hunting.

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    Yote
    Participant
    Member

    So I watched a preview on the gamo whisper and their so called dampener.long story short they don’t do a thing it’s a empty tube big marketing hoax

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