ATF Rules 40mm Practice “Chalk” Rounds Are Explosives, Destructive Devices

m203-Firing

In a head-scratching ruling, the ATF has reclassified 40mm practice (“chalk”) rounds and 40mm flares as “destructive devices”, putting them in the same category as actual explosive 40mm grenade ammunition. While several sources have covered this topic, the best treatment I have seen comes from WeaponsMan, and is reproduced in part below:

Ammunition they have confirmed they are confiscating is M992 infrared illumination and the M781 training practice round (seen below on the range, as featured in a WeaponsMan.com story last year).

m203 Firing

The practice round has a plastic shell and contains a day-glow orange (and naturally degradable, environmentally friendly, even) chalk filling. It’s supposed to be a ballistic match for the HEDP round.

Here are some comments from an Arfcom thread on the subject. The original post:

“Apparently the 40mm M992 IR flares are considered to be a explosive round. This is news to me. They got my name from the dealer I purchased them from, apparently they didn’t know either. Any one have any info on this. I’ve been googling it for a couple of hours now and can’t find anything.

“He left his card on my front door. He said he was going to bring a copy of the explosives tech branch ruling.”

The follow-up after the ATF visit, emphasis ours:

“Ok so a update. The agent that showed up was an actual bomb tech. I surrendered the rounds under protest per the advice of a attorney. The bomb tech was a really cool guy. He agreed that it was pretty stupid and he hated to do it but he was being forced to help out with the case. He did also tell me that they had sent him out to take 40mm chalk rounds under the same case. I walked out to the truck with him and watched him place the rounds in the explosive magazine in his truck. When I told him I was surrendering the rounds under protest he looked at me and said “good I hope you can fight it and get them back because this whole situation is stupid.” I’m not sure if I will go to court over it or not. I’m not out enough money for it to be a big deal but it’s an issue that has me concerned. I know there are not enough people out there with registered DD M203’s for this case to ever become a big deal but it is really shitty that as far as I can tell all 40mm rounds are considered to be Low Explosives and can not be owned unless you have a explosive licence.”

Note that the “explosives tech branch ruling” has not been furnished, although this letter is circulating. It was addressed to the original Arfcom poster’s dealer, the one that had sold him the rounds.

40mm M992 Confiscation Letter.pdf

And, a comment in the same Arfcom thread by a different user:

“I just contacted my Senator and OMB concerning this. My Senator is very concerned and OMB’s response was interesting in that they say ATF is citing one section of law while ignoring others that define what makes a DD. OMB believes that ATF may be outside of the law on this and will be contacting my Senator tomorrow. After a nice discussion with an investigator there, it appears ATF is fudging the language of the applied section of code to make a determination to allow them to confiscate. The investigator with OMB believes that this may warrant action against FTB in BATFE. We shall see what happens if anything. But there is absolutely no doubt that BATFE is deliberately incorrectly interpreting the section of code and is pursuing illegal action.”

…[Hognose continues]…

Our friends inside ATF say that the initiative was conceived and planned in the Chief Counsel’s Office. That way, managers have explained to the rank and file, they won’t have to answer questions to the public, press or Congress “because everything is under lawyer-client privilege.” They seemed to split on whether Acting Director Thomas Brandon initiated this policy or merely signed off on it. “It wasn’t his idea,” one told us flatly. “He’s not that bright. It came from the lawyers, or from DOJ through the lawyers.”

For what reason the ATF would want to regulate harmless marker rounds is puzzling. It appears however that the ATF has taken action to confiscate these rounds from owners, despite the fact that they contain no actual explosive material.



Nathaniel F

Nathaniel is a history enthusiast and firearms hobbyist whose primary interest lies in military small arms technological developments beginning with the smokeless powder era. In addition to contributing to The Firearm Blog, he runs 196,800 Revolutions Per Minute, a blog devoted to modern small arms design and theory. He can be reached via email at nathaniel.f@staff.thefirearmblog.com.


Advertisement

  • Darkpr0

    Better confiscate those rounds! Wouldn’t want people decorating sidewalks or anything.

    Fun fact: Canadians can’t own actual underbarrel launchers but we have plenty of aftermarket underbarrel “flare launchers” capable of launching your favorite flares and smoke grenades. Does this make us more free than you guys now?

    • DW

      Search for 37mm flare launchers on Gunbroker 😀

      No, Canada still cannot into same freedom as the Uncle Sam

    • Sianmink

      I’m still upset you guys can have short barrel shotguns with no paperwork.

      • Darkpr0

        You should be angrier that we had a better-built M1a by Norinco for 385 dollars a couple years ago >:D

        • Sianmink

          Eh. I’ve got a pre-ban Norinco NHM-91. XD

          • Darkpr0

            I have a pre-ban everything 😀 Who needs a stupid ban?

            T97s are nice.

          • mosinman

            but you can’t get anything that looks like a spooky AK can you?

          • Darkpr0

            There are prohibitions on certain weapons, but the fact is they ban by “scariness” rather than effectiveness. The AK is a very neat old platform, but it doesn’t have any magic to it. If you like 7.62×39 there are plenty modern (and in Canada, non-restricted) alternatives that have much better performance.

          • mosinman

            like the VZ.58
            it’s humorous that there are governments everywhere than ban certain guns just because of how they look

    • Rock or Something

      Canada is weird about certain stuff like that. It’s like you take one step forward ahead of us, but take two steps back while we are still stuck in one spot.

      Weird, like your bagged milk.

    • Guy

      I sense a Polandball strip soon…

    • Rick5555

      Due to firearms are registered in Canada. Your country will never be freer than USA when it pertains to firearms. Come on we know are ATF is out of control. In part due to the political climate currently in charge. However, the man in the office playing president. Is out in 18 months. And more and more people are aware of what our politicians are attempting to accomplish. Hence firearm sales were subsequently 140% increase. More and more Americans are waking up. Constitutional Carry (conceal carry) is occurring in more states now (8). And many states are still debating Constitutional Carry. So I don’t think you guys up north are more free or even closer to it. Than America.

      • Darkpr0

        Any citizen who is licensed to acquire firearms can call a gun store across the country, purchase whatever their license permits, and have it sent straight to them. That’s pretty neat. Despite my stupid joke, freedom is not point on a line. It is, unfortunately, much more complicated than that.

        Also the long gun registry is gone. It was struck down, and, in fact, would not have substantially contributed to an increase in government power to track or seize firearms. The citizenry have a lot of ways to prevent firearms from being seized very easily under Canadian law.

        • Mystick

          Things fall off of boats all the time.

          • iksnilol

            Yep, life’s too short to waste it securing your guns to your deck-

      • marathag

        But I believe Canadians can have open bolt semiautos with it not being their equivalent of a NFA item like in USA

        • Cymond

          Canada’s laws regarding shotgun barrel length are more lenient than the US, but it’s harder to acquire the shotgun itself.

    • Bal256

      Some things I am jealous of Canada, like cheap M-14s, SVT-40s, and Type 95, and other imports. But no, I would not give up my AR/AK, castle doctrine, right to carry and >10 round capacity magazines among other rights for that.

  • avconsumer2

    ffs… really ATF? Do you need to make more stupid decisions? Actually… strike that… make more stupid decisions. Maybe more senators will notice.

  • Azril @ Alex Vostox

    I’m sorry for this stupid question as it was come from a man from different firearms-culture. Why would a common civilian having a need for military-grade 40mm grenade launcher and rounds? Sure I understand for the need for uses of emergency flare or something like that. But, using a something that can be smuggled across the border and got similar component with a military/ “assault weapon” / “destructive Devices” is beyond my understanding. Why?

    • The short answer is that there are many things the common civilian does not need that they are still permitted to own in the United States, such as powerful computers, fast cars, some explosives, jacuzzis, wide screen televisions, megaphones, etc.

      Actual explosive ordnance is heavily regulated, however.

      • PK

        I wouldn’t call a minor tax and safe storage requirements “heavily regulated”. It’s somewhat akin to having a refrigerator where you place perishables, you place explosives in the correct storage spot.

        • Paul Epstein

          The incredibly important difference being that you can’t be put in prison for leaving the milk in the cupboard.

          • PK

            Absolutely! You are, of course, entirely correct on that point. I don’t agree with the regulations, I simply don’t think that they’re absurd to the point of being considered heavily regulated.

            It’s more about the principle of the thing than any difficulty in compliance or paying taxes. In principle, this is very clearly a case in which the items being seized are “arms” as spoken of in the 2nd Amendment.

          • Queltzl

            Something to keep in mind that the $200 tax in 1934 was meant to be oppressive, but isn’t anymore due to inflation. It would be around $3500 now if it was tied to inflation.

          • Mystick

            Now it’s just revenue.

          • KestrelBike

            You haven’t met my ex-wife!

        • J E

          It would be much less opressive if it was simply a tax at purchase — but in the US it instead goes like this — purchase item ( but you may not take posession of it ) to get the serial number, file paperwork with $200 and wait for 9 or so months for possible approval.

          It isn’t simply a tax. Also in this case EACH chalk round would need to have the paperwork and tax paid — every shot is taxed $200 and delayed many months.

          They background check us for the firearms in the first place — why can’t we just pay the $200 and go after passing it?

          • Mystick

            Are they even serialized? How can they track them if they aren’t?

          • iksnilol

            Can’t you reload them? I guess they’d serialize the case. Just ‘know, load to low pressures to make the brass last long.

        • Amplified Heat

          A 12 month wait for approval is ‘minor’ to you?!

    • DetroitMan

      These aren’t really about need. Hobbyists and reenactors have them for fun. A few points to answer your questions:
      1) People all over the world build trebuchets and air cannons that launch melons, and bring them to competitions. Those devices, while much larger, could certainly be destructive if put to bad use. Replace melons with rocks and you can do some serious damage. The point is, people everywhere enjoy hobbies that involve potentially destructive devices.
      2) Because these grenade launchers are entirely man-portable, they fit the technical definition of “arms” in our 2nd Amendment.
      3) Any criminal who wants one can get it, along with the actual grenades, on the black market. Restricting the law abiding from having access will only be a speed bump to determined criminals.
      4) The most puzzling thing about this ruling is that they are banning the mostly harmless rounds, but not the launcher itself. So it does nothing to address your concern about criminals getting their hands on a very destructive weapon.

      • DIR911911 .

        when was the last time a grenade launcher was used to rob the 7/11?

        • DetroitMan

          Never. But the antis, and apparently now the BATFE, are wetting their pants over the possibility that one could be used to rob the 7/11. Of course one wonders what kind of stupid it would take for a person to use a weapon with a kill radius measured in meters to rob a convenience store.

          Or maybe they are just concerned that the Moms Demand Action protestors will get illuminated and chalked in a manner similar to the way PETA likes to spraypaint people wearing fur.

    • Julio

      “Why would a common civilian [have] a need for…” Perhaps you don’t realise that this proposition is a mantra of gun control advocates. Regardless, it’s not a position anyone with a positive attitude to civilian gun ownership and an ounce of sense should assume.

    • Ko I

      Further, while it does sound like the tin-foil hat sort of stuff, the 2nd Amendment was, among other things, written to ensure that the people could remove their government, if it became entirely troublesome again. Hopefully we’ll never have to do so by force, but the threat of a civilian uprising is *supposed* to be what makes democracy work.

      • Mystick

        Replace “democracy” with a “democratic Republic”…. they are two very different beasts.

    • aka_mythos

      I think its important to point out that unlike the proper destructive device 40mm grenades there is a clear need for the two types of rounds they have “reclassified” and have started confiscating. Illumination rounds are basically flares, large caliber flares, but flares none the less; why do people use flare guns? -Safety and emergency signals where radio and cell phones aren’t viable. Chalk rounds are necessary for the safe practice and training with a 40mm launcher.

    • Rock or Something

      Bill of Rights, not the Bill of Needs. And what one person needs due to circumstances (flares for emergence us, practice to use, etc) should not be confined to another person’s narrative.

    • Azril @ Alex Vostox

      Welp, Everybody. Thanks for the answer! Thanks for enlighten me.

  • DetroitMan

    Remember, this is the same group that tried to reclassify M855 as “armor piercing”. The political agenda has trumped reason, logic, facts, and everything else. I know we aren’t supposed to get political on this site, but there really isn’t another explanation.

    • Joseph Smith

      Agreed.

      They are spending their days, paid for by our forced taxation, to push gun owners around.

    • nova3930

      Exactly. King Barack is pissed that we peasants have defied him, so the directive has come from on high to screw gun owners in any way possible. That’s the genesis of all these new regulations concerning firearms across the board.

  • Joseph Smith

    So it’s an explosive because it has propellant and a primer? That’s what I’m getting from the letter.

    Doesn’t also describe center fire ammunition? So I have a right to own a gun, but the ammunition is an explosive and illegal. BRILLIANT move.

    • McThag

      Could it be because the propellent in a 40mm round is still black powder?

      I remember being surprised that it was…

    • RocketScientist

      Yes, and no. Yes, the proellant and primer is what makes it explosive. As you not, this applies to all firearms ammunition, but the law specifically states there is an exemption for SMALL ARMS munitions. Their letter/ruling seems to state that since these rounds are not for small arms (ie, they have a bore over 0.5 in diameter and are not a shotgun) the normal ammunition exemption does not apply to them. Interestingly, this same logic would also mean that all aerial flares would be considered “low explosives”. Which is odd, considering the US Coast Guard REQUIRES boaters to have these as mandatory safety equipment. So if you are a boater, you can either be in violation of a BATFE ruling, or in violation of a USCG ruling, you have to pick one.

  • TheNotoriousIUD

    How easy would it be to modify these practice rounds and
    insert actual explosives which anyone with half a brain can mix up at
    home?

    • PK

      It would be easier and safer to start from scratch with empty cases entirely. Transitioning a chalk round to an explosive round would most likely be substantially more difficult.

      • TheNotoriousIUD

        Ive never even seen one of these rounds so I have no idea.
        So do you need a tax stamp to buy the launcher?

        • PK

          Yes – in the USA, any firearms that use a fixed cartridge and have a bore over .50″ are considered “large bore destructive devices” and must be registered. Certain shotguns are exempt as “sporting items”, such as the 870, while other shotguns aren’t exempt and are considered DDs, such as the Street Sweeper.

          • TheNotoriousIUD

            Stupid hippies.
            We need another Vietnam to thin out their ranks.

          • milesfortis

            Sorry, they’re too old for that.
            Try again.

          • Marcus D.

            Which means that cannon and .54 cal (or larger) muzzle loaders are exempt unless firing an explosive shell, correct?

  • USMC03Vet

    Out of control Government agency strikes again.

  • PK

    Well… if that’s really how they feel, if I must register each M781 round as a DD and have a storage magazine for HE ammunition in any case, I may as well just go ahead and register to make a whole lot of M203 rounds. If I’m paying $200 per cartridge and they have to go in the magazine, I’ll just use the real thing.

  • TheNotoriousIUD

    Next they’ll come for my t-shirt cannon.

    • Sianmink

      upcoming: ATF rules cheap diet soda as ‘destructive devices’ since they can be launched via can-cannon.

      • TheNotoriousIUD

        First time I saw one of those can launchers I wondered about the possibility of filling one with gasoline.

        • Sianmink

          I’m not sure I’d want to do that.
          Now, cement-filled cans, or launching shaving cream cans? you betcha.

          • TheNotoriousIUD

            Im just saying that a soda can could be filled with any number of explode-y things if one were so inclined.

          • DaveP

            You can fill it up with anything that pleases you. Getting it to work, though… that’s a whole different kettle of fish. And getting it to NOT work when you don’t want is an entirely different matter… go ask the Weather Underground.
            Shorter version: be much smarter, and not just for legal reasons, to stick with Diet Cheerwine.

          • TheNotoriousIUD

            Thats very true, people who play with explosives often end up blind and fingerless ( I still have mine). If I built the things now that I did as a teenager I would probably be in Gitmo.
            Regardless, I have no intention of buying a can launching upper. Though I admit its pretty cool.
            Next purchase will be a .300 SBR upper.

          • iksnilol

            Lemme guess, you followed my tip on getting a 300 BLK pistol upper since the FA lower isn’t restrained by petty things such as barrel length?

          • TheNotoriousIUD

            Yep, but ive got a whole list of that unfortunately has to come before that.
            Stupid bills.

          • iksnilol

            I know that feeling.

            Responsibilities>want

            We all wish we could prioritize the other way :P, I know I have some stuff to take care of before I buy a pimpin laptop but I am close now (about 6 months away).

            PS: Sorry for indirectly selling you a 300 BLK upper.

  • I could have sworn that the BATFE announced a rule change in the last year or so where they took the position that any ammunition for a Destructive Device was itself going to be considered a Destructive Device, even if the projectile was non-explosive.

    • PK

      Interesting! That would certainly change things, as even practice mortar bombs would then be DDs requiring registration and taxation. Do you have any idea what key words could be used to search for this determination? It could be quite enlightening.

      • I don’t see anything at the Federal Register (https://www.federalregister.gov), so may be misremembering it.

        • PK

          If you do find anything pertaining to what you originally said, please let me know. It would be very important information to have.

        • Mystick

          They don’t go by the law, but their “findings letters” and decisions made by functionaries buried behind the curtain of bureaucracy.

    • Patrick M.

      That would technically make all 12 gauge shotgun rounds destructive devices, would it not?

      • Smoothbores and their cartridges typically get a pass on the Destructive Device rules under a “sporting purposes” exemption. Of course, the BATFE gets to decide what is suitable for “sport.”

        • Cymond

          Yeah, but there are some 12ga Destructive Devices, like the USAS-12 and the Street Sweeper.

          • Exactly, the BATFE determined that they were not “sporting.” A few years ago, they also proposed doing the same to pistol grip shotguns.

  • wetcorps

    So they are really going door to door to confiscate things they just ruled illegal, using sales registeries to know who has what?
    I’m not from the US, but I would find this a little concerning.

    • PK

      It wouldn’t be the first time such seizures had been done by the ATF. It happens.

    • nadnerbus

      This is exactly why gun registrations are not so “common sense” with us pro 2nd amendment folks. All it takes is a little shift in the political winds, and suddenly law enforcement is at your door.

      At least in this case LE seems to have been respectful. No SWAT breaking down the door is always nice.

      Ask some of the California SKS owners back in 2000 or so about this.

    • Mystick

      Indeed. And they called us “tin-foil-hat” conspiracy theorists. They say “nobody is coming for your guns” as they are being inventoried by an agent and being removed from your gun safe, carted off for destruction. “Nothing to see here, move along…” Sickening.

    • Grindstone50k

      This is why when anti-gunners say “we’re not coming for your guns you nut” you know it’s a blatant lie. Gun registries are the first step to confiscation.

    • floppyscience

      I’m from Canada, where they did the same thing years ago with SPAS shotguns, Feather carbines, and a few other guns that were arbitrarily deemed illegal overnight, and which they tried to do again recently with Vz 58s and Swiss Arms rifles.

      When I came to the US people told me I was crazy for fearing registration could be used to identify and confiscate property.

  • Uniform223

    When I read this, this went through my head

    http://cdn.meme.am/instances/54582086.jpg

  • Urker

    They are not classified as “explosive” but they have to be stored as explosives and you must have a FEL. Also they are confiscating anything over 1/2 inch that is not specifically excluded ie 12g

    • milesfortis

      Well, then they better tell the military.
      I never stored chalk rounds any differently than regular small arms ammo.

      • Urker

        DOD doesn’t have to follow ATF rules dude.

        • milesfortis

          Uh, ‘Dude’, you’ll forgive me for forgetting the /sarc tag.
          You’re right about ATF *firearm* regs though, I never did.
          But for damn sure I followed DOT regs.
          And one thing you might not have known, DOD sure follows storage regs which mandate how different classes of ammo are stored and transported.

  • smartacus

    pride before the fall
    they think they are omnipotent

  • mosinman

    one of the multitudes of reasons why we should collectively stop listening to the ATF

  • Esh325

    Who honestly cares?

    • ostiariusalpha

      I do. I do not have a grenade launcher, and no intention of ever getting one, but I would very much like the BATFE to stop crapping out new BS rulings and just do some actual law enforcement. You know, like keeping guns from being smuggled to Mexican drug cartels and making sure that people that lie on the Form 4473 don’t get a weapon. Because they do such a good job at that.

    • aka_mythos

      Enough people collect NFA items. Data just came out last week that the total number of registered silencers just jumped from 170,000 or so to 800,000+ in less than 10 years. This shows a growing interest in these types of regulated items. So even you don’t personally care about 40mm grenades, you should care that an agency who regulates all firearms is so willing to ignore the legal definitions that govern its regulatory authority. If they can elevate a plastic egg filled with chalk to the same level as a high explosive grenade they can do anything.

    • PK

      I certainly do. I have many different types of 40mm rounds for my grenade launchers, including the apparently now-prohibited types.

  • aka_mythos

    Many question “why” these are even necessary? -Why do we need these? And maybe its a slippery slope to answer that question instead of arguing the ethical qualities of a prohibition, but I think its important to point out that unlike the proper destructive
    device 40mm grenades there is a clear need for the two types of rounds
    they have “reclassified” and have started confiscating. Illumination
    rounds are basically flares, large caliber flares, but flares none the
    less; why do people use flare guns? -Safety and emergency signals where
    radio and cell phones aren’t viable. Chalk rounds are necessary for the
    safe practice and training with a 40mm launcher.

    All that is before you consider that the definition of a Destructive Device specifically excludes flare and illumination devices. It is the signalling device exemptions that exclude flare guns and all flares. This is the part of the law they’re ignoring.

    The chalk rounds use the equivalent of a .38cal blank as a launching charge. If these are being deemed illegal because of that little amount of powder, they have some pretty thick blinders.

  • DIR911911 .

    so if you have some , head out and “dispose” of them at an appropriate range. nothing but left over casings here officer.

  • Phaideaux

    This is the same acting director that took over right before the “Sig braces are now a stock if you hold them wrong” opinion was published, right?

    Who appointed him?

    • ostiariusalpha

      Yep, good ol’ Max Kingery.

  • Lance

    Easy answer to why.Its Obama he wants to ban as much as possible so this is one thing with a pen he did ban.

  • Captain Obvious

    FYI, 40mm launchers are considered NFA DDs anyway but the ammo until this ruling were not unless explosive or anti-personnel. 37mm launchers are not DDs and thus the ammo for them is not unless they are explosive or anti-personnel rounds. That is unless and until the ATF says otherwise.

    • Urker

      Nope the ruling states that ANYTHING over 1/2 must be stored as explosives unless specifically exempted.
      Sucks!

  • Will P.

    You make all the food for those 40mm GLs highly restricted and you just made the GLs useless. Then nobody wants one, because you can’t shoot it right? Then the ATF can sleep happy at night because no one is running around with big scary GLs everywhere.

    • Cymond

      That’s my theory, too. Or they’re doing it just to do everything they can to mess over gun owners.

      It has to be malicious, it’s just too pointless to be a misguided attempt at doing something useful.

  • nadnerbus

    It would be really refreshing to see a government agency interpret a law in the least expansive way possible once in a while.

  • Why is the ATF still a thing?

  • Southpaw89

    By that logic the road flares I carry in my truck are destructive devices, I guess I should dispose of them responsibly, and watch helplessly as someone gets killed because I cant mark the next car accident I come across. OK, its and unlikely worst case scenario, but it makes this no less ridiculous.

  • Will

    What a crock of BS!!!
    The “Chalk” rounds we used to train with had no explosive value whatsoever.
    It was a plastic shell containing orange (for visibility) powder plus the base was a lead slug which weighed approximately one pound.
    It would punch through a wooden door and seriously damage a car door but did NOT explode.

  • Mystick

    Interesting, considering you can buy shell-cased flares of a similar size and launchers in most marina commissaries… of assorted flavors including parachute, +smoke, and even exploding.

  • ghost

    Might put somebody’s eye out. “Firearms, not politics”, seems to be out the door, so, I wonder if “the government” realizes when the people come for them, we will care what is banned or not? We will use what we have, and pick stuff up as we come.

  • Dan

    You mean to tell me you admitted to still having them? Why no Officer Bomb tech I just shot them up this last weekend it sure was a hoot!

  • Sam

    I feel like you read through the first page of the thread, but failed to read the remainder of it

  • HellBat

    This is starting to make sense now. After speaking with a manufacturer of 40mm launchers, I was told that most of the transfers of samples to “non-DD” NFA dealers/mfgrs had been denied recently.

  • Guest

    It’s a test. ATF is seeing if the people will submit to any form of confiscation. Chalk rounds may be harmless, but if they can confiscate something that is harmless, should it not be that much easier to confiscate harmful items?

  • john4637

    Just another boot stomp on our necks!!! Listen up, “NYET, COMRADE!”

  • Grindstone50k

    “For what reason the ATF would want to regulate harmless marker rounds is puzzling.”

    It really isn’t, especially given the recent track record.

  • jeff k

    so glad i didnt buy that spikes launcher i wanted

  • The Believer

    Well.. at least they didn’t storm in, shoot at you and then burn you to death. Hope and change!

  • Matt Shermer

    There’s a local manufacturer who specializes in 37mm and exotic 12 gauge who used to have cases and cases of 40mm Chalk for sale, he charged exorbitantly for them but I never held it against him since it was unique for this gun show. I guess those are gonna mysteriously disappear from his tables now…

  • iksnilol

    Look at the bright side, that 30 caliber grendel thingy won’t be SAAMI specced in a year or two. So you got some time to enjoy 300 BLK before it is shelved.

  • Cymond

    This is from June 2013, and I find it especially concerning. https://www.atf.gov/file/4826/download

    In short, it seems that tracer ammo can now be considered “explosives”, too.

    “In general, firearms ammunition is an “explosive”
    because it typically contains smokeless powder and other
    explosive materials. However, 18 U.S.C. §845 generally
    exempts small arms ammunition and components thereof
    from the provisions of 18 U.S.C., Chapter 40. ATF has
    long held that the term “small arms ammunition” pertains
    to .50 caliber or smaller rifle or handgun ammunition,
    as well as certain shotgun ammunition. Further, under
    27 CFR 555.11, ATF has defined “ammunition” in part,
    as “small arms ammunition or cartridge cases, primers,
    bullets, or smokeless propellants designed for use in
    small arms…” Accordingly, .50 caliber or smaller rifle
    ammunition containing only smokeless powder, primers,
    and other items specifically listed as components of small
    arms ammunition, is exempt from the Federal explosives
    laws and regulations. In contrast, bullets containing other
    pyrotechnic mixtures or high explosives (e.g., exploding
    ammunition, tracer ammunition, and “spotter” ammunition),
    do not meet the definition of “ammunition” under
    27 CFR 555.11, and therefore are not exempt as small
    arms ammunition.”

  • floppyscience

    Wow, it’s almost like the ATF has a dozen people in a room picking through the NFA laws and finding any little thing that can be “reinterpreted” and banned; like they’re trying to squeeze out any and all prohibitions they can using the authority they have.

  • James Smith

    They also have made tracer rounds illegal too. I dont know why this article does not mention that. So thinks that are not explosive are now considered explosive.

  • Coolhand77

    Just a thought for any LEO reading this. Do not enforce this. It is an illegal order, you know it is, they know it is. If you feel it violates your morals [you are stealing private property under color of law], then refuse the damn order. Make them get someone else to play Jack Booted Thug, or make them do it themselves.
    If we refuse to comply, are you going to make law abiding citizens into criminals, because some buracrat decided to make ownership of something illegal, ex post facto?
    Think about it. And remeber your OATH.