“Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal” is what the makers of the AutoGlove must have said last week when they received their rejection letter from the ATF. Even though I was never interested in the device that simulated fully automatic fire, I was impressed by the innovation. And although we all had a feeling this rejection was coming, it does highlight an important point – technology will continue to advance to the point where anyone will be able to manufacture any type of firearm with simple means. Then we will find out that regulating inanimate objects is not a successful method to control criminal actions.
Full details below.
On 9/16/2017, we received some disappointing news from the ATF. The ATF tested the AutoGlove and responded with an unfavorable determination. The bottom line is, the ATF determined the AutoGlove may not be used or possessed by individuals and for this reason, we have issued 100% refunds to every person that ordered an AutoGlove.
As of 9/18/2017, refunds were “processed” for 100% of the customers – Customers can expect a refund check to arrive on or about 9/22/2017 (only those customers that paid with a credit card after 8/17/2017 will receive a credit on the credit card within the next 7 business days, everyone else will receive a paper check).
While we respectfully disagree with the ATFs determination, as the AutoGlove was not tested in accordance with our design criteria or provided instructions/limitations, we will NOT appeal the ATFs determination. As we have always stated, it was never our intention to thumb our nose at the ATF or NFA regulations, we were simply trying to develop a device that could work within the existing construct of the laws to create a device that could assist a person with pulling the trigger rapidly, whether it be a paintball gun, nail gun, or firearm. (The AutoGlove had many uses!) We still are still a bit shocked to understand how one can attach a sliding stock or modify a trigger to achieve simulated full automatic rates of fire but a stand-alone glove worn on the shooters hand is somehow considered modifying a firearm.
While our instructions and limitations specifically require the AutoGlove to ONLY be used on firearms that allow for specific clearances between the trigger when the Trigger Assist Device (TAD) is placed inside the trigger guard (in order to allow sufficient space for the actuation of the TAD “without” engaging the trigger, and therefore requiring the individual to make micro trigger pulls as the TAD takes up the slack in the trigger as shown in the instruction video), the AutoGlove was not tested by the ATF with these same restrictions and for this reason, we believe this maybe partially why we received the unfavorable determination. Second, the ATF cited several past interpretations that included key words and phrases that were not defined anywhere in the laws and could easily be misinterpreted if the generic meanings as outlined in the dictionary are used. For example, the ATF cited a letter from 1982 that stated, in part, that if an electric motor is “attached”… (our belief is the glove is not attached to the firearm and the motor is only attached to the glove). The ATF cited a letter from 1988 that states that the ATF previously determined a semiautomatic firearm having an electronic solenoid attached to the trigger… (our belief is that the AutoGlove is not “attached” to the firearm, the TAD is only attached to the glove). The ATF also stated that an electrically powered trigger actuator would fall within the purview of the NFA… A weapon on which a device such as you describe has been affixed… (again, our belief is the the glove is not affixed to the firearm just as a finger is not affixed or attached to the trigger). And the ATF cites section 5845(b), Title 26, USC that states that a machinegun shall also include “any part” “designed and intended solely and exclusively,” or combination of parts designed and intended for use in converting a weapon into machinegun [emphasis added](our understanding of this passage is that the AutoGlove is not a “part.” A part attaches to something to make it whole. The firearm is never modified and the AutoGlove does not replace any of the manufactures parts on the gun. Although we could not find the definition for gun “part” we do not believe the glove is a “part” and we believe the Glove is designed to be worn, affixed, attached to a persons hand. Furthermore, the AutoGlove is not a part “designed and intended solely and exclusively for converting a weapon into a machinegun. (The AutoGlove works great on semiautomatic paintball guns and nail guns as noted in the patent and therefore was never made “solely” for converting firearms into machineguns. The AutoGlove could be used on a variety of equipment with a trigger such as a firearm, paintball gun, nail gun, or any light equipment with a trigger.
While we are still confused as to how the AutoGlove violates the plain language of the laws cited by the ATF, we are a small company and do not have the resources to appeal the ATFs decision and will cancel the AutoGlove project effective immediately, and will immediately issue full refunds to everyone that placed an order with us.
We would however, ask that the ATF publish definitions of the following terms so someone else does not waste thousands of dollars developing something that appears to meet the “plain language” of the law. In the past few years, more and more regulatory agencies have been writing their laws and policies in plain language to eliminate such confusion. I would respectfully request that the ATF define these words that appear to have different meanings from the dictionary to avoid similar issues in the future. Words such as:
3. Attached (does a person attach their finger to the trigger?)
4. Part (e.g. gun part)
5. Converting (eg. Converting a Weapon)
6. “Intended solely and exclusively” (The TAD can also be used on paintball guns and nail guns)
This is not the current ATF administrations fault. This language was incorporated into their policy over the past 30-years and I would just ask that the current ATF help better define these words.
We wish to thank all our supporters, and the hundreds of thousands of people that visited our website and watched our videos, but unfortunately we will no longer be able to accept any orders for the AutoGlove. The site will be removed once we issue the refunds early next week and have ensured everyone has received a full refund.
Thank you again to all our supporters , and please support (or continue to support) the NRA and/or their affiliates so we can continue to enjoy our second amendment freedoms long into the future!