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How much hassle is it to own a NFA class 3 weapon?


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I currently have a "couple" pistols with SB tactical braces. I am thinking to the future in August when the BATF is theoretically going to make their final (for the next couple months or years) decision regarding the stabilizing brace question. Currently, I "carry" my braced pistols infrequently but occasionally especially on overnight/weekend trips as a backpack/home defense set up. I am trying to figure out if it will be a huge hassle in the future to continue to use those guns for that purpose should they become NFA items or if it is really no big deal. Looking for those of you with SBRs to help me out. Appreciate it.  

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When I travel with a sbr, I'll fill out an ATF Form 5320.20. It's good for up to a year and I usually stay in the same motel. They are accustomed to us walking through the lobby with machineguns, ARs, and 50/75 lbs of ammo each. It takes about a month to get back and is pretty much a rubber stamp. I have yet to hear of anyone that has ever gotten into trouble for not doing this though. 

The second thing is to have copies of your form 4 or 1. A pic on your phone is good. I have never been asked for them. Not once in 25 years. You are only required to produce them for an atf officer, but I wouldn't refuse a police officer. They can hold you until the atf shows up. " In a few days". If you forget them, they can look them up pretty fast. 

I've had several encounters with different agencies over the years and I've never so much as had to produce a driver's license. Every cop I've ever dealt with has been great. I have yet to get one to put me in handcuffs so my buddy can get a pic. They're a bit weird about that. 

 

 

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Most of my travel is in state although I do make the occasional trip to Ohio or Florida. So in summation its a minor inconvenience but not to terrible especially in state if I go to my in-laws for the weekend or something?  

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I'm not sure if you have any NFA items already or not, but I was very hesitant to get one and be on the "radar" of the ATF.  Once I did my first one, I never looked back and typically always have something pending.  It isn't hard to file a form 1 and would suggest getting a trust if you do.  I keep a 5320.20 filed for several items and for my typical locations I travel, that way no matter where I go, I can take something NFA with me.  I've never been asked to see paper work by anyone and never hassled.   Most of the time they draw attention to themselves and people ask a lot of questions about them, I try to use that time to teach people that suppressors and machine guns are not illegal.  I would SBR them and never look back.  

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To try and answer your question quickly, I can say that I had a little apprehension at first as well but after purchasing my first suppressor, realized just how easy it was.  I now have multiple items including SBRs.  As mentioned above by the other responses, just have your paperwork in order.  I do not worry about moving around and have not found it to be a burden to possess them.  It has actually been one of the best decisions I have made.  It doesn’t hurt to do some research on ownership responsibilities/requirements on ownership.  Silencer Central, the American Suppressor Association and many other legitimate companies and law firms publish such info online.  There is a Lot of misinformation online… big surprise.

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I think the hardest part is the wait. I'm at 364 days on my first suppressor as of today, but that was a paper submission. I've been seeing e-form submissions come back in less than 10 days sometimes, which prompted me to buy another suppressor today using e-forms and race them to see which one gets approved first. Patience is a virtue I guess? lol

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  • 3 weeks later...

I have had to show my form 4 copy to law enforcement. Most of the time they won't even notice a SBR, but when they hear machine gun fire they start asking questions. Of the 2 times I showed it, I don't think the local officer even knew what he was looking at, but it satisfied them both times. Well one of them still tried to give me trouble, saying civilians can't own a machine gun, even with paperwork, but I told him to call his supervisor and he straightened it out.

It's really not that big of hassle to own class 3 stuff, although some would say that it can add a aggravating factor if you ever use your class 3 firearm in self defense. I never carry a class 3 firearm as my primary self defense weapon.

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10 hours ago, m16ty said:

I have had to show my form 4 copy to law enforcement. Most of the time they won't even notice a SBR, but when they hear machine gun fire they start asking questions. Of the 2 times I showed it, I don't think the local officer even knew what he was looking at, but it satisfied them both times. Well one of them still tried to give me trouble, saying civilians can't own a machine gun, even with paperwork, but I told him to call his supervisor and he straightened it out.

It's really not that big of hassle to own class 3 stuff, although some would say that it can add a aggravating factor if you ever use your class 3 firearm in self defense. I never carry a class 3 firearm as my primary self defense weapon.

agreed never use C3 for self defense, no need to interject the feds into your life.....ever...

I had a encounter with LE years ago, seen 3 guys who looked like LE and the far end of the shooting lane, did a mag dump, 1 guy headed my way, you cant own that, me I'm legal, him no way, me I have papers but you might want to contact your supervisor, him I'm the chief of police, ok try the city attorney or I can google the number for ATF in Nashville and you can speak to a field agent, turned away and left........wasn't even trying to be a di<k either...

 

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