courtesy canadaammo.com

Canadian shooters don’t exactly live in a gun-owner’s paradise. Still, the news isn’t all bad up there. That image isn’t Photoshopped: it’s the Dominion Arms ‘Grizzly’ 8.5″ shotgun. It holds five shots and for our friends in the Great White North it’s in stock now for just $449 Canadian. But only for Canadians. Importation of individual firearms into the US is . . .

a bureaucratic nightmare, and good old-fashioned NFA transfers are hardly any better. Despite the hiring of extra paper-pushers at the ATF’s NFA Branch last year, my LGS tells me that suppressor customers are still looking at about a 12-month wait before they can take their cans home.

The price of NFA transfers doesn’t bother me. Okay, that’s not totally correct, they do bother me, but I can deal with an extra $200 as the price of doing business. But I’m too impatient and too frugal (not to mention too outraged by the ATF’s bureaucratic inertia) to spend almost $1,000 for something I won’t get to use for a whole year.

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65 Responses to ATF Imposes Unofficial One-Year Waiting Period For Suppressor Transfers

  1. I ain’t buying that that thing holds five rounds….maybe 5 rounds of .22lr. EDITED: nevermind,..I see that it is a box fed deal.

    • It’s both. There is a tube fed and a box mag fed version. The one in the picture is the tube magazine version. There are also 12.5″ 14″ and 18.5″ versions available.

  2. This is back-door gun control. We will be seeing more of this if more and more layers of bureaucracy are added to our purchases.

    • Correction Sir. This is More Back Door Gun Control!! We, as law abiding citizens, already have too many restrictions on our gun rights.
      But if you know history we are in the upward climb to a total ban on private firearms ownership.
      You just can’t have good dictatorships if the citizens are armed to the teeth!!!

    • You said it!! This is the reason for the push of universal background checks. Pass it, flood the system with transfer request, claim there is nothing you can do about it, and what used to take 5 minutes now takes a year and a half, if your lucky.

      • Where do you live that a firearm transfer through a dealer is a five minute procedure?

        I *work* for an FFL, and in my limited experience transfers average 20-90 minutes. First, the transferee has to fill out the 4473 and state form, then the employee has to fill out more of the 4473 and state form, then the employee has to actually run the background check (minimum time of ~5 minutes, often ends up taking 30-60), then the employee has to finish filling out the 4473/state form, and then the employee has to double check the entirety of both forms (and often has to enlist another employee to double-check the forms).

        It’s a complicated procedure, and even the most trivial mistake is enough for the government to pull the FFL.

        For those arguing that “universal background check” proposals are intended to make it more difficult on those engaging in lawful commerce in arms, the fact of the matter is that we’re already there.

    • A universal background check is the golden opportunity for government to tax each and every firearm sale. Doubt it? Take a look at Colorado’s universal background check. They imposed a “fee” (i.e. tax) to “compensate” CBI (Colorado Bureau of Investigation) for the “expense” of background checks.

      It follows, then, that they will raise the tax to make transfers prohibitively expensive.

      No, they won’t ban guns…. just make it too expensive to buy them.

      • Firearms and ammunition are already taxed on the federal level via 11% excise tax, so additional fees and bureaucratic nonsense are doubly offensive to our rights as gun owners and our sensibilities as citizens.

    • You mean like imposing a ridiculous fee on an item so you can say it isn’t technically banned? Because that’s what the $200 tax started out as… they’re just sad they didn’t peg it to inflation, so now they best they can do is delay everything.

  3. Its a cool novelty item but really, unless you put a pistol grip on it you might as well have a longer barrel. As for shooting at a Griz, I would want at least 18″ of burn time in the barrel.

      • The data only goes down to 12″. Still, I agree that the velocity loss in a 12 gauge isn’t much – roughly 100-150 FPS – from a 26″ barrel down to a 12″ barrel.

        Also, loads that use a greater powder charge will likely suffer a greater velocity loss, as the powder burn will be incomplete. Someone did an excellent article on .308 velocity loss from a 26″ barrel down to a 13.5 inch barrel. The velocity loss was about 315-400 FPS depending on load.

        Of course a 12 gauge slug or 00 buckshot load will still have plenty of whoopa$$ for across the room distances.

    • Not unless you e-file. Give it enough time and those e-file will be waiting as long as paper filers. If memory serves me correctly, Firearms Concierge used the analogy of supermarket lines.

      • This is correct. A few years back (3-5) trusts seem to get processed more quickly, but that time has equalized since then. Now for every trust you can find that went faster than an individual, someone else can point to an example of the reverse. The only way to speed things up currently is with e-Form, and that’s if the system is cooperating. And as FC pointed out, there is an analogy to supermarket lines, and that also, will eventually equalize.

  4. I was working with my FFL for about a month trying to do the transfer via e-file but the ATF’s servers were constantly down for maintenance. This is the same government that wants to control your healthcare too! So I just gave up and filed the old fashioned way. Oh well.

  5. I really like that gun, much more than the serbu shorty.They should import a long barrel pistol grip model to the states so we can make it an AOW.

  6. People who go the gun trust route and use e-file are getting approved in as little as three months, according to reports from my clients.

  7. “But I’m too impatient and too frugal (not to mention too outraged by the ATF’s bureaucratic inertia) to spend almost $1,000 for something I won’t get to use for a whole year.”

    This is precisely why I don’t have any NFA items yet (though I’m getting closer, with the recent accelerated pace of the e-Forms). I just can’t stomach the idea of tying up that much cash for that long with nothing to show for it.

    • It’s unjustified but having just a week ago gotten my last can from exactly a year ago…it adds some variety and fun that you’ll have for the rest of your life to any range trip you choose given the durability of this good and ability to be hosted across models usually.

  8. I don’t agree with the system but it takes nothing but patience. If you had started the process when you first started thinking about it you’d have your can/sbr/aow by now.

  9. Odd I just called my lgs and he said the wait is around 4 months. He said he has no one waiting a year at this point. This is a shop that moves a lot of cans.

  10. The title is misleading. The ATF is not imposing anything, it’s just that the pro-suppressor campaign launched by AAC and others over the past few years has been very successful. Combine this with last year’s legislation scare and you have a lot more people trying to push paperwork throught a system that has not grown in proportion to demand.

    Given the Big O’s position on guns, hiring more agents in a time when budget items are geing cut is just not going to happen. Is it defacto gun control? Probably, but I would not expect it to change even if the Presidency changes hands in the next election. The simple fact is that the number of people who purchase NFA items is still proportionally small compared to the population of gun owners and unless that changes (or the NFA law is changed which is not too likely in the near to mid term)’ the wait time is not going to get better.

    As to those who don’t want to wait, well, two years ago, when I bought my suppressors, the wait was six months and people groused that they were not going to wait that long. Now the wait is a year. News flash folks, the line ain’t going to get any shorter. A couple of years from now, we may look back fondly at a time when the wait was “only a year.” Bottom line- if you want an NFA item, stop crying about it and pony up the cash.

    • Of course, there shouldn’t be a line at all. Suppressors shouldn’t even require a background check. It should be like buying an AR upper, you should be able to have them shipped directly to your house.

      • You can have suppressors shipped directly to your house, actually. I just got a Mack Brothers Echo shipped to me (no, I’m not an FFL). It was sitting in my mailbox when I got home one day, no signature required! After the Form 4 transfer to my trust was approved, I had to complete a 4473 and an affidavit and get them back to my dealer by mail, then a couple of weeks later my can was waiting for me when I got home.

  11. Short-barreled rifles and shotguns are useful for defense and competition and a short barreled 12 gauge could be a very effective defensive weapon against a large predator in the West or Alaska. Obviously, suppressors make hearing damage less of a threat for shooters and reduce the possibility of conflicts between hunters and people who don’t like hearing gun shots.

    There isn’t really a reason to have these items restricted, especially since handguns were exempted from the NFA.

  12. Since the antis are always talking about gun control “compromise”, why don’t we offer them their precious background checks in return for the repeal of all the NFA/1968 crap? I know, I know, because they have no intention to literally compromise.

    • And neither do many gun owners. People (on both sides) are tired of compromises and simply are not going to do it. Thus we will likely be left with the federal restrictions we have in place for a long timevto come.

    • Thats cause gun grabbers have never once compromised. Their idea of compromise is whats happened in Jersey, trading not requiring locked gun cases in trunks for a 10 round max magazine ban.

  13. While i disagree with the NFA as a whole, i could almost come to terms with the extra $200 IF i could take home my new toy that same day.

  14. When I was a dealer in the late 80’s transfer from mfg. to dealer was about 30 days and transfer to individual was about 90 days. The current situation is not because of a paperwork back log.

    • I’m not sure how you come to that conclusion. There is way more interest in suppressors and SBR/SBS items today than there was back in the 1980’s. Demand has increased, but the supply of paper pushers has not kept up, hence longer wait times for paperwork to clear.

      • I still stand behind the statement it’s a forced slowdown of processing the papers.
        Anybody that can legally own a firearm in a state that allows machine guns, sbrs and cans should get an approval in a timely manner.
        Taking months to transfer a can or sbr from a mfg to dealer is wrong. They are already approved to own such items.

  15. What happens to a right deferred?

    Does it dry up
    like a raisin in the sun?
    Or fester like a sore–
    And then run?
    Does it stink like rotten meat?
    Or crust and sugar over–
    like a syrupy sweet?

    Maybe it just sags
    like a heavy load.

    Or does it explode?

  16. I don’t suppose there is a secret executive order behind this, eh?

    I said it a long time ago: we are totally vulnerable if our government must approve building and/or purchasing firearms and related items. Whether due to incompetence, negligence, underfunding, understaffing, or outright malice, government can create ridiculous delays or even outright shut down firearms acquisition.

    We HAVE to get rid of background checks, registration, and waiting periods for this very reason. Just ask the people in California who desperately wanted to purchase their first firearm to protect themselves and their families during the Rodney King riots. And how about peak shopping days in the last two years when sellers were not able to call in background checks because the feds were overwhelmed? Imagine if some unexpected disaster affected a large portion of the country and suddenly everyone wants a firearm … but cannot purchase one because the phone lines are down or the feds are again overwhelmed.

    • I feel ya-

      Form 1 (Trust) submitted: 3/30/13
      Approved: 2/11/14
      Received: 2/22/14

      Ridiculous, yes, but your wait is almost over.

  17. “The price of NFA transfers doesn’t bother me. Okay, that’s not totally correct, they do bother me, but I can deal with an extra $200 as the price of doing business.”

    While living in Florida, I looked into getting a suppressor for my Walther P22. They’re so popular that I even found a holster designed to carry the gun and the can in a separate pocket when not attached. I was looking at suppressors in the $200 range; when you add in the tax stamp and other costs, the can would have cost more than the gun itself, so I pretty much gave up on the idea.

    That tax stamp is as absurd and unacceptable as the rest of the NFA. I would love for some decent lawyer with extra time on their hands to end up getting the ownership of short barreled long guns and select fire weapons recognized as indeed being part of the family of arms to which we have a right, so that all this nonsense can go away.

    • Good luck with that. The NFA has been in force for nearly 80 years and the Feds even got themselves a supreme court decision calling it legal. You won’t see a change happen as a result of a court case. It will take legislation and that just isn’t likely any time soon.

  18. Like most bureaucracies, the apparatchik only processes what is at the top of the pile. If your application is at the bottom of the pile and new material keeps being added on top, your application will eventually be processed IF and when they get down that far in the pile.

    I knew people whose 30-day re-application for a firearms license took 9 months because new applications kept being added to the top of the pile on top of their applications. Eventually it took numerous phone calls and requests to the police commissioner to enforce the processing.

  19. For $200 the process shouldn’t take any longer than a standard FFL transfer… heck, for $200 NFA items should be delivered to my doorstep via courier in no more time than it takes Dominos to deliver a pizza.

    • You assume that the tax stamp is some sort of service charge. It’s not. It was intended to disincent people from buying NFA items. That philosophy has not change 80 years later.

  20. The part I’m really curious about is what is the ATF doing with these forms for a whole year? Yeah, yeah, I know that they have 8 employees and they get 20,000-30,000 applications per year (and rising). But, what are they actually looking at on the applications? This seems like an awful long time to verify the serial number of the can…

    It gets even weirder with trusts. Are those 8 employees lawyers for all 50 states…? Doubtful. So, what are they doing…?

    • So, what are they doing…?

      Morning coffee. Coffee break. Lunch. Afternoon coffee break, and perhaps another coffee for the road.

      They might do about 5 minutes of work a week.

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