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Click here to download a pdf of the recently released 2011 document ATF Study on the Importability of Certain Shotguns. Judging from the conclusion (page 14), only “sporting shotguns” need apply. “Our determinations will in no way preclude the importation of true sporting shotguns. While it will certainly prevent the importation of certain shotguns, we believe that those shotguns containing the enumerated features cannot be fairly characterized as ‘sporting’ shotguns under the statute. Therefore, it is the recommendation of the working group that shotguns with any of the characteristics or features listed above not be authorized for importation.” Make the jump for the list of “non-sporting” features on the ATF hit list.. [Thanks to Dave Yates for the link.]

These features include:

  1. Folding, telescoping, or collapsible stocks;
  2. bayonet lugs;
  3. flash suppressors;
  4. magazines over 5 rounds, or a drum magazine;
  5. grenade-launcher mounts;
  6. integrated rail systems (other than on top of the receiver or barrel);
  7. light enhancing devices;
  8. excessive weight (greater than 10 pounds for 12 gauge or smaller);
  9. excessive bulk (greater than 3 inches in width and/or greater than 4 inches in depth);
  10. forward pistol grips or other protruding parts designed or used for gripping the shotgun with the shooterfs extended hand.

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  1. A lot of “Sportsmen don’t need these types of guns” stuff in there. Since when is the main purpose of The Second Amendment about sport shooting? Someone defund these clowns already.

  2. To be fair, Wes, that’s the criterion stipulated by the Free Citizen Enslavement Gun Control Act of 1968, 18 U.S.C. § 925 (d)(3):

    (3) is of a type that does not fall within the definition of a
    firearm as defined in section 5845(a) of the Internal Revenue
    Code of 1986 and is generally recognized as particularly suitable
    for or readily adaptable to sporting purposes, excluding surplus
    military firearms, except in any case where the Attorney General
    has not authorized the importation of the firearm pursuant to
    this paragraph, it shall be unlawful to import any frame,
    receiver, or barrel of such firearm which would be prohibited if

    While I agree with your sentiments, until the FCE Act of 1968 is repealed or overturned, BATFE (&RBF) is following the law in this case.

  3. There’s a public comment period on this study. In my limited dealings with ATF I have learned to:
    1: Keep a very close eye on their hands, waistband, pockets & feet.
    2: wonder what the end game goal of every action they take is.

    If you look back at the recent information collection request they tried to ram through (and got punked) their end game was to establish a quick emergency rule to acclimate the public to the “critical tool for public safety”. That it was illegal was irrelevant to those who seek to confiscate firearms from the people. But what about when the “temporary” collection ended? They came right out and declared that they might put a permanent rule in place.

    Regulatory actions are given great deference by courts, only about 1 in 4 challenges to regulations are successful, and probably the most seriously taken challenges are 1st Amendment. If they get the regulation codified, it’s not necessarily over, but unless you have the $$$ to challenge, it is over. Bottom line: ATF wants a registry of rifles (to start) and probably in support of their unhealthy fascination with conflagration.

    This study appears on the surface to be benign, but so does some forms of cancer. As with all regulatory actions you must ask – “What is the worst possible way this could be used against me” because that is how the courts will permit it to be used. Looking at it in that light I see the list of bad things – bayonet lug, magazine greater than 5 rounds… not as a list of import denial qualifications, rather I see them as criteria for possible ban based on the availability of parts to configure them into a non-sporting configuration. Sort of like the way they construe “constructive possession”.

    I envision this as a first step to ending Saiga imports. Not because they are ‘non-sporting’ but they are readily convertible to a non-sporting configuration.

    No matter who you might know who works for this group, who might be a ‘nice guy’, ‘one of us’, etc. remember that this group’s end game is all firearms in government hands, period. They have no sense of urgency because they exist on taxpayer money so they can be patient. There will be a follow up to this.

    Once we all have good look at this, we will need to log public comments. My initial read is that we should push to have a definition of 21st century sporting purposes that is inclusive of various competition leagues, formal and informal, more ‘groups’ & clubs represented and a more broad definition. But that should be BEFORE this ruling is issued since they point out there is room for such a redefining…

  4. There is already a run on siagas. Try to find some 20 rd drums or high cap mags they are selling too.

  5. Oh yeah, by coincidence I brought a noob & my s12 to the range Friday. He had to have one so I gave him some places to look. Ouch. A “run” isn’t necessary though. Not at this point.

  6. Today we have an incorporated individual right to keep and bear arms. Shotguns of all types and models regardless of feature configurations are in common use. The days of enforcing that importations meet “sporting shotgun” requirments should go by the wayside.

    This is the conversation we should be having when commenting with our government. The BATFE is attempting to enforce something that’s antithetical to the very Second Amendment. Which doesn’t say anything about “sporting” purposes. Then again, when you look at the current administration pulling the strings, it’s not hard to understand why this is happening.

  7. True, but the right is extremely limited in recognition. The fed & states only recognize the right within the actual confines of your home, not in conflict with any long standing prohibitions (like felons and probably) like gca 68 which enables this action.

    ATF is trying to curb and eventually eliminate inventory, so they can dry up the supply and get it to a small number. Once done – and this will take years, maybe decades, they will become uncommon and so there won’t be enough of a “lobby” left to fight for them and poof – they can reclassify them as registered; DD, or AOW. Remember, for all intents and purposes, ATF is immortal, and will outlive all of us.
    They can be more calculating and patient.

  8. Start learning to build ’em folks and ammunition too because they are coming after all of them and any of you that have them. They now rule this country, not you.

  9. “generally recognized as particularly suitable for or readily adaptable to sporting purposes”
    BATFU seems to be focusing on the first part “generally recognized as particularly suitable for”, and ignoring the “readily adaptable” part.

    If I have a Saiga-12 with a bayonet lug, and 10 round magazine, it is readily adaptable to hunting (sporting) purpose. All I have to do is switch to a 5-round mag. If local hunting regulations prohibit a bayonet, well, it’s a simple matter to remove that too.

    None of the listed features except for magazine size makes the gun in any way unsuitable for sporting purpose.

  10. The days of arbitrary gun laws for their own sake are coming closer to an end. Gun prohibition should actually be harder today. The very reason that we’ll see underhanded administrative attempts and other work arounds.

    The Heller and McDonald decisions are only the beginning. States with restrictive laws such as California are even now facing lawsuits that will be game changers. The BATFE shouldn’t be any different. There is no correlation between features and silly definitions like “sporting purposes” with that of bearing arms. The Second Amendment is a civil right just like the First.

  11. 1968 18 usc &925 (d) (3) the control of firearms started a long time ago. our government is more afraid of the gun owning law abiding citizen then the low life crminal. guess why? the original purpose of the founders regarding the 2nd amendment. yall keep your powder dry.

  12. Does this new law mean 922 (r) is history?

    Twelve Big Wins for Gun Owners
    NRA-ILA | November 18, 2011

    Shotgun Importation Protections. Prohibits the Department of Justice from requiring imported shotguns to meet a “sporting purposes” test that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) has used to prohibit the importation of shotguns with one or more features disliked by the Agency, such as adjustable stocks, extended magazine tubes, etc.

    • Mr. Daddy – did you ever get a response to your question about imported shotgun 922 (r) compliance?


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