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Set to take effect on February 3rd, new rules from the DOJ that were announced yesterday modify late-90’s law to expand and clarify an FFL’s requirement to offer secure gun storage or safety devices for all firearms sold to customers. It also appears to have expanded the definition of “antique firearm.”

You can read the rule as entered in the Federal Register here.

Every type of FFL, modified to now include manufacturers and importers, will have to certify that “secure gun storage or safety devices will be available at any place where firearms are sold under the license to non-licensed individuals.”

Furthermore, those secure gun storage devices (safes, lockers, locking cases, or most other containers that require a key or combination to access) or safety devices (trigger locks, cable locks, “a device incorporated into the design of the firearm,” etc.) must actually be compatible with the firearms offered for sale by the FFL.

Overall this is a minor change, but it does mean that every FFL — from pawn shops to manufacturers — that will ever sell a firearm to an individual must have available a storage device or safety device that is compatible with each firearm they sell. Obviously just because it’s available to the customer doesn’t mean it has to be included with every firearm (though the majority of new guns, of course, already ship from the manufacturer with some sort of trigger lock or cable lock in the box anyway).

Finally, some tweaks were made to firearm definitions, including expanding the 1968 Gun Control Act definition of “antique firearm” to include:

“…a weapon that is a muzzle loading rifle, muzzle loading shotgun, or muzzle loading pistol; that is designed to use black powder or a black powder substitute; and that cannot use fixed ammunition. The term expressly does not include any weapon that incorporates a firearm frame or receiver; any firearm converted into a muzzle loading weapon; or any muzzle loading weapon that can be readily converted to fire fixed ammunition by replacing the barrel, bolt, breechblock, or any combination thereof. 18 U.S.C. 921(a)(16)(C).”

The full text of the new rules can be found HERE.


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    • Use them in your vehicle to secure your firearm to a seat post or whatever when you have to disarm for whatever reason. Put the mag and chamber round in your pocket. Keep a couple in it for your better half, kids and friends. Don’t forget to put a few in the back seats. I also use a set of S&W handcuffs to secure my truck Minni 14. Who knows, I may also need the cuffs some day. Might pick up a cougar.

    • All my guns are securely kept inside a locked home.

      You literally have to break into this home to get them.

    • I doubt it. The fact is such items are already offered and available, and in wide spread use more than any other personal item safety device except vehicle seat belts.

    • Actually all it’ll accomplish is to run some small locally operated gun shops down. As that is the real idea behind it.

      • Yea but it won’t. You can get them SO cheap or even free. And they can charge for them. Buy 25 for 50 bucks and those will likely sit on the shelf for ever. Also gun shops should sell actual safes. They are profitable. Likely a higher margin than guns.

  1. Gonna be a lot of cable locks available in gun stores. Around here u can just walk into a gun store and ask for one and they just give ’em to you free.

    • I have/had a pile of them from new firearm purchases that I was planning to donate to anyone who wanted them.

      • There are a lot of police and sheriffs departments that will accept the donation from you. Not kidding, they give them away to people who ask for them. So check your police or sheriffs department and see if they want them. Here, anyone can walk into the sheriffs department and ask for a gun safety kit and get the lock and information pamphlets.

        Gun stores where you are might take them, they do here.

        Some firing ranges might also take them. The range I use here sometimes keeps a big 50 Gal drum full of them free for the taking and if you have some to donate you drop them in the barrel.

        • Before I moved to TX I had collected A LOT of cable locks being in WA and writing for TTAG for like 4 years at that point. One of the locks was used as a strap to hold all of the other locks. It was a gigantic ball of locks hanging in my office closet.

          When we had a yard sale to get rid of a bunch of stuff before the move, I filled a cardboard box with the cable locks and sold them for $1 each. They all sold within a couple hours. They’re pretty handy to have — I used to use one to lock my helmet to my motorcycle.

          BTW this rule doesn’t say they have to have one storage device or lock available for every gun in a 1:1 fashion. In theory the FFL could have one cable lock for sale for $10,000 and having that one available to any customers who want to buy it would allow them to sell as many firearms as they pleased (as long as that cable lock could be made to work on all of the gun models that they’re selling).

      • Thank you everyone for the tips on where to donate those firearm cable locks–I really want to get them out of my house and put to good use.

    • My favorite gun shop keeps a garbage can on the porch so that customers have a convenient recepticle in which to dispose of those useless trigger locks that the State mandates must be sold with every gun. This also enables the gun shop to recycle the cable locks and pass the savings on to their customers.

    • A while back the NRA was giving them away.. some kind of pr stunt for them.. as a range SO I got shipped a few hundred of them. Still have most since nobody wanted a cheap cable lock.

    • neiowa,

      The Ruling Class understands, “shall not be infringed,” full well–comprehension isn’t the problem. The actual problem is that the Ruling Class DOES NOT CARE. Just as a rapist does not care that it is wrong and illegal to rape a woman, the Ruling Class does not care that it is wrong and illegal to infringe on the right of good people to keep and bear arms for righteous purposes.

      Just as a rapist wants what he wants and tries to take it by force, the Ruling Class wants what it wants and tries to take it by force. Legalities (or illegalities) are of no concern.

        • Huntmaster,

          Sadly, you are correct. Many people think that sex is the primary motivation for rape and fail to realize that dominance/violence is the primary motivation.

          Much the same applies to the Ruling Class which already has giant piles of cash that they can never spend in 10 lifetimes. When you have that much money and you are still not happy, you turn to “power”–dominating people–in a futile attempt to feel fulfilled.

      • Oh, they care. Quite deeply actually. Just not in the way you’d like.

        It’s downright cute that people in this country generally think they still have rights instead of privileges (that are soon to be heavily restricted).

  2. Congress…DOJ…ATF…killing the industry one tiny bite at a time….or, you can use the frog in a pot metaphor if you wish.

  3. Cap and ball pistols are not muzzle loaders, they are cylinder loaders. Only single shot pistols are muzzle loaders. Are cap and ball revolvers no longer antiques? Moreover, there are available conversion cylinders, with and without incorporated loading gates, that convert .36 cals into .38s and .44s into .45s. Does this also mean that I will need to have a background check to buy one? Is there some outbreak in black powder pistols being used in committing crimes that no one has mentioned?

    • Mark N.,

      I don’t know the specifics of this latest Department of Justice decree. I can speculate with confidence based on the obvious objectives of the Progressive platform.

      We all know that Progressives are trying to require “universal background checks” on every purchase of everything that is or could be a firearm (in the common English language sense) or firearm component. That includes 80% receivers of course. Well, if I can purchase a cap-and-ball revolver as an antique replica without a background check and then convert it into a “modern” revolver without a background check, Progressives are going to balk at that. Thus, the new wording coming out of the U.S. Department of Justice is probably designed to require background checks on cap-and-ball revolvers.

      • “Well, if I can purchase a cap-and-ball revolver as an antique replica without a background check and then convert it into a “modern” revolver without a background check…”

        or if you were Alec Baldwin, someone could just hand you a cold one.


      • I thought the exact same. This doesn’t sound like much now but just wait, that’s what they will pull. What gives those bureaucrats the authority to make up rules however they want? The whole f in atf should be removed.

      • If we’re being honest, there’s a reason that the Democrats haven’t pushed on gun control very hard with this new administration/Congress.

        Because they don’t feel that they need to.

        And that, mostly, is because they don’t. At this point they’re thinking about pressing other buttons and idiots like Blowcaine Mitch will probably let them do it.

    • @Mark N.

      Furthermore, any gun made after 1898 that is chambered in a cartridge that is no longer readily available by common commercial means has been considered as “exempted”. I have a 1910 rifle that was manufactured by a company that went bankrupt several years later and is chambered in an obsolete cartridge. According to the legacy rules, it has been exempt from the definition of a “firearm”, and therefore BGC and recordkeeping requirements. Has this changed as well?

      • I don’t have time to read the rule, so at this point, based on what is quoted, it seems if you can make it chamber a cartridge, it is a firearm because it can fire “fixed ammunition.” Bit that’s just off the cuff with inadequate information at this point. I have to assume that the rule is subject to a comment period, so we will have to see–and if comments are being allowed, to complain bitterly. One thing seems reasonably clear, though, is that in-line muzzle loaders will be subject to the rule.

    • Indeed. I have a 1851 Navy that’s been in my wife’s family since the Civil War. While it’s theoretically in shooting condition, I’d never do so as there is noticeable slop in several of the connectors. So now the ATF is telling me that a 160+ year-old revolver is not an antique? Fascinating.

    • Was my first observation. I have recently gotten into black powder weapons and am considering a Colt Walker clone. However, conversion cylinders are available for most of the black powder revolvers. This is a significant change. Currently, these pistols can be purchased through the mail.

  4. So put one cable lock on display with a price tag of $3000 and the requirements are met. The lock was offered for sale and available to anyone who wanted to buy it. Two can play at this game!

  5. Next they’ll demand car dealers include The Club with every car sold. I suggest using never used cable locks to tie the hands of morons prone to hurt themselves or others with anything they can get their ignorant hands on.

  6. What is the practical change in the antique firearm rule? Normally you’d expect the article to explain but this one can’t be bothered.

    • As I read it, pre-1899 firearms are no longer antiques if they fire a cartridge that is “readily available”.

      • Obligatory joke that none of them are readily available right now…

        The “readily available” language is part of the law (GCA). Do you mean they also changed the list of “readily available” calibers? If so that’s unfortunately also part of the law.

    • Not sure. Did they just make way for muzzleloaders to be legally firearms? That would complicate the purchase of one and making a moderator for one.

  7. the local constabulary will provide cheap cable locks for anyone who requests one. sounds like a trap.
    i remember antique meaning before 1900. maybe this removes all those 1894 rifles from the antique list.

    • They were already under the rule, just like Colt 1873 SAAs, because they fire readily available cartridge ammunition. The rule exempted non-cartridge black powder arms, and there was never a rule regulating cartridge conversion cylinders (except as separately regulated under State law).

  8. Comment on their site and say no.

    Keep up the pressure. Biden’s flunkies still have another 3 years to continue their misdeeds via executive bureaucracy. Pushback is critical.

  9. I have safes available for sale with the purchase of a firearm. I include free delivery. A safe is $1M each. How many would you like? Although they’re available for sale, nobody has taken me up on my offer.

  10. Best way to get guns off the streets is to report gun owners under the new expanded red flag laws. Know someone who owns guns? Call an anonymous tip line and report that you’re worried the person who possesses guns is planning to hurt himself or others and just hang up. Cops have no choice but to check it out and preemptively take all his guns [lol] and then he’ll only get it back after legal fees, storage fees, and lots of time.

    • Why little sneaky david you do something sleazy like that and when the tables turn on you let us know how it goes.

  11. Jeremy, I wish you’d stop posting pictures of beautious P7s. They make me sad, jealous, angry and regretful all at the same time! (just so no one gets mad, this is not entirely serious)

  12. Couldn’t look away from the P7. Kinda like Austin Powers in Goldmember and the mole scene. Sweet pistol.

  13. Article shmarticle. I just want the guns in the picture. If that was a P7M13, even better. I can admit it. I objectify guns. It’s just who I am.

    I also still want a BREN-10 (but with magazines). Go ahead. Judge me.

  14. They didn’t expand the definition of antique, they restricted the heck out of it.

    Try to name one inline or breakbarrel (H&R, CVA) muzzleloader that can’t be converted to a cartridge arm by a skilled gunsmith who makes a different barrel, bolt, and breechblock for it.

  15. Remind me again how government works. Is it the DOJ that passes laws and congress that enforces them?

  16. If I read this correctly, they have to have something available for the customer to buy?
    One great, big, heavy, super expensive safe that nobody will take home should do the trick.
    Never leave the shop but it’s available!

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