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Old April 26, 2012, 07:40 PM   #1
hal9000
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New toy, new project idea. Legality check?

So I just did some horse trading and am the proud new papa of a Craftsman 12"x36" lathe. It'll take me a few weeks (or maybe months, I'm pretty busy) to get it set up and get comfortable with it, but I'm looking for a relatively easy first project to try... I'm thinking a silencer for my little 10/22 sounds good. I already have the threaded barrel anyway.

Before I file the Form 1, I figured I'd ask about what I want to do. I'm thinking the path of least resistance to a nice finished product would be to spend the $35 or so for one of the fake suppressors that are available online (they're basically just a drilled and tapped billet with a nice finish as far as I can tell), then bore it out, thread the last few CM of the dangerous end, and make an insert that slides/threads in. This should give me a much more professional looking finished product than if I started from scratch.

What I'm trying to find out is whether or not starting with one of the cheap fake suppressors would create any legal issues? Or other issues for that matter. Any input would be welcome.

Thanks all
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Old April 26, 2012, 07:54 PM   #2
Willie Lowman
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You had better make sure that the threads on your fake silencer are concentric to the bore of your pistol or you will be in baffle strike city.
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Old April 26, 2012, 08:49 PM   #3
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It may look really good. It depends on how much you trust it. a Baffle strike can end a silencer pretty quick.

I am still waiting on my paper work to clear for my first suppressor. I hate to think about doing it all again because the threads did not match up.
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Old April 26, 2012, 10:22 PM   #4
David Hineline
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1" tubing 1.25" diam solid, do research on K Baffle and learn how to make on in theory Learn to cut threads, by the time your paperwork is approved you will realize how silly your original plan was.
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Old April 27, 2012, 02:40 PM   #5
hal9000
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Did the research a year or two back. Making the baffles really isn't an item of concern. Practicing internal thread cutting on this machine is one of my first tasks, but I've already got a good grasp on how to do it. Honestly I don't see how the idea is silly... If you've got something specific you're thinking of please share your concern instead of just being snarky.

I'd probably try to center on the threads and not on the suppressor body for the boring operation. Barring that, confirming concentricity of the threads before I started (probably before even filing the paperwork) would def be necessary. Considering that many of the suppliers I've looked at claim to also make real suppressors of the same dimensions I'd expect that they should be fine. No way they have enough rejects to sell as fakes right?
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Old April 29, 2012, 12:48 AM   #6
RAnb
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I think you are selling yourself short by starting out with fake silencer. Simple aluminum or stainless tubing is the way to go. I get mine from www.onlinemetals.com Check out http://www.silencertalk.com for ideas. I have a video posted here for beginners making their own silencers. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yYrlxPCmbmU

You have to make it right the first time and replacement parts cannot be made unless you pay another $200 tax. Feel free to PM me.

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Old April 30, 2012, 12:04 PM   #7
hal9000
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Nice powerpoint there! Most of the construction data was stuff I've read, but the photos are a great help.

The one real eye opener that I hadn't heard was that FFL holders can make their own suppressors without filing the form 1. I know this is going to come up in conversation with my Father since he's held an FFL for the last 40 years or so. I'm assuming that FFL holders can't manufacture suppressors for sale, only for personal use right?

For what it's worth, My thoughts for starting out with one of the fake's was two fold. 1) the finish would be better than I can achieve without going through another learning curve and 2) it would eliminate one assembly operation. Since the barrel adapter and tube would be a single uint I figured that getting rid of the welded joint would make one less place to get misalignment during the construction. I could start with a solid bar, tap it, and bore it out to the same effect. Not sure if it's really worth the effort vs. welding either way.

Also, do the suppressors have to be made in such a way that they can't be disassembled? I was thinking of threading the muzzle-end cap.

Last edited by hal9000; April 30, 2012 at 02:53 PM.
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Old April 30, 2012, 06:44 PM   #8
Willie Lowman
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Quote:
I hadn't heard was that FFL holders can make their own suppressors without filing the form 1. I know this is going to come up in conversation with my Father since he's held an FFL for the last 40 years or so. I'm assuming that FFL holders can't manufacture suppressors for sale, only for personal use right?
The FFL must be a 07/02 also known as a manufacturer's license to some. They can make a silencer without paying the $200 tax but a form 2 must be filed.

If your dad had that kind of FFL he would know that.
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Old April 30, 2012, 09:54 PM   #9
hal9000
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He might already know that. It's not something that's ever come up in conversation. I'll probably ask the next time I visit now that I know about it.
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Old May 1, 2012, 05:03 PM   #10
RAnb
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Quote:
Also, do the suppressors have to be made in such a way that they can't be disassembled? I was thinking of threading the muzzle-end cap.
Federal law says that silencer parts are themselves silencers, but this does not mean they have to be permanently sealed. Most silencers for high powered rifles have welded end caps. This means they can be made with thinner tubing.

It is a good idea to have removable end caps and internals for anything using rim fire or cast ammo so that it does not fill up with gunk.

The Special occupational Tax (SOT) that FFL's pay is $1000 per year to make firearms other than destructive devices. It is $500 a year for those that only do a half million per year or less in business each year.

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Old May 3, 2012, 10:45 AM   #11
hal9000
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Thanks RAnb. I've got an ultrasonic cleaner so even if it was a single unit cleaning wouldn't be much of an issue, but I like the idea of being able to disassemble the unit and I like the though of being able to build without welding. I'm pretty good with steel, but my aluminum welding skills aren't exactly stellar (need more practice).
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Old May 5, 2012, 07:10 PM   #12
James K
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Maybe I misunderstood, but it seems like some folks are advising Hal to begin work before getting Form 1 approval. If so, that is a bad idea, since if he makes anything that could be considered a suppressor without the approved Form 1, he would be in violation of the law.

Jim
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Old May 7, 2012, 11:50 AM   #13
johnwilliamson062
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seems odd to me you can't make replacement parts, how would ATF ever dream of enforcing that?

You can practice skills on like sized pieces of metal without assembling a suppressor.

I had no idea Craftsman made metal lathes. I have one of their wood lathes.
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Old May 7, 2012, 02:50 PM   #14
hal9000
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James,
I won't be doing anything but making practice parts from plastic until I get the form 1 back. I need the time to practice on the lathe anyway, but I knew about the prohibition from starting before I ever posted my question.

John,
Unenforceable laws are still laws. It's just up to us to decide to obey them. Kind of like filing for a building permit before cutting in a new outlet or replacing the stairs in your house....

Craftsman apparently made metal lathes from the 30's up until the late 70's or so (I didn't know about it either until I got this one). They're knock off's of the Atlas bench top models. Mine's a a pre WWII model, but it still works fine and I couldn't beat the price.
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