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Old July 8, 2014, 03:33 PM   #1
wogpotter
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Importing a .22 bolt action ex military rifle from France

Has anyone actually done this?
What is the cost (I assume you have to go through either an FFL, an Importer with a license, or both).
Is it even legal nowadays?
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Old July 8, 2014, 06:43 PM   #2
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Good luck.
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Old July 9, 2014, 10:15 AM   #3
TATER
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You could give IMA a call, They might could guide you or heck, They might could import it for you.. Worth a try.
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Old July 9, 2014, 10:47 AM   #4
Aguila Blanca
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You will need to find an importer who can bring it into the country, first. That importer (there are such critters, but I no longer have the names of those I once knew abut) will probably not be in your state, so the importer will then transfer the firearm to an FFL in yourstate, and you will receive it through your local FFL.

It's not an inexpensive proposition. I hope you REALLY want this rifle.
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Old July 9, 2014, 11:29 AM   #5
wogpotter
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OK, so far I've gotten that there is no legal prohibition on importing a firearm, as long as I follow all the steps required, is this correct? I ask because of recent rules about receivers, barrels in kits & so on.

Now for the pricing I was looking for, how much is "not an inexpensive proposition" in $$ & cents
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Old July 9, 2014, 12:40 PM   #6
Tom Servo
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Quote:
Now for the pricing I was looking for, how much is "not an inexpensive proposition" in $$ & cents
Many dealers simply don't want the overhead, which is significant. One dealer I know who did the process a few years back mentioned that he'd charge at least $200 to make it worth his time.
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Old July 9, 2014, 01:02 PM   #7
Aguila Blanca
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Servo
One dealer I know who did the process a few years back mentioned that he'd charge at least $200 to make it worth his time.
That's probably cheap.

The time I tried it (for a handgun, not a rifle),I first had to submit the BATFE's score sheet demonstrating that the firearm satisfied their requirements (basically to show that it's not a "Saturday Night Special"). Then we went to the importation paperwork stage, which was duly submitted. In my case, I had already put down a deposit on the firearm, knowing that it met the import requirements.

However, the BATFE sat on the application right to the bitter end. They have 90 days to act -- on abut the 88th day I was notified that the application had been denied over some technical issue. When I called to ask for clarification, the agent who signed the rejection letter was a woman who spoke with such a heavy Jamaican accent that it was almost impossible to understand her. And she flat out refused to offer any information other than what she had put in the letter ... which wasn't much of anything beyond "No."

By this time, more than six months had elapsed from the start of the process. I notified the seller that the BATFE had rejected the import application and that I would have to try again. He said he didn't want to wait any longer and sold the gun. And I didn't get my deposit back.

I've never been tempted to try again.
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Old July 9, 2014, 03:32 PM   #8
wogpotter
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That's disheartening (but not unexpected). The fudged "process" is about what I was expecting.
$200 might not be a deal breaker though as I haven't yet seen the item anywhere in the U.S. in 30 years of casual looking. I wonder (if I ever sold it) if the scarcity of the item might not cover the price hit for importing? Plus of course I WANT ONE!
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Old July 9, 2014, 03:53 PM   #9
gyvel
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This goes back a few years, but I imported a CZ82 from Pragotrade in Canada (before the "flood"). I submitted the app to BATF, they approved it in a couple weeks, I had to pay a customs fee and agree that I would never sell it, then the gun was shipped to my FFL friend, all in less than 5 weeks. I guess things have changed.
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Old July 9, 2014, 03:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
That's disheartening (but not unexpected). The fudged "process" is about what I was expecting.
$200 might not be a deal breaker though as I haven't yet seen the item anywhere in the U.S. in 30 years of casual looking. I wonder (if I ever sold it) if the scarcity of the item might not cover the price hit for importing? Plus of course I WANT ONE!
What, exactly, are you looking for?
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Old July 10, 2014, 07:11 AM   #11
wogpotter
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a No8 Mk1 with the P-H sight.
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Old July 10, 2014, 09:03 AM   #12
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Nice looking gun. I can see why you'd like one!
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Old July 10, 2014, 09:52 AM   #13
wogpotter
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I learned to shoot on one. They were way, way more accurate than the No9 which looks exactly like a No4.
I think the different bedding caused by the short stock & the bull barrel made that happen.
I never liked (sacrilege, burn the witch) the SMLE-based .22s but loved the No8.
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Old July 11, 2014, 08:46 AM   #14
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I see No. 8s pop up every so often on Gunbroker, but not with P-H sights, though.

But I thought you already had a No. 8. I asked you a while back if you had a source for either original or repro rubber butt pads as mine has a hard checkered replacement.

Last edited by gyvel; July 11, 2014 at 08:52 AM.
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Old July 12, 2014, 06:02 PM   #15
wogpotter
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Nope, not me I only have a No 4 Mk2.
(at least until today, stay tuned)
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Old July 12, 2014, 06:31 PM   #16
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It's possible, in theory. I don't recall ever having seen anyone (other than someone who imports and sells guns for a living) claim that they've ever done it. What I gather is that the hassle, expense and delay are only worthwhile to someone who's going to import a LOT of guns and who plans to make a LOT of money selling them after they're imported.

My impression from comments I've seen by the importers suggests that you shouldn't expect to have the gun in under a year.
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Old July 13, 2014, 10:15 AM   #17
wogpotter
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Yea I guess. Its all kind of academic now as this happened over the weekend.

OK went to the different gun show in a different area cuz I think I've cleaned out the local one of everything I want.
Backing up a little:
I really like the "Puma" brand knives, & my favorite of the Pumas is the "White Hunter". It has a pretty unique blade design which makes it great camping & general purpose knife. That odd looking shape has an amazing effect on how well a medium sized knife can do things like chopping firewood & slashing through vines & so on.
Then I fond this sweet Damascus blade version so I just couldn't resist.


OK, I'm feeling spendy so I keep looking.

Guess what "just followed me home"
I was literally handing the seller the last $5.00 bill when the Mrs called on the cell, the dealer was telling me she must be telepathic & her first question was:
"What did you do & why am I hearing hysterical laughter in the background"?

My new toy,
a No5Mk1 12/46 Faz dated with matching bolt!
Its a pre 1968 import with just the "ENGLAND" stamp




I'm pretty sure its refinished, the Faz's AFAIK weren't blued, & I'm not sure about the varnish either, but for $345 OTD I'm happy the bore is clear & bright with good rifling & it passes a headspace check. (Closes on the 0.067" NO GO, but not on the 0.074" FIELD). There are a couple of minor (non structural) dings in the wood, one at the toe of the butt & another at the front of the hand-guard as it enters the band.

Anyone ever hear of a s/n like this?
No5 MK1 (F)
12/46 Y
[space] 7818
Its faint but the first character on the number looks like an upper case "Y" then a space & a 4-digit number?
Comments & observations? I haven't torn it down yet, but I'll post more pics when I do in a few days.
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Old July 17, 2014, 08:22 AM   #18
gyvel
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What happened to the bayonet lug on the flash hider?
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Old July 17, 2014, 10:44 AM   #19
wogpotter
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It was (quite well) ground off by some previous owner.
The whole rifle is refinished (blued) & the wood is varnished.
It been carefully sporterised, not the usual Bubba with a rusty, blunt hacksaw & an angle grinder

I'm in the process of getting the wood looking a little less "plasticky" with stripping, re-staining (its beech stained dark)& Linseed oil.

Not being a collector, but a shooter I was more concerned with the matching bolt, tight headspace (with a no0 bolt head yet), & bore condition
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Old July 25, 2014, 07:32 PM   #20
gyvel
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Wogpotter, here is a link to a No. 8 on Gunbroker, but IMO, it's a bit pricey.

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...Item=430719858

Of course, if you were attempting to import one, by the time you paid all the fees, imposts, shipping, etc., it would probably be the same.
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Old July 26, 2014, 04:22 PM   #21
wogpotter
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No Kidding!
You're trying to get me divorced aren't you?
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Allan Quatermain: “Automatic rifles. Who in God's name has automatic rifles”?

Elderly Hunter: “That's dashed unsporting. Probably Belgium.”
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Old July 26, 2014, 11:18 PM   #22
kilimanjaro
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Looks pretty nice to me.

The first one of those I ever bought had the bayo lug ground off, and the charging bridge as well, by way of sporterization. It's still a great shooter, and my other two kind of sit around a lot, it seems.

I bought a replacement flash hider some years ago, one day I just might put it on and re-blue, or find another one to work on.
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Old July 27, 2014, 01:43 AM   #23
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No Kidding!
You're trying to get me divorced aren't you?

Marriages are temporary; A Lee-Enfield is forever.
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