View Full Version : How to for Silencers

W. C. Quantrill
May 17, 2008, 08:51 AM
Kansas just voted to approve full auto and silencers. My question applies to silencers.

If I wish to legally obtain silencers for firearms, what is the process? I read here all the time that different ones of you do have silencers, but I dont, because we have not previously been legal to have them.

Not knowing anything about the process, I'm asking.
What is the order of events?
Do I have to do lengthy paper work first?
Where do I actually make a purchase?
Can I make my own?

How much do I have to pay the ATF nazis for transfer fee?



May 17, 2008, 09:26 AM
The transfer tax is $200 payable to the ATF. You can also make one on a Form 1, $200 tax. You need approval from the ATF before you start.

You have to find an NFA dealer in your area that is licensed to deal in suppressors and other NFA weapons (machine guns, etc).

He may charge a fee for handling the transfer.

He will have a form to fill out, called a Form 4. You fill this out in duplicate. You will need to get fingerprinted, have passport photos taken, and have a CLEO (chief LE officer) sign off that you are not a criminal as far as he knows and that (s)he doesn't think you are violating the law by buying a suppressor.

You can send these to the ATF directly with a $200 transfer check. I recommend you bring them into the dealer so he can go over them to make sure everything is right.

Then you wait. A long time. Three months isn't uncommon.

The ATF will approve the transfer, attach a stamp to the original Form 1 and mail it back. Then you can legally take possession of your suppressor. Your dealer will record it on a 4473, since it is a firearm, but NFA transfers don't have to be NICS checked, just fill it out and sign.

You can make your own suppressor, but you fill out a Form 1, then send it to the ATF yourself. When your form comes back approved, then you can get supplies and make it. There is no time limit. You can take 2 days to make it or 2 years.

Make a bunch of photocopies of your approved Form 4 (or 1). Keep a copy with the weapon and with you while in possession of the weapon at all times. Keep the original in a fire proof safe or better yet in a bank safety deposit box.

May 17, 2008, 12:26 PM
You can also find some how to information on Suppressor mfg pages:



My recent wait times after submission of the F4 or F1 to ATF has been about 2 months. Hope this helps.

W. C. Quantrill
May 17, 2008, 01:44 PM
I sure appreciate the info, folks,,,,,,one more questiion while we are at it......

Is this one Form 1 per silencer, or a Form 1 permit to have silencers? It would be rather pricey at $200 per can. I have lathe and vertical mill so it would take me a short evening to crank out a can.

A lot of Northern Europe requires silencers for shooting. My friends in New Zealand are strongly encouraged to use silencers. In fact they can go in to most hardware stores and purchase one over the counter no questions asked. Rifles imported into NZ already have the barrels threaded and thread protectors in place.....he told me he just bought a Ruger Ranch Rifle and it was already threaded. And we have to put up with this nonsense. We are not as free as the liberals try to make us think that we are.

So I am reading that if my corporation gets the silencer, then, I do not need the CLEO signoff? And being as I travel between a number of states in my business, as long as I dont get caught in one of the nanny states, then I can take the can between, say, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, and New Mexico without any problems as they are positive states....

May 17, 2008, 03:03 PM
A form 1 is required for EACH suppressor you manufacture, along with the $200 tax due on each.

And yes, you can travel with your suppressor as long as you stay within states that allow them.

W. C. Quantrill
May 17, 2008, 05:25 PM
And corporations do not require LEO signoff?

May 17, 2008, 05:34 PM
Correct. If you own a corp. your corp. can buy the silencer with out LEO sign off and the transfers go through faster.

May 17, 2008, 07:38 PM
and the transfers go through faster.

lately that hasn't necessarily been the case. BATFE is scrutinizing Trust and LLC transfers much harder than they once did. It used to be unheard of to use a Trust or LLC to transfer a NFA firearm, and no one really knew much about it. Now they are being used quite extensively, mostly to circumvent the CLEO signoff, and the ATF's lawyers are looking very hard at the incorporation or declaration documents. A friend and I sent transfer papers for MG's on the same day to BATFE. His was a personal transfer and mine was via a Trust. Mine took 2 weeks longer than his. Another friend registered a suppressor to his LLC and it took just about as long as my Trust transfer...as usual YMMV.

W. C. Quantrill
May 17, 2008, 08:23 PM
Thank you. It is much simpler to form an LLC than to have to deal with the local -CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED-s with badges.

James K
May 17, 2008, 08:52 PM
Which is the reason BATFE is looking hard at those "corporations" formed only so someone can buy an NFA firearm without the CLEO signature.


May 18, 2008, 12:33 AM
Thanks for the correction, VUPDblue. I had not heard that. It wasn't that long ago people were bragging about their corp. transfers taking less than 20 days mailbox to mailbox.

May 18, 2008, 01:02 AM
There is a little blurp about forming a corporation to bypass the CLEO signoff in the ATF publications or somewhere. I'll try to dig it up tomorrow.

May 18, 2008, 07:06 AM
IMHO, it'll only be a matter of time until BATFE makes some kind of from the hip ruling that restricts Trust and Corp. ownership, or requires a signoff from the executor or CEO. Late last year, I SBR'd a couple of AR's via my Trust and it was taking less than 30 days mailbox to mailbox. My MG transfer took something on the order of 75 days.

W. C. Quantrill
May 18, 2008, 05:11 PM
Well, I happen to own two solely owned businesses. I can LLC either or both of them and be the CEO and that's that. $35 in this state, and I dont have to even ask Barney Fife. LEO as a group consider the people who put them in office as their subjects, and become control freaks.

I am hostile towards authority, especially when it has any government connotation. I wore a badge for about 15 years, until I began to see what it represented. I figured it was time to find a career that had some ethics left in it, so I did. I know that there are a number of LEO in here, and if that's your bag, then good for you. The sheriff that I would have to deal would never sign off on a Form 1. Not for me, not for anyone. So there is a control freak who thinks that they can lord themselves over me. Wont happen. LLC here we come.

Thanks guys.

May 18, 2008, 07:24 PM
My advice if you go the corp route, is just get a corp for the NFA stuff. Don't mix NFA weapons in another business already, even if it's a sole proprietorship. If **** happens, they can go after your NFA stuff to settle. Keep it separate.

David Hineline
May 18, 2008, 11:29 PM
You have some attitude against regulators, I suspect you will find taking gun ownership to the next level is going to cause you problems.

I always reccomend going the CLEO route as first option, that way when the POPO is hassling you, it is most likely thier boss who's name is on the transfer form.

KS police are not going to be used to this for a while, they will be doing stops etc. and running lots of serial numbers and background checks untill they learn that machinegun fire is now common place.

May 31, 2008, 01:31 AM
Could a misdemeanor, say a DUI/DWI prevent you from getting a silencer? if not is the CLEO required to sign off on the form unless you are a convicted felon or currently under indictment? Problem is my local sheriff and I have never gotten along, therefore he set me up on a DUI about a year ago. Falsified breath tests, and deputy of course perjured himself in court. It's a damn shame, they have such unchallenged authority that if they want to get you they will, legal or not

May 31, 2008, 10:50 AM
If you can legally own a gun, you can own a suppressor (if your state allows them).

June 2, 2008, 02:41 PM
Thanks Freakshow, is the CLEO required to sign off on this as long as you are legal to own a gun?

June 2, 2008, 10:34 PM
There is no requirement that they sign off. They have the right to refuse. Inform them that there is no liability and that they are just certifying that you are not a criminal to the best of their knowledge. Inform them that the ATF and FBI do an extensive background check that takes months to complete and will not process your application (state it that way) if it violates local laws.

If they refuse, then stick it to them and tell them you will form a corporation that will bypass the need for their signature and they won't know what you have or what you own and they can't do anything about it. CLEOs that won't sign are douchebags.