View Full Version : Simple Steps to a Silencer?

July 15, 2008, 06:42 PM
Can anyone give a simple list of steps to get a suppressor? Legal steps?

This would be for a handgun, and later an Uzi. 9mm caliber.

July 15, 2008, 07:32 PM
Here in NE you buy the suppresor and pay the $200 transfer tax.Then you either decide to go thru your local Chief of Police or Sheriff and get him to sign off on it, or you do the trust thing. Either way it has to go thru the BATF for their approval which can take several weeks. After you are approved, then you can finally take possesion of your "can".

July 15, 2008, 08:35 PM
Here is a good summary of the steps from one silencer mfg.


July 16, 2008, 07:36 AM
Iamwhoiam - if you live inside the city of Houston, you will have to go either the trust route or the corporation. Chief Hurtt will not sign off for a private citizen.

There are several good class III dealers in the Houston area, but I don't have any of their contact info with me here at work. Also check out www.texasguntalk.com there is a NFA section there as well.


July 17, 2008, 02:49 PM
If you look at all the steps it will seem overwhelming and you will never get around to doing it. Take it one step at a time.

Step 1: Find a dealer and pay for the can you want in full.

Don't even start thinking about Step 2 until you complete Step 1 and the dealer has the can in his possession where you can look at it and touch it. If the dealer doesn't have the can in stock this could take a LONG TIME (months or even a year if it's a Knights can).

Don't worry about signoffs and trusts and all that crap right now. You have a long way to go.

James K
July 17, 2008, 10:19 PM
The best way is to check with a local dealer FIRST. He can tell you if your CLEO will sign off and what steps you will need to take next. I doubt a dealer would let you pay for something he knows you won't be able to have, but it could happen, especially if he is not from your city/county.

You can also contact the CLEO's office directly, but dealers usually know the ropes and the people to contact.

Then, study catalogs, find what you want and make your deal. Dealers may want all the money or a big chunk of it up front, but most will return it if the CLEO/ATF business falls through. When the purchase money changes hands is of no concern to ATF, but ATF has to have the tax money with the application.


July 18, 2008, 06:47 AM
When I purchased my first suppressor I went about it a little differently.

First step was to write a letter my local Sheriff (CLEO) explaining what I wanted to buy, why and asked him if he would sign off on my form 4.

This way I didn't bother any dealer with a bunch of questions prematurely. I knew what I wanted; I knew where I was going to buy it. All I needed was a local Class III to have it transferred to and then to me upon approval.

When I received a letter back from the Sheriff advising me that he would sign off on the form 4 and what he required to do so, I contacted the selling dealer and paid for the suppressor. I then contacted the local Class III and asked if they would do the transfer. They said that they would and I then left the transfer between the two dealers up to them. It went very smoothly.

When the transfer was completed, my local Class III filled out the form 4 completely for me and advised me what I needed to do to submit it to BATFE. I did it, sent it in and it was approved.

July 18, 2008, 11:54 AM
Not to beat a dead horse, but if you live in an NFA friendly state and you can legally possess a firearm then the CLEO signature is a non-issue. If he won't sign or gives you any grief you have other options which frankly are better than asking your Sheriff for permission.

Go buy a silencer. If you can buy a gun there is no reason you won't get approved. Worst case you get denied, you can still resell it. It will be on a Form 3 and easy to move to anywhere in the country.

July 18, 2008, 10:23 PM
What do they look for specifically in the background check for an NFA item.

I mean, I thought they know everything about me after my CHL license?

July 19, 2008, 07:44 PM
They look to see if you are eligible to possess a firearm. If you have a CHL you are good to go. They do not check for tax problems.

James K
July 19, 2008, 08:08 PM
Basically, the check for approval of an NFA firearm is no different from the regular NCIC check. The big hurdle for some folks, especially on machineguns) is the CLEO approval, since some CLEOs simply will not approve and, in reality, there are few options. The corporation route is one, but some CLEOs have advised people that if they go that route, they will be harassed endlessly until they surrender the weapon.


July 19, 2008, 08:12 PM
Surrender the weapon to whom? Your CLEO? He'd then be in possession of an NFA weapon that isn't registered to him and a quick call to the ATF will fix that problem.

If you go the LLC or Trust route your CLEO won't even know you have the weapon. It's none of their business. You are under no obligation to produce your paperwork or weapon to anyone except an ATF agent. Slam the door in everyone else's face.

July 21, 2008, 05:21 PM
Where can i get information on the trust/LLC route to owning a SBR or suppressor?

July 22, 2008, 12:29 PM
Here are some links you might find useful. I have not used a trust yet, so I have questions of my own that might not be answered fully until I actually create a trust for myself.





Hope this helps.


July 22, 2008, 02:30 PM
"Where can i get information on the trust/LLC route to owning a SBR or suppressor?"

NFA doesn't change it. Set it up the 'normal' way.
A trust that will have items moving in and out should be Revocable (i.e. setup a Revoc. Living Trust).

For trusts I recommend software (electronic versions) so I can keep a backup for the original in digital form, and it's easier to modify this way (if need be).

I hold a LLC & Trust. Items in both & prefer a trust.

July 22, 2008, 11:47 PM
Thank you both for the information, I will look into setting up a trust versus using my LLC