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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Cape Town

    Default Licencing of firearm components

    Hi all

    I know that this topic has been debated before (can't find the thread right now) but I think my angle is a bit different.

    The FCA makes it pretty clear that the barrel of a firearm is the major licence-able component but also speaks about other components being licenced. My understanding is that the net effect of this is that all major components, which are typically but not always those that carry a serial number, need to be licenced. In the case of a pistol these components would be the barrel, frame & slide. In the case of a bolt action rifle they would be the action & the barrel.

    I've been toying with the idea of getting my hands on a set of shotgun sidelocks and mounting them in a frame for display. I think that if I can, it would make an interesting wall decoration in my study (well for me anyway, not sure about anyone else.......) There are several different types of lock and maybe even they would make a nice series if displayed together.

    Picture the following nicely mounted in a picture frame with a glass front, possibly even with its own lighting:

    So the question is: Would they need to be licenced and would it be legal to have them on display?

    I don't think they would need licencing, but before answering the question be aware that this would be a slippery slope and the question then becomes where to draw the line between what needs to be licenced and what doesn't need to be licenced.

    Some aspects of the argument that I can think of are listed below in no particular order, I'm sure others will be able to come up with other aspects:

    1) The difference between hammer action side locks from muzzle loading rifles/shotguns and hammer action sidelocks from cartridge loading rifles/shotguns is negligible. Muzzle loading rifles/shotguns don't require a licence and neither do their components.

    2) If the component needs to be licenced, that implies that it is deemed to be a (major component of) a firearm and as such should probably be locked in a safe and couldn't be on open display. (Assuming that a glass fronted frame is regarded as open display)

    3) If I can display sidelocks, what about boxlocks? (The difference being that sidelocks still need other components in order to attach a barrel to them, whereas one can clip barrels directly into a boxlock frame)

    4) What about, for example, a Martini-Henry action? Would it be legal to display just the frame of the action with all the working bits removed (some of them have beautiful = artistic engraving) and would it make a difference if the working bits were fitted?

    5) What about an engraved Mauser 98 action? Also potentially very artistic but for me it crosses the line into being a modern firearm hence the powers that be could be concerned that it is easy to convert into a useable rifle.

    Art is very subjective but for me, and I'm sure others too, there is creativity and art in mechanisms. A firearm action is a mechanism hence artistic enough for me by itself. If one adds on the engraving seen on older firearms this just strengthens the argument for it being a piece of art.

    What are other people's thoughts?

    PS: I was prompted into writing this post today when I saw somebody advertising a Mauser 98 action only for sale on GunAfrica this morning.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Licencing of firearm components

    Ont the 271 or License card they show Serial number for Barrel, Frame and Receiver.
    So those three parts I would think you need a valid License for.

    The problem is what does those Shotgun parts fall under.
    Would that be seen as the the Frame or Receiver part of the Shotgun.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Right next to the pot that needs stirring.

    Default Re: Licencing of firearm components

    I would categorize this as a "trigger group" No licensing for those.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2009

    Default Re: Licencing of firearm components

    Barrel, receiver/frame need a licence. Slides/bolts/BCG's needs a licence to possess if you already hold a licence for an identical gun already. All of these are legally firearms and need to be kept in the required safe storage.

    Anything else you can display. Brownells sends trigger groups and magazines through the post for instance.

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