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On gun laws that are dumb

I knew Glock made a .380 and that it wasn’t available in the US. I never really knew why. Now, I do. It seems the ATF has a point system that determines if a pistol can be imported. A pistol must score 75 points. Here’s the point system:



Length: for each 1/4" over 6"


Forged steel frame


Forged HTS alloy frame


Unloaded weight w/mag (per oz.)


.22 short and .25 auto


.22 LR and 7.65mm to .380 auto


9mm parabellum and over


Locked breech mechanism


Loaded chamber indicator


Grip safety


Magazine safety


Firing pin block or lock


External hammer


Double action


Drift adjustable target sight


Click adjustable target sight


Target grips


Target trigger


That seems rather, uhm, totally random. The site also notes:

Changes and features made to Glocks to comply with the BATF rules:
– all models are imported with a cheap click-adjustable rear sight that is replaced at the factory with the stock sight
– target (grooved) trigger added to compacts & subcompacts
– target grips added to all models (required for the subcompacts)
– due to their caliber, .380 autos (G25 & G28) do not score enough points to be imported

8 Responses to “On gun laws that are dumb”

  1. Standard Mischief Says:

    A 12 inch barrel would net you an extra 24 points under this system. You could have the barrel cut by the end user. Of course, that would be a loophole that would only encourage extra regs from the ninja tobacco-inspectors.

  2. Alcibiades Says:

    I thought this restriction might count as a free trade violation. After all, guns that don’t meet these requirements can be made and sold in the U.S.. Since foreign manufacturers must meet a different standard, it would seem like protectionism.

    Hell, the WTO punished the U.S. for making internet gambling illegal. The federal government was just trying to make sure that gambling was a States’ Rights issue (each State decides if gambling is legal or illegal), but the WTO didn’t really seem to care.

    I wonder if anyone’s tried to challenge it at the WTO?

  3. Wesley Womack Says:

    Does anyone know what law gives them the ability/authority to decide ridiculous things like this? I don’t understand how our government got to the point that they believe they should regulate the type of sight I have on my firearm.

  4. SayUncle Says:

    Sporting purpose language of the 1968 GCA.

  5. Tam Says:

    Even if they would make import points, Glock likely wouldn’t import them, as the 25 and 28 would just cannibalize sales from the already-profitable 19 and 26.

    These chubby sloppily-converted .380’s are mainly intended for markets where “military calibers” like 9×19 are a no-go.

    Would it amuse you further to know that:

    1) Every small Glock comes into this country with a set of flimsy adjustable sights (which are then knocked off) to make import points?

    2) The little thumb-divots and serrated trigger faces on mini Glocks count as “Target Grips” and “Target Triggers” and were put there to curry import points from the BATF?

    3) All small-frame Taurus snubnoses come into the country with long barrels, which are then unscrewed and replaced with short barrels?

  6. Tam Says:

    Edit: Whoops! Shoulda read below the table in your post. 😮

  7. SayUncle » You’re kidding Says:

    […] Yeah, street thugs are going to buy them for $5,000. And they’re not really powerful enough to be much of a threat. I’m pretty sure importing these items may be illegal as they don’t meet the point system for handgun importation. That’s assuming these are classified as firearms. […]

  8. Justin Buist»Blog Archive » The CZ 100 Says:

    […] I was also reminded that there’s a CZ 110 out there which would fit my bill much better. Instead of a DAO pistols it’s DA/SA and more on par with what you’d expect from a CZ trigger. Unfortunately because it has an SA mode it doesn’t qualify under the asinine BATFE import regulations. […]

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