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Colt Model 1851 Navy with an attachable canteen for a stock. I wonder if that’s classified by the NFA as a short barreled rifle or if it has the okee dokee letter from ATF?

11 Responses to “Oddity”

  1. Jay G. Says:

    I’m pretty sure black powder firearms are exempt from NFA regs…

  2. SayUncle Says:

    Hmm. Black powder machine guns?

  3. Justin Buist Says:

    Muzzle loaders are exempt. You can’t shove black powder into some .45ACP cases and run your full auto Thompson that way just because it’s BP. 🙂

  4. Justin Buist Says:

    Plus whatever you call having to manually stuff powder into the cylinder’s chambers. Not sure WTF that’s actually called.

    Paging Tam…

  5. Chas Says:

    Black powder and alcohol . . .

  6. Sigivald Says:

    Yeah, muzzle-loaders aren’t covered by the NFA, so you can have all the “SBR”-ish muzzle-loady you want, with no tax stamps.

    I think half the companies that sell 1851s and the like also sell stocks for them, at absurd prices.

    I covet them as a general idea, though not so much in this configuration.

    (Honestly, in use I’d be worried about banging the pewter up. Stuff’s really, really soft.)

  7. Lyle Says:

    “Plus whatever you call having to manually stuff powder into the cylinder’s chambers”

    You call it a percussion revolver. Same classification as a muzzle loader even if you don’t load it through the muzzle. Some vendors actually call the revolvers muzzleloading pistols, but that bugs me.

    The distinction is that it is not designed to use metal cartridges (though metal cartridges are fired percussively too).

    Interestingly, you can mail order a percussion revolver with no paperwork (depending on local laws) and get a cartridge conversion cylinder along with it, so your reproduction 1858 Remington New Model Army now fires the 45 Colt metal cartridge.

    Back in the day, they were called revoloving pistols, or revolving belt pistols, revolving holster pistols, or revolving pocket pistols, usually depending on the size of the pistol. Sometimes the terms were interchanged in strange ways as can be seen on some of the cartridge boxes (them there being consumable envelope [paper or skin] cartridges of which millions were used in the Civil War era).

    The terms “revolver” as distinguished from a “pistol” (automatic) came later. Back then they were pistols, and then came the automatic pistol.

    So it’s all effed up.

  8. Geodkyt Says:

    The official terminology is “antique firearm”, which includes:

    1. Genuine antiques, made in 1898 or earlier, that use “rim fire or conventional center fire ignition with fixed ammunition” that is not currently made in the US nor readily available through ordinary commercial channels. Does NOT include reproductions. So, if the gun is old enough AND the cartidge is rare enough, it’s an antique.

    2. Anything that does not use “rim fire or conventional center fire ignition with fixed ammunition”, and has not been converted from a gun that did use such ammunition. This includes both originals and reproductions, regardless of when made. This SPECIFICALLY includes any matchlocks, flintlocks, and percussion fired guns (or any similar system) by name, and would also seem to cover things like pinfires.

    “Antiques” (regardless of which category) are exempt from both NFA and GCA regulation (i.e., they aren’t “guns” for the purpose of federal rules on possession, manufacturing, transferring, or shipping. Hold up a bank with one, and it IS a “gun” for the purposes of “armed robbery”.

    Note that taking a gun that wouldn’t fall under NFA even if it didn’t qualify as an “antique” because it is in category 1 (say, a 30″ double barrelled shotgun with an oddball gauge no one has ever heard of but Tam, made in 1880), and you saw the barrels off to 12″, and it is no longer an “antique” — because you “made” it as a sawed off shotgun when you shortened the barrels. Therefor, it is considered as if it was manufactured in 2012. Since it uses “normal” type ammo (albeit in a weirdo cartridge), reproductions DO NOT COUNT.

    OTH, a cap & ball revolver such as this falls into the EXACT statutory (NOT a rule made up by ATF, so not subject to changing on their whim) definition category where repros ARE OK, and maintain the NFA exemption. So, if you want a muzzleloading cannon, or you make a Webley-Fosbury style action, only without a disconnector, mate with a Walker Dragoon cylinder and barrel, you would have a perfectly legal machinepistol. Because it’s not a “machinegun”. Because, being cap & ball, it’s not a “firearm”.

    And while you shoot that monstrosity, I’ll be a couple of terrain features over until you run out of powder or manage to send the last three rounds of the cylinder into the bottom of your jaw as the gun twists in your grip. {grin} (Oh, and wear fire-rated SCBA — you’ll need it. {chuckle})

  9. Tom McCord Says:

    Two things.

    Any firearm made before 1898 are not considered firearms under current federal law.

    All cap and ball or muzzleloading firearms ( old or new made ) are not considered firearms under current federal law.

    Don’t know about State or local law where you may live.

  10. one-eyed Jack Says:

    Remember that drop in centerfire rifle and shotgun barrels are available for guns such as the T/C Pro Hunter and require a 4473 and NICS check even if only purchased with the muzzleloader barrel. And here in Mass, the FA 10. Jack.

  11. Kristophr Says:

    Anything built before 1898 is an antique, and not considered a firearm by the BATFE.

    There is a reason the first three years production of model 1895 Potato Diggers are so collectable.