Theodore Roosevelt, 1903

"Let us speak courteously, deal fairly, and keep ourselves armed and ready." - Theodore Roosevelt, 1903

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

What is a Firearm? The ATF Definition

This is from the ATF website:

Gun Control Act Definitions

Define: Firearm

Defined Under: 18 U.S.C., § 921(a)(3)

This section is intended to provide basic guidance in understanding firearm terminology. Please bear in mind that these illustrations do not necessarily depict importable firearms.

The term “Firearm” means:

A. Any weapon (including a starter gun) which will or is designed to or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive;

A Firearm expelling a projectile. A Starter Gun converted to expel a projectile is a Firearm.



B. The frame or receiver of any such weapon;

A Frame or Receiver constitutes a Firearm.

C. Any firearm muffler or firearm silencer; or

Examples of Destructive Devices. Such term does not include an antique firearm.

D. Any destructive device.


Firearm Frame or Receiver

That part of a firearm which provides housing for the hammer, bolt or breechblock, and firing mechanism, and which is usually threaded at its forward portion to receive the barrel. 27 CFR § 478.11.

National Firearms Act Definitions


Define: Firearm

Defined Under: 26 U.S.C. Chapter 53

For the purposes of the National Firearms Act, the following definitions are used to define and verify the different types of firearms:

§ 5845(d) — The term “Shotgun” means:

A weapon designed or redesigned, made or remade, and intended to be fired from the shoulder, and designed or redesigned and made or remade to use the energy of the explosive in a fixed shotgun shell to fire through a smooth bore either a number of ball shot or a single projectile for each single pull of the trigger.

Shotgun - Unaltered.


§ 5845(a)(1) — The term “Firearm” means:

A shotgun having a barrel or barrels of less than 18 inches in length;

Shotgun - Barrel(s) less than 18 inches.
§ 5845(a)(2) — The term “Firearm” means:

A weapon made from a shotgun if such weapon as modified has an overall length of less than 26 inches or a barrel or barrels of less than 18 inches in length;

Shotgun - Overall length less than 26 inches and barrel(s) less than 18 inches.

Rifles

Defined Under: 26 U.S.C., § 5485(a)

For the purposes of the National Firearms Act, the following definitions are used to define and verify the different types of firearms:

§ 5845(c) — The term “Rifle” means:

A weapon designed or redesigned, made or remade, and intended to be fired from the shoulder, and designed or redesigned and made or remade to use the energy of the explosive in a fixed metallic cartridge to fire only a single projectile through a rifled bore for each single pull of the trigger.

Rifle - Unaltered.

§ 5845(a)(3) — The term “Firearm” means:

A rifle having a barrel or barrels of less than 16 inches in length;

Rifle - Barrel(s) less than 16 inches.

§ 5845(a)(4) — The term “Firearm” means:

A weapon made from a rifle if such weapon as modified has an overall length of less than 26 inches or a barrel or barrels of less than 16 inches in length;

Rifle - Overall length less than 26 inches and barrel(s) less than 16 inches.


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