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What differences keep .22 blank-powered nail guns from being classified as firearms?

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  • #16
    I'll tell my wife to buy some extra coffee. If the feds come to our house, they'll dang sure need it.
    Any products mentioned in my posts have been endorsed by their manufacturer.

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    • #17
      Another time, I was with the same workmate during the building of some 8 story blocks being built in Aldershot, Hampshire, UK, and he managed to press the nailgun against the concrete of an unfinished window on the 5th floor and fired a nail which we saw bounce along a garden path about 100 yards away. We only tried that the one time, thank heavens.

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      • #18
        If you want some fun and a lot of flat tires there are a number of pneumatic nailers and staplers that will go full auto if you hold the safety bar back. At short range a framing nailer will make a big mess of a cardboard box.
        *** I always wanted a welding stinger that looked like the north end of a south bound chicken. Often my welds look like somebody pointed the wrong end of a chicken at the joint and squeezed until something came out. Might as well look the part.

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        • #19
          How about a version of a potato gun? Or not even a version, just make one and shoot a potato with a fishing line attached to it. They have been ruled NOT to be firearms by the BATF in the past though again, state law may dictate otherwise. If you propel with compressed air, they are even less of an issue. Unless you use them to launch flaming tennis balls, then apparently the BATF takes a very dim view:

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spud_gun_legality

          In any case, the projectile is even biodegradable as well as edible.

          Simple and ridiculously cheap to make in their basic form, just a bit of PVC plumbing, a few fittings, department store propellant and a bag of spuds.

          A friend made on that he powered with a small CO2 tank, it was actually pretty impressive.

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          • #20
            I think a propane or alcohol combustion type potato gun would meet the definition of a firearm. It expels a projectile from the expansion of burning gases.

            A pneumatic potato gun would specifically not meet the definition of a firearm under federal law but many states do regulate pneumatic guns.
            *** I always wanted a welding stinger that looked like the north end of a south bound chicken. Often my welds look like somebody pointed the wrong end of a chicken at the joint and squeezed until something came out. Might as well look the part.

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            • #21
              Uhh, yeah, you gotta watch it. In NJ an airsoft (spring propelled) gun that all the kids use is technically considered a firearm. Silly, but I read a story of someone being prosecuted for having one. BB guns are firearms here and even if you own one legally, you can't discharge it in your own backyard.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Bob La Londe View Post
                I think a propane or alcohol combustion type potato gun would meet the definition of a firearm. It expels a projectile from the expansion of burning gases.

                A pneumatic potato gun would specifically not meet the definition of a firearm under federal law but many states do regulate pneumatic guns.
                One letter they issued specifically exempted "potato guns" by name, but like all things involving the ATF, there is plenty of room for interpretation. If it is used as a weapon or used with some other projectile (like a flaming tennis ball) then it "could" be considered a destructive device, and you are in a for a heap of problems.

                Source here:

                https://aircannonplans.com/guides/ai...n-legality.htm


                The state laws, as you and polaraligned note, are entirely another matter.

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                • #23
                  Just to toss out another option, off topic to the actual question... How about a crossbow with a light line attached to the arrow?
                  Robin

                  Happily working on my second million Gave up on the first

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                  • #24
                    Thats close to what Im doing.

                    I use an old compound bow. The plain target arrow has three landscaping nails attached around the shaft at the tip to provide weight so it falls back to the ground and will pull the string. Nails duct taped heads around tip and shafts toward the fletching. String tied to the top of the arrow point. I have the poundage set to the lightest setting and still only pull back about 60% of the shaft length otherwise the inertia of the landscaping nails will destroy the arrow on release. I gotten good enough over the years that i can usually put the arrow through the target fork with only a couple of tries.

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                    • #25
                      To your original question, many firearms laws are local and many are illogical and make no sense. Example: a WW1 Luger is licensed as a handgun. Unless you own the block of wood that slides up the back and functions as a shoulder stock. Now its a Short Barreled Rifle and ownership requires a federal license. The only way to answer where you live is to call local law enforcement and ask.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by rdfeil View Post
                        I have launched a lot of line for wire pulling by using a cheap fishing reel, a lead sinker and a wrist-rocket sling shot!
                        I use this method to string a wire antenna between trees for ham radio. Some of the guys in the club have built compressed air launchers from pvc pipe and an electric valve from a sprinkler system. They work well but you need to carry a battery and a compressor or foot pump, and of course the bulky launcher.
                        Tom - Spotsylvania, VA

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Paul Alciatore View Post
                          Don't nail guns have to be PRESSED against a surface before they will fire? That should completely prevent a projectile (the nail) from being shot into the air. But you do want to shoot something into the air so you may have a tougher row to hoe.
                          Unless the untrained moron the contractor you've hired has working for him attempts to shoot a 2" Hilti anchor pin into a sheet rock wall. Missed the worker on the other side by less than a foot.

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                          • #28
                            Lot of talking out of rear ends here.

                            FACT. If you are legally able to own a firearm of the type you want to build in your State, County, City. You are legally able to build one. No serial number. No manufacturers name. It can not be built "For Sale". https://www.atf.gov/firearms/qa/does...m-personal-use

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                            • #29
                              Fact - close.

                              In North Carolina and many other states NFA firearms are legal so if I want a M1A1 Thompson submachinegun i can get the approvals and go buy one. I can not legally make one. To say that ATF link is poorly written is an understatement. Like i said this country is full of inconsistent and contradictory gun laws that in many cases depend upon exactly where you live.
                              Last edited by SteveF; 05-05-2021, 12:22 AM.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Paul Alciatore View Post
                                Don't nail guns have to be PRESSED against a surface before they will fire? That should completely prevent a projectile (the nail) from being shot into the air. But you do want to shoot something into the air so you may have a tougher row to hoe.

                                I would suggest that you look at some commercial line launchers and DO talk to the appropriate officials. The federal ATF comes to mind.

                                https://www.atf.gov/
                                The last time and probably the only time I ever used one of those nail guns I believe it was called a ram set, or that might have been the brand name.
                                It came with an assortment of .22 blanks that were color coded to indicate the charge. It also came with an assortment of steel discs about 1/2" in dia. that were stacked in the end of the barrel. They were suppose to control the depth of the nail being shot. It was like a hit and miss kind of thing between that and the different charges.
                                A long time ago I had to fasten a 2 x 6 to the bottom of a steel I beam. A friend suggested that we could use his fathers ram set. His father was a carpenter. Listening to his advise assuming he had some experience with it I gave it a try. He suggested that I stack about 4 discs into the end of the barrel and said use this cartridge. First attempt the nail stuck into the bottom of the I beam flange and was sticking out of the 2 x 6 by about an inch. Then he suggested to use the higher charge cartridge. So I loaded up and gave it a shot. That one blew the nail through the stack of discs, straight through the 1/2" I beam flange and stuck about 1/2" into the the opposite flange. At that point I said lets drill and bolt the board to the beam.
                                An yes........... you have to firmly press the base against a surface in order to allow it to fire.

                                JL.................

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