Looking for help -- Shotgun legal question

Looking for help -- Shotgun legal question

This is a discussion on Looking for help -- Shotgun legal question within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I'm hoping that some of you, maybe FFL holders or otherwise, might be able to give me a definitive answer on a legal modification question ...

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Thread: Looking for help -- Shotgun legal question

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array cvhoss's Avatar
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    Looking for help -- Shotgun legal question

    I'm hoping that some of you, maybe FFL holders or otherwise, might be able to give me a definitive answer on a legal modification question I have about one of my shotguns.

    This is my Benelli M1-Super 90 in it's factory, as delivered configuration (except for the weapon light):


    I have read, and been thoroughly confused by it, that there may be some legal consideration in adding an extended magazine tube to this gun because it is imported. As you can see on Remington's web site, it's obviously legal to have a pistol grip, auto loading shotgun with an extended mag tube but, as I said before, I have seen it indicated that because the Benelli is an imported auto-loader, the combination of an extended magazine tube and the pistol grip (the pistol grip is factory and how the gun came) would be illegal.

    Any help anyone can offer on this would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Hoss
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  2. #2
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    I am guessing it has to do with the Number of US made compliant parts.

    I am really only familiar with C&R guns.
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

  3. #3
    Ex Member Array AVIVIII's Avatar
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    I think you are SOL.

    From my friend the FFL:
    Unfortunately, there is a Federal restriction on all imported shotguns imported after 1990. It is illegal to add a mag tube extension increasing the mag tube capacity past 5 rounds. If you do you have to follow the law of 10 US made parts.

    US CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) Part 178.39
    § 178.39 Assembly of semiautomatic rifles or shotguns.
    (a) No person shall assemble a semiautomatic rifle or any shotgun using more than 10 of the imported parts listed in paragraph (c) of this section if the assembled firearm is prohibited from importation under section 925(d)(3) as not being particularly suitable for or readily adaptable to sporting purposes.

    ...Part C reads:

    (c) For purposes of this section, the term imported parts are:
    (1) Frames, receivers, receiver castings, forgings or stampings
    (2) Barrels
    (3) Barrel extensions
    (4) Mounting blocks (trunions)
    (5) Muzzle attachments
    (6) Bolts
    (7) Bolt carriers
    (8) Operating rods
    (9) Gas pistons
    (10) Trigger housings
    (11) Triggers
    (12) Hammers
    (13) Sears
    (14) Disconnectors
    (15) Buttstocks
    (16) Pistol grips
    (17) Forearms, handguards
    (18) Magazine bodies
    (19) Followers
    (20) Floorplates

    ATF takes this law a step further and applies it to pump shotguns as well as semi-autos.

    Benelli shotguns with pistol grip butt stocks are allowed to be imported into the US as "sporting" firearms because the pistol grip and the butt stock are one piece. If the pistol grip was removable, they would not allow it to be imported as a "sporting" firearm. This interpretation by BATF goes to the point that they consider a shotgun to be non-sporting if it has a detachable pistol grip that protrudes beneath the receiver of the shotgun.


    So I think that the mag extender would fall into the same, non-sporting category. Unless of course you could find a Benelli Factory 8-shot tube. Then you would be in business.

    This of course only applies to shotguns imported after 1990.

    I'm not telling you that I haven't seen a lot of imported shotguns with extended tubes, but I don't know the specific circumstances.

  4. #4
    VIP Member Array cvhoss's Avatar
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    O.K., I should know by now that trying to apply logic to gun laws just makes my head hurt, but -- can anyone explain the difference to me between an AK or SKS with a 30 round detachable mag, a Sig 556, an HK SL8-6 etc. and my Benelli?

    And thanks for the help and responses to this point.

    Hoss
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  5. #5
    VIP Member Array cphilip's Avatar
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    They are also subject to it. If they are changed from their imported confuration. If the Magazine, in their case, was not part of the parts count. And they were imported that way then, it only applies if you change one of those parts.

    For instance, many people alter their SKS but completely ignore this. And many will then add a flash hider or bayonet lug to their AK and not pay attention to the fact that they now need to change other parts to comply. And they do.

    But they don't say what parts you need to change. You can chose from among them as long as you then result in having no more than 10 imported ones. But you have to chose from THEIR list... not yours.

    So you can choose some of the furniture or some of the fire control group... or whatever parts from that list, and change them to USA parts to comply.

    Remember... the rule does not apply to a gun as it came in. It applies only if you change something from their list on the gun. And then the whole rule applies. In this case I would be guessing that a Magazine Tube on a shot gun might be considered a Magazine body (18) and apply.

    It is a stupid rule.

  6. #6
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Same situation occurred recently toward the FNH SLP with it's magazine.
    It's IIRC 8 or 9 capacity and was sold as that shipped to the US OEM up to last spring or so when the BATFE got bent about this also based on the components of ten rule featured above.

    - Janq
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    VIP Member Array Rob72's Avatar
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  8. #8
    VIP Member Array cvhoss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob72 View Post
    See, that just adds to the confusion. I think the big hitch comes in because the one I have has the pistol grip stock and as such is considered one of those evil assault shotguns.

    And then there's:
    This and
    this and
    this (from Cabela's, no less. Why would a company as big as Cabela's sell an illegal to use item?)

    And from the list of 20 things I can't change without changing at least 10 of them (if I'm understanding all this correctly), if item 18 keeps me from adding the mag tube extension, how does Surefire sell this as item 17 should prevent me from using it.

    Oh, my aching head.

    Hoss
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  9. #9
    VIP Member Array Rob72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cvhoss View Post
    See, that just adds to the confusion. I think the big hitch comes in because the one I have has the pistol grip stock and as such is considered one of those evil assault shotguns.

    Hoss
    By meeting US compliance (import) parts count you are fine -as you would be completing an AK parts kit with Tapco G2 trigger, piston, US-made stock and fore end. You could then use any muzzle device and mag.

    Most of this is so much wanking. Keep as legal as possible, but realize that in the not too distant future it will be no-win; we'll be regulated out of compliance. Plan and act accordingly. Law controls the law abiding.

  10. #10
    VIP Member Array cvhoss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob72 View Post
    By meeting US compliance (import) parts count you are fine -as you would be completing an AK parts kit with Tapco G2 trigger, piston, US-made stock and fore end. You could then use any muzzle device and mag.

    Most of this is so much wanking. Keep as legal as possible, but realize that in the not too distant future it will be no-win; we'll be regulated out of compliance. Plan and act accordingly. Law controls the law abiding.
    What actually concerns me is that this is my primary HD shotgun. I worried that if I install the mag extender on it and then should ever have to use the shotgun, I may find myself on the wrong end of the law for having an illegal shotgun.

    Hoss
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  11. #11
    Member Array ReaperVelle's Avatar
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    I purchased a brand new Benelli M1 Super 90 about 4 years ago, ghost ring sights, 18 inch barrel, and factory 7 round tube... It didnt come with the pistol grip so maybe thats where the difference is with mine(it also came with a 5 round tube and some other parts) ?

  12. #12
    VIP Member Array Rob72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cvhoss View Post
    What actually concerns me is that this is my primary HD shotgun. I worried that if I install the mag extender on it and then should ever have to use the shotgun, I may find myself on the wrong end of the law for having an illegal shotgun.

    Hoss
    Short answer: request an opinion, in writing, from the ATFE's local Tech Branch.

    Unsourced, second-hand: utilizing US made components keeps you legal. Using a Benelli extension(import) would not be legal, unless you put a "sporting stock" on your gun.

    This is why the US made Benelli M-4 tube extensions were such a high-demand item, initially ($130)...

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