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whiteknightmedic
26th December 2007, 17:39
Where can someone buy 80% receivers for 1911's? What would go into finishing such a receiver?

whiteknightmedic

Cap
27th December 2007, 08:20
Medic, i see no one has replied to your question.
I was hoping to figure out what an "80%" receiver was by the responses.

However, help a dummy out (me :o ) and tell me what's an "80%" receiver.

is it a frame that comes with 80% of the internal parts included?

thanks


..L.T.A.

Rich-D
27th December 2007, 08:31
Where can someone buy 80% receivers for 1911's? What would go into finishing such a receiver?

whiteknightmedic

As Cap related, the term 80% Receiver leaves us questioning which parts are not included. Inform the Forum and I am sure that you will be assisted by one of our qualified members.


Rich

Hawkmoon
27th December 2007, 09:19
An "80%" receiver is a receiver that has had only 80 percent of the machine work completed. According to U.S. BATFE regulations, any receiver that is 80 percent or less complete is not yet a "firearm" and can be sold without going through an FFL or having a serial number affixed. It not only has no internal parts, it also cannot be assembled into a firearm with out additional machine work. How much machine work seems to depend on the definition of what the seller considers to be 20 percent of the work. Some 80% receivers need more work than others.

So what can you do with such a critter? You (and I mean YOU) can perform the remaining machine operations and make it into a home-built pistol. The catch is that they really mean that YOU must do the work. You can't take it over to your pal Ed's tool and die making shop and have good old Ed run it up for you. If you do that, both you and Ed are committing a Federal felony.

Also, although some suggest that there are limited exceptions, most sources of info on 80% receivers say that once you build one into a gun (they are available for rifles, too, not just 1911s) you can never EVER sell the gun. You own it.

There was a major supplier of 80 percent receivers who was busted by the BATFE a few months back. His case is still wending its way through the courts. Apparently, he also owned a machine shop and allowed customers to come in on Saturdays to use his equipment to finish the receivers. The BATFE argued that the customers weren't actually doing the work, that he was doing all the setup and thus violating the rules. I wasn't there so I can't comment beyond informing you all that the major supplier is at least temporarily out of business, and that his case serves notice that the BATFE does follow up on this stuff.

And for that reason, I am not going to make any attempt to tell anyone where to find these things. I don't want to help anyone get in trouble with the BATFE.

And, for the record, Sarco does NOT sell 80% receivers. Sarco's "decorator frames" are closer to 50% than 80%. They need a LOT of work, and even after that they were the product of a company that went bankrupt, so the quality is highly suspect.

kcshooter
27th December 2007, 09:39
I agree. I read this too and didn't post because in my opinion, an 80% receiver is just a way to have an unregistered and unnumbered weapon.
For the amount of work that goes into finishing the last 20% (exact location of most or all pinholes, slide rail cuts, drilling for ejector and plunger tube, etc.), the savings will never be realized. Unless you have a complete machine shop in your home, you just can't pull this off.
Go buy and legally register a numbered, manufactured frame and stop trying to get around the laws.

Rich-D
27th December 2007, 10:44
Ah Ha! I learned something new today. That's what I enjoy about this site. Another 10 years and I my be an expert! :)


Rich

grendelbane
27th December 2007, 17:16
I agree. I read this too and didn't post because in my opinion, an 80% receiver is just a way to have an unregistered and unnumbered weapon.
For the amount of work that goes into finishing the last 20% (exact location of most or all pinholes, slide rail cuts, drilling for ejector and plunger tube, etc.), the savings will never be realized. Unless you have a complete machine shop in your home, you just can't pull this off.
Go buy and legally register a numbered, manufactured frame and stop trying to get around the laws.

Every one has a right to their opinion. And my opinion disagrees strongly with yours. Where I live, registration is not required, so that is not a reason for building on an 80% receiver. I suspect the fun aspect is the most important reason to most people.

It is not about savings. Some people just like the challenge. It can be done without a complete machine shop, though it is not easy.

It also is not about trying to get around the laws. Your state may be different, but in my state, I can legally manufacture a fire arm. There is no requirement for it to be numbered, or registered. No law is being broken by this process, or even slightly bent. Your state may be different.

Sorry to sound so harsh, but you seem to be implying that an individual manufacturing weapons for his own use is either being illegal or immoral. In my state, it is not, and if I ever decide to take on the challenge, (which I know is a high bar), I will.

Haviing said that, all of the Gov't model clones that I have assembled were assembled on numbered receivers. Technically, it is a much simpler, and most of the time more economical, process.

They are not registered, as registration is not required in my state.

kcshooter
27th December 2007, 17:53
Before buying any firearm, you must have your name and that gun's serial number run thru the NICS system by a Federal Firearm License holder. Please note the word FEDERAL, I don't care what state you are in. Every one of those numbered receivers was transfered to you by a FFL dealer.
In the case of an 80% receiver, you do not. The ATF will never know of this firearm, and even a felon can buy the 80% kit because of this (the felon just can't make it into a 100% gun). However you can never, ever transfer that firearm to anyone else without numbering it and registering it. Because of the tolerances involved, it just isn't feasible to do this without a machine shop. Even the most complete kits require you to cut your own slide rails, and doing this without some machining equipment and experience just isn't going to give you the precision cuts required. Plus, good luck explaining to police why you have no numbers on your gun.

grendelbane
27th December 2007, 18:16
No, you only have your name run through the NICS system if the firearm is purchased from a dealer. If the firearm is purchased from an individual, the NICS check is not required. In any case, NICS is not synonymous with registration. One of my numbered receivers was a gift from an admirer, perfectly legal in my state. Another one was indeed transferred through a dealer, but once again, I do not consider NICS to be registration.

I don't plan on transferring either one to any one else. However, I can do so, since they were not manufactured with that intent. When I die, they will transfer to my heirs, who can sell them, keep them, or give them away. I could give them away myself, with absolutely no legal problem. The only problem here is with the excise tax on firearms, and since I manufactured them for my own use, no excise tax is due.

As far as explaining to the police why I have no numbers on my gun, you do have a small point there. It would be a case that I would win, but it could indeed be an expensive case. I live in a rural area, and I suspect that it would be a situation that would be resolved in my favor very quickly, as it should be. I could stamp numbers on my home made gun, which would be legal, and they would accept those numbers as being legitimate. Which they would be.

Years ago I had an opportunity to purchase an M1911A1 with absolutely no serial numbers. Due to fear, I passed, and have lived to regret it. Prior to 1968 there was no federal requirement for serial numbers on a gun, and there is no current requirement today for serial numbers on a gun manufactured by an individual for his own use.

Hawkmoon
27th December 2007, 18:20
Before buying any firearm, you must have your name run thru the NICS system by a Federal Firearm License holder. Please note the word FEDERAL, I don't care what state you are in. Every one of those numbered receivers was transfered to you by a FFL dealer.
In the case of an 80% receiver, you do not. The ATF will never know of this firearm, and even a felon can buy the 80% kit because of this. However you can never, ever transfer that firearm to anyone else. Plus, good luck explaining to police why you have no numbers on your gun.
Grendelbane is entirely correct. It is fully legal to manufacture your own firearm (in the U.S.), and although it is recommended that having done so the maker apply a serial number or some sort of identification, doing so is NOT required by law. There are machinists and folks of that ilk whose hobby is making firearms -- from a chunk of steel and a blueprint. They don't do it to "avoid registration," they do it to see if they can do it.

And, although I suppose a felon can obtain an 80% frame, a felon can also legally purchase a blueprint, a milling machine, and an ingot of steel. However, serial number or registration notwithstanding, if said felon makes him (or her) self a gun out of that chunk of steel, he/she is in violation of the law. Doesn't matter if he built it, bought it in a legal (unregistered) face-to-face buy, or stole it -- he's still not allowed to own a firearm. I don't think there are large numbers of convicted felons out there turning 80% frames into illegal firearms. Too much work -- it's easier to buy them on the street, or just steal them.

kcshooter
27th December 2007, 18:27
I never said it wasn't legal, I said in my opinion many times it is done to circumvent a law that would keep someone from owning a numered gun.

grendelbane
27th December 2007, 18:53
I am not aware of any cases involving home manufactured firearms and criminals. I would appreciate it if you could show some cases. 80% is not a legal term, BTW. It is convenient slang for a paperweight, which can be made into a fire-arm, with some work. Not too well defined, as the fellow who is having legal problems currently shows.

I do have a couple of un-numbered receivers in my possession. They are Kalashnikov receivers that I bent from flats. A project that I admit I have not completed, but I suspect I have gotten far enough along for the receivers to be considered firearms. I doubt that very many police officers would even recognize them as fire arms at this point, though legally they would be. I can number them later.

I have seen a Gov't model clone built on an 80% receiver, and the owner told me he used a Dremel tool and files to cut the rails. While it was not up to the standards of my Gold Cup, it did function. A machine shop is not required, and for some people, would take much of the fun out of the build.

I prefer Caspian receivers first, and Doublestar has a decent receiver. They are actually cheaper than the 80% Tannery Shop receivers. I can understand why an enthusiast would want to finish his own. It has nothing to do with any thing illegal, immoral, or unethical. It has everything to do with enjoyment. It is a hobby that I enjoy, and the fact that I could purchase a mass produced firearm cheaper is not relevant.

Hill
29th December 2007, 18:36
I DO have machine tools capable of completing any so-called 80% receiver in order to home build a 1911 pistol and thought it would be an interesting project for a winter. It's my individual failing that in retirement I find building model steam engines tedious, boring, and with a final result that means little to me. How I envy those old guys who enjoy it so much!

But I found that the people I could find who were selling these 80% receivers were charging a price so high that I could use my discount with Brownell's to buy three finished receivers (well, almost three) for the same money. The project lost some steam when it became almost stupid to pursue it.

Anyway, my understanding of the legal ramifications of this coincide with those grendelbane has voiced. Pretty sure the federal rules in the matter trump state rules, even in that place south of me where I was born.