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Antique rifles - 45/70 takes cartridge so is it an antique

Ben Cartwright SASS

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last night I was at the club talking with a friend and we got discussing C&R's and antiques in relation to 45/70 Trapdoors. I said that any gun that uses commonly available cartridges even if made before 1898 is not an antique but he insisted that Trapdoors, which is what we were discussing ARE antiques because even if modern ammo says it is safe in a Trapdoor it will possibly blow it up and therefore they are antiques.

my feeling is the a cop or ATF agent isn't going to ponder whether a round is safe to shoot but rather will it fit and fire, and is it designed for that size cartridge. He is saying it has to be safe to shoot and the police and ATF will know that. Therefore it is an antique.

How is right?
 
The modern ammunition only applies to copy or reproductions. Trapdoor rifles made before 1899 is exempt no mater what ammunition they take. The reproductions that were made are considered firearms. A good example is the Winchester 1897 . If it was made in 1898 no paperwork is required to transfer. If it was made in 1899 you need to handle it as a modern firearm.
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That seems pretty concise. Another question, what about a trapdoor I have, built 1873, but modified at some point to look like a Officers Model, barrel cut down and new stock, I though I had heard if a gun has been modifed in appearance and is no longer in the same configuration as when new it is no longer an antique, I believe C&R's fall under that.

Thoughts?
 
The modern ammunition only applies to copy or reproductions. Trapdoor rifles made before 1899 is exempt no mater what ammunition they take. The reproductions that were made are considered firearms. A good example is the Winchester 1897 . If it was made in 1898 no paperwork is required to transfer. If it was made in 1899 you need to handle it as a modern firearm.
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According to Federal Law, 18 USC/921(a)(16)

antique firearm​

(16) The term “antique firearm” means— (A) any firearm (including any firearm with a matchlock, flintlock, percussion cap, or similar type of ignition system) manufactured in or before 1898; or (B) any replica of any firearm described in subparagraph (A) if such replica— (i) is not designed or redesigned for using rimfire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition, or (ii) uses rimfire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition which is no longer manufactured in the United States and which is not readily available in the ordinary channels of commercial trade; or (C) any muzzle loading rifle, muzzle loading shotgun, or muzzle loading pistol, which is designed to use black powder, or a black powder substitute, and which cannot use fixed ammunition. For purposes of this subparagraph, the term “antique firearm” shall not include any weapon which incorporates a firearm frame or receiver, any firearm which is converted into a muzzle loading weapon, or any muzzle loading weapon which can be readily converted to fire fixed ammunition by replacing the barrel, bolt, breechblock, or any combination thereof.
 
That seems pretty concise. Another question, what about a trapdoor I have, built 1873, but modified at some point to look like a Officers Model, barrel cut down and new stock, I though I had heard if a gun has been modifed in appearance and is no longer in the same configuration as when new it is no longer an antique, I believe C&R's fall under that.

Thoughts?
Under federal law, antique is antique. "Original military configuration" applies to C&R, which are modern firearms and not antiques.

BUT... years ago there was a case of a man buying pre-'99 Mauser actions (Century U-Fix-Ems or somesuch), and rebarelling them and putting them in modern stocks. Under federal law, they were still antiques.

ATF gave him a Cease and Desist order, telling him that he was "remanufacturing" them into new firearms, and that he needed the appropriate FFL for that.

It wasn't worth fighting, so he quit doing it.
 
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