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Posted: 12/26/2012 3:37:01 PM EST
If there's already a guide, please feel free to point me to it. For no other reason than I'd just like to have it, I've been considering looking into getting an AR or converting an existing AR to full auto or burst mode. I know very little about it. I was told that you have to buy an already existing auto lower from years ago and that they are extremely hard to come buy. Someone else to me you can purchase the parts and convert your own existing rifle (that seemed fishy to me) but like I said I just don't know.

I'm assuming I'd have to fill out a new FORM1 and add whatever lower or components to my trust.

So here's my somewhat specific questions:
1) Can I buy the necessary parts and convert... say... my SBR to select fire with either burst mode or full auto? If so, do you just apply like I did for my SBR? That's seems just too damn simple and dangerous.

2) Can you buy the select fire lower? If so, do you just apply for the Class 3 like I did for my SBR or is there considerably more to it?

3) Assuming I buy a full auto lower, and something catastrophic happens... like a major Kaboom and the the lower is damaged beyond use... am I SOL?

4) Cost assocaited with whatever options are available

Thanks for the help or simply pointing me to where all this general noob stuff has already been posted.
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 3:52:56 PM EST
1. You cannot "convert" anything to full auto, unless you posses the appropriate license, & pay the taxes for that license. The manufacture of MGs for civilians has been outlawed since 1986, so any MGs that you can legally buy were made prior to the cutoff date & are older than me( I was born in July of 86). These are called transferrable machine-guns. If you can legally own a handgun, & your state has no laws forbidding MGs(if you live in Florida you're GTG), then you can own one.

2. All transferrables mgs fall in the NFA category & are subject to a $200 tax.

3. Since the manufacture was outlawed for civilians, there is a finite supply of MGs, therefore pricing them out of most people's pocketbooks. A transferrable Colt M16 for example, goes from $15k-$20k+ depending on the model, accessories, etc. An Uzi, from $75-8500. They are expensive because there will always be less, & never more.

4. Your options for converting your ARs to full auto would be a registered drop-in autosear, which will run $18-20k, or a registered lightning link, which the last time I checked, was around $8-9k.

If you want a new machinegun, you have to pay for the appropriate license, & I have no knowledge of the different licenses, fees, etc.
My disclaimer: follow all laws, because a machinegun is not worth 10 yrs and/or $250,000 fine
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 4:39:34 PM EST
Based on what you wrote, it would seem it makes more sense to go the registered autosear route given that the cost is about the same and you can assemble a modern day lower receiver with it. So you fill out your Form1 for the autosear, wait for you stamp, buy the autosear, and then... done?

Link Posted: 12/26/2012 4:59:23 PM EST
Originally Posted By itschris:
Based on what you wrote, it would seem it makes more sense to go the registered autosear route given that the cost is about the same and you can assemble a modern day lower receiver with it. So you fill out your Form1 for the autosear, wait for you stamp, buy the autosear, and then... done?



You didn't get it, you can not file a from 1 to manufacturer a MG, the cut off was may 1986. You can buy a Registered Drop In Auto Sear for about $18-20K.
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 5:07:36 PM EST
I realize I have to shell out 20k, but beyond that, there's not much else to it correct? I'm buying the autos ear to put in an existing AR... That the process correct?
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 5:15:38 PM EST
Originally Posted By GRATIOFLASH:

If you want a new machinegun, you have to pay for the appropriate license, & I have no knowledge of the different licenses, fees, etc.
My disclaimer: follow all laws, because a machinegun is not worth 10 yrs and/or $250,000 fine


Everything posted was correct, on the licenses:

A type one FFL is $150 every 3 years, with a class 3 sot ($500 a year). You can sell almost anything and have almost anything. But at this point, you're running a business and can, and will be inspected by the ATF. I'm in the process of doing this right now.
A type 7 (iirc) ffl, with class 3 sot, will allow you to MAKE a regular lower into a machine gun, BUT on top of the other costs, it will also cost you at least $2250 a year in ITAR fees.

In neither circumstance may you keep post 86 machine guns after you retire and relinquish your FFL. They must be sold to a qualified dealer, .gov agency, or turned into the ATF. Other title 2 items (except DDs iirc, which require a different type of ffl I think) may or may not be kept with or without a $200 tax stamp upon retiring, depending on which type of business you ran, (sole proprietership, partnership, etc)

Link Posted: 12/26/2012 5:39:52 PM EST
Originally Posted By itschris:
I realize I have to shell out 20k, but beyond that, there's not much else to it correct? I'm buying the autos ear to put in an existing AR... That the process correct?


Whoa......I wouldn't do that.....not yet at least.....
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 5:58:43 PM EST
Checkout the classifieds on subguns.com and sturmgewehr.com. I posted a WTB ad and had lots of replies and eventually found the M16 that I wanted. Autosears are rarer, and command a higher price as compared to a "shooter" M16A1. You have to follow the NFA process in purchasing one, i that you will have to use a form 4 for an state transfer, form 4-form 3-form 4 if it's purchased out of state. Since you're in Florida, checkout Ruben Mendiola's site at dealernfa.com. He might have an M16 that you like.
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 5:59:29 PM EST
Originally Posted By AF_K9:
Originally Posted By itschris:
I realize I have to shell out 20k, but beyond that, there's not much else to it correct? I'm buying the autos ear to put in an existing AR... That the process correct?


Whoa......I wouldn't do that.....not yet at least.....


Well I'm just trying to figure out how to get it done. So I have an SBR already. Without having to become my own FFL as mentioned above, the only way I can do this is to buy an autosear. Now I'm assuming that's not considered making an mg and is the alternative rout to buying a very expensive preban auto lower.
Link Posted: 12/26/2012 6:01:39 PM EST
Originally Posted By itschris:
I realize I have to shell out 20k, but beyond that, there's not much else to it correct? I'm buying the autos ear to put in an existing AR... That the process correct?


Make sure you're using the correct terminology -- an autosear is one of the parts that makes an M4 full auto, and you cannot possess one legally. Using one would require you to drill the third hole in the lower, converting that lower into a machine gun, which you cannot legally do since 1986.

A Registered Drop In Autosear is a device that performs the same function, was built *and registered* prior to 1986, and is designed to insert into a regular ar-15 lower without drilling the third hole for a regular autosear.

Link Posted: 12/26/2012 9:45:19 PM EST
[Last Edit: 12/26/2012 9:50:16 PM EST by collegeboy]
Originally Posted By itschris:
Originally Posted By AF_K9:
Originally Posted By itschris:
I realize I have to shell out 20k, but beyond that, there's not much else to it correct? I'm buying the autos ear to put in an existing AR... That the process correct?


Whoa......I wouldn't do that.....not yet at least.....


Well I'm just trying to figure out how to get it done. So I have an SBR already. Without having to become my own FFL as mentioned above, the only way I can do this is to buy an autosear. Now I'm assuming that's not considered making an mg and is the alternative rout to buying a very expensive preban auto lower.


Like everyone has already told you, you can not convert a new gun to full auto anymore b/c of the stupid liberal bullshit machine gun ban of 1986.

You can either buy a pre-1986 registered receiver (Colt or other brand), or if you want to make a current "newer" AR that you already have full auto, you need to buy a RDIAS (Registered Drop in Auto Sear). These fit in many new lowers, and the few that it doesn't fit in, can have some metal milled out by a good machine shop. This is the route I went, b/c I prefer all of the newer AR lowers out there and also it is an almost non wear part, so it'll last forever. Also, if you get a kaboom, it will not be damaged. Also, if it is, it will be much easier to repair as well compared to a registered receiver.

To find a RDIAS put a WTB ad out there. They are very rare, but they are out there, and when I put up a WTB ad, I had several offered to me within a day. I paid $17,000 for mine, and the price is still around there, give or take a couple thousand depending on the sear itself, and how much the seller knows about the current market. I've seen them sell recently from $14,000 to $20,500 for all steel ones.

Also, if you were wondering, putting a RDIAS into an AR is NOT considered making a new machine gun. The RDIAS is considered the machine gun. The AR is just a host it sits in. Also, when the RDIAS is in a normal non-SBR AR, a short barrel can be put on it b/c the MG trumps the SBR. It's all fucking pointless bull shit, but it's important and easy to learn.

Good luck on your future purchase.....you are making a great one!

My RDIAS


Link Posted: 12/27/2012 4:51:05 AM EST
Okay now this is starting to come together. I think I just had my definitions mucked up. Thanks.

What do I need to have in place to purchase one? Do I apply for a stamp prior to the purchase?
Link Posted: 12/27/2012 5:58:05 AM EST
Originally Posted By itschris:
Okay now this is starting to come together. I think I just had my definitions mucked up. Thanks.

What do I need to have in place to purchase one? Do I apply for a stamp prior to the purchase?


You find the item for sale, agree on the purchase terms, then submit a form 4 to the NFA Branch. That form will include all your information, the serial number of the item, description, etc. If you submit the form 4 as an individual, you will need a sign off from your chief law enforcement officer, two photos, and two sets of fingerprints in addition to the two copies of the form 4 and a certificate of compliance. And, of course, the $200 transfer tax. If you do a transfer to a trust, corporation, etc., you need to include copies of those supporting documents.

Then, you wait 5-7 months, and pick up your MG from the seller.
Link Posted: 12/27/2012 9:09:09 AM EST
Originally Posted By itschris:
Okay now this is starting to come together. I think I just had my definitions mucked up. Thanks.

What do I need to have in place to purchase one? Do I apply for a stamp prior to the purchase?


didn't you say above you have an SBR already? you should know what to do...

buy from dealer - dealer gives you forms - you fill out forms and either send in to ATF, or send back to dealer who will send to ATF - wait.

when the approved forms come back (to your dealer), he or she will contact you and you can go pick up your new MG.


Link Posted: 12/27/2012 11:44:49 AM EST
Originally Posted By bullyforyou:
Originally Posted By itschris:
Okay now this is starting to come together. I think I just had my definitions mucked up. Thanks.

What do I need to have in place to purchase one? Do I apply for a stamp prior to the purchase?


didn't you say above you have an SBR already? you should know what to do...

buy from dealer - dealer gives you forms - you fill out forms and either send in to ATF, or send back to dealer who will send to ATF - wait.

when the approved forms come back (to your dealer), he or she will contact you and you can go pick up your new MG.




I do, but I just wanted to make sure there wasn't anything specific for MG type purchases beyond the standard Form 4 and tax. In a typical transaction, do you pay the entire amount up front or do you negotiate some sort of down payment? I'm a bit nervous about shelling out up to 20K for something I can't own for months down the road.
Link Posted: 12/27/2012 2:03:40 PM EST
This is why a lot more guys buying MGs buy from a dealer, even if it costs $1k-2500 more. Peace of mind is worth that to some folks, & I understand that because if you buy an NFA item from someone in another state, they do a form 4 to their dealer, which takes 4.5-9 months plus the time it takes for the form 3 to clear to their dealer, & that's a long time to wait to be able to our your hands on a physical item. Lots of dealers have an inspection period, where you can return the item if you don't approve of it. There are different payment methods. I've seen individuals take 1/2 payment, then the other half when it gets to your dealer. I myself have paid in full to a dealer, it was his personal MG, but he was a dealer. I've also sent a dealer a check that he held until he had the item in his possession, & he contacted me to make sure I still wanted it before he cashed it. I guess its up to the parties involved. The NFA community is a small community, so if somebody has gotten screwed by someone, word usually gets around. Dealers are a safer bet, but usually command a premium price. Ruben Mendiola, for instance, has a sterling reputation, but his MGs are more expensive. He does provide lots of pics, & inspects his items thoroughly though. HTH
Link Posted: 12/27/2012 2:20:51 PM EST
Originally Posted By itschris:
Originally Posted By bullyforyou:
Originally Posted By itschris:
Okay now this is starting to come together. I think I just had my definitions mucked up. Thanks.

What do I need to have in place to purchase one? Do I apply for a stamp prior to the purchase?


didn't you say above you have an SBR already? you should know what to do...

buy from dealer - dealer gives you forms - you fill out forms and either send in to ATF, or send back to dealer who will send to ATF - wait.

when the approved forms come back (to your dealer), he or she will contact you and you can go pick up your new MG.




I do, but I just wanted to make sure there wasn't anything specific for MG type purchases beyond the standard Form 4 and tax. In a typical transaction, do you pay the entire amount up front or do you negotiate some sort of down payment? I'm a bit nervous about shelling out up to 20K for something I can't own for months down the road.


It all depends on the seller. Some people do 50/50, some do payments, some do all up front, some even do all once the forms come back. Just work out a deal, and make 100% that whoever you are buying from is legit.

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