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Posted: 11/7/2003 11:33:42 AM EDT
I'm not in the US. I own a 1960 H&R M14 that I'd really like refinished. I was told by a US vendor/'smith that I could not send the rifle to the US because it was a machine gun and those can't be imported by anyone other than LE agency or government. I was under the impression that only some M14s were FA and therefore, if I stripped out my internal parts (selector, trigger etc.), mine wouldn't be considered an MG. Anyone know the law on M14s?
Link Posted: 11/7/2003 2:56:15 PM EDT
While the US Army removed the selectors from almost all M14 Rifles and made them SEMI only, they remained capable of AUTO fire with a couple of parts.

Since the M14 will fire AUTO it's a machinegun and as such is covered by a zillion US laws, even if none of the special parts are present.

This is so bizzare that even if you sawed the [bleeping] receiver in half, the part with the serial number would still be a "machinegun" even though it's barely useful as a club.

Before someone jumps in here and clains there were special semi-only M14 Rifles produced: Yeah, a couple of dozen.

-- Chuck
Link Posted: 11/8/2003 11:28:38 AM EDT
The M14 receiver is a machine gun. Though many were in use as semi-auto only (for practical reasons), it was only because the Army either did not install, or instructed armorers to remove, the few linking parts which would indeed allow it to fire full auto. If you look at your M14 receiver (out of the stock) you will see a metal tab sticking down from the right-hand (as viewed from the rear) side. That is the key element. If there is not, you have one of those to which Chuck refers, which was ground off. I do not know of the legalities there, though I am sure there would be a snowstorm of paperwork associated with it.

Your stock may even have a cutout at that point. There was a key shaped switch there, along with one or two internal parts and a bar linking to the operating rod. The issue is that, unlike rifles like the AR15/16, for example, you do not have to make modifications to the rifle to get auto fire. If you added a full M16 trigger pack to an AR15, you would not get it to fire full auto without adding a sear. But, an M14 only needs reinstallation of readily available parts to go back to full auto. BATF policy is "once a machine gun, always a machine gun." And, though I hate to say it, given the parts issues, they are correct.
Link Posted: 11/9/2003 4:03:27 PM EDT
Hmmmmm. There might be a way to work this. If you pick a gunsmith with a full auto manufacturing license they may be able to receive it and send it back to you. I'd call BATFE an ask them. They probably won't help you in finding a gunsmith but they can answer your questions.

Refinished? As in re-parked or what? If you tell us what country you are in and what exactly you want done we might be able to guide you to someone a little more "local."

Link Posted: 11/10/2003 2:33:16 AM EDT
Thanks folks. I'm what you would call a Class 3 dealer down in the Caribbean. There is no other refinishing option close by, I think it is safe to say that 99% of the expertise on these rifles exists in the USA. My gun seems to have been re-finished at some time in its life with a non-parkerized finish and I'd like to get it back as close to USGI spec as possible. I might have to do the parkerizing job myself - I have a set of bluing tanks, are there any decent kits available?
Link Posted: 11/10/2003 7:32:28 AM EDT
Brownells sells park kits, I haven't done any so I can't recommend one.

You might ask in the Build it Yourself Forum.
Link Posted: 11/10/2003 8:33:50 AM EDT
Brownells parking kits are EASY to use.

I've done 3 FALS, each came out better than the previous, I think that has something to do with the solution getting stronger as it works on more metal, I reused the same solution 3 times. It's not real nasty or stinky, but I did mine outside on gas barbacues-you're only talking 180 degrees or so, not difficult at all. Go the the FALFILES for some step by step instructions using the search function, but I was shocked how easy it was to do.
Link Posted: 11/10/2003 8:56:56 AM EDT
Thanks CITADELGRAD, I just did exactly that and am suprised how easy it is. I already have a blast cabinet and stainless boiling pots are easy enough to come by, I think I'll include some Brownells Parkerizing solution in my next order. The barrel on this gun is chrome-lined so I'm thinking that I won't even bother removing the barrel from the action or plugging it. All I need after that is a new or mint/used GI stock with all the hardware and I'm back in business with this ol' fella.
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