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Rob M
20-05-2004, 10:53 AM
About the Home Office's new Firearms Laws consulation document:

http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/docs3/controls_on_firearms.pdf

I am preparing my response, amongst other things I will be asking for airguns power to be tested with a single standard pellet that is available to the public, so that people can set up their rifles legally with those pellets, without worrying about vindictive coppers testing them with lightweight Prometheus or heavyweight rabbit magnums and finding them over the limit that way.

I will also be requesting that airguns are no longer referred to as 'air weapons', this is a misnomer that has really got on my nerves over the years, since only about 0.03 per cent of airguns are used as weapons (if you apply the dictionary definition of the word 'weapon', which is "an object used to injure or threaten another"), even airguns that are used illegally are only very rarely used as weapons.

I really think that everyone on this BBS should write in asking for these things. What else would other people from this BBS be asking for?

rabbitman
20-05-2004, 11:17 AM
I agree with you totally but having recently had correspondance with Caroline Flint minister for(against) shooting I reckon you will find the governments already made its mind up on this matter
irrespective of the truth.
Incidently Caroline Flint stated 80 self Contained Gas Cartridge guns had been used in a range of crimes up to murder.

Geordie
20-05-2004, 11:22 AM
Originally posted by rabbitman
I agree with you totally but having recently had correspondance with Caroline Flint minister for(against) shooting I reckon you will find the governments already made its mind up on this matter
irrespective of the truth.
Incidently Caroline Flint stated 80 self Contained Gas Cartridge guns had been used in a range of crimes up to murder.

Would you be able to expand on all that for me please mate? :confused:

TIA,

Dan

robinghewitt
20-05-2004, 11:35 AM
I think that if this really is an attempt to rationalise complicated law, there should be similar amounts of tightening and easing, rather than all of one and none of the other.

Mick H
20-05-2004, 11:43 AM
Yeah, the standard pellet / pellet weight would is a good idea,
let's hope they go for it.
Good Luck
Mick

Rob M
20-05-2004, 11:47 AM
"I think that if this really is an attempt to rationalise complicated law, there should be similar amounts of tightening and easing, rather than all of one and none of the other."

I hope that this really is the case Robin, but I too am a bit cynical these days.

There are many people on this BBS who would rather talk about the minutiae of our sport, than do something constructive to preserve it. They would rather talk about which scope or silencer or trigger shoe is best, than write to their MP or their government to at least try to save their sport. At least when the axe falls, those of us that have sent in their views on this document, wrote to their MP etc will know that they did something at least to save airgunning.

If people don't do something, after they have handed in their guns for destruction, they will always wonder if they could have made a difference...

Sorry for being so cynical...

:(

Len
20-05-2004, 11:48 AM
I fully agree with your pledge to use a standard pellet as it will remove much of the twillight surrounding the legal limit.

As far as the word Airweapon is concerned, just live with that word, personally I think it is a weapon (looks and general idea of shooting a projectile) and we need to think about it as a weapon and handle it as a weapon; it can be used to kill or injure another which can be animal or human.

The law is there to basically rout the use of any gun and the discussion is endless. Every country has their own law, and they all keep looking at other countries and as a result change their own law etc etc etc.

Len

Rob M
20-05-2004, 12:36 PM
"As far as the word Airweapon is concerned, just live with that word, personally I think it is a weapon (looks and general idea of shooting a projectile) and we need to think about it as a weapon and handle it as a weapon; it can be used to kill or injure another which can be animal or human."

Sorry Len, I don't agree at all there. The fact that it can be used as a weapon doesn't mean a thing. There are more people bashed every year with golf clubs than shot with airguns (according to Home Office statistics), and golf clubs evolved from weapons, but do we have golf weapons? Are shotguns referred to as 'shot weapons'? No, they aren't. The very word 'weapon' is an insult to the 99.8 per cent of airgun shooters who are intensely law-abiding.

The word 'weapon' has bad connotations, and it's continual use in connection with airguns unfairly blackens our name and helps to turn the public against us.

I know that I am arguing about semantics here, but what's wrong with referring to airguns as airguns? Why do we have to be tarred with that brush?

The fact that some animals are shot with airguns is neither here nor there, full-bore rifles used for shooting deer are referred to as sporting guns or sporting arms, not sporting weapons.

Taff Williams
20-05-2004, 12:49 PM
Ignoring the airgun/weapon minutiae for the minute.

Assuming we were all to write to our MP's, should we follow a standard format or just present our views as they effect each of us; Is the best form to write snail mail or Email to be most effective?

Should we also follow guidelines from BASC/BASA before (excuse the pun) shooting our mouths off.

I've printed the entire document so I can smother it in comments that I can later collate into a legible reply.

Views so far?

Ogri the trog

Beer Hunter
20-05-2004, 01:24 PM
Gents,

I’d suggest that we collate our views and then formally request that the BASC petition on our behalf. After all, this is their area of expertise and one of the reasons we pay our membership.

I believe that much of the time the BASC simply give lip service to airgun issues; but if presented with a request for action from several hundred members, they would have to take note.

TER…

draftsmann
20-05-2004, 01:26 PM
Now that the absolute offence committed in inadvertantly possessing a 12.1 ft lb air rifle carries a mandatory sentence, the shooting bodies should be pursuing a standard test, probably based on a degreased pure lead ball fired through a cleaned and degreased bore and with ambient temperature within a specified range.

Campaigning for a change from using the word "weapon" in the legislation on the other hand is a waste of time and energy better devoted elsewhere IMO.

Adrian

Rob M
20-05-2004, 03:42 PM
"Campaigning for a change from using the word "weapon" in the legislation on the other hand is a waste of time and energy better devoted elsewhere IMO."

Firearms laws as a whole are under review, the consultation document covers pretty much everything to do with firearms. I know that some people see the use of the word 'weapon' as trivial, but it's just one of many things about the UK's firearms laws which I think is wrong.

My point is that any shooter who reads the consultation document will have views on it's content, and views on how to make the laws better for everyone, and while each shooter's views will be different, every shooter that writes in strengthens the case for shooting sports as a whole.

If you don't think that them referring to airguns as weapons is important, then fine, I am sure that you will find other things to write about in that document. As many shooters as possible should write in, after all, the GCN and other anti-gun groups will be writing in as well.

Len
20-05-2004, 03:55 PM
Originally posted by draftsmann
Now that the absolute offence committed in inadvertantly possessing a 12.1 ft lb air rifle carries a mandatory sentence, the shooting bodies should be pursuing a standard test, probably based on a degreased pure lead ball fired through a cleaned and degreased bore and with ambient temperature within a specified range.

Campaigning for a change from using the word "weapon" in the legislation on the other hand is a waste of time and energy better devoted elsewhere IMO.

Adrian

No, we are not going to discuss amongst ourselves about the word weapon or gun, forget about it, this was just my personal opninion. However, this does illustrate our sensitivity to any alterations in the law and the fact that public opinion in general has been pushing us (dedicated airgun shooters) around for too long, seems like we are always at the receiving end.

At the same time I dare state that hardened criminals will pick up all sorts of guns left right and centre while the likes of us will remain gobsmacked.

Absolutely right, we can all have our different opninions but as far as testing of airguns is concerned there should be a standard test with set parameters, like pellet shape, weight etc etc. The word test implicates a certain procedure with set references

draftsmann
20-05-2004, 04:02 PM
Out of interest Rob what term would you prefer used? Something like "gas powered firearm"?

Adrian

MikB
20-05-2004, 04:24 PM
Originally posted by draftsmann

Campaigning for a change from using the word "weapon" in the legislation on the other hand is a waste of time and energy better devoted elsewhere IMO.

Adrian

Absolutely - call a spade a spade. If the W word becomes taboo, those of who shoot, for example, Lee-Enfields - a W-thing if ever there was one - will be separated off from those who shoot "air operated ballistic sporting devices" or whatever damn PC name they acquire in this brave new world...:p

Regards,
MikB

Snapshot.
20-05-2004, 05:14 PM
The other thing is that Rob only seems to be defining 'weapon' as when an airgun is used against a human. If it's used for hunting or could be used for hunting then it's a weapon and this is a somewhat higher percentage than .03.

Jonathan

figjam
20-05-2004, 06:32 PM
if your weapon is tested then all you have to do is specify whicj pellet you use, therefore when its tested it falls within the legal requirements!

once you start trying to dictate what pellet and method is used for testing your backing down!

at the moment if you set your rifle up with say air arms blah blah blah!

if your stopped for in example your car, what happens if youve just bought rabbit magnums for a mate, or you posess a F.A.C. rated air rifle, but you dont have it in your posession at the time of being stopped and tested!

then if for example they test your weapon with all types of ammunition on your posession, and you know for sure the rabbitt magnums are going to push it over the 12ft/lb limit. you will be charged!

i think not, they have no way of actually proving you have or will ever use those pellets, even if you have them in your posession!


i cant see what the fuss is all about

rgds

kenny

Terry D
20-05-2004, 07:22 PM
Originally posted by figjam
they have no way of actually proving you have or will ever use those pellets, even if you have them in your posession!



They don't need that proof, mate. The law uses the phrase 'capable of exceeding the legal limit' - and it refers to the gun, not its user.

THAT'S what all the fuss is about.

For the record, the shooting lobby has been campaigning for a 'test round' for many years. The logic in support of it is overwhelming and we've even offered to fund the required pellet supply/development. We're still trying. :rolleyes:

Terry

Terry D
20-05-2004, 07:28 PM
Originally posted by TER...

I believe that much of the time the BASC simply give lip service to airgun issues;

TER…

Why do you believe this, mate?

I'm regularly there when the BASC are going into battle on behalf of airgunning and there's no 'lip service' going on at all.

BASC knows that airgunning is a major factor in the takeup of all shooting sports - and it defends us with full commitment.

Long may the BASC be our defenders, because nobody does it better. ;)

Terry :D

draftsmann
20-05-2004, 08:23 PM
Originally posted by Terry D
For the record, the shooting lobby has been campaigning for a 'test round' for many years. The logic in support of it is overwhelming and we've even offered to fund the required pellet supply/development. We're still trying. :rolleyes:
I don't doubt what you say for one minute Terry. What has been the Home Office's response to this lobbying? I assume that the recent introduction of the 5 year mandatory sentence has renewed the campaign for clarity in this law?

Adrian

Zanx
20-05-2004, 08:29 PM
From a newbies point of view the solution is (maybe naively) simple at the time of testing.

1) Fixed weight pellet.
2) Fixed air temp.
3) Fixed air density.
4) Clean barrel.
5) Access to a scince lab were all these things can be offered.

OR

Offer a 1ft/lb window to work within, if you're .5 over because of a certain pellet or a very shiny barrel then there's no problem.

I suspect this particular law has been created to intentionally increase the numbers of "Illegally held guns" bravely captured by our heroic policemen. There seems to be a common sense vacuum.

Rob M
20-05-2004, 08:53 PM
Quote: "Out of interest Rob what term would you prefer used? Something like "gas powered firearm"?"

How about.... Airgun?

For most people gun can mean pistol or rifle...

Quote: "The other thing is that Rob only seems to be defining 'weapon' as when an airgun is used against a human. If it's used for hunting or could be used for hunting then it's a weapon and this is a somewhat higher percentage than .03"

I think that you'll find that an object only becomes a weapon if it's used against people. Sporting guns used against animals don't qualify to be called weapons... My dictionary here defines weapon as "any object designed or used to inflict bodily harm on a person, such as a gun, bomb or hammer", so even guns used to shoot deer don't qualify. Like I said before, shotguns aren't called 'shot weapons' are they? Golf clubs aren't called golf weapons? So why should airguns be different. For an object to be a weapon it has to be used against a person, that is why the word 'weapon' has connotations of violence for the public, and it's continual use in connection with airguns continually harms the public's perception of us and our sport.

I'm not squeamish about the term 'weapon' at all. I have shot Lee-Enfield .303s, FN SLRs and even an M16 and have no problem with those military guns being described as weapons. I just believe strongly that the term is a complete misnomer for airguns and having our guns referred to as weapons harms our sport. I am not being PC about this; airguns simply aren't weapons in my book.

I didn't mean to go on like this, this is just my opinion, I just think that as the firearms laws are apparently in a state of flux for the next year or so we should try and swing as much of the legislation our way as possible. That includes trying to get a standard test for power, and (in my opinion) trying to get politicians and policemen to stop using the 'W' word.

Rob M

figjam
20-05-2004, 09:02 PM
Originally posted by Terry D
They don't need that proof, mate. The law uses the phrase 'capable of exceeding the legal limit' - and it refers to the gun, not its user.

THAT'S what all the fuss is about.

For the record, the shooting lobby has been campaigning for a 'test round' for many years. The logic in support of it is overwhelming and we've even offered to fund the required pellet supply/development. We're still trying. :rolleyes:

Terry

sorry but there is no way you could possibly be procecuted for posessing a tin of pellets that are capable of exceeding the air rifle limit!

any laywer would laugh this out of court!


its a bit like 'doing' somebody for owning a subaru wrx!(or any other car)

its capable of exceeding the 70 mph limit but unless your actually caught breaking the law with it, im sorry i dont agree with your principle!

in the eyes of the law you would have top be caught using that particular pellet!

i'm not condoning the idea of single pellet test, but surely money and effort can be better used in fighting more impotartnat issues!:(

back to my original post.

would you be happy if you had your weapon confiscated and tested and you had a tin of heavy weight pellets, like rabbit magnums in your posession that were somebody elses!
or for a F.A.C. rated weapon that you owned but wasnt on you at the time of being stopped!

i dont think i would like to take the chance!

draftsmann
20-05-2004, 09:03 PM
Originally posted by Rob M
How about.... Airgun?

For most people gun can mean pistol or rifle...


Problem is that legislative drafting is - or should be - a precise and technical exercise. "Gun" denotes a smooth bored, barreled weapon. The overwhelming majority of our air weapons are not, strictly speaking, "guns". This isn't being unduly pedantic, but the word that most people would use in everyday speech is not necessarily the correct word to use in the legislation.

Adrian

Geordie
20-05-2004, 09:10 PM
Figjam - I think you've missed the point somewhat here..

It's not the pellets that are the issue - it's the gun.

If your gun is set to 11.9 with AA fields, and you get it taken off you and tested, the police are entitled (under current law) to use *any* pellet they see fit - they could even use Dai Sungs if the mood took them (although AFAIK this is yet to happen).

The lack of standardisation means that some forces use only the pellets found with the gun, wheras others use a variety of weights and shapes, ranging from lightweight up to bismags. In this case, with your 11.9fpe rifle, you'll get locked up - simple as.

I. J.
20-05-2004, 09:17 PM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Mick H
[B]Yeah, the standard pellet / pellet weight would is a good idea,
QUOTE]

How about standardizing on a round lead ball (4.5mm, 5.0mm, & 5.5mm) :rolleyes:

figjam
20-05-2004, 09:24 PM
campaign for the the testing of the pellets your caught with!

personally if you standardise a test with heavy pellets, and as you might already not every rifle likes the same pellet.

so i choose to use a lighter pellet, which fires at 9.5 ft/lbs, surely then im affecting my capabilities of despatching quarry humanly.

does this not seem a bit stupid!

surely if you were to campaign for every rifle tested with the pellet stated to be used, does that not make more sense!

:D :D


and if this fails is our club and every club in britain, aswell as the police forces going to be issued with these test pellets!

rgds

kenny

draftsmann
20-05-2004, 09:24 PM
Originally posted by I. J.
How about standardizing on a round lead ball (4.5mm, 5.0mm, & 5.5mm) :rolleyes:
Exactly - it's so obvious isn't it? Sometimes I wonder - there are one or two analogous situations in the tax legislation I work with in my day job where, despite the government's stated agenda of fairness and clarity, there are long-standing ambiguities that could be addressed easily. You really have to ask what is the government's underlying motive in choosing not to tie up these loose ends. It looks to me like they are playing a "heads we win, tails you lose" game......

Adrian

rabbitman
20-05-2004, 10:20 PM
Yes Adrian very astutely put.
The upcomming firearms review is expected to extend to air guns which could be modified above the the 6ftlb and 12ftlb limits.Rumours within the trade suggest that mechanisms will be required to be tamper proof to prevent people winding up the power.eg hardened pins limiting transfer port dimensions ,sealed regulators,after market sales of springs.
The most worrying suggestion is that having avoided paying compensation to self contained gas cartridge weapon holders by offering them the opportunity to apply for an FAC at £58 and cabinet at £100 that all the older guns which are not tamper proof may have the same thing done to them.ie if you want to keep it pay up.
Legalised theft really!

Beer Hunter
20-05-2004, 10:27 PM
Originally posted by Terry D
Why do you believe this, mate?

I'm regularly there when the BASC are going into battle on behalf of airgunning and there's no 'lip service' going on at all.

BASC knows that airgunning is a major factor in the takeup of all shooting sports - and it defends us with full commitment.

Long may the BASC be our defenders, because nobody does it better. ;)

Terry :D

Terry,

My remarks were perhaps a little flippant; but based on many years experience as a member the BASC. However, my experience is mainly limited to reading the members magazine which drops through the door every few months.

While UK airgun shooters are undeniably more numerous than shotgun or firearms users, the magazine concentrates the vast majority of its pages to shotgun and firearm articles. Perhaps this is due to a relatively small number of airgun users being members? Perhaps shotgun and firearm users more effectively line their coffers?

I bow to your more active involvement.

Anyway, my point still stands – I still have faith in the BASC and believe that they are best placed to protect our sport. Supplying the BASC with our opinions and asking them for action must be more effective than individual members lobbying.

TER…

POK!
20-05-2004, 11:43 PM
Originally posted by figjam
campaign for the the testing of the pellets your caught with!

But what if you're caught with no pellets?

figjam
20-05-2004, 11:54 PM
tell the ignorant copper what you set it up and shoot with!

figjam
21-05-2004, 12:01 AM
Originally posted by rabbitman
Yes Adrian very astutely put.
The upcomming firearms review is expected to extend to air guns which could be modified above the the 6ftlb and 12ftlb limits.Rumours within the trade suggest that mechanisms will be required to be tamper proof to prevent people winding up the power.eg hardened pins limiting transfer port dimensions ,sealed regulators,after market sales of springs.
The most worrying suggestion is that having avoided paying compensation to self contained gas cartridge weapon holders by offering them the opportunity to apply for an FAC at £58 and cabinet at £100 that all the older guns which are not tamper proof may have the same thing done to them.ie if you want to keep it pay up.
Legalised theft really!


but how many of us out there have bought a rifle from new or a shop and it chrono'd well over 12ft/lb


who's to blame there!


in the eyes of the law its the owner!

you cant argue with the courts!

its YOUR weapon, its YOUR responsibility!

how can we dictate what happens when we cant even agree amongst ourselves whats best!


GIVE IT 3-5 YRS AND ALL WEAPONS WILL BE ON TICKET UNLESS WE DO SOMETHING NOW! AS A SINGLE BODY!

rgds

kenny:(

Russ6357
21-05-2004, 03:16 AM
They don't want anyone but the Police and army to have guns.

At a push they will recognize that gamekeepers and the like have to have them as a tool of the trade.

Other than that they want them all.

To go to prison for 5 years because someone tested your gun on a hot day and it dieseled is outrageous but it is what it is.

I suspect that if one was to talk to the Police that it is unlikely that your gun is going to be confiscated and tested unless you are caught comitting another offence (tresspass for example).

Terry D
21-05-2004, 06:24 AM
Originally posted by figjam
tell the ignorant copper what you set it up and shoot with!

Mate, please tell me you're just having a wind-up.

We need a standard, mid-weight, test projectile - and we've campaigned for an 'official' lead ball as it happens - so that the limit is not open to 'flexibility' of any kind. As stated, we have offered to fund the development, purchase and distribution of this official projectile, and the debate goes on.

Figjam, you stated;
' sorry but there is no way you could possibly be prosecuted for possessing a tin of pellets that are capable of exceeding the air rifle limit!

any lawyer would laugh this out of court!


its a bit like 'doing' somebody for owning a subaru wrx!(or any other car)

its capable of exceeding the 70 mph limit but unless your actually caught breaking the law with it, im sorry i dont agree with your principle!

1. Nobody said anyone would be prosecuted for owning a tin of pellets, mate. As already stated - it's the GUN that gets you done. The 'capability' issue refers to the gun.

2. It's not MY principle - it's the law of the land and people HAVE been prosecuted because of it. Please don't confuse that which seems logical and fair to you, with the letter of the law. These are often two very different things. Airguns ARE treated differently to cars under law. Fact. You don't have to be caught speeding with an airgun - it only needs to be 'capable' of speeding, ok?

Some aspects of the firearms laws certainly need to be addressed, but until changes are made there's no point in ignoring legislation or putting our own, albeit sensible, interpretations on them. It ain't fair at times - but it IS the law, and we're law-abiding people.

Terry

Trav
21-05-2004, 07:02 AM
This is my take on the argument. I'm not completely conversant with british legislation on this (however the education is coming REAL fast) but I am somewhat conversant with the way courts of law think and proceed.

Just saying to the policeman "But I use Crosman pellets" is no good. The courts look at the letter of the law and the letter of the law states "Capable of exceeding". It is true that most people wouldn't use the ultra fast pellets because their rifle either isn't suited for them or because they themselves aren't suited to the purpose of the shooter. However, as the law stands, the testers can and will use the ultra fast pellet to try to catch the shooter out.

Campaigning for an official test pellet/weight/testing condition is pointless from my view. The courts will look at the letter of the law yes, but they also try to base themselves (haphazardly I admit) in the real world. They will see that the rifle needs to be tested in at least somewhat real world conditions.

The solution though is fairly simple. If the testers want to test the rifle using a multitude of pellets and a chrono, let them. However, campaign for the wording of the law so that LOTS of pellets of different types are put through your gun. If all the chrono times are put together then averaged, a fairly accurate picture of whether someone is trying to exceed the legal limit will emerge.

From my experience, when campaigning for changes to a difficult law, just identifying a problem area isn't enough. A solution must be presented as well. Not only that, but the solution must be one which doesn't on the face of it reduce the legislators powers. It has to look fair to them, because - particularly on an issue like this - there is a lot of ego and face at stake. For a politician to be able to say "I stopped all those eeevil airgunners from blahblahblah" is a big thing politically because at heart, most of the population is ignorant of the issues. They will simply see the politician as having removed guns from the street.

A solution like the one I've outlined above though, can be explained simply, can be implemented easily, wouldn't cost much and has the outrageous property of being fair. Its hard to argue against.

cheers,

Trav

(Edited because of a misspell)

Simon Clarke
21-05-2004, 08:22 AM
Originally posted by Terry D
We need a standard, mid-weight, test projectile
Terry

Should we call this a "testicle"?

Sorry, I'll get me coat.

Simon.

Beer Hunter
21-05-2004, 08:53 AM
I like the idea of using a pure lead ball as fair test.
A .22 would weigh 16 grains and a .177 would be 8 grain.

TER...

Terry D
21-05-2004, 09:10 AM
Originally posted by Simon Clarke
Should we call this a "testicle"?

Sorry, I'll get me coat.

Simon.

Bally new-generation BASC wallas! (Harumph, harumph!)

Wouldn't have had such flippancy in the WAGBI days....(more harumphing....) ;)

Terry :D

Rob M
21-05-2004, 10:05 AM
I think that it has to be a diabolo pellet or a slug, lead balls would be a problem for some mag or bolt fed guns, and lead balls might not seal well enough in the barrels of some springers to cushion the piston effectively.

I think that we should petition the government to nominate (or commission the manufacture of) a medium-weight British-made diabolo pellet that is reasonably well made to a consistent weight, available in all calibres, then all police tests should be conducted with that pellet alone. I am sure that Lincoln Jefferies, Lane's, Milbro, Cammell's or Rothery's would be happy to make these 'British Standard Pellets'.

You could buy in a few for testing or tuning your gun, get it below the legal limit with the 'Standards', then if it happens to be running at 12.1 ft/lbs with Bisley Magnums, or Hobbys, or Prometheus, it wouldn't be a problem as long as it's still running sub-12 with the standard pellets.

That's how I'd like the law set up anyway, and that's what I'll be asking for when I write in with my suggestions for the new laws (along with my request that airguns aren't referred to as weapons any more!! ;) )

Rob M

marcusj
21-05-2004, 10:15 AM
Would those standard pellets be used with or without a squirt of WD40 up the transfer port for springers? :rolleyes:

If they want to nick you, they will.

Beer Hunter
21-05-2004, 10:23 AM
Rob,

I completely agree with your logic, but the problem would be ensuring the long term availability of the nominated ammo. Brands are discontinued and manufacturers go out of business. Test projectile availability doubts would probably result in the authorities rejecting our request.

It is much easier for (many) manufacturers to produce a “standard” ball mould than is a pellet mould.
As a repeatable test, I think the solid lead ball is hard to beat.

TER…

Rob M
21-05-2004, 10:24 AM
Ter said: "Anyway, my point still stands – I still have faith in the BASC and believe that they are best placed to protect our sport. Supplying the BASC with our opinions and asking them for action must be more effective than individual members lobbying.

TER…"

I agree there, we should all let BASC know our opinions, but this should be in addition to writing to the Home Office ourselves, not 'instead of'.

The address to write to is in the PDF:

http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/docs3/controls_on_firearms.pdf

The testing of guns should obviously be done without WD40 in the transfer port, that goes without saying, any policeman or forensic science officer tampering with evidence like that would be in serious breach of the law. :mad:

Quote: "I completely agree with your logic, but the problem would be ensuring the long term availability of the nominated ammo. Brands are discontinued and manufacturers go out of business. Test projectile availability doubts would probably result in the authorities rejecting our request."

The government should be responsible in some way for the supply of the standard pellets. If the design was created as a British Standard, any manufacturer could make them. All the firms I mentioned have been going for many decades, Lincoln Jefferies and Lane's have been going well over a hundred years, so there should be scope there for the production of a steady supply. If it was the law that airguns had to be tested at the factory with them, and shooters could buy them for their own testing, plus the police had to use them, there's enough demand there to guarantee a steady supply surely?

Rob M

Ray J
21-05-2004, 10:39 AM
For some unknown reason I can't bring up the doccument.

On the subject of mandatory sentences, didn't the Law Society recently successfully resist the government wishes to implement this.

Ray :cool:

Beer Hunter
21-05-2004, 10:44 AM
The government should be responsible in some way for the supply of the standard pellets.

Like any other organisation, the government want an easy life. There is a big difference to agreeing to a standard projectile and becoming responsible for their supply.

TER..

morose
21-05-2004, 10:52 AM
Is there any scope for petitioning towarda a 15ft/lb limit. I don't expect many of us would at present be happy to shoot/hunt a few ft/lbs under the current legal limit. However if the limit were higher then I for one would be happy sticking at the current levels without need to worry if I marginally exceed the 12ft/lb limit.

The industry could continue to produce rifles at the 12ft/lb level and could charge a premium for those wishing to go towards the 15ft/lb mark in an effort to disuade the hooligan minority from getting their filthy mitts on them.

I can see some swiss cheese size holes in this argument and it's probably unrealistic but thought it was food for thought (if you'll pardon the pun).

DJP
21-05-2004, 10:56 AM
While the standard projectile idea is a good one it ain't gonna happen, the government simply will not go to those efforts for us. Remember, they're trying to get rid of us.

Realistically, the best we can hope for is that they publish a standard list of pellets to be used in testing by all forces. And that if a pellet on the list becomes unavailable they publish an updated list showing what will be used instead.

British Standard Balls? Load of balls more like! :D

Beer Hunter
21-05-2004, 11:10 AM
Originally posted by DJP
While the standard projectile idea is a good one it ain't gonna happen, the government simply will not go to those efforts for us. Remember, they're trying to get rid of us.

Realistically, the best we can hope for is that they publish a standard list of pellets to be used in testing by all forces. And that if a pellet on the list becomes unavailable they publish an updated list showing what will be used instead.

British Standard Balls? Load of balls more like! :D

DJP,

If the government were to define a standard list of pellets, this would no doubt involve further consultation above and beyond naming a solid lead ball. Furthermore that marketplace would require regular review to ensure product availability.
As all this would involve greater effort on the part of the authorities, I think your argument fails to hold water.

TER...

Ray J
21-05-2004, 12:18 PM
I must have missed something.

Part 2 Relates to - Unlicenced Guns, guns that do not meet the legal definition of Fire Arm.
"Low powered Air Guns, that are used for target shooting and vermin control" That's us, isn't it?

I didn't read Air Weapon.

I didn't read anything relating to mandatory sentences for being a .5 lb/ft over 12 lb/ft.

Can some one point me to the sections that do?

Ray:cool:

Geordie
21-05-2004, 12:33 PM
Originally posted by Ray J
I must have missed something.
<snip>
I didn't read anything relating to mandatory sentences for being a .5 lb/ft over 12 lb/ft.

Can some one point me to the sections that do?

Ray:cool:

Yup, Annex B - Firearms Offences and Penalties:

Possessing etc. Firearm or Ammunition without Firearm Certificate - 5years or an unlimited fine or both

hwtyger
21-05-2004, 12:50 PM
I don't know, what if they test a gun for legal limit with, let's say, Gamo pellets
with THOSE they're within limit
but who shoots Gamo pellets?
might be very possible that it's above the limit with your favourite pellet:AA/Daystate, FTT...
about the word weapon:it really shows how the general public feels about guns, it's stigmatising(is that the correct word?)

Rob M
21-05-2004, 02:44 PM
Quote: "about the word weapon:it really shows how the general public feels about guns, it's stigmatising(is that the correct word?)"

I am glad that someone else feels the same way about this that I do!! :)

This isn't the general public's term though, it was applied (incorrectly) to airguns the last time that major new laws involving airguns were created, back in 1968. It really is time that we stopped calling these things weapons, they don't deserve it, and we don't deserve the violent connotations of the word weapon creating entirely the wrong impression with the public.

Ray J
21-05-2004, 06:08 PM
The way I read these "proposals" they are targeted:rolleyes: at bullet guns, not pellet guns.
I appreciate that a pellet gun stepping over the 12lb/ft limit is classed as an unlicenced fierarm.

This is just one of the instances that the law society insists on maintaining their discretion in sentencing.
A pellet gun 2-3 lb/ft over the limit is not the same as a pellt gun 10/20lb/ft over, nor is it the same as an UZZI.

Mandatory sentencing removes the magistrate's/judge's brain!

I feel this will be resisted again even in the case of fire arms.

There is an email addy' so I'll be putting my piece in.

Ray:cool:

CL
21-05-2004, 07:32 PM
Fellow Shooters,

Interesting thread this, I was talking to my mate about this issue last week in fact.
I think eventually it will come to having a register of some kind or a licence for an airgun, whatever its power. I wouldnt have a problem being on a register to say I have airguns, indeed having a register just to say you own an airgun would help reduce crime as it would make it a bit more difficult for young tw@ts to get hold of them.
Its a very fine line on the power issue, with pellet weights, air temp and all the rest of it. As I said to my mate I would find it shocking if a judge sentenced somebody to five years in prison who had a rifle that was, say, 1.5ftlbs over the limit and had never had a criminal record, never been in trouble with the law in any way and just shot at the local club or the odd rabbit shoot.
Its the law thats wrong in this country, people are charged with manslaughter who have a string of criminal offences already and get less than five years, paedo's get mere wrist slaps for their crimes and the list goes on. I know the law is the law but all this fuss and panic about doing five years bird for 0.2 ftlbs over the limit needs to be sorted by the home office otherwise its just gonna depend on if the police or judge are in good moods on the day they catch someone with an over the limit gun.
I mean, imagine if your old man bought an old springer for a bit of rabbiting at the weekends and went down the club to zero it and the police turned up to do random testing and found it to be 12.14 ftlbs. He's never broke the law ever, in his 50's and gets five years bird!!. I know you have to break the law for a airgun to be taken off of you and tested (or do you?) perhaps someone could confirm that. I'd be interested to know if anybody has had their rifle tested or knows anyone else who had it done and what the result was and what action was taken against them.
If I was in charge of the issue for this country I would keep the limit at 12fps and if anybody was found to be in pocession of an airgun over the limit I would give them two weeks to reduce it or they would have to apply for a ticket. If both were not complied with then I'd throw the book at them plain and simple. If the power limit is bought down anymore hunting wouldnt be worth doing, its hard enough as it is to get clean kills with 11.8ftlbs. No matter how good a shot someone is if the power aint there it aint gonna stop them and they will crawl away for a slow death. We all say we have mostly clean kills but we all know they doesnt always happen. Anti's will have a field day and they will become even more enraged by peeps hunting with lower power guns than before!. Its also wrong for the term "air weapons" to be used. Gentleman above was quite right on that, air is something that powers the rifle or pistol, I mean you wouldnt called a kitchen knife "a kitchen weapon" even though it has the potential to kill somebody, and I might add, knives are used more in crime than "" in this country!!.

CL

Nigel S
24-05-2004, 10:53 AM
Originally posted by Terry D
They don't need that proof, mate. The law uses the phrase 'capable of exceeding the legal limit' - and it refers to the gun, not its user.

THAT'S what all the fuss is about.

OK, now you've got me worried.

I knew that if my gun was running over the legal limit when tested I could get done. Now I'm reading "capable of exceeding", and reading that different pellets could be used when assessing that capability.

So how far does "capable" extend? Surely any PCP can be tweaked to go over the limit -- so it's "capable". Any springer can have a beefier spring fitted -- so it's "capable".

What does capable cover?

And from the previously mentioned consultation document:


"Trespassing with an air gun and firing one within 50 feet of a public road are both offences."

WHAT!?! I thought (and I'm sure it was covered in a thread here a while back) that you had to be causing a nusiance/distraction/whatever within 50 feet of the road -- not just firing the thing! Has this changed, or are they just paraphrasing for the consultation document?

Starting to panic...

Nigel

Rob M
24-05-2004, 01:11 PM
Quote: "I thought (and I'm sure it was covered in a thread here a while back) that you had to be causing a nusiance/distraction/whatever within 50 feet of the road -- not just firing the thing!"

This hasn't changed, I think that they are just paraphrasing.

It's a stinker of a law though, even if someone just claims to have been bothered by the noise, (rather than having any genuine safety problem), they can object, and if someone objects then the offence is deemed to have been committed.

We all need to write in with our views and get some fairness and common sense into these laws. I suggest replying to the document, also writing to your MP, the Home Secretary, Tony Blair and also BASC... The more letters that the government receives on this subject the better, the more people that write in, the better.

Cam
24-05-2004, 05:26 PM
Is illegal to fire 50 ft from the CENTER of a road so in reality if you are by a fast A road you can be right on the edge!!!

++

It has always struck me as an interesting comparison - you cant be done for speeding if you are within 10% of the speed limit but if you are 0.1% over with an air rifle wham!

So i think the easiest change is that police can test as many pellets as they like but only if the average is above 12ft lbs can they prosecute.

My force allow (or did?) 10% leeway before they got excited.
when my scg came up for renewal I asked my FLO (who is also a keen airgunner) under what circumstances would an air rifle be tested and his answer was to the effect only if you were caught using it in an illegal manner, but thats on his patch which has very low air rifle crime. unfort different forces have different rules

I know the law sounds draconian but does anyone know or have proof of someone jailed or being given a massive fine for owning a 12.2 ft lb air rifle?