PDA

View Full Version : 50 BMG


justin_5585
10-05-2009, 10:44 AM
Now I know this wouldn't be with the spirit of the law, but based on the following statement in the CA ban on 50's from the penal code, couldn't one simply seat the bullet a bit deeper in the case to get away from the overall length of 5.54 inches (as this is from base to tip of the bullet, not the case end)? Again, just hypothesizing, as I am not a big fan of this particular regulation, and would love to see it crumble...

“.50 BMG cartridge” is defined as a cartridge that is designed and intended to be fired from a centerfire rifle and that meets all of the following criteria: (1) It has an overall length of 5.54 inches (141 mm) from the base to the tip of the bullet. (2) The bullet diameter for the cartridge is from .510 to, and including, .511-inch (13.0 mm). (3) The case base diameter for the cartridge is from .800-inch (20.3 mm) to, and including, .804 inch. (4) The cartridge case length is 3.91 inches (99 mm). (PC § 12278.)[3]

B Strong
10-05-2009, 10:51 AM
Now I know this wouldn't be with the spirit of the law, but based on the following statement in the CA ban on 50's from the penal code, couldn't one simply seat the bullet a bit deeper in the case to get away from the overall length of 5.54 inches (as this is from base to tip of the bullet, not the case end)? Again, just hypothesizing, as I am not a big fan of this particular regulation, and would love to see it crumble...

“.50 BMG cartridge” is defined as a cartridge that is designed and intended to be fired from a centerfire rifle and that meets all of the following criteria: (1) It has an overall length of 5.54 inches (141 mm) from the base to the tip of the bullet. (2) The bullet diameter for the cartridge is from .510 to, and including, .511-inch (13.0 mm). (3) The case base diameter for the cartridge is from .800-inch (20.3 mm) to, and including, .804 inch. (4) The cartridge case length is 3.91 inches (99 mm). (PC § 12278.)[3]

If you came up with new nomenclature for the cartridge and had that caliber designation engraved on the firearm in question, I think you'd be OK.

But why not just go with the .510 DTC?

justin_5585
10-05-2009, 11:05 AM
Because if this were the case, you wouldn't have to go through the brass resizing and fireforming, you could use standard 50 brass and just load differently (as 50 BMG brass is more prevalent and cheaper).

reidnez
10-05-2009, 12:03 PM
The law is already pretty much irrelevant with the .510 DTC which is legal and, for all intents and purposes, identical. I'm not really interested in owning .50's anyway, but if I were, that would probably be the best bet.

In any case, I don't think what you're proposing would make a difference legally, because it is the weapons chambered to .50BMG specs which are banned, not the ammo (ball ammo, anyway). .510 DTC is legal because it will not safely/properly chamber a .50 BMG round or vice-versa. It does not conform to .50 BMG chamber specs and thus is a different cartridge/chambering.

CSACANNONEER
10-05-2009, 12:13 PM
So, since I load my rounds to match 5.65" and 5.75" (depending on the gun), I should not have had to register my rifles. Right? Just because the rifles are still capable of shooting 5.54" ammo should not make a difference. Right? Hell, I trim my brass to 3.900" so, my ammo doesn't fit in two catagories.

Well, if you tried it, I doubt that you'ld win in court. Either get a DTC (fireforming is not that hard) or hope and pray that the ban will go away. The other option is to buy a 50BMG upper and never attach it to a lower while you are in California.

Mssr. Eleganté
10-05-2009, 12:17 PM
This idea was brought up earlier. Even leaving out the safety debate, the point was made that such a rifle would still be able to chamber a .50 BMG round by forcefully closing the bolt. The bullet on a standard .50 BMG round would just get pushed back into the case as you chambered it. If the rifle can chamber a .50 BMG round and fire it (even with the unsafe pressures) then it would be considered a .50 BMG rifle under California law.

justin_5585
10-05-2009, 1:51 PM
This idea was brought up earlier. Even leaving out the safety debate, the point was made that such a rifle would still be able to chamber a .50 BMG round by forcefully closing the bolt. The bullet on a standard .50 BMG round would just get pushed back into the case as you chambered it. If the rifle can chamber a .50 BMG round and fire it (even with the unsafe pressures) then it would be considered a .50 BMG rifle under California law.

But arguably a 10 (maybe even a 12 gauge) can chamber a 50BMG and fire it (again, unsafe, but if the firing pin strikes the primer it will shoot). Does that therefore make it a 50 BMG? I know that's a stretch, but I'm trying to get down to the nitty gritty of the law, you know?

CSACANNONEER
10-05-2009, 2:11 PM
The bottom line is that the law was very poorly written. The law makers didn't even realize that M2s were exempt from the letter of the law. But, it doesn't keep DOJ from trying to enforce their interpetation of the spirit of the law instead of the letter of the law. Many of the straightest shooting 50BMG rifles I know of can not chamber a stanard 50BMG round because, they have extra tight necks. All I can say to you is, if you want to push it, you better have plenty of time and money to waste.

justin_5585
10-05-2009, 2:20 PM
All I can say to you is, if you want to push it, you better have plenty of time and money to waste.

And I suppose that really is the bottom line. I don't have the money, nor the time, to push back if I was ever to be prosecuted for said law. The whole purpose of my question was to see if others viewed the law as poorly written as I did, and whether they recognized the potential for loopholes.

Obviously others had seen that, or the 510 DTC wouldn't exist, but I just can't believe how specifically the writer of the bills targeted .50 BMG ball ammo. Hell, any other bullet in that case would not fit their specific measurements, and the law specifically states ALL parameters must be met to = .50 BMG.

I guess what it all boils down to is I am really sad to not be able to get a standard BMG. I don't need one, I would probably never use it to it's potential, nor be able to afford to shoot it regularly, but it's a principle thing, and I hate the logic behind the ban. I suppose that's why we are all members of CALGUNS though, to try and claw back up the hill RKBA supporters were pushed down in this state...

X-NewYawker
10-05-2009, 2:23 PM
The bottom line is that the law was very poorly written. The law makers didn't even realize that M2s were exempt from the letter of the law. But, it doesn't keep DOJ from trying to enforce their interpetation of the spirit of the law instead of the letter of the law. .

This is a surprise?

CSACANNONEER
10-05-2009, 2:24 PM
You can buy a 50BMG upper and just not mount it to your lower in California. You're more than welcome to do just that and bring it to Reno next April for a 1000 yard match. Who cares if you place last, you'll learn a lot. That's how I started shooting 50s.

justin_5585
10-05-2009, 2:28 PM
True, and I very well might. The issue is having two completely legal pieces, and maintaining the self control to not put them together in the sunshine state ;)

Josh3239
10-05-2009, 4:09 PM
There is a problem with that. Where do you draw the line between a disassembled Assault Weapon and two separate and legal pieces that can never be attached to each other? Do you feal confident sitting in a courtroom telling the DA that they are two legal components that you never attached to one other? The DA will sell it as a complete upper and a complete lower that are just disassembled from each other and only two pins separate it from being an assembled assault weapon.

Where do we draw the line? Can I turn the screw on my Raddlock and remove the BCG and say it isn't a disassembled AW because it isn't capable of firing a round without the BCG?

Is there a constructive possession clause that disallows you from having two legal components? No. Are AWs whether working, broken, assembled or disassembled legal? I think I'll be more conservative on that and say AWs in any state are illegal.

IMO, having a complete lower and a complete .50 BMG upper in the safe together is sitting on the line of two legal components and disassembled AW, that is a line I sure as heck don't want to be sitting on should the government ever show up.

justin_5585
10-05-2009, 4:46 PM
But by that logic then, isn't it a disassembled assault weapon when you have a lower, LPK (with standard button), upper, buttstock, etc. and your bullet button as well when you are getting ready to do a build? Does this mean we must throw the standard button away before we get all the parts together lest we be in constructive possession.

CSACANNONEER
10-05-2009, 7:00 PM
Josh,
There is no constructive possession of AWs or 50BMGs in California. I would suggest always having a junk small caliber upper on the lower while transporting it in Ca. It just looks better that way. But, other than CYA, it isn't needed to be 100% legal.

B Strong
10-05-2009, 7:04 PM
There is a problem with that. Where do you draw the line between a disassembled Assault Weapon and two separate and legal pieces that can never be attached to each other? Do you feal confident sitting in a courtroom telling the DA that they are two legal components that you never attached to one other? The DA will sell it as a complete upper and a complete lower that are just disassembled from each other and only two pins separate it from being an assembled assault weapon.

Where do we draw the line? Can I turn the screw on my Raddlock and remove the BCG and say it isn't a disassembled AW because it isn't capable of firing a round without the BCG?

Is there a constructive possession clause that disallows you from having two legal components? No. Are AWs whether working, broken, assembled or disassembled legal? I think I'll be more conservative on that and say AWs in any state are illegal.

IMO, having a complete lower and a complete .50 BMG upper in the safe together is sitting on the line of two legal components and disassembled AW, that is a line I sure as heck don't want to be sitting on should the government ever show up.

No constructive possession statute in California wrt AW's or .50's.

leelaw
10-05-2009, 7:07 PM
I think the issue will be this:

...A .50 BMG rifle is a center fire rifle that can fire a .50 BMG cartridge ...

(That takes care of your hypothetical 12ga-as-.50-BMG-shotgun idea)

Can your .50BMGm (modified) rifle fit and feed a .50BMG round as defined by statute? If so, then you could label it a ".50 SO-NOT-A-BMG" caliber and it still accomodates .50 BMG.

The point of .510 DTC is that it can not physically allow a .50BMG round to be fit or fired, this it is near identical to a .50 BMG, but allowed due to dimensional differences between the round banned by statute, and the new .510 DTC cartridge.

Josh3239
10-05-2009, 8:53 PM
I know there isn't constructive possession in California, I even wrote it in my post. There is an assault weapon law and as I said before, where do we draw the line between disassembled AW and two legal components separated? I'll throw the bait out again, if I turn the screw on my Raddlock and remove the BCG am I in possession of a disassembled AW or a "non-gun"? Do you think you can convince a District Attorney or a jury? What if that BCG is my only one and in a different state? What if the BCG is sitting right next to the rifle? Does it make a difference?

Even wonder why the legal minds here like Gene and Bill tell people not to drive around with a complete lower with a functional mag release and a complete upper separated? I think that rule very much applies if we switch "complete upper" with .50 BMG upper.

But by that logic then, isn't it a disassembled assault weapon when you have a lower, LPK (with standard button), upper, buttstock, etc. and your bullet button as well when you are getting ready to do a build?

That is pretty ultra conservative. It would be hard to argue someone having an AW when they have a lower, FCG, upper, barrel and BCG all sitting separated on the floor. Those items need labor, tools and a basic understanding of the operating system of the AR's FCG to put together. It isn't the same as popping two pins, attaching, then closing two pins. But having a .50 BMG upper sitting next to a non-AW complete lower is dangerous IMO.

Think of it this way, new machine guns are banned. Some of the ways they did this is through auto parts (constructive possession) and open bolts. Lets focus on open bolts, open bolts were "too easy to convert to auto" so new ones are now banned. Does that mean close bolts cannot be converted? No, they just require a little know how. But they aren't banned and open bolts are. And that is the difference; the difficulty, the knowledge, the labor, the tooling, etc.

As of now, according to the government any device that makes you firearm "rapid fire" such as a Hellfire trigger, even though it is still semi auto is illegal. According to our government a shoe string can make your gun an illegal machine gun. I think if you play the "but it is disassembled" card you will lose.

Then again I am not a lawyer and everyone's opinion is different but as I asked, where do you draw a line, because there definetly is one. It is absoluetely possible to have a disassembled AW (while not codified it falls under the same as an assembled and working AW) and it is absoluetly possible to have legal components as long as they are separated. Don't blindly listen to faceless people on a public, internet chatroom. Think for yourself. Use it for information and then form your own thoughts. Atleast that is how I roll on this forum.

Josh3239
10-05-2009, 9:06 PM
Just wanted to also add that I am not saying it is illegal. I am just saying to exercise caution and don't get caught up in this "no constructive possession so lets dissassemble everything that is banned here" mentality. It just isn't that black and white.

EBR Works
10-06-2009, 7:35 AM
It just isn't that black and white.

Actually, it is. I know of many guys with weapons in pieces that would be considered AWs if they were assembled, but they are not. There is no constructive possession for AWs and that is the law. If I had a use for one, I would have no reservations about possessing a .50 BMG upper and never attaching it to my lower unless outside of Cali. I understand your paranoia but please relax and go about your business. Nothing to see here. :rolleyes:

reidnez
10-06-2009, 8:39 AM
Unfortunately, these laws are written so poorly as to be readily interpretable in different ways--both by citizens and by D.A.'s.

I, personally, would not be comfortable having a .50BMG upper in California with the knowledge that there is no way I can legally use it, or even make it ready for use, within the state. How am I going to explain that if challenged? No thanks.

We live in an era where a grandma can get arrested for buying two boxes of cold medicine in the same week, and a soldier can get arrested because his private AR malfunctions and spits out a couple of bursts. I think it's important to fight these laws to the best of our ability through the normal channels, while at the same time staying the heck out of the net that they cast.