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Hi from the UK


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Hi guys & girls

I found this site by following the link in this months Target Shooter magazine.

Although there is only one seller that I can find currently selling the Colt in the UK, hopefully NW Custom will be getting the S&W, Colt and SIG on the shelf sometime soon.

We have had the GSG5 for over 12 months and it has a good following. I did not get one as I wanted for GSG to iron out the faults (were up to 3rd Generation).

I particularly like the looks of the S&W, but have a fully tricked Ruger 10/22 for competition use, so it will have to offer something that the Ruger does not.

I shoot mainly Gallery rifle competitions with my 10/22 and have recently bought a Marlin 1894 in .357 so am looking forward to airing that next year.

Although I am currently saving for a .308 I would say F/TR is one of my disciplines and I hope to be competitive in the next couple of years.

My final Discipline is Practical Shotgun, which I consider to be my weakest. I have a Semi auto Hatsan Escort in 12 g with a 10 shot tube. I have recently made some mods, mainly a new stock, which I hope to benefit from next year.

One of my hopes, with the cost of ammunition spiralling out of control, Is that Practical rifle or as we call it Mini Rifle in the UK, picks up momentum with these new guns and we get a good competition circuit going. It may only be GSG 5's and Ruger's + a few Spikes and others at the moment but I am sure the dealers will start to bring them in if they see the demand.

No one saw the demand for the GSG, but now everyone has sold one or two.

I would ask that the Forum moderator keeps an eye on how many UK shooters he attracts and if he considers it viable, give us our own little area so we can discuss / advertise competitions etc.

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Firearms laws in the UK have been hit hard by two terrible incidents where men have gone walk about and killed people.

As a result our laws could be considered a mess and are confusing to even the experienced shooter.

In short, everyone needs a Firearms Certificate (FAC) to own a firearm or a Shotgun Cert (SC) to own a Shotgun (2+1). Shotguns with more than 2+1 capacity are considered firearms and you need a FAC but some shops demand to see a SC for you to buy cartridges – although solid shot requires a FAC to purchase (clear as mud)

Both Cert's are issued by the local Police and you have to meet certain criteria, but in essence as long as you have good reason to own one i.e. member of club, 6 months or longer, or have land to hunt on, they are suppose to issue a license. In general anyone who has been to jail will not get one and anyone who has been found guilty of an offence will have to wait 5 years.

Both Certs’ will state how many firearms you are allowed to purchase and the caliber, also how much ammunition you are allowed to purchase and own. When you purchase a firearm or sell one you have to update the Police with the relevant details.

Home defense is not a good reason to own one and you will not get a certificate!

So what can we have?

Air rifles up to 12 ft lb / air pistol up to 6 ft lb no license but over becomes a firearm requiring a FAC - so if you are running at the upper limits you need to do the math’s not to fall in trouble.

Paintball guns, air soft and the like need you to be a member of a club to buy, but no official certificate from the police. Airsoft in particular has been used by the criminal fraternity and is coming under more and more scrutiny.

Bolt action rifles, single and magazine fed, are FAC and the only restriction on the caliber is where to shoot it. .308 is generally very well catered for, .338 and 50 cal are restricted to one or two ranges.

With the exception of .22lr we are not allowed semi auto rifles. Some might argue that a few dealers can get them but for general use it is a no go. With .22lr we have no magazine restrictions.

The law never saw .17hr coming along so we are only allowed bolt action rifles in this caliber.

Pistols: We are allowed black powder rifles and pistols of most shapes and forms on a FAC. No restriction on number of shots.

We are allowed Long barreled revolvers, which are basically 24†long, made up of mostly Barrel and a wire “coat hanger†of the grip to make up the length. They are not that popular due to the difficulty in shooting them and the initial cost. You can see some examples here: http://www.rimfiremagic.co.uk/lb_revolvers.html

As a rule we are not allowed any full bore handguns should that be Self loading Pistols or Revolver. What the law does allow is for hunters to own, on a FAC, a single shot dispatch handgun, so you sometimes see these advertised.

We are allowed .22 long barreled semi auto hand guns and the Browning Buckmark is the most common example with the Barrel extended etc to make it 24â€.

Despite the Olympics coming here in 2010 we are not allowed to practice for the .22 pistol events and our competitors are having to travel abroad to practice. This is a very political topic amongst shooters and is against the Olympic ethos. Last time I looked the shooting complex was being built at the cost of £60 million GBP and it is going to be knocked down after the games. Very political.

I cannot remember where we are at with Blank firers and Deactivated guns. A number have been converted back to fire live ammunition including 20+ Mac 10’s which have been responsible for a number of murders. Suffice to say if you commit a crime with anything, including a water pistol, and it was your intention to have the victim believe you had a firearm, you will be charged with being in possession of having a firearm.

Moderators are covered by the FAC but as long as we can show a reason to own one, permission to purchase is easy enough to get. Again you have to notify the Police when you buy one and it is recorded on your FAC. Target shooting is recognized as a good reason these days as muzzle breaks are falling out of popularity in the larger calibers due to them being anti social to other shooters. Moderators help with recoil and also help the “quality of life†for everyone in the area.

I am aware this is a large post, so any questions please ask!

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It is not difficult to buy, either from a Registered Firearms Dealer or another FAC holder, as long as you have the necessary paperwork.

This sometimes causes frustrations when you are in the right place at the right time but have not got the permission to purchase on your FAC.

The biggest pain is the lack of Shooting industry in the UK, so you have to travel far and wide to find what you are looking for. With a few exceptions, the internet is not widely used by dealers, which I think is another nail in their coffin.

Certainly we do not have the shops with the floor space we imagine you guys have. Trying to find all the equipment you might be interested in purchasing in one place is almost unheard of and we certainly do not have anything like firearms etc on sale in general stores like you have (had) in Walmart.

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