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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-05-2011, 10:28 PM Thread Starter
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FFL License Question

I was curiious if anyone had an idea of the best way to find out what all is required for someone obtaining their FFL license. I kknow there are different types depending on the type of firearms you will dealing with. Im just thinking about it to maybe pick up old long guns and fix them up to use or re-sell, maybe some handguns depending on how much more or less stuffs involved versus just long guns. Thanks for any help.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-06-2011, 10:22 AM
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Re: FFL License Question

this site will answer all your questions.
http://www.atf.gov/firearms/how-to/become-an-ffl.html

It is not complecated, but is a pain and time consuming if you are only going to do it part time.

The Gov doesn't want part time FFLs, especially if you plan to work out of your house. You will be giving them the right to come into your house at any time to check your records and inventory.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 08:54 AM
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Re: FFL License Question

I was one of those "part timers" and after 5 yrs., was inspected and questioned by BATF which delayed renewal of my license by 3 months. They did not refuse, but put me thru the third degree. I really did not make a profit, did not feel the harrassment was worth it, and turned the license in.

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 09:24 AM
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Re: FFL License Question

+1
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 10:41 AM
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Re: FFL License Question

There are several types of FFLs you can get a collectors FFL which is an easier process. If you are going to get a dealers FFL then you will need to get a business and zoning permit from your local town. You will also need a very secured are to lock up all of the stuff you are planning on selling.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 11:24 AM
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Re: FFL License Question

A FFL03 for Curios and Relics is not dificult to get. However you can not sell firearms with it. It is for a collectior of firearms.

<span style="color: #3333FF"> </span> Overview of the Type 03: Collector of Curio and Relic FFL

Most gun collectors will be interested in the Type 03: Collector of Curios and Relics (C&R) FFL. This type of license is very easy to obtain and cheap as well. The fee to obtain the license is $30 for a 3-year license, only $10.00 a year! The main benefit of the Type 03 FFL is that you can obtain old military surplus rifles (typically 50+ years old, but there are exceptions) directly from the importers without having to go through a gun shop/dealer (and the associated markup) and they can be sent directly to your door. There is a minimum of paperwork that must be kept when using this FFL, nothing like the detailed records that must be kept by a Type 01 Dealer. The main point to remember is that this FFL was created for the "Collector of Firearms" not for the dealing in firearms. The actual disclaimer as written on the license states "This license does not authorize the holder to engage in the business of dealing in any firearms".

<span style="color: #000000"> </span>

Plus with a FFL03 you can qualify for dealer discounts from Midway USA and other dealers.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 11:42 AM
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Re: FFL License Question

Judging by what I read on numerous firearms forums, C&Rs are very popular among those that collect old military arms.

Beyond that, their posts reveal lots of grumbles and some glee, about dealing with many of the importers, like Century and SARCO.

Two friends of mine had FFLs for years. Neither had a "storefront" and mostly dealt in buying/selling firearms as a hobby and as a means of making a bit of money on the side.

Forget the exact year now, but it was during the last year or so of the Clinton administration, when BATF began a subtle campaign of eliminating many of these "small fry" that held FFLs.

One buddy got tired of them pestering him and gave up his FFL within a few months of the initial BATF contact. The other one is a tad crankier and kept his, despite periodic harrassment, finally giving his up last year.

My understanding now, is that unless you plan on having an actual location to deal in firearms on a regular basis, it's a royal pain to get an FFL and keep it? At least that is the advice I see many long time FFL holders giving to guys that ask.

We had an ol' boy near here who had a gunshop since the late 1950s. When he was in his 80s, a new BATF agent made his life miserable for several years, before he finally gave up and quit. Once she made him go to a hearing in Wilkes Barre twice, before he got any satisfaction from her constant pestering.

He never was too good about record keeping and got worse as he got older. I recall one hearing was because he didn't have his "personal collection" book and and those firearms on the premises for repairs or resale, properly logged-in.

She wrote him up once for having three or four rifles in the shop, that were neither tagged, nor logged-in yet, on one visit.

Some folks' learnin' curves just look like circles...3A Camp/also hunt 4B
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 01:30 PM
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Re: FFL License Question

I was one of those part-timers as well, for 15 years. They renewed me in Nov. for 3 more years, then came for the first ever inspection of my paperwork in April. But his ulterior motive was to take my license. His reason was because I didn't sell enough and only had it for personal gain, which was true, the paperwork had become a pain in the [censored] so I had only sold 3 guns in the last 4 years, maybe 60 over the years. He said he couldn't force me to but he would then have to go over my books with a fine toothed comb to make sure my eyes were dotted and tee's crossed. If ya get my drift! So rather than go thru that hassle I turned it in to him. Had I known that was his intent, which he never mentioned in an earlier phonecon, I would've order another rifle for my son right away.

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-08-2011, 12:40 AM
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Re: FFL License Question

My dad has had an FFL and gunsmith shop for the past 20 years. He finally got his first ATF check two years ago. The agent came to the shop which is attached to the house and checked all guns in for service as well as all of his personal collection to make sure there weren't overlapping. Despite the agent being at the shop for 3 days, he actually didn't find it that unpleasant. I think the biggest reason is his attention to detail and thoroughness in keeping his books and paperwork. The agent found a few minor things, but didn't really worry too much about it and offered some advice to resolve the minor issues. To say the least he was pleasantly surprised at how smooth everything went. I guess its just like anything else and if you are not doing anything wrong, they can't really do that much to you.

Most of the places that I know have had problems with ATF inspections have had histories of problems and despite one store having its license suspended for several months on 2 separate occasions, they are still in business today. If you desire to have an FFL the best thing to do is be extremely tedious in your paperwork.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-08-2011, 10:15 AM
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Re: FFL License Question

Probably depended on the ATF "man", as to how these things went, in many cases? No secret that they were on a mission some years ago, to get rid of the small dealers.

The ol' boy I mentioned above, got warned from time to time over the years about his poor book keeping for his collection and customers' guns in for repairs, but he always paid attention to that when selling a firearm.

Problem with him, was that at one time he had over 250 firearms "upstairs" that were his own guns. Mostly NIB or minty used Winchesters and if he added another one, he sometimes forgot to update his "personal collection" book.

At one time he had a mess of pre-64 M70s and M94s, many NIB, plus a pile of M12s stashed away. He eventually sold them off as his retirement nest egg.

Some of the guns he had in the shop, wound up in nooks and crannies, so that he lost track of what was there. Didn't stop me from looking, since I often found a hidden jewel or two over the years and took 'em off his hands. Used to rile him up when I found something he'd forgotten was there. Then we got to hagglin' over the price.



When the new ATF lady arrived, she apparently made it her life's work to get him on the straight road and made his life miserable in his 80s.

Some folks' learnin' curves just look like circles...3A Camp/also hunt 4B
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