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Special Interests - Groups & Societies => Spencer Shooting Society => Topic started by: El Supremo on January 18, 2020, 09:59:10 AM

Title: 56-50 Center-fire Spencer BATFE Ruling date?
Post by: El Supremo on January 18, 2020, 09:59:10 AM

Am working on a Reproduction Spencer History project that will be added to SORI later this year.

In 2006 it was noted here that at least Romano 56 - 50 REPRO Spencers were exempt from FFL Transfer regulations.  I bought my first one directly from Larry in March of 2009 and had to provide an FFL.

So it appears that between 2006 and early 2009 the BATF reclassified 56-50 center-fire REPRO's.
I am not concerned with ORIGINAL Spencers here!

I spoke with Larry yesterday.  He could not recall the date, but did recall receiving a BATF Notice years ago and called the Agent.  He said the agent told him that since COMMERCIAL 56-56 ammo was now available via The Old Western Scrounger and Buffalo, the status changed.  I did not ask Larry to dig in old records.

I have searched the INTERNET to no avail. 

If anyone can please provide more details and a date, it would be a big help.  Thanks.

Spoke w Dave Gullo at Buffalo who told me he did not produce commercial 56-50 cartridges or have them listed on his license or in his catalog until 2010.  Smart money is on TEN-X. JKT
El Supremo/Kevin Tinny

Title: Re: 56-50 Center-fire Spencer BATFE Ruling date?
Post by: Two Flints on January 18, 2020, 11:12:36 AM
I read any commercial facility making ammo for domestic sale needed a license - the BATF Regulation came out in 2006 . . . if this is of any help?  Why not contact Buffalo Arms? or any other ammo maker of 56-50 and see if they can help you with the BATF regs?

Two Flints
Title: Re: 56-50 Center-fire Spencer BATFE Ruling date?
Post by: Blair on January 18, 2020, 02:10:09 PM
I do not recall the exact date/year, but it is in and about 2006 that the Italians got approval to produce arms in a new caliber (to them) in 56-50 cal. center fire.
Up until this time people with arms in this caliber had to make their brass from .348 Winchester or 50-70 cases. But with the repro Spencer now coming out in 56-50 a search was on to find someone to make cases in center fire for this cartridge.
Once the componate parts (in center fire) started to become available, BATF could start offering regs. in the form of regulating it and the "new" arms chambered for it.
Earlier Spencer's made in .44 R, .45 Colt and .44 WCF all fell into the BATF regulations and guidelines.

All of this does not happen over night. So, it is not until in or about 2008/9 (if my memory serves me well ?) that "all" repro center fire Spencer's fall into BATF regulations.
I hope this helps.
My best,
Title: Re: 56-50 Center-fire Spencer BATFE Ruling date?
Post by: Snakeeater on January 18, 2020, 07:09:05 PM
I think what you may be looking for is a publication from ATF, referred to as ATF Publication 5300.4 revised September 2014 or Federal Firearms Regulations Reference Guide that is available online from the ATF website.

Under Title 18 United States Code Chapter 44 "The Gun Control Act of 1968," Section 921, paragraph 16 wherein defined the term "antique firearm" is given to mean,

(A) any firearm (including any firearm with a matchlock,  flintlock, percussion cap or similar type of ignition system) manufactured in or before 1898; OR

(B) any replica of any firearm described in subparagraph A if such replica....

(i) IS NOT designed or redesigned for using rim fire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition, OR

(ii) uses rimfire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition which is no longer manufactured in the United States AND which is not readily available in ordinary channels of commercial trade.

This is the portion of the 1968 Gun Control Act that you might be mistaken for a letter or ruling by ATF. You may want download a copy of this publication to see if it contains any new or amended statutes enacted since the 2005 Edition as well as updated regulations and rulings by ATF. Most all FFL license holders are provided with a copy as well as a list of all the exempted firearms under the Curio & Relic classification of firearms, also available from ATF.

For those who may be under the impression that this was a recent ruling simply based on whether .56-50 fixed CF ammo was commercially available again, this has been federal law now for over 50 years. One need only to glance through the 1969 Gun Digest to read about Navy Arms introducing a new Model 66 Yellow Boy lever action rifle in .22 rimfire and .38 Special, to realize why this statute reads the way it does. In the late 1950s, you had besides all the modern and antique firearms dealers, Navy Arms (established 1956) and also Centennial Arms (1959) formerly Mars Equipment Company.

Gun Digest (1969) reported: "the Model 66 carbine retails for $119.95... In addition, the same 66 is now offered in .38 Special caliber, the price is $139.95, and Val Forgett tells me he'll soon have a new cartridge for it. These, soft point hollow points made by RWS in Germany,  will exceed 357 Magnum ballistics in the 18" barrel of the Yellowboy."
Title: Re: 56-50 Center-fire Spencer BATFE Ruling date?
Post by: Blair on January 21, 2020, 04:40:37 PM
Snakeeter, /Richard,
The Gun Control Act of 1968 is not what was in question here, it is when did these regulations effect/concern the production of the "56-50" reproduction of the Spencer arms. 44R, 44wcf and 45 Colt all fell within these requirements.
It was when the component parts for the 56-50 ammo became commonly available from the ammo makers that this becomes an issue.
My best,