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David Hines [userpic]

a gun nut says, "Jesus wept."

February 4th, 2008 (05:12 pm)
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abz6598 posted this link to the guns community on LJ, and JESUS WEPT. I damn near did.

What you're seeing, if you click on that link, is the liquidation of an NFA collection. NFA = National Firearms Act of 1934, which is the bit of legislation that outlawed fully automatic weapons for the general populace without a federal license and a hefty tax of $200 per weapon. (It also made suppressors, colloquially referred to as "silencers," subject to the same kinds of provisions, which is really dumb legislation -- a suppressor doesn't render a gun inaudible; it's just a damn muffler so you don't suffer hearing damage from shooting.) That's $200 in 1934 dollars, mind; $3171.59 in 2007 dollars, according to the Inflation Calculator. And remember, that's per gun or per suppressor. That's not so much these days, but now there's a complicating factor: it's now illegal to import full-auto weapons for sale to individuals, and you can't even own a domestically-manufactured one unless it was made and originally registered prior to May 19, 1986. (This is also stupid, as the guns are highly regulated anyway; all it does is artificially decrease the supply and run up the cost on law-abiding gun nuts.) Where I'm going with all this is that if you own even one full-auto gun, you're making a substantial investment; if you own several, you're spending serious coin and jumping through lots of hoops; and if you own many *collectible* ones, you are likely older than dirt and richer than God. Bruce Stern was an old NRA director, apparently, and I guess he qualified. The part of his collection that's being auctioned is what's left *after* the NRA museum (which, if you like guns, is pretty goddamn impressive) had gone over Stern's armory and picked out what they wanted. So what the link shows is only part of Stern's collection -- and, astoundingly, it's only part of *that,* as they're still adding inventory.

In other words, holy crap.

(I haven't even mentioned the fabulous shotguns, the military rifles, the vast array of pistols -- gorgeous Lugers, Broomhandle Mausers, plus the really weird-ass obscure shit: there's even a freaking Simplex. Also, there's a bunch of material related to the Women’s Aircorps Service Pilots, which is pretty dang neat.)