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Old 24th January 2015, 09:22 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2009
Member of: Rivington Riflemen
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Originally Posted by skires View Post

I've already said that I would love a standard test. So I'm not against you.

How long have we as airgunners been asking for a standard test? The answer is many years and it hasn't happened. How long have you and Ray been asking for one? Have you got one?

Once again ... we hear from people, who we believe are in the know, that if we push for a standard test we may end up worse off. Ray, yourself and now Bri has suggested that they may not all have been totally truthful about the AT thing so I'm now willing to listen to alternatives on the test theme.

This 12fp law came in 46 years ago.

So for the last 46 years there have been thousands of guns in the UK that could be capable. They could all be tested as capable if they go to the Forensic Test Lab from hell where they make serious modifications to get them over. This is the lab that the police keep sending guns to because this is the lab that definitely makes them go over, so they can make more money. I'm not convinced that that is a totally realistic and balanced view to be putting across to a nervous airgun community.

So with all those rifles ( thousands ) in circulation, and 46 years, there is no great list of cases where people have done nothing wrong with their rifles ( or other ) but have fallen foul of the Demon lab and now all have criminal records. We keep getting quoted one off cases where we don't have all the details.

On this thread alone we have heard of one poster saying that he knew someone in a crash and their guns were taken and tested. Result ... guns returned as under power and no problem. Another guy had the police call in on him and his mate shooting in the garden. Result ... Take fellas ... no guns taken for testing. I personally said that I've had the police call in on me several times on my permission when some nosey neighbour has phoned. Result everytime ... Hi mate, just checking it's just an air rifle ... Result ... Sorry to have bothered you, take care ... no rifles taken for testing. So none of that is suggesting that the police are seizing guns left right and centre and the Demon lab is making them go over. Staffordshire Police Firearms told me that they are far too busy to worry about airgunners unless they are doing something they shouldn't.

Where is the evidence with thousands of rifles and 46 years of play to warrant the paranoia? Like I said ... the killer statement is ... but 'what if' it's you that is the one that gets that criminal record?

At the moment the two options are ...

Option A ... An airgunner wants to be absolutely 100% that his gun won't be randomly seized on permission or at a club, the gun sent to a Demon lab and made to go over, and he gets a criminal record. He's actually got more chance of being hit on the head from falling debris from the failed 1970 Apollo 13 space mission that has made it's way back into the atmosphere. If he still wants that certainty then his only option is to not own an air rifle until a standard test is in place. He may wait a long time.

Option B ... Set his gun to under 11.5fp and only shoot on private land/permission/club and make sure no pellets leave their boundaries, and accept that that is all he can do, and the chances of him getting a criminal record are so minimal that he needn't worry about it..

Make your own choice.

If you know how to get this standard test, and there will be no chance that we will be worse off, then let me know and I'm with you.
What you are doing is confirming that there was no reason to fit AT. You don't think there was ever a problem so what we have is a solution to something that never existed.

The situation has changed over the last few years for the worse. When the FSS tested guns it's fairly safe to assume that they were mainly tested in the same way. There could have been slight differences but all were tested by the same organisation. That is no longer the case.

Testing is now farmed out to independent test labs that have their own procedures. We only appear to have one factual case to go on and that is what happened at Luton Court. In this case the tester stripped a rifle down to virtually component parts and removed the firing valve return spring. Now it doesn't matter whether we think this right or wrong. The fact of the matter is that a Crown Court felt that this was in order and a guilty verdict was returned. In another case I understand stripped rifles were reassembled and tested over power, but less is known about this particular case.

We hear plenty of talk about what your Barrister would/should do in Court and all I can say is that we have a lot of airgunners with very deep pockets to have a Barrister in Court with them. Vast majority of cases never get to Court as people will accept the Caution.

I think it's extremely dangerous to advise that there is nothing to worry about, you just do not know. If you do know the figures then please tell us.

Look at what is happening in airgunning over the last 10 years. Continual tightening of legislation. Face to face deals that now cost more in RFD charges. Increasing difficulties in posting airguns (especially PCP types).

Standard test. How do you set your guns now. To a test that there are no instruction for ?
Do manufacturers set to these same non-instructions, do the police test to these same invisible instructions.
You presume that what you think will happen will be correct. Good luck when it isn't.

We have to comply to legislation that is poorly worded at best.
We have to do that because we are held responsible but we have no control due to AT.
We have to use a test that doesn't exist to conform to a poorly worded law that we can't do anything about anyway.

Now that's a great situation to be in just to follow a hobby.

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