News of the Maxim 50, a 50-cal muzzleloader rifle from SilencerCo that comes with a built in silencer has the MSM in a tizzy. CNN’s headline speaks for itself, “No federal gun control for new silencer-muzzleloader.” The gun itself is very cool, though I doubt you’ll want to use it for self-defense in the home.
There’s a new firearm on the market with an attached silencer that is not covered by federal gun control laws because it’s not considered a gun and it’s not considered a silencer.
The Maxim 50 from SilencerCo, a silencer manufacturer in Utah, is a .50-caliber muzzleloader, a modern version of the single-shot muskets used in the Revolutionary War. But unlike the muskets from hundreds of years ago, the Maxim 50 has a silencer that’s permanently attached.
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That makes the Maxim 50, which went on sale this week, exempt from federal restrictions on the sale and distribution of firearms. SilencerCo says it deliberately sidestepped federal laws with the design.
But, the company also says it has already run into legal challenges from California, Massachusetts and New Jersey — three states with stringent gun laws.
“Since we have no desire to place any consumer in a situation where they may get arrested and charged with a felony because their state defines a firearm differently than the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), we have placed orders from those states on hold and are refunding customers pending conversations amongst lawyers,” said SilencerCo president Jason Schauble.
“It is relevant to point out that no states contemplated a product of this sort in their laws,” he said.