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Military serial numbers are for inventory purposes and because they are exempt from transfer it's not relative to stamps or registration to a new owner. That's how the SN wound up on the lower for the M16 - it wasn't until 1968 the ATF mandated manufacturers do it.

By exempt from transfer ie the weapon is surplus, it's boxed up, mil forms are filled out, off it goes parcel and arrives at the next unit to be recorded in the property book. SN is checked, gun is racked and it's inventoried monthly. No stamps etc. ATF has no records and would likely be told to pound sand unless it's a criminal investigation. Unit armorers do it all the time moving a weapon up to the next level maintenance, too.

Here's the catch - how did this particular rifle "escape" military custody and how did it come into a civilian owners hands? If legal, a paper trail exists. No paper trail - worst case is confiscation by the ATF.

We are now back to, does the current possessor have a dog? Yeah, I'm kidding, but, I'm not kidding about the official reaction to someone in possession of an SBR with no stamp. Clue: does the posted pic have metadata imbedded with it's geolocation encoded. IE, digital pics will now automatically contain a GPS code saying where it was taken.

That's one of those things I keep turned off. Others love to have that attached - skin diver photos, vacation, etc. YMMV.
 

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saemetric, Here are the Cliff Notes: If there is no ATF paperwork, you cannot initiate and effect legal transfer of the firearm. What you are looking at is 5 years and $10K in fines. Since NFA Tax Stamps and associated registration papers are classified as tax return documents, they may not be released to anyone but the person(s) who originally registered the item or their heirs. Therefore, if the current possessor has no idea where that survival gun came from, he or she is in the possession of contraband, and it should be donated to a museum - or a gun "buyback", if they want to realize some trinkets. Trafficking in NFA contraband will get you more that 5 years, after tacking on conspiracy, receiving & concealing stolen government property, etc.

You have posted information on a public forum that you know the whereabouts of an NFA-controlled item that you have reason to believe is unregistered. Not a good move.
 

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Can you show me the regulation that a SBR, SBS, or AOW has to be registered before 1986?

I know that a full auto must have been on the registry before 1986 but I have friends that have made Form1 SBR and SBS in the past two years.
I think the pre 86 date refers only to select fire weapons and parts. Someone confirm this as my first application for something that I have to get approved by ATF will be a silencer/suppressor for a .22. I really need to save what I have left of my hearing.... tinnitus
 
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