The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives has apparently issued a ruling on the controversial “AutoGlove.” The glove contained a motor-driven “trigger actuation device” that, while not attached to the firearm, would allow a semi-auto weapon to run just like a machine gun.
If you’re surprised to learn that BATFE gave the Autoglove a big, fat nope, you don’t really know BATFE.
Designed as a “trigger actuation device” that does not permanently attach to a gun, the AutoGlove made headlines earlier this summer. The fully contained TAD used a battery pack that attached to the wrist or forearm to mechanically manipulate the trigger at variable speeds to include single, three-round, or continuous fire at rates past 1,000 rounds per minute.
However, as noted by the company, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives tested the AutoGlove and issued a determination letter last week that the device “may not be used or possessed by individuals” and is considered a machine gun under the National Firearms Act.
AutoGlove has stopped taking orders and is issuing refunds for those who have paid for the device already. A small start-up, the manufacturer says they do not have the resources to fight the determination.
“While we respectfully disagree with the ATFs determination, as the AutoGlove was not tested in accordance with our design criteria or provided instructions/limitations, we will NOT appeal the ATFs determination,” says a statement posted by the company.
If you’re bothered by the fact that bureaucrats get to determine what is legal and what isn’t, I get it. I’m still annoyed by their short-lived ruling on the Sig arm brace from a few years ago that it was illegal to put it up to your shoulder, even though it wasn’t actually designed for that. They do some bizarre things that I don’t like.
However, they are also the ones who issue rulings on stuff like this. Our choices, as gun owners, is simple. We either accept their rulings, or we ignore them and risk becoming a test case for the constitutionality of the law. However, I do not recommend that course of action.
The fact is, the AutoGlove getting the ruling they got isn’t much of a surprise. BATFE isn’t known to be in favor of any device that allows machinegun-like operation out of a semi-auto weapon, regardless of how it was mounted.
Their biggest mistake, however, was taking orders prior to getting the go-ahead from BATFE.
Note SilencerCo’s suppressed muzzleloader we reported on yesterday. They got approval for their muzzleloader before they ever uttered a public word about the gun. Now they can take orders knowing that the weapon is already approved by BATFE. They’re sending a letter out to that effect, because they already have it.
I get that AutoGlove is a small company with limited resources, and it shows. They started selling a product they weren’t sure they could sell.
Whether you agree with the laws in effort or not is irrelevant, it was just a dumb business decision.