Author Topic: Changes to Arms Act – "Restricted Airguns"  (Read 2335 times)

Offline edaemus

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Changes to Arms Act – "Restricted Airguns"
« on: September 24, 2014, 07:36:28 PM »
This is my first post here; just joined to have a whinge, I guess.

... About this:

     A new category of “restricted airguns” has been created. A restricted airgun is an airgun that:

(With or without any of its attachments) has the appearance of being a pistol, a restricted weapon or a MSSA; or
Is designed for use in airsoft or paintball sports and (with or without any of its attachments) has the appearance of being a firearm capable of full automatic fire.
A permit to import is now required to import restricted airguns and there must be a special reason for the import. The same process that is currently applied to the importation of pistols, restricted weapons and MSSAs will be used. Applications can be made to your nearest Arms Office.

I know this isn't particularly new news but it's still frustrating me, nine months after the change.
Basically, NZ Police have made a new category of airgun, based solely upon appearance. The strangest part is that it only applies to imports, and has no effect on purchasing airguns, new or used, from within NZ.
So, here is a list of things I could hypothetically do.

I could:

 - Go out and buy a powerful gas-spring airgun, which could easily cause a fatal injury
 - Go out and buy a hundred of the above
 - Import a hundred of the above
 - Go out and buy a realistic replica airgun that resembles a MSSA or pistol

I could not:

 - Import an airgun of any sort (including airsoft, paintball, RAM...), regardless of its power, that happens to look like it's a pistol, restricted weapon, MSSA, or capable of fully-automatic fire.
Not without a permit, that is. Further reading on permits and "special reasons" can be found here:
i.e., "good luck with that"

I found all this out the hard way. In late December last 2013 (within mere weeks of this change being quietly introduced), I ordered a Tanfoglio Witness 1911 BB gun from Pyramyd Air  (, via NZ Post's YouShop. After a great deal of difficulty with YouShop (they were having freight-forwarding paperwork issues), I finally got them to send it on to NZ... only to receive a letter from Customs (sometime in late February) saying my item had been seized. Oh boy! I exchanged an email or two with the Customs Arms Officer, but basically there was nothing I could do. Permits to procure are not issued in arrears, so my item – value ~$200 – would be destroyed, and that's that.

Whatever. I can understand their concerns about people misusing airguns that look real, sure... But merely restricting imports based on appearance alone is probably not the best approach. And considering realism is generally inversely proportionate to power (the most powerful airguns look nothing like real firearms, right?), will it not just encourage people to start waving around actual dangerous airguns?
They could at least make the criteria a bit clearer; what exactly constitutes looking like a pistol? Does it fall under the same rules as normal firearms? Of course, everyone knows how arbitrary and ambiguous those rules are...

Where would this fall? It's got a long barrel, but is that a "pistol grip"?

(Oh by the way, that sound you can hear is me pulling my hair out)

Offline Hidayat

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Re: Changes to Arms Act – "Restricted Airguns"
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2014, 07:53:26 PM »
Why you must import airpistol?in nz we have couple
airpistol guru/maker.Danny in roxburgh central otago.
wingman in hamilton.clark arms in you
« Last Edit: September 24, 2014, 08:42:12 PM by Hidayat »

Offline IanNP

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Re: Changes to Arms Act – "Restricted Airguns"
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2015, 09:07:10 AM »
Maybe they don't have what he wants and he doesn't want to give another slice of the pie away?
Who doesn't order something direct from overseas via email etc?
He's right; just because it "looks like" when one can get it down the road anyway (if you'll just hold on while I check with the distributors first sir). "Oh look, hes got a gun! What kind is it? Who cares, hes waving it around in public, shoot him!"
By the way, I think the Police do a great job in the most trying of circumstances. I get tired of just talking to my mates some times. (yes I know, not a good picture).
Another knee-jerk patch to cover the shortfalls of dealing with humans.
Maybe just a need to prove ident/FAL etc when needed by customs etc. before release. But thats the importing cert isn't it?


Offline Akzle

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Re: Changes to Arms Act – "Restricted Airguns"
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2015, 09:07:08 PM »
fun fact
100% of illegal shit done with guns is illegal.

Meaning that 0% is done by people with cognizance nor appreciation of the legislation.

Seriously, how many drop kicks ever arranged to import an air pistol with the intent of robbing mr patel on the corner?

Another fuckwit solution looking for a problem (that didnt ever exist)