France... A world apart..

Discussion in 'Shooting, Hunting and Fishing' started by Mongo, Aug 29, 2011.

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  1. Mongo

    Mongo LE Reviewer

    I was in a Decathlon (giant sports store) in Provence the other week. Was just wondering around and I came across a load of boxes in the middle of an aisle. Saw that they were rifle cartridges, did a double take then opened a box up, merely out of curiosity.
    There, sitting for the taking, was a box of 200 .300WinMag rounds...

    Is that normal? I'm not familiar with French firearms laws but surely that's overly lax?
  2. Why?

    For one, I can't imagine that sporting ammunition is going to be of much use to criminal gangs using illegal weapons, and if you don't have any firearms at home, just what use will the ammunition be?
  3. Goatman

    Goatman LE Book Reviewer

    hee hee...La Belle France.....yes it is indeed a world apart.....Decathlon is one of its better features - now available here in UK in Reading, Sheffield and Glasgow ......their Qechua fleeces are well worth a try out - and in France the bike section put Halfords to shame (this is not difficult) .......sadly, the French insouciance regarding firearms is not replicated this side of La Manche
  4. Mongo

    Mongo LE Reviewer

    .300WM is making its way into military use - M24E1 is Now the XM2010 « Soldier Systems Performs quite similarly to .338WM (apparently) but is cheaper.

    Decathlon was an experience! The climbing section left a little to be desired but that's French climbing for you! Supermarket sweep there would be fun!
  5. Alsacien

    Alsacien LE Moderator

    Decathlon sports stores have a little bit of everything, usually at the cheap to mid-range. Ammo is usually in a basic glass cabinet, but shelf stocking must have been interupted in this case.
    .300WinMag and .338Lapua are not currently classified as military calibres - I can buy any rifle chambered for these over the counter along with unlimited ammo, not even a gun cabinet needed.
  6. A little bit of info please Sir. It was the case that if you produced a valid euro ID document, say for example a British passport, that showed you were over 18 you could happily buy a weapon classed as a shotgun. Is this still so?

    Otherwise, my understanding was, that for other non-military calibre weapons you needed to show a valid French ID to prove residency not nationality.
  7. Alsacien

    Alsacien LE Moderator

    Shotguns (db and s/s) and ammo used to be on sale in supermarkets until the late '80's to over 18's with an ID/passport number. Now they are category 5 along with all non-military calibre rifles, and semi-auto hunting rifles and shotguns with <3 rds in the mag. Anyone with either a FFTIR sport shooting license, or a permis de chasse can purchase any amount of cat 5 firearms and ammo over the counter.
  8. A good source for long range shooters and sniper buffs in France near Lyons:

    CRE Loaded 6 - ESP France

    Eric, the owner, is a very good guy and he speaks English.
  9. Alsacien

    Alsacien LE Moderator

    He is also expensive!

    Nice toys in the ESP catalogue though ;-) (which you have to pay for also..)
  10. Of course he speaks English!! We won the ******* war!!
    • Like Like x 1
  11. I have not been there in years but I had kept a good impression from my last shopping trips there....considering the thickness of the catalogue, it's quite normal you have to pay for it I reckon; it also makes for nice reading....until you look at the prices !

    To be honest, a few years ago (2007), ESP was selling the cheapest Glock pistols in France; I don't know how he compares now.
  12. He at least sells MP5's at a reasonable price, compared to the jiggery pokery you have to go thru here to even want to pay some numpty $20,000 for one.

    I'm not a snipey rifle type of person but I do like the look of that Savage 110BA on his site.

    Brownells send me their catalogue a couple of times a year if someone wants one next time I get one.

    How does it work there, are you allowed military calibres? I can't recall if France required special permissions etc.
  13. Alsacien

    Alsacien LE Moderator

    Yes, they are cat 1, I have my original L1A1 SLR on my French ticket.
    Procedure is very much like a UK FAC, police check, organisation approval, declaration you own a cabinet (no visit to check though), renewal need after 5 years.
  14. That is because they were manufactured 'under license' in Pakistan. I have used these things, don't go there...

    I take it you are in the US? Only full auto's are in that price range. In Switzerland and Germany it is more the 5K+ USD range for various semi auto MP5's, yes, made in Germany...
  15. There are several factors to consider here:

    1. There is a cut off date, back in the 80's somewhere, that determines what can and cannot be done with a weapon regarding full auto or not.

    2. Barrels must not be less than 16" in length or you need to get an ATF approval ($200). Not a big deal.

    3. Anything that vaguely whiffs of full auto needs ATF approval and I believe they need a registered manufacturer to assemble and do the initial registration. Here a sear, that you can drop into any weapon, can be the licensable item and may itself cost $5K - $10K.

    4. There are things here readily available called parts kits - everything included apart from what the UK Firearms Act used to call the frame. The frames need to be sold to you by a registered dealer, not a problem. Then, you need to incorporate a certain number of "made in the USA" components in the thing - because somewhere along the line they realised that homegrown gats were crap and everyone wanted HK and Glocks so in order to protect their gun industry they legislated for import controls. That is why HK, Glock and Sig now have plants here - and made in original country guns still pull a premium.

    There is actually a school of thought that has people investing in full autos as they always outperform the stock market and banks as regards return on investment.

    Never fired the Pakistani ones. Here the [cl]ones to buy are Vector, if you can get them, or PTR. PTR bought the tooling for G3's from Portugal when it sold up its HK licensed factory. I've been looking recently and perusing putting together a PTR91/G3 DMR in the coming year, I would consider getting an SLR but parts are pricier and more difficult to get. Added to which I've had septics telling me about their British L1A1 when they are quite clearly sticking a Belgie version under my nose.