While we have been pilloring the ATF on their seizure of the WE Gas Blowback Rifles imported by Airsoft Outlet Northwest comes a report that made us think twice. Fox News reports that one firearms manufacturer claims that these airsoft rifles can be converted into the real thing. Before everyone will be alarmed, this is only one dissenting opinion. As this is an interesting piece of news, we might as well dwell on the implications if this is really true.
In the report, Fox News correspondence with the manufacturer states that:
“The airsoft can be converted to an AR-15,” firearms manufacturer Leo Gonnuscio told FoxNews.com after testing the make and model of airsoft guns seized by the ATF.
Having concluded that several other airsoft guns could not be converted to fire real ammunition, Gonnuscio said he was surprised to find that he was able to to transform this particular gun to the real thing -- and with “minimal work,” because its bottom half, or “receiver,” is so similar to an AR-15's.
To make the airsoft receiver function just like an AR-15’s, Gonnuscio said, “All you have to do is drill one hole.”
And once that's out of the way, the rest is even easier. The AR-15 receiver is the only part of the semi-automatic rifle that is given a serial number, and is the only part that is regulated. All the remaining parts of the real thing can be purchased by anyone – any kid, criminal or terrorist.
The caveat here is that Gonnuscio follows it up with that it will be able to withstand around 15-20 shots before it becomes useless. It will not last long, but 15-20 live ammo shots are already more than enough to cause some deadly mayhem in a crowded, public space.
The cost of buying the Taiwan-made airsoft gun and all the parts needed to convert it to an AR-15 comes to roughly $1,100 -- more than the cost of some real AR-15s. But someone who can’t clear a background check or has been refused a gun for any other reason could use this method to make his own lethal weapon, Gonnuscio said.
While most of the firearms experts agree that it will be very cumbersome and costly to convert an airsoft gun to fire real ammo, as there are other cheaper alternatives to making makeshift guns, this report might come out as saying that airsoft guns are very dangerous when in the hands of a very competent gunsmith with a deadly agenda.
What do you think? Do you agree with this report? Should there be stricter regulations on how airsoft guns are manufactured so that they will not be able to fire real rounds? Or it is really a useless activity to convert one as you can buy cheaper real steel guns in the blackmarket?
Read the rest of the story by clicking on the screenshot below: