Tag Archives: national shooting sports foundation

In Other News, the number of Youth in the Shooting Sports is on the Rise

I think it is no secret that I spent my childhood immersed in gun culture. Growing up in the Gulf South in the 1970s and 80s under the watchful eye of my grandpa (a retired 30-year SNCO) I got my first pellet gun at age six, my first .22LR two years later, and harvested my first deer– with a milsurp 8mm Mauser as tall as I was– before I left grade school. Added to this was Scouts, JROTC (where we fired Mossberg 442s in class against a sandbagged target trap every Friday!), hunting trips with my friends, and neighborhood turkey shoots, followed by working in a local gun store in my teens.

However, over the past several decades, the numbers of kids given the opportunity to shoot safely have greatly decreased, a sure bet that the number of responsible gun owners would shrink moving forward.

But, things may be changing a bit.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation’s hunting license sales index showed a 29 percent jump in new hunters taking the field in 2020 when compared to the previous year, climbing from an estimated 2.3 million in 2019 to over 3.2 million, gaining a legion equivalent to the population of Jacksonville, Florida, or Austin, Texas. Many of these were teens.

Besides apprentice hunters, the clay fields are also seeing big gains.

Following up on a record Fall Season, the USA Clay Target League told me last week that they will have a record 27,577 student-athletes representing 1,308 high school and college teams in 34 states participating in the league’s programs this spring, supported by 7,800 volunteers serving as coaches, range officers, and staff.

Maybe the kids will be alright.

Go ahead, spitball how many guns are in circulation

Of course, this is a moving target and in most cases would be considered something of a wild ass guess in most cases, but the NSSF, working with industry and regulatory data for the past couple of decades, came up with some interesting figures when it comes to the number of guns in private circulation in the U.S.

The big numbers: 434 million firearms, 20 million “modern sporting rifles” such as AR-15s, and 150 million magazines which are considered in eight or nine states to be “high capacity.”


More in my column at Guns.com.

There are now over 5 million NFA items on the books, including 1.3 million suppressors

The number of National Firearm Act items saw a huge jump in the past year — including a 50 percent increase in suppressor registration and 39 percent bump in short-barreled rifles registered — according to new data released by federal regulators.

The report provides an overview of the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record, which is the federal list of all items, such as suppressors, SBRs, short-barreled shotguns, destructive devices and any other weapons logged under the NFA as of April, and updates figures released in February 2016.

In the 14-month period between reports, the total number of NFA items of all kinds has climbed to 5,203,489 — an overall increase of more than 800,000 items.

While the numbers of AOW’s, machine guns and SBSs all saw negligible increases, the biggest jumps in the 14-month interlude came in the numbers of registered SBRs and suppressors.

More in my column at Guns.com

Enjoy the silence: There are more than 900,000 legal NFA-compliant suppressors out there

hk 91 with suppressor and m1 garand silencerco photo

New data released last week by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives shows FFL numbers rebounding, over 9 million firearms produced in 2014, coupled with healthy import and export activity.

The statistics are part of the agency’s 2016 Annual Statistical Update of Firearm Commerce in the United States.

Sweeping in its context, the report gives the public a rare glimpse into the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record, which is the federal list of all items, such as suppressors, SBRs, short-barreled shotguns, destructive devices and any other weapons logged under the NFA as of February 2016. While this figure includes Post-86 Dealer samples, SOT production guns up for sale and LEO guns as well, most of these are in civilian hands.

Comparing last year’s report with the new information shows the aggregate number of NFA items of all kinds have climbed to 4,436,096, adding over a quarter million devices to the registry in a twelve-month period from February 2015.

This includes:

2,545,844 Destructive devices (mostly live ammunition over .50 caliber in size)
902,805 Suppressors
575,602 Machine guns
213,594 Short barreled rifles
140,474 Short barreled shotguns
57,777 AOWs (pen guns, cane guns, shorty shotgun pistols)

Suppressor numbers have just reached for the cheap seats in the past five years. In 2011, there were 285,087 cans registered– meaning U.S. silencer ownership has more than tripled in the past half-decade.

More in my column at Guns.com.

Suppressor numbers nearly 600,000 nationwide, becoming mainstream

Once the fodder of Hollywood spy movies and pulp fiction novels, the NFA-compliant suppressor is becoming ever more common in its use and adoption with numbers at an all-time high.

No matter whether you call it a silencer, a suppressor, or just a can, the mechanism defined by the National Firearms Act of 1934 as any device for silencing, muffling, or diminishing the report of a portable firearm, is shedding decades of misinformation and rapidly becoming more and more mainstream. According to figures released by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives earlier this year, there were, as of March 2014, no less than 571,750 legal suppressors listed in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record (NFRTR).

As benchmark in the increase in the number of yearly transfers done on NFA items, such as suppressors, in 1984 the ATF collected just $666,000 in transfer and making taxes on these items. Three decades later, with no increase in the tax rate, the ATF collected almost $18.2 million in transfers, according to its 2013 figures, an increase of over 2,700 percent.

suppressed 1911as
Read the rest in my column at Guns.com, where I get the low-down on the suppressor industry from the head of the American Suppressor Association.