Exclusive Interview: ATF Bans Can Cannon

Get over to the X-Proucts page and see what’s going on: http://www.xproducts.com/

Or go to their Facebook page and show supprt: https://www.facebook.com/xproductsllc

We love the Can Cannon! Heck, everyone loves the Can Cannon. We’re on record as saying it’s the best fun-gun ever!

So, we were incredibly perturbed to learn that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives recently issued a letter on the Can Cannon saying that when it is affixed to a rifle receiver it is considered a (SBR) or short barrel rifle and when place on a pistol it becomes an (AOW) Any Other Weapon.

Now, by itself, the Can Cannon is not a firearm or a controlled item. But the minute it is put on a rifle receiver or handgun it becomes subject to NFA restrictions.

In other words, to legally possess the Can Cannon on a rifle receiver or handgun one must must obtain approval from the ATF, obtain a signature from the Chief Law Enforcement Officer (CLEO) who is the county sheriff or city or town chief of police (not necessarily permission), pass an extensive background check to include submitting a photograph and fingerprints, fully register the firearm and pay a $200 tax.

You can read more about how to legally buy a NFA-regulated item in this GunsAmerica article.

So, it appears that owners of the Can Cannon have two options: 1. Begin the NFA application process or 2. Refrain from using the Can Cannon until the ATF revises it’s stance.

With respect to number 2, there is reason to be hopeful. Currently, XProducts, the makers of the Can Cannon, are “submitting a revised design” of the Can Cannon to address the issues raised by the ATF in its determination letter. Assuming XProducts is able to satisfy the ATF’s concerns, the Can Cannon may no longer be subject to NFA restrictions when attached to a rifle receiver or handguns.

There’s no telling how long this review process will take, but keep your fingers crossed that in the end the ATF makes the right call and removes all the NFA restrictions on the Can Cannon.

Interview with James Malarkey of X Products

What will happen to all of the Can Cannons sold? “At this time nothing. They are not illegal to poses and they will be able to exchanged once we have received a determination letter from the ATF on what needs to be changed for them to be legally used on a non class 3 AR lower.”

How many units have been sold? “Between 4,000 and 5,000 units.”

Will welding the gas tube end shut solve the problem?

Will welding the gas tube end shut solve the problem?

What modifications are you planning on making to appease the ATF? “Currently we are working with 4 potential modifications that can be done to the uppers that will make them legal for everyone to use.”

We currently have submitted two versions this week and are now waiting on the ATF to make a judgment.

List of options

  1. Adding holes after the chamber so that all of the gasses are expelled instantly.
  2. Adding holes after the chamber and then welding a plug/plate over the bore so that no projectile can pass.
  3. Make the tube 16” long.
  4. Rifle the inside of the tube.

Options 1 and 2 have been submitted and are thought to make the devices comply with the ATF. The other two options will be explored as last case scenarios.

Some have wondered why X-Products hadn’t already gotten a determination letter from the ATF. They had. “We had already received a determination letter for our upper before the product originally went on sale. After the fact we submitted a complete firearm and they decided to change their minds. This is not the ATFs fault. They are just doing their jobs and we don’t hold it against them.”

The new duck decoy.

The new duck decoy.

How will they handle all of the uppers that are out there in the wild? “Once we develop and have a proven solution we will offer an exchange program to make sure our customers are take care off properly.”

X Products isn’t stopping here.

They have many new products launching for the end of 2015 into early 2016.

  • Weighted and whistling duck decoy for hunters and dog trainers – 2-4 weeks out
  • Net launcher that has a new purpose in life. Netting drones out of the air. -6-7 months out
  • Grappling hook to be used in marine environments for shooting lines form boat to boat. -2 months out
  • 308 launcher that shoots tennis balls. –Waiting on ATF determination for that upper.
  • Top water spear launcher for spear fishing – 4 months out
  • Inflatable vest projectile launcher for boats.


A letter from XProducts on the Can Cannon evaluation. (Photo: XProducts)

A letter from X-Products on the Can Cannon evaluation. (Photo: X-Products)

can cannon ATF letter 3
can cannon ATF letter 2
can cannon ATF letter 1

About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 41 comments… add one }
  • Dennis December 29, 2015, 9:42 am

    ATF interest could have to do with the fact that mounted on the end of a rifle it is a potential grenade laucnher.

  • ejharb November 1, 2015, 8:20 pm

    Kommisar ej says these children have too much free time on hands they should do more socialist labor for the people!!

    Damn that looks fun! I kinda want one. And I’m not even a ARf fan

  • Steve Em October 5, 2015, 7:16 pm

    Put it into a family trust to go avoid the background with the Sheriff. Nuff said

  • mike October 1, 2015, 9:43 am

    It’s sad that X Products doesn’t post this info on it’s website and forces Can Cannon owners (me being one) to search the internet for updated info like this. X Products seems more interested in getting their name out there instead of letting people who paid them $399 for what is now a paperweight know what is going on.

  • Gopher Baroque September 29, 2015, 10:59 pm

    Reading the BATF letter, extending the 1.05″ mounting tube to 2+ inches would seem to address the SBR concern for minimum 18″ barrel (attached to a common non-SBR 16″ barrel). Not sure if this covers the other concerns, though. It’s a tough slog through all the details.

  • Steve Warren September 29, 2015, 12:44 pm

    Well you all can sarcastically poke fun of the BATFe if you want, but I know that I for one will sleep better tonight knowing that a team of $70,000+ ATF agents have worked tirelessly for months to get this horrible destructive device removed from the streets of America. The country is safe again.

  • SP September 28, 2015, 8:07 pm

    Just shows the idiocies of the Agencies, you can’t have a device to “launch” a tennis ball or soda can but you can own flame thrower!

  • F*ck the ATF September 28, 2015, 5:38 pm

    I didn’t want one until the atf said I can’t have it. Now I think I will make my own potato gun that is 13 inches long just to be spiteful. ATF can suck it.

  • KMacK September 28, 2015, 5:01 pm

    Perhaps confounding the BATFE(ces) would work: Set it up as a black powder flint or percussion device. Then it is not a firearm under the law and the BATFEces people are out of the picture.

  • Steve September 28, 2015, 4:00 pm

    wait a minute – James Malarkey? Is this just a bunch of Malarkey or is it really banned as a SBR? LOL

  • Lee September 28, 2015, 1:30 pm

    Grappling hook launcher was used in WWII. Before that line and grappling hook cannons and rifles were common. They were used to rescue people from ships that ran aground. A breaches buoy (sp) on a rope carried a person over the waves and onto the beach. It was pulled back and forth until everyone was safely ashore.

  • Jim Parsons September 28, 2015, 1:04 pm

    Interesting there was no mention of the part in the BATF letter on Page 3 that says that while the Can Cannon “in of itself is not a “firearm”” if it is “under the control of a person possessing such a receiver [an AR type firearm incorporating a shoulder stock] this aggregate of parts would constitute such an aggregation.” (And then it drivels off in to incomprehensibility. I’m not sure the BATF guys did any proof reading there as they seemed to have been working to a conclusion and then afterward decided to insert the bit about the AR-type pistols.)

    It seems (to my decidedly non lawyer eyes) that the above says that just owning the Can Cannon and an AR that it can be installed onto constitutes owning a SBR or a AOW.

    • Charles September 28, 2015, 5:45 pm

      “It seems (to my decidedly non lawyer eyes) that the above says that just owning the Can Cannon and an AR that it can be installed onto constitutes owning a SBR or a AOW.”

      That’s right. It’s considered “constructive possession” which is -bad news-.

      ” I guess that makes my 2 can cannons “Pre-Ban”…….and prices rise…….”

      There is no “amnesty” or some-such, you simply possess what is considered contraband. And like it or not, there are lists of purchasers out there that will keep ATF agents busy for a good while.
      If your intent is to stay out of trouble, you need to hand your can cannons over to a FFL with a title 2 or SOT licensure, file your Form 1 s , pay the tax ($200) and wait for your paperwork to arrive (about 5 months or so about now).
      Waiting out the promised “fix” from X Products has an unfortunate possible end result of a stay in Leavenworth and fines that will make your head spin, along with loss of your gun rights ect., ect. .
      Remember, those folks have absolutely no sense of humor -AT ALL-!

      • B September 28, 2015, 9:35 pm

        The AOW tax stamp is only $5, IIRC. So why not make a pistol out of it instead; grab a sig brace, too, while you’re at it.

  • Me September 28, 2015, 12:36 pm

    The best part of articles like this is how it brings the Screwballs out of the woodwork. Number 1, this isn’t a Ban. It’s a reclassification of a poorly disguised weapons platform. (it uses gunpowder filled brass blanks for propulsion and has a trigger and barrel). I mean really, what else is it? I’m going to blame Guns America and their pathetic attempts to bolster flagging readership of the tripe they usually publish. (this site is the National Enquirer of the Gun World.) Number 2, this device is nothing more than a grenade launcher and should be classified as one. For once, I agree with the ATF. All we need is a more ignorant Redneck Hillbillies with too much beer money and deadbeat time on their to start launching home made mortars at each other over who screwed who’s Sister/Wife.

    Generally I believe the ATF to be an illegal, intrusive heavy handed elitist corrupt organization, by this time… They got it right.

    • ej harb October 19, 2015, 8:00 am

      So banning a freedom you don’t like is cool but god help the unholy tyrant who takes something you don’t like?
      Freedom is for adults! Grow the eff up and we’ll talk more. As for you guys who trumpet constitution that document is libtard toilet paper until patriots grow a pair of bools and deliver consequences to its violators! Until then stfu and enjoy what you are allowed to enjoy

  • Dan September 28, 2015, 12:27 pm

    Tough getting through the alternative reality, what it’s doing is putting a large exponent on their already absurd authority. Personally, I can’t see any practical use of a flame thrower, maybe just people speeding up the grilling process, perhaps barbecuing a deer during the hunt as an MRE, and certainly an effective zombie eliminator. I believe it would be invoking the law of unintended consequences and collateral damage as a home defense weapon. What I really want to know, what is the name of that song that they play on the video? It’s stuck in my head and I need to know. Perhaps a dose of a tennis ball to the head from the can cannon, at distance, might help.

    • John Smith October 4, 2015, 1:56 pm

      The song is “Where It’s At” by Beck.

  • Mick Dodge September 28, 2015, 12:21 pm

    So can cannon grenades are out of the question now ?

  • B September 28, 2015, 12:19 pm

    From what I’ve read, they are using the GCA definition, not the NFA definition for SBS

  • dino September 28, 2015, 11:54 am

    FUCK the ATF ……. read the 2nd Amendment……………. read the F’n Constitution. Because when the people finally rise in mass to remove this Tyranical Criminally De Facto Government the ATF will be up serious Shit Creek without a paddle!
    Not one of them possess the power or the Authority to USURP BYPASS OR OVERIDE the Constitution and by their Sworn Oath Article 6 Section 3 they are also FORBIDDEN to “Warring Against the Constitution”…………………….

  • skipNclair September 28, 2015, 10:44 am

    The ATF just another illegal Govt. agency that has no business even existing. According to the constitution this agency is illegal. but hey just have to have all these illegal agencies to turn the folks into slaves and control them even if we have to piss on the constitution we took an oath to.

  • BEN September 28, 2015, 9:21 am

    I guess that makes my 2 can cannons “Pre-Ban”…….and prices rise…….

    • Bob the Veteran September 28, 2015, 11:51 am

      Good for you on your choice of investments! I have a friend that spent a $20,000 inheritance on full auto weapons before the ban on transfer of new weapons. A few years later, he sold the weapons and put 2 kids through college with the money.

  • Chad September 28, 2015, 8:49 am

    That does it ! Those numbskulls at the BATFE need to add fiber to their diets so they can relax their sphincters and get a realistic view of the world. What are they going to do next: Regulate slingshots? What a bunch of MORONS.

  • Jeff September 28, 2015, 8:34 am

    S.H. Blannelberry I’m quite certain you did not intend to state the NRA in the following sentence…. “You can read more about how to legally buy a NRA-regulated item in this GunsAmerica article.”

    • S.H. Blannelberry September 28, 2015, 8:39 am

      Good catch!

    • Rod September 28, 2015, 12:30 pm

      Don’t you mean “NFA”-regulated item, not “NRA”.

  • Jay September 28, 2015, 7:07 am

    Just another example of how government is getting more and more intrusive and out of control! The BATF needs to be closed and the second amendment needs to reign supreme for all law abiding citizens! Criminals need to be treated as criminals not citizens who live by our laws!

  • We not Free September 28, 2015, 6:22 am

    Abolish the ATF !
    War on Drugs is a Fraud.
    War on Terror is a Fraud.
    Every law enforcement officer carries full auto rifles.
    Law enforcement have heavy armoires vichicles.
    Law enforcement ceasing money from citizens without cause.
    Etc., etc…..
    Vote them all out. Vote for Farmers, factory workers, common people who pay the taxes and built this country. Follow the US Constitution.
    We all need to get off our knees !
    If not now then when ?

    • hey September 28, 2015, 3:47 pm

      Couldn’t agree more with, “We are not free”!! Freedom is ultimately the people’s responsibility and it is about time to admit we are failing miserably. Do not forget our garbage passive thought doctrine of a education system we now have. That is why we have growing socialist society. Half of the people today do not have the critical thinking skills to analyze information, instead they just move in the direction they where taught by following the ones dominating the conversation.

  • Mike Washburn September 28, 2015, 3:44 am

    Well, this Can Cannon looks like major, big time fun but it sort looks line a grenade launcher……too bad. I wonder if I can still find one though.

  • DRAINO September 24, 2015, 9:06 am

    YES! HERE YEE!! HERE YEE!!!! THE FUN POLICE HAVE SPOKEN!!!! THERE IS NO FUN AUTHORIZED WITH OUT A WRITTEN FUN REQUEST PERMIT ISSUED BY THE FUN POLICE!! ALL FUN PERMIT REQUESTS MUST BE SUBMITTED ATLEAST 60 DAY PRIOR TO ANY SUSPECTED FUN EVENT OR ACT! REQUESTS WILL HIGHLY DETAIL ANY AND ALL FUN EVENTS OR ACTS, TO INCLUDE JOKES, PRANKS AND/OR ANY OTHER NON-SENSICAL TOM FOOLERY THAT WILL BE PERPETRATED DURING THE SPECIFIC TIME FRAME LISTED ON THE FUN PERMIT REQUEST!!! What kind of idiot came up with such non-sense?? This is straight out of the Obama’s Socialist Anti-Fun Law Book. Since when did it become governments job to protect people from themselves???? IF Obama and the UN area so set on population control….then they need to let natural selection take its course…..there wouldn’t be as many idiots in the world…..notice I said “as many”. Cause there is still enough idiots to fraudulently elect Obama into office 🙂

    • Greg September 28, 2015, 7:31 am

      Uh, that would be “Hear Ye!”…as in, everybody listen and pay attention.
      Anyway, typical BS from BATF. Waiting for flame throwers to suddenly be found to be illegal too!
      Gawd how those idiots follow their master Odumbo’s bidding and intestinal rumblings as law.

  • LH Oswald September 22, 2015, 10:44 pm

    Any idiot who can read should have known better than to market this or even own one. The Act had been around since 1934 and pretty specific on bore sizes with and without rifling. All you out there that have made or bought Potato Launchers that use some sort of ignited gas as a propellant, those are illegal too. Beer can mortar, illegal. Arrows with bullets attached that explode on impact, illegal. Armor piercing handgun ammo, illegal. Motorizing an impeller for a trigger actuator (like a BMF Activator), illegal. There’s always somebody wanting to dance on the razor’s edge of potentially illegal devices and forget to read the laws. It’s not likely ATF will bend on this either.

    • aru weppo September 28, 2015, 5:47 am

      It’s always pathetically easy to sniff out a whiney, cowardly BATFE agent. Isn’t it Lee Harvey?

    • robert mccallum September 28, 2015, 8:44 am

      I always thought congress and the president made laws, not Alphabet government agencies. Illegal rules and laws are null and void that violate the constitution. Move along agent

      • Jim Parsons September 28, 2015, 12:43 pm

        They do make laws. But many times they leave much of the details, and sometimes most of it, up to individual agencies. The agencies come up with regulations that comply with the overreaching laws Congress make. If Congress had to come up with every little detail the amount of work they are getting done now would look like they were moving at light speed by comparison. Besides, the expertise (as much as you may agree or disagree with them) is in the agencies not the Congress.

        • loupgarous September 28, 2015, 7:15 pm

          Deferring to the expertise of the Executive Branch on how to implement laws that abridge Constitutional rights is how we got to our present sorry state. Congress is even now considering the REINS Act to pull the Executive Branch back from de facto tyranny over American citizens. That act wouldn’t be necessary if Congress did due diligence to spell out what it meant in a way that left no “wiggle room” to Obama and the Federal bureaucracy.

    • John September 28, 2015, 8:55 am

      The mind of a slave asks if it;s legal….

      The mind of a free man asks if it’s right…

      At least when they banned alcohol they did it like a Republic, not by creating some bogus department to make their own interpretations of law…(that is for the judicial branch of the government to do, NOT the BTAF!!)
      The BTAF itself is a aboration in a Republic.

    • Mr Mack September 29, 2015, 10:00 am

      Y’all have fun registering your shit. I’ll be plugging away with my illegal paper-free can cannon

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