Rare Breed Sues ATF in Defense of FRT-15 Trigger System: It’s Not a ‘Machinegun’

(Photo: Rare Breed)

Rare Breed Triggers, makers of the FRT-15 trigger system, is challenging the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) following the ATF’s recent FRT-15 classification. According to the ATF’s Technology Division, the FRT-15 is a machine gun.

Rare Breed filed a lawsuit against the ATF seeking an injunction to prevent the agency from enforcing their determination as well as to block any potential civil or criminal prosecution over the possession and/or sale of the FRT-15. They argue that the FRT-15 is a semi-automatic trigger, and the ATF is wrong in its determination.

The FRT-15 works mostly like a normal AR-style cassette-type trigger pack. It’s a drop-in assembly with one extra function: after a round is fired and the bolt cycles, it cocks the hammer and at the same time, resets the trigger.

That’s how the FRT-15 gives shooters the ability to repeatedly pull the trigger quickly, similar to how practice with a light trigger can also be used to shoot rapid strings of fire. According to the law, a machine gun isn’t a gun that can be fired quickly, it’s a gun that fires more than one shot per pull of the trigger.

Since the user still has to pull the trigger for each shot with the FRT-15, Rare Breed says that the ATF is not applying the law as it is written when they classified the trigger system as a machine gun last July. Additionally, the trigger includes a locking bar to prevent the user from being able to pull the trigger until the firearm has completely cycled.

SEE ALSO: Rare Breed Showcasing Non-NFA FRT-15 Forced Reset Trigger

“Because the FRT-15 requires a pull or function for each discharge of the firearm it is not a ‘machinegun,'” reads the lawsuit. “While the FRT-15 allows for a more rapid subsequent firing of the next round by the firearm, it does not allow more than one round of ammunition to be expelled per function of the trigger, and this does not meet the definition of a “machinegun”

The lawsuit has been brought by Kevin Maxwell, who is both an attorney and the owner of Rare Breed. Prior to filing the lawsuit, Rare Breed consulted with former ATF agents who agreed that the FRT-15 is not a machinegun or machinegun part.

“These four experts, with over 100 years of combined law enforcement experience, are well known to the Defendants,” states the filing. “This is not only because of their former employment as ATF special agents, but also because the DOJ and ATF presented each of them as experts in the Defendants’ cases and criminal prosecutions on the subject of what does and does not constitute a ‘machinegun’ under federal law.”

The request for the emergency injunction is scheduled to be heard Wednesday.

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About the author: Max Slowik is a writer with over a dozen years of experience and is a lifelong shooter. He has unwavering support for the Second Amendment and the human right to self-defense. Like Thomas Paine, he’s a journalist by profession and a propagandist by inclination.

{ 19 comments… add one }
  • Larry Hall January 28, 2022, 12:50 pm

    Hondo, you nailed the Bluedouch. I doubt seriously he ever served anywhere except Mc Donalds. A real M-16 would have made him wet his panties.

  • Yippee Kayay August 23, 2021, 5:32 pm

    Just in, Jerry Miculek classified as a Machine Gun.

  • T man August 20, 2021, 5:04 pm

    Good for you Rare Breed. These are the kind of challenges the NRA should be joined in every time the ATF or Government over steps their authority to curb our gun rights.

  • kjj5874 August 20, 2021, 1:38 pm

    I was tempted to buy this trigger group but was hesitant because i knew the atf was going to take one look at it and classify it as a machine gun and they did. The government thinks they can make up laws that they can skirt if it suits them, in this case just because it acts like a machine gun it is a machine gun. Never mind if the mechanics is lawful, if they dont like it screw the law.

  • Hondo August 20, 2021, 8:25 am

    Bluedouche he/clown makes me laugh every time I see one of this clowns posts , a know nothing dipshit for sure.

  • skipNclair August 20, 2021, 8:16 am

    Make life allot better if there were no ATF to begin with for their being able to make valued decisions on these things goes against the will of a free man. So lets join together and get the ATF a dozen agencies abolished and become free men again.

    • kjj5874 August 20, 2021, 1:46 pm

      I hear rumblings a lot of what you just said, it may come to that if a totalitarian government goes too far taking away our rights. And that will never happen until the people stop being lemmings and voting for the very people who take away there rights , voting for more government.

  • Kurt Hollyday August 20, 2021, 8:02 am

    Isn’t the “threat”, danger, or consequences, what keeps people in check, honest, and not commit crimes against you. Where should the line be drawn on what we are “allowed” to own Blue dog?

  • Boyd Welsch August 18, 2021, 11:04 pm

    Why has no one produced a three trigger assembly staggered so you pull the first it fires and , continues back , the next on fires keep pulling until three rounds are down range from pulling three triggers. The first one would look normal picking up the arms of the next two under the pad.

  • Roland August 18, 2021, 8:51 pm

    I just want some PRIMERS!…..at non-scalper prices.

    • Slim August 20, 2021, 10:26 pm

      Check YouTube as many people use good ol’ snap caps or roll type kid guns. There’s the old school six shooter type that they pull the white part out that makes a small “bang” noise and has been made for decades all over the world. And then there’s the roll type that has for example around 25 or so same style “bang” type caps that as the kids gun is fired it rolls to the next little cap and so on that just makes noise. But the kind on the six shot or so wheel seem to be best since they’re the same size as most primers and simply remove them with tweezers and take out the little retainer clip in the primer pocket on any primer you have(recommend using two caps for rifle rounds)and use a punch or other tool to push the used primer with the dent in it from the firing pin flat from the inside of the primer and then simply reinsert the retaining clip that holds in the primers ignition source and your set with primers. Hand made primers you just need to take care not to be stupid and you’ll end up with crazy enough very reliable primers if you have no other choice. Good luck.

  • JonsOn August 18, 2021, 11:04 am

    Does anyone really think that Joke Biden’s ATF really cares about the law and the constitution? They just want the guns out of the hands of those that would turn on the government when they finally go too far. Which is something they are getting very close to. Why else would Joke nominate a person like David Chipman to head the ATF.

    • Ronald M Dalton August 26, 2021, 6:52 pm

      No it’s beginning to look like you would have to be part of the Taliban if you want Biden to let you have guns. Anyone looking for a Blackhawk 🙁

  • Blue Dog (he/him) August 18, 2021, 9:25 am

    Wait, the trigger only fires one round per trigger pull? (Or per trigger movement in the case of a binary trigger)

    If that is the case, then I have to agree that the ATF has overstepped in their ruling here. It sounds like this company Rare Breed has a case to challenge the ruling and it is right that the court system should sort out the question. I admit that I am not familiar with this product (I am not an AR guy) and since the ATF made this ruling I have to ask if the story here presents the full story or if some details were not included?

    • Dr Motown August 19, 2021, 8:34 am

      Well, my, my, my…..After reading many false statements from you over the years regarding ARs as “assault weapons,” “weapons of war,” “assault rifles,” and other ridiculous monikers, it’s refreshing to hear you FINALLY ADMIT that you’re “not an AR guy.” Perhaps, in the future, you should only comment on things you actually understand or have researched thoroughly…..it’s a good way to avoid looking unintelligent on a subject👌

      • Blue Dog (he/him) August 19, 2021, 10:15 am

        I don’t have to be an AR guy to understand how they work or what kind of threat they are to public safety. I put a couple of lower together several years (more than 10) ago when I had my FFL so I could better understand what customers wanted and were looking for. I am “not an AR guy” not out of a place of ignorance but rather out of preference. Just because I prefer Dr. Pepper does not mean I don’t know what Coke tastes like.

        • Dr Motown August 20, 2021, 7:39 am

          And yet, with all your alleged expertise and FFL experience, you consistently and predictably make ignorant and false statements about ARs, mischaracterizing them as “weapons of war” and “assault weapons.” Regurgitation of political talking points has replaced any supposed knowledge you claim to haveonce had. SMH….

          • Slim August 20, 2021, 10:43 pm

            Agree, this guy is a HUGE MORON! He had NO CLUE what any gun does since he’s just a loser troll who has never shot a single gun(even a red Ryder!)and damn sure doesn’t know how they function! Built lowers, right?! What does a lower tell you on what a customer wants?! A lower is simply nothing more than a trigger and that’s it since I know you didn’t install a kynshot buffer or anything remotely upgraded including the trigger so what’s to see what a customer wants since I bet my life you never built one lower and even IF you did I’ve never met someone who sells custom lowers only to see what customers like! The upper is where the customizing happens in sales! Most people just want a lower that works and don’t care if it had an upgraded trigger or buffer assembly, but do care if the upper has the rails, hand guard length, sights, etcetera they want if they care at all! Hilarious your she/shim BS! Your a dude or a chick! NO OTHER CHOICES! Just because YOU WANT us normal people to address you in some BS way does NOT CHANGE what you were BORN WITH AND THAT IS WHO YOU ARE!!!!! Polish a turd such as yourself and in the end YOUR STILL A TURD! Shim your a troll at best! Shouldn’t you be on some trany site?! This is for gun owners, not trany’s such as yourself shim!

        • Ants August 21, 2021, 1:49 am

          Dude. Rifles only account for about 2.6% of homicides across the country. Around ten percent are done with knives and other cutting instruments. There is no “public safety” regarding rifles, no matter what they look like.

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