What is a Blank Gun?
The best way to describe a Blank Gun is to imagine it as a real gun in just about every way except on, there are no dangerous bullets flying out the front of it. A Blank Gun just like a real gun uses a brass or metal shells, loaded with a primer and gun powder, but only fire blank bullets or signal gas ammunition which are known as your pepper bullets which shoot out pepper spray. https://safetypro.co.za/product-category/blank-pepper-guns/
Are blank guns legal in South Africa?
According to the explosives act, the end user does not recquire any licence or permit to purchase or carry blank and pepper cartridges.
Blank guns are excluded from the firearms control act.
Blank Guns are flare guns, what makes a blank gun a flare gun? A blank gun with a attachment on the barrel houses a pencil flare, the flare is triggered by the front firing blank gun.
A blank gun is a non lethal alternative to a firearm, it looks, feels, sounds and most importantly works like a firearm.
Blank cartridges are for firing warning shots to deter intruders.
Pepper cartridges are purely for self defence, it is most effective within 6m.
The contents of a pepper cartridge have a very fine synthetic powder and not a ball or a pellet, see below as to why.
If a blank gun fired any projectile (lead, pepper ball, nylon ball, cermaic ball, rubber ball …) it would need to be licenced in South Africa as it uses a 9mm pak cartridge, it would be no different to a firearm and it would be better to get a firearm instead of a blank gun.
Precautions are still required because fatalities and severe injuries have resulted on occasions when blank cartridges have been fired at very close ranges.
Attempting a conversion is dangerous for the user since the materials and production methods involved in the making of blank-firing replicas are not the same as those of firearms designed for live ammunition.
- According to the FCA to be classified as a firearm the device must be able to fire a projectile
- According to the FCA for a device to be classified as a firearm it must be able to easily be altered to fire a projectile
- According to the fca you must be able to fire a projectile at 8 joules to be classified as a firearm by means of burning propellants through a barrel. How do you measure the velocity of powder? Powder is not a projectile!
- The FCA exempts flare guns from being a firearm even if they meet the criteria of being a firearm. But they don’t
- A flare gun is a blank gun with a attachment at the muzzle to hold a pencil flare
- No off the shelf ammo in the country will be able to fit into the magazine or chamber of blank guns
- The barrels of blank guns are narrowed to prevent users from firing projectiles
- Most models of blanks guns have steel rods placed vertically and horizontally in the barrel for preventing users from trying to fire projectiles.
- Barrel plugs are placed in all blank guns at the muzzle end not only for someone to differentiate between a firearm and a blank gun but also to make the product unusable, when you remove the barrel plug the air flow through the barrel is interrupted which stops the slide from pushing back allowing the catch to hook the rim of the used cartridge, eject and allow a new round to be placed in the chamber.
blank / pepper pistols are not toys, they serve a purpose to deter/defend and buy time, they are also not firearms but as far as safety goes it should be treated as one even though it does not fire a projectile. Do not expect the performance of a firearm from a blank/pepper pistol because by definition they are not designed to perform as firearms. Emptying multiple/several magazines filled with rounds is abuse of the product. One can also not make any alterations to the product as that will void the limited warranty, Stripping the product voids the warranty, Removing the barrel plugs or rods from the barrel also voids the limited warranty and is also illegal.