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Discussion Starter #1
My experience with NICS is that it is anything but "instant". Out of about 20 gun purchases during the past 10 years, I have usually had to wait. A couple of times the federal maximum allowed time of 7 business days was exceeded and I was given the gun without the background check being completed.

I've been in the information business all my adult life and I have never personally been involved with such a poor system, except one. My work has principally been on commercial systems that cannot tolerate such lax performance. The exception was a federal government system that was a complete waste of tax dollars and I swore never to work for any government body again. The waste and inefficiency was utterly profligate and I felt like wheelbarrows full of hundred dollar bills were being dumped into a fire. I strongly suspect that NICS is a similar system.

Is there anyone challenging the suitability of NICS as an institution? In what way is it any better than a simple 7-day waiting period administered by the local police?

If a traffic cop can tell me about a speeding ticket I got 22 years ago in another state by simply running my driver's license through his patrolman's system, then why does it take days for the FBI to do what amounts to the same kind of test?
 

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Must be you. ;)

The last four I purchased I was in and out so fast it was like going through a fast food drive through. They were all long guns though.
 

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I doubt it. For example, I just went in to buy a gun this weekend. By Monday night the Gander Mountain store I am buying the gun from had received no calls back from NICS all day. Was it down for 3 days? Not likely. Computer-based systems aren't down for 3 days at a time in any industrial application I can think of. So if it's not the computers, then what's the problem?
 

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My experience for as long as I can remember has been immediate, never had to wait for a call back approval, but I think the spelling of my middle name has a lot to do with that as it's unusual, I never give my SSN either, have made about 35 purchases in the last 3yrs or so.

Tim
 

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From about 2001 until 2007 I was delayed every time I went to purchase a weapon.I challenged the ATF and found out that some clown with a ssn one number off from me , was very badly wanted by the ????.He either has died or is in jailed as I now do not get any delay.Quick is right I now do not give my ssn. Doug
 

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I doubt anyone here buys more guns than me or more frequently. I've likely owned at least 500 in my life time.

I've NEVER had any delay with NICS yet. They make the call get a truly instant approval once they've gien NICS the required info they expect prior to the approval. Within 15 or so seconds from the time they give the last bit of needed info they are writing down the approval number. I'd say on average the entire phone call lasts less than a minute and a half. That's on hundreds of guns since NICS when into place I'd guess.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
GB:

Do you happen to know if there are regional call centers for NICS? My experience has NEVER been like yours. I have been at gun shops where others were buying guns and have never seen a quick call like that.

My current example where there is a days-long backlog of calls to return is not uncommon at all in my area. Part of the issue may be when I buy guns. It's usually around this time of year, and I wonder if there's any seasonality to their work load.
 

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I am a gun-owner that haas never been in trouble with the law much less convicted of a crime even during my teenage years. I am 14 year USMM ( United States Merchant Mariner) and I am currently holding a USCG mate /pilots liscense in good standings with all associated agencies DOT,USCG,EPA,and the DOE . I am allowed to drive hundreds of thousands of tons of hazerdous cargo through major cities i.e. Houston Tx. , New Orleans La. , etc etc. By the way the US Coast Guard( The US GOV) gave me the liscense to do this . I have never purchased massive amounts of firearms and have never purchased a assault weapon or anything resembling one, all of my purchase have been basic hunting rifles 22lr to 30-06 ,handguns 357 magnum 44magnum both sa rugers and have recently purchased a kimber 1911 45 , 1 shotgun rem 870 12 guage . My question is why is it that everytime i try to purchase a firearm i INSTANTLY get delayed? I provide all the information requested acurrately and without hesitation as I have nothing to hide. My name and ssn has been involved with the fbi and us government for the last 14 years with no problems so you would think that would say something for me. That being said my wife is a 24 year old house-wife with no technical training at all as a matter of fact her drivers liscense and ss card dont even match because since we have been married she has never had it changed,but she can go into a gun store , pawn shop , and get instant approval for a gun purchase!!! WHAT GIVES Is there a way to find out why i get delayed and to possibly resolve the problem if there is one? I have searched extensively for the answer and keep drawing blanks, please any info or advise would be greatly appreciated. While this is not the end of the world I want to know why ,Even though I play by all the rules I still get punished ? Can this issue be changed or am i doomed to a 3 day wait forever ? Thanks in advance.
 

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Have you bothered to fid out what specifcially it is causing the delays? I'd think the could see what triggers the red flag(s) and see how to work around that. Do you provide the SSN?
I have absolutely NO wait at all. As fastas my info is provided, it's cleared for purchase. On the flip side, my brothers with FFL's both get delays occasionally.
 

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I really don't know for sure Rudy but I don't think so. I know Steve told me one day when we were discussing it that he never seems to get the same person. I think the NICS database is housed in DC and all personnel work there but as I said I'm not sure.

Not all states actually use the NICS data base directly. Some go to a state office that does the check not NICS and some charge and some don't. Here in Bama the dealer calls NICS directly and there is no charge added for it.

I've probably bought or traded for 30-40 guns at least in the past couple years alone with never a slow down.
 

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We deal with NICS alot in the pawn business, and it seems that the repeat customers we see that have been delayed in the past always seem to get delayed, if it goes thru then they always go thru. we asked one day and it was said that it could be the last name that a common name means alot more names to go thru, and again this time of year there are alot of guns being sold or redeamed causing a little bit of the problem. JIM
 

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I have asked specifically why I was getting delayed and was told by the owners of the shop that if I get delayed once I will always be delayed. I asked them to ask the NICS why they were delaying me and ,the owners said that they werent allowed to ask those questions. I have even gotten the forms from the shop that they give to deniels and followed the directions ,Hand written letter asking for a explanation to why I was delayed.4 different times in the last 6 months and have yet to get a replyto a single letter.I would even be happy if they called back occasionally and approved my request,but everytime I have to wait ,they have never called back. I would be happy with just a answer to why, they could say "We dont like your haircut so your delayed" . At least it would show a sign of life(not intelligent but its alive). I stil think that this is a crock because the only people using the system are the honest gun-owners. The bad guys arent going anywhere near one of those forms they are going around breaking into honest folks homes and stealing the guns that we have to struggle to get even though the Constitution of the United States of America gives us the Right to own. The guys that are being stupid and getting that right taken away have more guns than we do because they are easier for them to get 1. they are free 2. no NICS paperwork 3. if they get caught (by a poor shot) they can sue and get rich. Kinda makes you think twice about being a good guy sometimes.
 

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The answer is to get a concealed carry license...........no background check required (at least here in Texas). I am like GB, bought and sold more guns in the past few years that most people will own in a lifetime and never had a problem, or a wait.

I worked part time for one of the local dealers, mostly at gun shows, and in all the sales I have witnessed I only recall one individual that had to wait for any excessive amount of time, and that was only for 2 hours or so. The guy had won the gun in a raffle, and was to pick it up and do the paperwork in my friends shop. We were transferred from office to office for near two hours, each time they would tell me to please hold, then someone else would pick up the phone. The guy's name was John Gonzalez, when I finally got approval the agent told me there were more John Gonzalez's in the system than there were John Browns, that was the reason for the wait. He told me that sometimes a common name may require a little time, particularly if a person with a similar name had a record.

My advice, if you are in a state that accepts a concealed handgun license, then get the license, it sure saves a lot of BS when buying.
 

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Here is what I know about NICS. I worked a part-time gig at a Sportsman's Warehouse Gun Dept. for a couple of years. There are two NICS call-receiving centers. No telling which one you get when you call. They simply enter full name and DOB of buyer, along with SSN if given. IF no criminal record is found, they give the go-ahead.
IF a near-miss to someone with a criminal record comes up ( maybe different middle name, transposed DOB, slightly different spelling of last, etc ) they transfer to an actual FBI data base, who continues the check. That should clear up near-misses. IF the person being checked has a criminal record, that may or may not preclude them from purchasing a weapon, they refer it to another person, which means either they phone back, or just not phone and let the time lapse if the person is cleared to buy.
Each state is different regarding CCW's. Here in Washington State if a person has a CCW and buys any weapon, the NICS is still done. BUT, with a CCW a long-gun can go out the door as soon as NICs clears. With a handgun, even with a clear NICS, there is a waiting period before it goes out the door ( it's been a few years, I forget how many days, 3 or 7 or some such ).
A person who is often or always delayed can get a packet from most gunshops. It will have a fingerprint card and other stuff. Follow the directions, submit to address provided, and you will be given a "code". Next time you buy a weapon, provide that Code # to the clerk when they run the NICS check, so they can give it to the NICS call-receiver. That should provide an instant approval.
In my case, about 20 years ago I plead guilty to a gross misdemeanor. This offense does not preclude me from buying/posesssing firearms, but I am always being delayed. About six months ago I went to court to have my conviction "vacated". A criminal check on me now shows no convictions, but I am still being delayed ( yes, I have had a CCW all along). So now my next step will be the packet that I mentioned above, to keep from being delayed.
It's a bit of a hassle, but really, compared to other countries, it is not too bad. Mark
 

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even dealing with walmart was almost instant. i was still completing warranty info when i got to go ahead. i belive it took about 10believe. at a gun shop about that but i only had to wait one time and that was when i was buying a shotgun and the guy in front of me was buying some ak 47 that they took forever on. it took them a day for his and i went in there the next day and they said they had got the call as soon as i left.
 

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I believe the NICS center is based in Clarksburg, West Virginia. And now is a pretty comprehensive data base. I think their problem is not only allowing firearm sales against federal regulations BUT also against state regulations and laws relating to your record. In other words, various states have obscure laws, many just misdemeanors, that if you have a conviction you a prohibited from gun ownership and purchase. NICS has taken it upon themselves not to facilitate violations of various state codes. Their computors are mighty but state issues may have to be correlated with a state agency and cause a slow down. Just a theory, but the part about correlating with various state's records is true.

...TM7
 

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As a Gander Mountain gun guy in ND, I ran thousands of names through NICS. I would guess that less than 5% were delayed... Many of these got the go-ahead the same day. Only remember a few that didn't get a response in the week. Now, I am selling guns in Idaho... I swear that around 40% of the people are delayed. Many of those are never responded to within a week. The people at NICS still sound like they are from WV...

Jim
 
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