Did you note the title in the link Robert provided ?
"ATF Guidebook - Importation & Verification of Firearms, Ammunition, and Implements of War"
then further down under Machinegun Destruction it states:
Except as provided in Title 26, United States Code (U.S.C.), Chapter 53, Section 5844, it is generally unlawful to IMPORT a machinegun into the United States for unrestricted sale. However, machineguns that are PROPERLY DESTROYED may be IMPORTED.. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) routinely receives inquiries regarding the acceptable method of destroying machineguns."
please also note ATFE came up with a bunch of screwy crap after GWs election. In the link they mention regulations created in 2003.
So to help enlighten some folks a bit on this let's look 1st at the situation with PPSh kits
Early on in the 80s some Chinese Type 50s came in, single chop saw cut either right behind or through the ejection port and all was good
By the 90s Hungarian kits were coming in as well as Soviet and other Warsaw Pact nations. As the years rolled by the standard became to just saw cut out a chunk behind the ejection port that wasn't included
By around 2002 ? we ended up with an interim director of Technology Branch who went wacko crazy
that where these comic book diagrams date from
Bartlett decided "trunnions" were a Machingun for the purposes of importation
That's the era the bureau was raiding InterOrdinance, Naitron, a slew of other companies as well
So you want some direct evidence these diagrams ONLY apply to imports ?
consider this telling fact
So after the trunnion madness ATFE was forward tracing a bunch of crap over, yeah trunnions being "NFA" regulated
Now here's where it gets funny, American made replacement trunnions were and remain just a normal component
again, the PPSh trunnion ban ONLY applies to imported parts kits
Let's talk on STENs
1st kits getting imported years ago back in the 70s were single saw cut under the mag housing
those were new old stock Canadian Longbranch guns. Treasury eventually had a snit about those and demilling methods gradually evolved
thing to note though, look at the 2003 comic book diagram, just a mess of angled torch cuts. Frankly I have NEVER seen one kit cut up in that manner
Look at the current APEX kits
You need to remember that the bureau has not hard and fast rules on any of this, importers apply for and receive variances all the time
Now on LMGs & HMGs they currently want the torched up angled cuts and generally destroying the trunnion area
that said Bowman got a variance on his BREN kits and those have intact trunnion surfaces
mind you in the 90s a couple vertical saw or narrow plasma kits were good enough.
So why all the changes and evolutions ?
You can blame it largely on all the ButtClowns who picked up SOTs back in the late 90s and were hacking together posties
all that made the bureau aware these things could be rebuilt
Same deal with the MG barrel ban. That wasn't about AKs, FALs and G3s
it was all about subguns and LMGs
Internet was a huge contributor to all this as well
Somewhere I have a link to a bureau white paper, in it some clown attempts to rewrite history. His position is that ATFE has always used DoD demill standards going back into the 60s
Well, the author was an idiot as DoD chop sawed and sheared tons of crap like M14 receivers that the bureau decided were a problem around 2002...I think the paper came out maybe 2004 ? I'll look for it but it's all straight retard generated BS
Thing is the bureau isn't close to being consistent.
For example they went crazy over PPSh trunnions as well as Steyr MP front and rear chunks but didn't bother with UZI or STEN trunnions
Honestly, I have never seen much in government import demill docs pre 2000
At best they would photocopy a pic from Janes and place red lines through areas they suggested should be cut at
Of course, you could request a variance and would likely obtain it
Now some other things:
the bureau don't like things you can make go bang with little work
Some of the early PPSh saw cuts could be duct taped together and run, same with MP40 single saw cuts that are cut behind the take down
on the other hand you can tape up a bare Flemming .22 MAC conversion over the rear and it will dump a mag
are they rounding up Flemming kits ?