Canadian Firearms Digest Discussion List,
Frequently Asked Questions

CFD FAQ -- Version: 3.0 -- Date: August 3, 2009

Disclaimer: No part of this FAQ or any of it's sub-sections should be viewed as legal advice or a definitive source for any information. The authors bear no responsibility whatsoever for incorrect information. This entire FAQ and all sub-sections are a compendium of information gathered from postings to the CFD and from other knowlegeable sources. Permission is explicitly given to distribute this FAQ in its entirety only if no changes are made and if this disclaimer is included.

Note: Some items have changed since this FAQ was published, and will be indicated as *changed* below. A new FAQ that incorporates all of the changes will be made available in the future at: this location.

Comments/Suggestions:   Howard

Table of Contents

  1. Administrative
    1. What is the This? What's a FAQ?
    2. What is the CFD?
    3. What the CFD is not?
    4. When was it started, how does it work and who runs it?
    5. What is the difference between the Main Feed and the Digest?
    6. What is the Chat?
    7. What is the Alert?
    8. What is the CTG? What about it's FAQ?
    9. How do I subscribe? How do I unsubscribe?
    10. How do I find the moderator's email address?
    11. Where are the archives?
    12. How can I save this FAQ locally?
  2. Organizations
    1. AFGA - Alberta Fish and Game Association
    2. CFGC - The Coalition For Gun Control
    3. CILA - Canadian Institute for Legislative Action
    4. NFA - The National Firearms Association
    5. OHA - Ontario Handgun Association
    6. OFAH - The Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters
  3. People
  4. Acronyms and Definitions
    1. Acronyms
    2. Definitions
  5. Bills affecting Gun Control
    1. What is Bill C-68?
    2. What is Bill C-17?
    3. What about Bill C-51?
  6. Frequently Asked Questions
  7. Further Reading
    1. The CFD, NFA and CILA Web Sites
    2. Gun Control
    3. Goverment of Canada Sites
    4. C-68, Firearms Act and Regulations
    5. International and Other Gun Control Sites
    6. Pure Firearms
  8. FAQ Revision List
  9. Credits
    1. Who do I contact to request changes or comments on this FAQ?
    2. Many Thanks To...

  10. 1. Administrative

    The administration section lists background information that may be of interest to users of the Canadian Firearms Discussion List and this FAQ.

    Note: This list has grown and changed some, since this FAQ was created. The information in this FAQ will not be changed, to keep the historical information intact. Broken Links will be updated, if there is current information, or disabled if the web page no longer exists. A new FAQ and other support pages will be located at

    1.1 What is the This? What's a FAQ?

    This is the FAQ list for The Canadian Firearms Discussion or CFD Mailing List. FAQ stands for Frequently Asked Questions and is the general name for a list of questions that tend to be asked over and over in a Usenet news group or on a Mailing List such as this. See the Revisions section for information on the changes made to this FAQ since it's inception.

    This FAQ does not seek to take sides in the Gun Control Debate but instead seeks to inform readers of background information as pertaining to the debate (even though we know we're right).

    1.2 What is the CFD?

    From the very first posting to the CFD mailing list:

            The purpose of the list is to propagate information about laws,
            regulations, and other issues affecting Canadian owners.  The 
            list is moderated and discussions will be allowed; even encouraged, 
            but flame wars and anti-gun rhetoric will not be forwarded to the 
            subscribers.  The aim is two-fold:  1) to have a higher signal-to-noise 
            ratio than would be seen on a Usenet newsgroup, and 2) to provide a 
            source of information of particular interest to Canadians.

    1.3 What the is CFD not?

    It is not a forum for the discussion of actual firearms and shooting although there is some necessary overlap. In addition the moderator will usually allow the odd short post from someone asking a question about just about anything related to firearms. It would be preferable for the person posting to include their personal email address and ask for a direct reply so as to ease the load on the list.

    If you are looking for actual firearms discussion mailing lists check the Further Reading section at the end of this FAQ.

    1.4 When was it started, how does it work and who runs it?

    The mailing list was started by Skeeter Abell-Smith in 1994. The first post was by Skeeter on April 22, 1994. That post is still online in the CFD Archives at:


    Skeeter handed the list over to Howard R. Hamilton on April 29, of 2002, who has been running the list ever since. The handover was documented in Issue 718 of Volume 04.

    The software is basically a remailer to a list of subscribers. The software is called Majordomo and more information can be found at:

    The list is run by the moderator. See question 1.5. The moderator collects the posts and screens or edits them before remailing them to the subscribers. To lighten the load on the digest care should be taken in formulating your post. Please ensure that you do not send HTML or any other type of encoding - straight text, nicely formatted is prefered. Proof reading would be nice.

    1.5 What is the difference between the Main Feed and the Digest?

    The main feed from the mail list consists of individual postings as they are fed to the moderator and then remailed out to the subscribers. You will receive them in the same manner, as individual postings. The digest is created by the moderator from these postings. He or She collects the postings into one email that is sent out to the subscribers of the digest. Generally the digests consists of 10 to 20 individual postings collected together.

    1.6 What is the Chat?

    Chat is intended for discussions between individuals (Chatting) which would normally not be appropriate on the digest. Chat is an unmoderated list and is not archived. It has a high volume due to the varied nature of questions and discussions. Although unmoderated, the rules of etiquette and civility still apply.

    1.7 What is the Alert?

    Alert is for time sensitive or very important information that needs to be broadcast immediately. The frequency of alert postings is low.

    Note: The alert list has been discontinued due to inactivity.

    1.8 What is the CTG? What about it's FAQ?

    CTG stands for and is a Usenet/News discussion forum for discussing guns in Canada. It's FAQ can be found at:


    The CTG FAQ is oriented at people that are perhaps new to the discussion of Gun Control in Canada. This FAQ services the CFD mailing list discussion group which is a different animal then the CTG. Most of the people on the CFD already have an understanding of Gun Control and want to discuss it in detail. This FAQ services that need and pertains to Frequently Asked Questions from that mailing list.

    1.9 How do I subscribe? How do I unsubscribe?

    Information on subscribing and unsubscribing can be found at the CFD web site at:

    To subscribe to the Digest send an email to:

    with only one line in the body of the email "subscribe cdn-firearms-digest". That same line shortened to "subscribe cdn-firearms" will subscribe you to the main feed. The return address on that email is the address that will be subscribed to the service requested. You probably do not want to subscribe to the main "cdn-firearms" feed and the "cdn-firearms-digest" since they contain the same postings.

    Subscribing and unsubscribing information is also posted to the end of every digest:

            To unsubscribe from _all_ the lists, put the next five lines
            in a message and
            unsubscribe cdn-firearms-digest
            unsubscribe cdn-firearms-alert
            unsubscribe cdn-firearms-chat
            unsubscribe cdn-firearms
            (To subscribe, use "subscribe" instead of "unsubscribe".)

    Note: The cdn-firearms-alert lists has been discontinued.

    1.10 How do I find the moderator's email address?

    This information is included at the end of every digest look for the line starting with "Moderator's e-mail address:". If you are not subscribed to the digest, go to one of the latest posted digests, which can be found in the next question, to find the the string mentioned in the first sentence.

    Note:When the new website was set up, a permanent address for all moderators was created. That address is:

    1.11 Where are the archives?

    The archives of all previous digests can be found on the CFD web site at:

    The archives are broken up into volumes. Currently there are volumes one and two with three soon to follow. Basically a volume encompasses about 1000 digests. Volume one archives are of the form v01n001-099 which encompasses the very first post to the 99th. Volume one, section two would be v01n100-199 and so on through v01n200-299. Volume number two changes the prefix to v02nXXX-YYY. Thus the volume two sections would be v02n001-099, v02n100-199, v02n200-299 and so on.

    1.12 How can I save this FAQ locally?

    All browsers have the ability to save the pages you are viewing. Generally it is something like FILE > SAVE AS. There are only two sections to this FAQ at this time, the one you are presently viewing and section 6 which is the "true" Frequently Asked Questions. Access either of those pages, wait until the page is fully downloaded into your browser, and then save the pages as "Source" or HTML code. No images are used in these pages so once you have saved those pages you have it all. The links in the saved pages will still work.

    You could also save the pages as text. The links in the pages will not work but the pages will print out on less paper.

    2. Organizations

    This section of the FAQ provides an alphabetical list of some of the different organizations involved in the Gun Control Battle.

    2.1 AFGA - Alberta Fish and Game Association

    The AFGA is, as their name suggests, an Alberta association devoted to Fishing and Hunting. Their mission statement, from their web page, is:

    "to promote through education, lobbying and programs, the conservation and utilization of fish and wildlife and to protect and enhance the habitat they depend on."

    2.2 CFGC - The Coalition For Gun Control

    The Coalition For Gun Control. Info to follow.

    Note: The CfGC is an organization that advocates more gun laws. Their site can be found at:

    2.3 CILA - Canadian Institute for Legislative Action

    The Canadian Institute for Legislative Action is a Canada wide coalition of pro-firearms and shooting organizations devoted to preserving, promoting and protecting firearms and related activities. CILA has a full time representative in Ottawa and maintains offices in Ottawa, Toronto and Vancouver.

    2.4 NFA - The National Firearms Association

    The National Firearms Association is a Canadian organization devoted to lawful ownership of firearms. The NFA is totally funded by membership and private donations. The aims of the NFA are to promote, support, and protect all safe recreational firearms activities and all educational firearms activities. To promote natural justice for all firearms activities, and to serve and inform responsible owners and users of recreational firearms.

    2.5 OHA - Ontario Handgun Association

    The OHA is a Handgun Association formed in 1957 as a non-profit membership corporation that represents Ontario handgun shooters. It has 9,000 members and 200+ member clubs. It is recognized by the Province of Ontario as the official governing body for handgun competition in Ontario.

    Note:The OHA has evolved. Historical info on the OHA can be found here:

    And current information on the new organization (the Canadian Shooting Sports Association or CSSA) that replaced the OHA can be found here:

    2.6 OFAH - The Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters

    The OFAH was formed in the 1920's and has 79,000 members with 580 member clubs. It is devoted to outdoor heritage and conservation efforts in Ontario. It also has a staff of biologists and other experts to assist in it's efforts.

    3. People

    This section of the FAQ gives information about some of the people involved in Gun Control. Alphabetical listing by last name.

    Skeeter Abell-Smith owner and first moderator of the CFD Mailing List
    Tony Bernardo President of Canadian Institute for Legislative Action (CILA)
    Al Dorans Chairman of the FED-UP II rally, now Director of Operations for CILA
    Donna Ferlolie Liason Coordinator for the NFA in Ottawa
    Jim Hinter Communications Director?? of the National Firearms Association, runs ShopNFA
    Peter Kearns NFA Communications
    Dave A. Tomlinson President of the National Firearms Association
    Larry Whitmore President of the Ontario Handgun Association (OHA)
    Kim Campbell Former Minister of Justice when Bill C-17 was introduced.
    Prime Minister from June to Nov 1993
    Wendy Cukier Spokesperson (president?) of the Coalition for Gun Control (CFGC). Teaches at Ryerson
    Allan Rock, MP Minister of Justice under Jean Cretien when Bill C-68 was introduced, went on to be Minster of Health and Anne McLellan replaced him. Home riding is Etobicoke, Ontario
    Anne McLellan, MP Current Minister of Justice. Home riding is Edmonton West
    Kathleen Roussel Lawyer and communications person for the Canadian Firearms Centre
    Jean Valin ??? of the Canadian Firearms Centre
    Henry Van Wyk Former CPFO of Ontario, now responsible for communications at the Canadian Firearms Centre

    4. Acronyms and Definitions

    This section of the FAQ provides information on Acronyms and Definitions that a reader may encounter while reading postings to the CFD or in discussions on Gun Control.

    4.1 Acronyms

    AK Automatik Kalashnakov (as in AK-47, AK-74)
    AKA Also Known As
    AMA Atlantic Marksmen Association
    AP Armour Piercing
    APC Armoured Personnel Carrier
    ARRA Arnprior Rifle and Revolver Association
    ATT Authorization to Transport
    BAR Browning Automatic Rifle
    BATF Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms and Tobacco (Part of US Treasury Dept.)
    CA Converted Automatic
    CFC Canadian Firearms Center
    CFO Chief Firearms Officer
    CFGC Coalition for Gun Control
    CFR Canadian Firearms Registry
    CFSC Canadian Firearms Safety Course
    CILA Canadian Institute for Legislative Action
    CPFO Chief Provincial Firearms Officer
    CSAAA Canadian Sporting Arms and Ammunition Association
    CWF Canadian Wildlife Federation
    DAT David A Tomlinson
    DCRA Dominion of Canada Rifle Association (also provincial affiliates)
    DOJ Department of Justice
    FAC Firearms Acquisition Certificate (considered a PAL under new regulations)
    FIP Firearms Interest Police, Ontario database of people that may be flagged for firearms ownership
    FN Fabrique National
    FART see FRT
    FRAS Firearm Registration Administration Service, changed to CFR under C-68 (RCMP)
    FRT Firearms Reference Table (aka FART)
    HP Hollow Point
    IPSC International Practical Shooting Confederation
    IROA International Range Officers Association (IPSC range officers)
    JPFO Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership
    LUFA Law-Abiding Unregistered Firearms Association < /td>
    MNR Ministry of Natural Resources (Ontario)
    NCBCS National Communication British Columbia Service
    NFA National Firearms Association
    NRA National Rifle Association (US equivalent to the NFA)
    NROI National Range Officers Institution
    NSRA Nova Scotia Rifle Association
    OFAH Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters
    OIC Order in Council
    OHA Ontario Handgun Association
    PAL Possession and Acquisition License
    PETA People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals
    POL Possession Only License
    RFC Recreational Firearms Community
    RKBA Right to Keep and Bear Arms
    SBA Saskatchewan Bowhunters Association
    SBH Short/Small Barreled Handgun
    SFC Shooting Federation of Canada
    SRFO Saskatchewan Responsible Firearm Owners
    SSAC Sporting Shooters Association of Canada
    SSAA Sporting Shooters Association of Australia
    SWF Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation
    USPSA United States Practical Shooting Association

    4.2 Definitions

    Green Slip Common Name for Restricted Registration certificate (Pre C-68)

    5. Bills affecting Gun Control

    This section of the FAQ provides information on some the Canadian Legislative bills that affect firearms in Canada.

    5.1 What is Bill C-68?

    (With permission from the ctg.faq, see further reading for location)

    Bill C-68 (now "Chapter 39 of the 1995 Statutes of Canada" or "S.C. 1995, c. 39") was the latest legislative installment in Canada's "gun control" saga.

    Bill C-68 was tabled in the Commons on 14 Feb 1995, received third reading and was passed by the Commons on 13 Jun 1995, was passed by the Senate on 22 Nov 1995, and received Royal Assent on 6 Dec 1995.

    Much of Bill C-68 (now "Chapter 39 of the Annual Statutes of Canada, 1995" or "S.C. 1995, c. 39") came into force on 01 December 1998, after being postponed five times.

    5.2 What is Bill C-17?

    (With permission from the ctg.faq, see further reading for location)

    Bill C-17 was introduced and passed in 1991 by the Kim Campbell Conservatives. It created expanded powers for the minister of justice to restrict any firearm and prohibit those not "commonly used in Canada for hunting or sporting purposes". Other sections included new powers for police to search the homes of certain types of "gun collectors", and placed limits on magazine sizes (10 rounds for semi-auto pistols and 5 for centre-fire semi-auto rifles and shotguns, but there are a few exceptions).

    Some of C-17 is illegal, much is unnecessary, and some of the OICs (Orders in Council) have been thrown out.

    Bill C-17 was preceded by Bill C-80 which died on the Order Paper.

    5.3 What about Bill C-51?

    (With permission from the ctg.faq, see further reading for location)

    C-51 came after C-83 which was withdrawn by the Liberals and then justice minister Ron Basford. Among other things, Bill C-51 created the FAC (Firearms Acquisition Certificate) and prohibited fully automatic firearms (unless registered before January 1, 1978).

    6. Frequently Asked Questions

    The "Meat and Potatoes" Frequently Asked Questions are contained in a separate page devoted to those questions and their answers.

    FAQ Meat and Potatoes

    7. Further Reading

    This section of the FAQ outlines where you might find further information on Gun Control but also has a brief section on where you might go to find further information on Firearms.

    7.1 The CFD, NFA and CILA Web Sites

    An excellent place to start looking if you searching for more information on Gun Control in Canada are the Canadian Firearms, National Firearms Association and Canadian Institute for Legislative Action Web sites.

    The CFD Web Site can be found at:

    The NFA Web Site can be found at:

    The CILA Web Site can be found at:

    7.2 Gun Control

    If you are looking for more information on Gun Control in Canada, try The Canadian Firearms Research Link at:

    Gun Control Research

    and the Canadian Research Section at:

    Canadian Research

    For a good paper on Gun Control try:

    Observations on a One-way Street: The Canadian Firearms Control Debate
    -- Presented by The Shooting Organizations of Canada

    A version can be found online at:

    Observations on a One Way Street

    7.3 Goverment of Canada Sites

    Department of Justice Canada (English)

    Department of Justice Canada (French)

    Criminal Code of Canada (English)

    Criminal Code of Canada (French)

    Parliment on the Internet (French and English links), alot of good links under "Reference Material". Also links to the senate.

    7.4 C-68, Firearms Act and Regulations

    Firearms Act

    Firearms Act Regulations

    Note: There was a single set of regulations when this document was first written. Currently, (August of 2009) there are 8 different sets of regulations found at the following sites:

    Firearms Fees Regulations:
    Firearms Fees Remmission Order:
    Firearms Fees Remmission Order (Licenses):
    Firearms Fees Remmission Order (Registration Certificates):
    Firearms License Regulations:
    Firearms Marking Regulations:
    Firearms Records Regulations:
    Firearms Registration Certificates Regulations:

    7.5 International and Other Gun Control Sites

    United Kingdom

    Justice for Shooters (JFS)
    This link was not working when this page was updated.

    Shooters' Rights Association (SRA)

    Sportsman's Association of Great Britain & Northern Ireland (SAGBNI)


    Sporting Shooters Association of Australia

    New Zealand

    Sporting Shooters Association Of New Zealand (SSANZ)

    United States

    Gun Owners of America (GOA)

    Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership

    NRA (National Rifle Association)

    NRA ILA (National Rifle Association Insitute for Legislative Action)

    Right to Keep and Bear Arms (RKBA)

    7.6 Pure Firearms

    If you are looking for discussions on Firearms and Shooting there are many many locations where you might start looking. We won't list every type of firearms home page as there are many, covering everything from Glocks to M1 Garands and more, instead we will list some good areas at which to start:

    The Amateur Trapshooting Association

    International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) Home Page:

    IPSC Canada Home Page:

    Usenet rec.guns FAQ web site:

    The actual FAQ for rec.guns can be found at:
    They now call it their "Charter"

    And finally a very good link to search for mailing lists, info on firearms or what have you, DejaNews is a engine for searching postings to news groups ie. Usenet. Click on the following link and enter the string you are searching for (ljungman, glock, gun control etc.) at the top of the page. Enter the Usenet forum that you want to search in the "Forum" box and then press "Find":

    Note:Google bought out DejaNews, and the service was continued under Google Groups:

    8. FAQ Revision List

    This section of the FAQ provides information about changes made to the FAQ - when it was started, when it was updated and what was changed in each revision.

        v3.0 August 16, 2009
           Cleaned up broken links
           Added historical notes to the main section
        v2.1 October 4, 1999
           minor edits and spelling corrections
        v2.0 October 1, 1999
           Added FIP Database as Q 6.30
           Added C-68 and Ammuntion purchases as Q 6.31
           Added Magazine limits as Q 6.32
           Added Rights at the Border as Q 6.33
           Added Flintlocks and Registering as Q 6.34
           Added Moving to the US and Firearms as Q 6.35
        v1.1 July 29, 1999
           Added info from Dave Tomlinson on OICs to 6.15.
           Added an intro to the 6.20 disprove 1935 Hitler quote.
           Switched FAQ to FAC in question headers for 6.15, 6.22 and 6.23.
        v1.0 First Release, July 20,1999 - Added a fair number of questions
           to the actual "Meat and Potatoes" section, will number every single
           edit to anything after this point.
        v0.5 Beta Post, March 19, 1999 - administrative sections of FAQ completed 
           and posted for testing, basic admin FAQ completed work started on 
           the actual Frequently Asked Questions section.

    9. Credits

    These are the people that have worked on the FAQ.

    9.1 Who do I contact to request changes or comments on this FAQ?

    The following link should always point to the email address of the FAQ owner:

    The original creator and maintainer of the FAQ was:

    Don Shesnicky, Ottawa, Canada

    9.2 Many Thanks To...

    Many thanks to the following people for their efforts in working on the FAQ:

        Marc Mousseau, Ottawa
        Keith DeSolla, NFA Field Officer, Ottawa

    And of course:

        Skeeter Abell-Smith, Owner and Originator of the CFD Mailing List
        Dave A. Tomlinson, President of the National Firearms Association

    And finally:

        Everyone on the CFD Mailing List working toward our cause...
    Author: Don Shesnicky
    Date: Mon Oct 4 20:48:46 EDT 1999
    Create By: makefaq v1.0
    Updated August 16, 2009
    Copyright (c) 2009 by Howard R. Hamilton