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Old 04-27-2009, 05:46 PM #1
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Default Is it illegal just to import or to have

So is it illegal to just import anything over 5mw or to have anything over 5mw in the US? Is it illegal for us to have the components for personal use.


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Old 04-27-2009, 07:23 PM #2
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

Why would they confiscate the imported lasers if they wanted us to have lasers over 5mW? :
Of course it is illegal to possess a laser over 5mW. If a police officer sees you pointing a 20mW green laser at a tree, will he confiscate it? Probably not.
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Old 04-27-2009, 07:50 PM #3
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

i thought it was only illegal to import or sale pointer over 5mW.......but i thought it was perfectly legal to build and own them.....
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Old 04-27-2009, 08:11 PM #4
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mohrenberg
i thought it was only illegal to import or sale pointer over 5mW.......but i thought it was perfectly legal to build and own them.....
So did I, I have no clue what I'm saying
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Old 04-27-2009, 09:00 PM #5
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

i hope it's legal to have a laser over 5mw.

Otherwise lots of people need to send their DVD drives back!!! ;D ;D ;D

IIRC, I think a lot of it has to do with intent.

Im a locksmith and I can own tools that are &quot;illegal&quot; to have but I don't use them in illegal activities.

Lots of people own &quot;picks&quot; and other &quot;burglary&quot; tools. But if you get caught doing something illegal with them then that's a whole different situation.

In some places it's even illegal to own picks (IE: Washington DC)

Around here you have to be licensed and bonded. But lots of people have them anyway and it's not illegal to use on your own locks.

Lasers are similar, you can have and use personally and they are in a lot of devices, but you start distributing and that all changes.


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Old 04-27-2009, 11:39 PM #6
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

It is ILLEGAL to import any POINTER over 5mW without the proper safety features.

It is not, however, illegal to posses said laser.
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Old 04-28-2009, 01:54 AM #7
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

What about sale or purchase of said laser?

Does anyone have the FDA proof of these laws? I can't understand legal crap myself, but if anyone is good at law, the document is 21 CFR 1040.10 (I've read it many times over myself, but can't understand a thing.)

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Old 04-28-2009, 02:22 AM #8
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

Some of the recent insane laws are state by state. I live in Texas and it was very depressing to read some of the BS laws that have been passed here that most people know nothing about.
Here at least, it's broken up into several power categories, but basically anything over the power of a cat-toy had better have a key-switch, permits, and access logs. Somebody seems to have decided these are terrorist weapons and allowed no room for hobbyists. It looked like it would be easier to get a permit for an AK47 than a 30mw laser.
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Old 04-28-2009, 02:58 AM #9
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

theres no law against possession of a &gt;5 mW laser pointer, just the selling in the US. the fda has no restrictions on possession. my friend stupidly shined his 50 mW at a guy and he called the cops, the cops said not to bring it out of the house agian
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Old 04-28-2009, 03:07 AM #10
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketparrotlet
What about sale or purchase of said laser?

Does anyone have the FDA proof of these laws? *I can't understand legal crap myself, but if anyone is good at law, the document is 21 CFR 1040.10 (I've read it many times over myself, but can't understand a thing.)

-Mark
You've read the FDA warning on importation and so have I. The FDA makes it very clear that importing a laser pointer over 5mw is against federal law. Frankly it's written in plain language. Selling a laser pointer is also a no no. Buying a &gt;5mw pointer is not unless the law has changed
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Old 04-28-2009, 04:13 AM #11
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

So you can't sell, buy, import, or export. But modules are still legal...

...that's what I thought, and why I buy all my lasers either (supposed to be) under 5mW or in components. So what if all you need is a flashlight, a piece of wire, a battery, and a soldering gun to make it work? Easy enough, and still legal. That's the way to go.

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Old 04-28-2009, 12:04 PM #12
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

Thanks all for your input. Its as i thought, the restrictions on our hobbies are more extensive than having a hand gun. I dont recall seeing anything on the news where someone has held up a McDonalds or slain a college with a laser pointer. But yet go into your local gun shop and grab yourself a Pepsi and a 9mm and you are on your way. I think that i would rather take my chances being held up with a laser pointer. For those who do stupid things like shining at planes, etc they should be punished not all of us. I thought we were innocent until proven guilty.
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Old 04-28-2009, 05:16 PM #13
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

Gun ownership and lasers have nothing to do with each other in any way, shape, or form. Why do people always make this argument when they can't have or do what they want? The FDA controls radiation emitting devices. This means lasers. They have controlled them since the beginning, long before you or I ever got close to a laser. The regulations are in place for safety not for your convenience. Lasers are and were never meant to be in the hands of hobbyists. That is why there are no regulations convenient to you and there never will be. As such, if you want to play with lasers, you follow their rules. If you can't follow their rules, so be it, but don't cry when you become an example.

Now, you can import any laser system that is accessioned by the FDA. You can build any laser system you want and you will not be bothered by the FDA. Operating or selling the laser system is where you will get into trouble. Operating the system in an uncontrolled manner and subjecting bystanders to laser radiation will draw FDA attention. Operating laser systems in OTH mode (over the horizon) will draw FAA attention. Selling an uncertified or unaccessioned laser system violates Title 21 and you can be fined or arrested or both.

Local laws are generally much more restrictive and are often the result of reactive thinking. This means some idiot did something that requires a law and it is hastily passed into law by local lawmakers. Don't blame the lawmakers for the restrictions, blame the laser owners who operate systems &quot;for fun&quot; in a reckless manner without regard for safety. You've all seen the headlines of what draws attention yet it keeps happening. In the United States, particularly with the you are special just like everyone else mentality, everyone pays the price for the indiscretions of a few.

Always remember, in the United States you do not have a right to own a laser, you have a right to own a gun which is why you cannot equate laser and gun ownership. Laser ownership is a privilege subject to the restrictions of the FDA and it will always be so. Harsher restrictions do not come from the FDA they are always local.

By the way, all of this has been covered in other threads.
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Old 04-28-2009, 06:01 PM #14
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

Guns and lasers go hand in hand. We have the opportunity to purchase laser sights for almost any type of firearm. I am positive that if we were to really look hard we could find much higher power laser sights than we are finding on e-bay. For instance i bought my son a laser sight at Big 5 for his air pistol which was rated at 5mw and 650nm. I can guarantee that this unit is not comparable to the unit bought by the professional marksman. The performance of it was weak and all for the low price of $39.00.

My microwave has a warning sticker on it warning of radiation. This doesnt keep anybody out of my kitchen. I truely am not trying to be sarcastic. I am just thinking on the terms of most of the population. The average person will take a laser pointer and use it as a toy for a pet or presentation. If we were to take their unit and show them how to build a burning laser they would think it was cool as most of us do. I myself do not know anybody who would try to incorporate it into illegal activities. Its not the laser thats dangerous its the person who is operating it.

We are talking about units that will only burn at a few feet. These lasers that we are calling high powered is nothing compared to whats really out there and of course you can bet that those components are highly regulated which they should be.

I guess one way of putting it is that i would prefer my children to have a hobby such as building a small laser verses taking an interest in a high powered gun. As i said in a earlier thread, those who do negative things should be punished but living in a free society we should have free choices. Countries such as China and Hong kong are very restricted but able to provide us with the components to make our lasers and use them freely.
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Old 04-28-2009, 06:17 PM #15
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

Quote:
Originally Posted by skylight
Guns and lasers go hand in hand. We have the opportunity to purchase laser sights for almost any type of firearm. I am positive that if we were to really look hard we could find much higher power laser sights than we are finding on e-bay. For instance i bought my son a laser sight at Big 5 for his air pistol which was rated at 5mw and 650nm. I can guarantee that this unit is not comparable to the unit bought by the professional marksman. The performance of it was weak and all for the low price of $39.00.

My microwave has a warning sticker on it warning of radiation. This doesnt keep anybody out of my kitchen. I truely am not trying to be sarcastic. I am just thinking on the terms of most of the population. The average person will take a laser pointer and use it as a toy for a pet or presentation. If we were to take their unit and show them how to build a burning laser they would think it was cool as most of us do. I myself do not know anybody who would try to incorporate it into illegal activities. Its not the laser thats dangerous its the person who is operating it.

Your Microwave will have an Accession number from the FDA as it is a radiation emitting device ( Microwaves ) . Laser pointers which people use for pet toys or presentations are all usually &lt;5mW . You might not know anyone who would do something dangerous with a laser, but you don't know the 303 million people that live in the US.

We are talking about units that will only burn at a few feet. These lasers that we are calling high powered is nothing compared to whats really out there and of course you can bet that those components are highly regulated which they should be.

These lasers can still blind a pilot temporarily at 1000ft.

I guess one way of putting it is that i would prefer my children to have a hobby such as building a small laser verses taking an interest in a high powered gun. As i said in a earlier thread, those who do negative things should be punished but living in a free society we should have free choices. Countries such as China and Hong kong are very restricted but able to provide us with the components to make our lasers and use them freely.


I wouldn't argue with the chimp, he works with high powered lasers every day of his life, all of which are FDA certified. He knows whats he's talking about.
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Old 04-28-2009, 06:23 PM #16
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Default Re: Is it illegal just to import or to have

People can make all the justifications they want. I'm not here to argue over semantics. I'm just stating the way it is.
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The Frothy Chimp
Cynic Extraordinaire
Why yes, I am a rocket scientist

Good whiskey, fine cigars, long legged women and blues guitar.
That's what I like.

The strong shall stand, the weak shall fall by the wayside.
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