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A meeting today with Canadian Customs

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Old October 2nd, 2007, 09:11   #46
frankiet
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greylocks View Post
Do all of you who feel like taking a chance really want to follow the unwritten advice of a single CBSA employee?
Plastic body probably means 'clear'. Cost of fetching plus duty equals or comes close to prices we can get here already.
All a lot of IF and MAYBE in what was said by the CBSA person.
When a person who does not have the right to dictate policies gives advice and refuses to put it in writing, I see huge warning flags.


Too much uncertainty.

One more thing; if many start trying this AND get caught, what happens to the status of airsoft for legitimate importers and the rest of us? Do we get dinged with more problems/costs due to the sudden rise of visibility on CBSA's radar?

Until then, get legal stuff in writing guys. That's how you protect yourself from tons of grief.
Although there seems to be an unwritten rule about agreeing with Greylocks, I'm going to have to. He's right.

Don't you find this a little too weird. Orange tips. Trades. These sound to me like American policies. I think everybody here is getting a little too desperate to get a hold of some AEGs. I smell a fish.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 09:27   #47
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Things are looking up , Job well done ,thank you.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 09:43   #48
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What still irks me is that I still have on paper from CFC that you can't do this.

http://www.cfc-cafc.gc.ca/factsheets/airguns_e.asp

Quote:
3. Air guns that are replica firearms

These are air guns that are not powerful enough to cause serious injury or death, but that were designed to resemble a real firearm with near precision. Replica firearms, except for replicas of antique firearms, are classified as prohibited devices.

In particular, some air guns that are commonly called air soft guns may fall into this category. These are devices that have a low muzzle velocity and muzzle energy, and that usually discharge projectiles made out of a substance such as plastic or wax rather than metal or lead.

Although replica firearms are prohibited, you may keep any that you owned on December 1, 1998. You do not need a licence to possess them, and they do not need to be registered. However, as an individual, you cannot import or acquire a replica firearm. If you take a replica firearm out of Canada, you will not be able to bring it back in.
That last bit really drives it home that CFC agrees with the import, somewhat.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 12:42   #49
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Originally Posted by Greylocks View Post
Plastic body probably means 'clear'.
We talked about the plastic body thing. He said anything clear or is off-scale is automatically considered a toy and is permissible. The pictures he showed me of guns that would allow were models with black plastic bodies but also had orange tips in the pictures. Clearly, they were models that originated in America.

Quote:
Originally Posted by frankiet View Post
Don't you find this a little too weird. Orange tips. Trades. These sound to me like American policies. I think everybody here is getting a little too desperate to get a hold of some AEGs. I smell a fish.
If the "fish" you're referring to is me, well, I take offense.

Let's be clear about something: if I never get another Canadian customer shopping in my store ever, it won't make any difference to us. I'm not going out of business if you guys don't visit. The fact that you do is entirely bonus, and we do our best to serve all of our customers.

I spent half of my day off yesterday pursuing answers to questions that you guys, as customers, have asked.

The models that we're discussing that may be permissible to bring over the border represent a tiny fraction of my stock at any time. I carry almost entirely high-end, brand-name guns. I generally try to stay away from clones and have only begun to stock more of them primarily due to demand from Canadians.

The team that my store sponsors has over 500 players on it and is the second largest in the US. I make more than enough money just catering to my own guys, not to mention all the new walk-in traffic we constantly get, as well as orders that we ship all over the world. We never opened this store with the intention of tapping the Canadian market. I won't be getting rich just because I might sell a few dozen JG's to folks from Canada.

I totally agree that the orange-tip thing was weird. It is something entirely American in origin, as there is no mention of it anywhere in your laws. But, for whatever reason, it was something he mentioned, and it was in many of the pictures he showed me.

Only you guys, individually, can decide if this is something you want to attempt. Is there risk? Of course. Will there be time, effort, duties and fuel expended on your part to do this? Yes.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 13:06   #50
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Just love how a fellow goes out of his way to try and get some clarification/info, and the trolls come out to shit all over him - <sarcasm> really guys, you're making the community look awesome! </sarcasm>

Warchild, thanks for the info. Taking what you've said so far, it sounds like getting some items across the border should be possible. However, I would suggest for all players considering, take a printout/colour photo of what you are planning on bringing back across the border, and stop on your way over to the american side at Canadian Customs, ask to speak w/ someone and explain what you would like to bring back.

Again, action is required to make things happen people, not just sitting around trolling on msg boards.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 13:08   #51
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Originally Posted by WarChild7 View Post
If the "fish" you're referring to is me, well, I take offense.
I don't give a rat's ass if you take offence. I don't know you, nor your business practices. Your trader rating isn't helping you either (note the big zero). I haven't seen a single person on this site who has vouched for you, so excuse me if I'm a little skeptical if this info comes from a retailer with no credibility here.

Also, you seemed to say the following:

"He said they would not seize the item, but rather would give the person the opportunity to return to the US, and return the item to my store for a refund. (Provided it was within a reasonable period after leaving the store that the item was returned, and it was obvious that the gun was still new and unused, of course we would issue a refund.)"

Yet you have a waiver on your website clearly contradicting this:
"I understand that products from THE WAR STORE (excepting all products manufactured in China) carry a 15 day 100% limited parts and labor warranty for manufacturer’s defects and in-house modifications only. Further, I understand that any alterations or modifications to any product in any respect by any person not employed or authorized by THE WAR STORE, will cause all such warranties to be cancelled and void. For airsoft guns, the warranty is void if guns are used with anything less than high-precision, seamless 0.20g BB’s, or any non-Japanese brand of BB’s, with the exception Airsoft Elite BB’s. THE WAR STORE shall not be liable for normal manufacturing defects, for customary variations from specifications, for imperfections inherent in the process used, or for damages resulting from improper shipment, storage or use of goods. All claims arising out of the sale of any products manufactured or sold by THE WAR STORE shall be deemed barred and waived unless made in writing, and presented to THE WAR STORE within 15 days from date of purchase...

9. Return policy: If I am not satisfied with the products purchased, I understand that, excepting any items manufactured in China, I may return them within 15 days from the purchase date, subject to the following:
a) Sealed, unopened items, with receipt, will receive a full refund in the form of a business check (if purchase was made with cash), or funds will be replaced onto the credit card used in the transaction."

So it seems to me, that if somebody buys one of your guns (but only ChinaSoft since they are plastic and tradeless), and gets turned around at the border, your waiver is basically screwing them... or does the waiver not apply to Canadians?

Seems to me, there are three scenarios:
1) Buy gun and get a customs officer who follows American guidelines (wishful thinking, but in my opinon unlikely) and lets you through.

2) Buy gun, get a customs officer that doesn't follow American guidelines, but is in a generous mood and either lets you take the gun back (which screws you since your waiver says no dice on ChinaSoft), or takes the gun and sends you on your way (also screws you since you're out the money).

3) Buy gun, get a customs officer that says "sorry, it's a replica, come with me". Your gun is gone, you may get charged, name is black listed.

I think that it's a crap shoot. Scenarios 2 and 3 really suck. Is it worth the risk???
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 13:25   #52
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@ Frankiet

My sentiments exactly. Who would go across the border and try to get a chinasoft across anyways. They're pieces of shit.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 13:32   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WarChild7 View Post
We talked about the plastic body thing. He said anything clear or is off-scale is automatically considered a toy and is permissible. The pictures he showed me of guns that would allow were models with black plastic bodies but also had orange tips in the pictures. Clearly, they were models that originated in America.



If the "fish" you're referring to is me, well, I take offense.

Let's be clear about something: if I never get another Canadian customer shopping in my store ever, it won't make any difference to us. I'm not going out of business if you guys don't visit. The fact that you do is entirely bonus, and we do our best to serve all of our customers.

I spent half of my day off yesterday pursuing answers to questions that you guys, as customers, have asked.

The models that we're discussing that may be permissible to bring over the border represent a tiny fraction of my stock at any time. I carry almost entirely high-end, brand-name guns. I generally try to stay away from clones and have only begun to stock more of them primarily due to demand from Canadians.

The team that my store sponsors has over 500 players on it and is the second largest in the US. I make more than enough money just catering to my own guys, not to mention all the new walk-in traffic we constantly get, as well as orders that we ship all over the world. We never opened this store with the intention of tapping the Canadian market. I won't be getting rich just because I might sell a few dozen JG's to folks from Canada.

I totally agree that the orange-tip thing was weird. It is something entirely American in origin, as there is no mention of it anywhere in your laws. But, for whatever reason, it was something he mentioned, and it was in many of the pictures he showed me.

Only you guys, individually, can decide if this is something you want to attempt. Is there risk? Of course. Will there be time, effort, duties and fuel expended on your part to do this? Yes.
Whether or not we'll be able to personally bring across guns as you describe, I think it's fair to say that a large portion of the ASC community appreciates the work you've done. Thanks again.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 13:36   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frankiet View Post
I don't give a rat's ass if you take offence. I don't know you, nor your business practices. Your trader rating isn't helping you either (note the big zero). I haven't seen a single person on this site who has vouched for you, so excuse me if I'm a little skeptical if this info comes from a retailer with no credibility here.

So it seems to me, that if somebody buys one of your guns (but only ChinaSoft since they are plastic and tradeless), and gets turned around at the border, your waiver is basically screwing them... or does the waiver not apply to Canadians?
Despite having done business with dozens and dozens of Canadians, I presume I don't have a trader rating for several reasons:

1) non-Canadians cannot be age-verified and cannot buy/sell/trade guns on your forums
2) those who have made purchases from me probably don't want to draw attention to the fact that they obtained their products from the US

My waiver was written and posted on the website over a year ago. This new information was obtained less than 24 hours ago. I hadn't even thought yet about modifying it to cover this situation. Thank you, though, for bringing it to my attention.

Despite what the waiver currently says, I would certainly make an exception for a Canadian purchaser. If the items were rejected at the border, I would think the purchaser would be returning shortly after having been here initially. No problem with a refund.

Special or custom orders, though, would not be eligible for refunds.

If several days had passed, and/or the item has been opened, or possibly used, I think it would be fair that I said no to a refund.
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Last edited by WarChild7; October 28th, 2007 at 12:49..
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 13:55   #55
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I have been in WarChild7's store. I did not make any restricted purchases that day but based on our conversation, there have been players from this community who have. I personally know several who have also visited the store, but I'll let them speak for themselves. At no point did I feel any pressure to purchase anything - I spent more of my time there just chatting it up with the staff than talking about any actual items for sale. It was like ASCA again.

Is WarChild7 a businessman? Yes. Does he have a vested interest in our patronage? Yes, he's a businessman. But we're a small market - given the broader player base in NY, sales figures from Canadian purchases would probably barely be noticeable.

Thus far I have seen one businessman take personal time out for the sake of interest and community and personally procure info to share, only to be met with what can only be described as trollish behaviour.

While it is always good practice to be somewhat skeptical of info that seems out of ordinary, there are ways in which to inquire about clarification that don't practically accuse the messenger of feeding bullshit. At the very least, a little thanks for a person's time would be welcome. How many of you have gone to the lengths WarChild7 has in order to find out this information for yourselves?

Last edited by Endymion; October 2nd, 2007 at 16:07.. Reason: grammar :P
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 15:21   #56
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+1 to that.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 15:48   #57
Brian McIlmoyle
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Thanks

For the effort, nothing has changed...

You can't import replicas... its up to the CBSA agent looking at the thing to decide if he thinks its a replica.

Factors he will take into consideration..

1.Your impression on him
2.The characteristics of the actual item he is looking at, considering the easiest is for him to call it a replica, take it and move right on to the next point.
3.Time from.. to his next break
4.What mood he is in today...

Quite a bit to risk... but if you feel it is worth it for you... by all means go for it. Our Friendly War-Store owner will be ready and able to serve you.. and for that he deserves thanks.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 17:04   #58
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Who would go across the border and try to get a chinasoft across anyways. They're pieces of shit.
I agree. But why pay for crap when you can buy used quality for the same price?

Last month I drove 2 hours south to North Dakota and bought a used/stock TM AK for $120. I stripped the reciever while in the US and tossed it in my hotel trash bin, and brought all the rest of the parts back across the border with absolutely ZERO hassle. I ordered a replacement metal body in Canada for $100 shipped.

So, I now I have a used, full metal TM-based AK for $260 ($220 + $40 gas). I've bought and rebuilt a few guns this way already this year.

Since the reciever is the only part that is actually a controlled/prohibited item in Canada (aside from shorty pistol barrels, but I don't do GBBs), just head to the US, buy whatever the hell you want, strip and ditch the reciever before you cross the border, and order the reciever of your choice when you get all the parts back in Canada.

I'm driving down again in 3 weeks and in all likelyhood I intend to buy another gun - a full metal GB Tech M870 Charger, fully loaded and upgraded. It will cost me another $100 to get another metal body (I have to bin the body that is on it to bring it back). Still, I'll save almost $300 on what a Canadian dealer was selling the same model for. The same seller in the US offered me an upgraded TM/Guarder RPK conversion for $350. The savings there is well over $500.

I can't believe I'm the only person who's doing this.

And before I get inundated with PM's, no, I won't tell you who my local American contacts are for used guns. It took me years to foster relationships and build trust with American players, and I'm a greedy bastard. I want all their guns for myself.

*I make no guarantees this will work for anyone. You pays yer money, you takes yer chances.
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That was a very bad move on your behalf. Sort of like cutting off your foot for money, but not getting the money first and then letting the person with the money run away.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 17:20   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redmond View Post
@ Frankiet

My sentiments exactly. Who would go across the border and try to get a chinasoft across anyways. They're pieces of shit.
Sorry I gotta stand behind JG. I don't find what I own a piece of shit, infact I found it far surpassed TM at this point. It all depends what you like or if your one that only buys name brand.

I've been to the store as well, found the employees informative and nice, never pressuring anyone to buy anything and were very welcoming.

It's personal choice in the long run, that's all it boils down to, and as said many times buy and cross the border with your items at your own risk.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 17:28   #60
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Skruface you bring up a really good point, but it's not everybody who lives close to the border, and it's not every state that has airsoft stores, let alone one situated by the border.

What you're doing isn't illegal, and you know what, i would probably do the same thing, but 600 miles (one way) to the nearest airsoft store in the states (for me) doesn't save me money, it costs more.
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