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Thread: Type 4 Magazine

  1. #1

    Default Type 4 Magazine

    OK, again showing my ignorance. I am trying to get a Type 4 magazine set up. I found a shipping container, price is right, but upon closer inspection I realized that it is made of aluminum. I always thought they were made out of 12 gauge steel plate. Are they normally made of aluminum and will the ATF approve them if they are aluminum?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Type 4 Magazine

    Type 4 magazine-
    This magazine must be constructed with the following

    1) Hinges and hasps shall be attached to doors by welding or
    riveting or bolting (nuts on inside of door).

    2) Each door shall be equipped with two mortise locks, or two
    padlocks fastened in separate hasps and staples, or a
    combination of a mortise lock and a padlock, or a mortise lock
    requiring two keys to open, or a three-point lock. Locks shall
    be five-tumbler or five-blade. Padlocks shall be protected
    with 1/4" steel caps constructed to prevent sawing or level
    actions on locks/hasps. Note: Outdoor/mobile storage
    facilities with one steel, case-hardened, five-tumbler padlock
    having at least a 3/8" diameter shackle, have been determined
    by the Director to meet necessary requirements.

    3) Electrical lighting used in any magazine must meet National
    Electrical Code standards for conditions present. All electric
    switches must be located outside of the magazine, and comply
    with the National Electrical Code. Battery-activated safety
    lighting may be used in all explosives magazines.

    4) Storage facilities shall be kept clean, dry, and free of grit,
    paper, empty packages and containers, and rubbish. Explosive
    materials shall not be placed directly against interior walls
    of a storage facility. Brooms and other cleaning utensils
    shall have no spark-producing metal parts. Only tools made of
    non-sparking materials shall be used in Type 4 magazines.
    (Metal slitters may be used for opening fiberboard containers.
    Metal tools other than non-sparking transfer conveyers shall
    not be stored in any magazine containing explosives.) Area
    surrounding storage facilities shall be kept clear of rubbish,
    brush, dry grass, or trees less than ten feet tall for not
    less than 25 feet in all directions. Any other combustible
    materials shall be kept a distance of not less than 50 feet
    from an outdoor storage.

    A Type 4 storage facility may be a building, an igloo, or army-type
    structure, a tunnel, a dugout, a box, a trailer, or a semi-trailer,
    or other mobile facility. It shall be fire-resistant, weather-
    resistant, and theft-resistant. All Type 4 magazines shall meet the
    following requirements:

    1) They shall be constructed of masonry, metal-covered wood,
    fabricated metal, or combinations of these materials.

    2) The doors or covers shall be constructed of metal, or solid
    wood covered with metal.

    3) The foundation shall be constructed of brick, cement block,
    concrete, stone, or wood posts. If piers or posts are used,
    space under buildings shall be enclosed with metal.

    4) The interior shall be lined with non-sparking material. No
    sparking metal construction shall be exposed below the top of
    walls and interior. All nails shall be blind-nailed or

    5) The ground around outdoor storage facilities shall slope away
    for drainage. Unintended vehicle storage facilities shall have
    wheels removed or shall be immobilized by kingpin locking

    6) No indoor storage facility shall be located in a residence or
    dwelling, nor contain in excess of fifty pounds of a low
    explosive material.

    For further information, it is highly recommended that one obtain

    Copied from a model rocketry site (they are very useful for this type of information). You can also download a copy of the ATF Orange Book:
    State of CO Display Operator Licensed
    Member PGI

    Smoking isn't a right - ever.

  3. #3
    Supporting Member Array jknepp1954's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Central Pa.

    Default Re: Type 4 Magazine

    i am hoping i can simplyfy that for you,
    YES - aluminum is actually perfect provided the doors are made so that the hinges can't be taken off. and you won't have to line it with wood either. the only problem i had is sometimes these tend to sweat in the summer months.
    Now you will need to put on 1/4" steel hoods over the locks. We had 2 type 4 mags here - the guy made the hoods at his welding shop, then brought them back and drilled 4 holes thru and bolted them on the inside of doors. you will have to put epoxy paint over those bolts on the inside.
    I think that is about it.
    "Fireworks isn't just for July 4th anymore!"
    Member NFA, PaPyro Artists, WNYPA, Pa. Pyrotechnics Assoc., NLPC, Crackerjacks, PGI Cert.

  4. #4
    Member Array GK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006

    Default Re: Type 4 Magazine

    I have used and seen aluminum shipping containers used in the past. You may still have some steel on the floor to be covered.

    I actually had to explain several times to one inspector that aluminum IS "non-sparking material" and show proof.

    Carpe Noctem

  5. #5

    Default Re: Type 4 Magazine

    Mike, I actually have an orange book (3 of them to be exact) and have read them cover to cover multiple times, but I guess my mistake was in trying to apply some common sense to the "law". We're going to install a lock, hood, and hasp in addition to the locks that come from the factory because, according to my ATF agent, covering the locks on the factory handles would still leave part o the handle exposed where someone could saw through it and then open the doors. We're going to make that cover out of 1/4" steal plate and either weld or bolt it in such a fashion that no one but Houdini could pry it open. Yeah, no way we're going to get through there, yet we can step to the side of the thing and rip open a hole big enough to drive a skid steer through with little more than a Wal-Mart can opener. The book says "metal" and aluminum is in fact, metal.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Type 4 Magazine

    The owner of a company I work with has received a written approval to use this type of puck-style padlock on his container, which does not require a steel cover plate as the bolt and lock 'clasp'(?) are covered and protected by the lock itself.

    They work very nicely
    State of CO Display Operator Licensed
    Member PGI

    Smoking isn't a right - ever.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Type 4 Magazine

    Yes, the "Hocky puck" style lock is starting to become more commanly accepted; but it is still up to the agent if they feel it is good enough. Normaly they can be bought like this

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