You saw the teaser…
Now get the intel straight from the horse’s mouth. Wallace of Zshot Posted the following on Tackleberry’s True and Original Systema PTW forum:
“Let’s hear this from the horse’s mouth!! Sorry guys been away for a while but no I am not a fugitive hiding from the ATF.
The problem with PTW in America is that back in June of 2010, ATF seized a major shipment of ours (without any prior warning) and declared the lower receiver “illegal Class-3 firearms”. This is VERY different from non-serial-numbered AR receivers; it is as if we were trafficking illegal full-auto machine guns. Yes I understand it does not affect Canada right now but if the Canadian government realize the ATF classified PTWs as Class-3 firearms, they probably will do the same. Nonetheless we haven’t said anything because we do not want to get existing users in trouble; if one currently owns a PTW he/she is technically “in illegal possession of a Class-3 firearm” as per ATF ruling.
Anyhow, ATF actually have been extremely cooperative and understanding. They really just want us to change a few things and that’s about it… and in 2012 we finally received an approval from ATF to classify our latest sample submission as “non-gun” (meaning we can sell it again). Now we just need to manufacture the American PTW. Which, as it turned out, was WAY harder than I thought!
Our first hurdle was getting someone to make the lower receiver. Most CNC shops were scared away when they see the PTW receiver… “Do I need an FFL?” is usually their first question, but many just simply shy away and don’t even want to touch it. In late 2012 we turned our focus to firearm manufacturers, except Obama suddenly decided he wants to ban guns, sending American public into a gun-buying-frenzy… in early 2013, most firearms have a 7+ month back-order and as a result nobody have time to take on a “one-off” airsoft project from us. In fact, we were close to getting LaRue Tactical to manufacture the lower receiver for us, and then they got busy from the gun-ban. For the entire 2013, we were given the run-around because nobody was willing to accept such a small run.
Fast forward to today, the firearm industry seems to have settled down and we are getting some traction on making the receiver. Which is why we are finally making some announcements (and I come out of the woodwork). We now have several machine shops prepping samples for us and as a result we started making some noise and can share some first-handed intel!
The “American PTW” primarily differs from “International” PTWs for one reason: Most of the external components will be made-in-USA using either firearm-spec components, or actual firearm components. For example, the upper receiver will be machined from an actual, real, AR upper to work with the PTW cylinder. So is the buffer tube. The lower will either be cut from a mil-spec “forging”, or 7075-T6 aluminum billets. Certain limited edition is in the work that uses Knight’s Armament SR16 upper/lower receivers. We are still in the talk with LaRue about using their upper/lower and integrated rails. We can also modify real LMT MRP piston uppers, Vltor VIS Keymod… you name it. There will also be other components that uses real-steel parts, for example there is no point sourcing the charging handle, barrel nut, castle nut, or even the front sight / gas-block from SYSTEMA. The stock will be real Magpul stock (not Magpul PTS – the polymar formula is NOT the same; PTS stuff do break), the flip-up sights will be real Magpul MBUS, etc. The only exception is that we currently plan to use licensed KAC rails; partly for cost control, partly because the licensed rails are CNC cut out of similar aircraft grade aluminum anyway, but more importantly real URX rails are in short supply and it’s not easy to keep production output stable.
Internally, they will all have SYSTEMA components – no 3rd party stuff so you won’t have to worry about CTW or FCC crap mixed in it. For the record, FCC made some really good stuff but it seems they have problem on manufacturing tolerance; you can get a batch of stuff from them that’s phenomenal, and then the next batch is completely out-of-spec. (First hand experience; we got many PTW warranty / repair shipped to us that FCC was the root of all their issue.) We’ve never had this problem with SYSTEMA components, and also for this reason you will never t see reputable retailers such as Redwolf carry their products.
In any case, we do appreciate this forum’s neutral stand so we can distribute real, first-hand information to our customers. As someone who helped develop the PTW from the very beginning, I am excited we were able to “resurrect” this fantastic training tool in North America. I suppose there is a reason back in 2004 SYSTEMA shipped us the first ever PTW prototype outside of Japan, and that after 3+ years of complete silent that we still have their full engineering support (between 2011-2013 we placing zero orders from SYSTEMA). We’ve never lost our exclusive distribution rights and I hope we will have your support for this almost historic come-back!