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Do I need to have a licence for my Webley tin can launcher?

Do I need to have a licence for it, as it uses .22 blank cartridges?

Bill Harriman
The Webley Target Launcher uses a .22 Long blank as the propelling charge for a tin can.

However, it is not classified as a firearm for the purposes of the Firearms Act because it is not a lethal, barrelled weapon but a piece of sporting equipment.

No certificate is required to possess or buy the blank cartridges.

The launcher was originally designed to fire soft drinks cans with 66mm separately fitted bases.

Nowadays, the bodies of all drinks cans are extruded from a single piece of metal, which means they will not fit the cavity in the launcher.

However, I have found that a baked beans-type tin can is ideal.

Most tins will survive between five and 10 launchings before they become too distorted to fit.

I have never had to replace the sealing ring in my launcher, but I suspect that a 67mm O ring of 5mm diameter will do the job well.

Shooting cans from the Webley launcher is great fun and also ecofriendly, as the tins can be recycled and do not leave fragments on the land like clay pigeons do.

Though the launcher is no longer made, it can often be found on Internet auction sites or in gun auctions.

It normally sells for around £10, though a mint specimen with instruction leaflet and original packaging may fetch up to £30.