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Elon Musk plans Boring Co. flamethrower rebranding to avoid customs scrutiny

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20,000 preorders and it’s already stirred up plenty of controversy

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In nearly every respect, The Boring Company flamethrower has been one of Elon Musk’s most talked-about creations just this year. After many comments of disbelief that the device actually existed, the flamethrower may be attracting more unwanted attention because people can’t believe the Tesla and SpaceX CEO would actually go through the necessary steps to sell and then ship it to customers.

Musk tweeted Friday he may be facing some headwinds in shipping a product called a “flamethrower,” which appears to raise some red flags with customs agencies who oversee the important and exporting of goods. As a result, a rebranding just might be in order, Musk says:

Already, a California state assemblyman has sought legislation to ban the sale of the Boring Company’s flamethrower, citing safety concerns in the state and in the part of Los Angeles County he represents. “We don’t allow people to walk in off the street and purchase military-grade tanks or armor-piercing ammunition,” Assemblyman Miguel Santiago said Tuesday in a statement. “I cannot even begin to image the problems a flamethrower would cause firefighters and police officers alike.”

Yet that hasn’t stopped the 20,000 preorders for the flamethrower to be exhausted in days, even at the $500 asking price for what appears to be a modified Airsoft gun with a propane torch attachment. And then there are the eBay listings for as much as $20,000 for one spot in the waiting line to get your hands on the sold-out device once, and perhaps if, it ever starts actually shipping some time this spring.

Update 8:18 p.m. ET: He’s already thinking of other names: