AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

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AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by Halfapint » Wed Aug 30, 2017 3:27 pm

So a question just popped into my noggin. When I purchased the lower for my 300bo build, they never asked if it was for pistol or rifle. So, my main question is if I wanted to make it a rifle if I if I took it a part and put a longer barrel and a stock on it I could. However it would be changing it back to a pistol that would be illegal right? I'm just confused where it becomes illegal.

Disclaimer: I do not plan to do this, I want clarification for my own personal information. I also want to make sure that I give proper information to people asking ME for advise about AR's. I know it was discussed on here a while back but I cannot find it.

One other question about AR Pistols. I know you cannot put a vertical fore grip however as I understand it you can have one of the triangle style fore grips (not sure of technical name for them). Is there any specific style that is legal vs illegal??
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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by Stercutus » Wed Aug 30, 2017 3:41 pm

Brings to mind a couple of questions:

- Who are they?
- What did the seller put on the 4473? or you on the form 1? Whatever is on there is whatever the gun is now.

You can convert a pistol in to a rifle (must be fully compliant with rifle rules) and back again without paperwork.

It is illegal to convert a a rifle in to a pistol at any time. You can however convert it in to an SBR if you do the paperwork nutroll.
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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by Halfapint » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:31 pm

Stercutus wrote:Brings to mind a couple of questions:

- Who are they?
- What did the seller put on the 4473? or you on the form 1? Whatever is on there is whatever the gun is now.

You can convert a pistol in to a rifle (must be fully compliant with rifle rules) and back again without paperwork.

It is illegal to convert a a rifle in to a pistol at any time. You can however convert it in to an SBR if you do the paperwork nutroll.
On the 4473 it just stated caliber, no pistol/rifle, and they put multi

So you can swap as long as you don't SBR it, its legal? So as long as it is pistol length bbl and buffer tube or 16" bbl with stock and over the minimum OAL to be conceded a rifle it's legal? Huh.... Maybe that's why I couldn't find any real information online.
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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by RickOShea » Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:40 pm

Halfapint wrote:So a question just popped into my noggin. When I purchased the lower for my 300bo build, they never asked if it was for pistol or rifle.
Well, around here you have to be 18 to buy a complete AR-type rifle....but you have to be 21 to buy a stripped AR lower receiver, cause "they" don't know if you're gonna assemble a long gun or a pistol with it.
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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by RonnyRonin » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:10 pm

If it is not stated which it is then it is a blank slate, theoretically whatever you build first sets it in stone. If you want to really cover your butt 100% borrow a pistol upper from a buddy and snap it in first thing (maybe even take a picture). The lower is now officially a pistol lower and you can do whatever you want with it.
If you throw a rifle upper on it first then theoretically it can NEVER be used to build a pistol.

I bought a bunch of CAV arms lowers when I was 20, walked into the FFL to pick them up and was told I had to be 21 to buy lowers and they had to sit on the shelf for 6 months until I came of age. The fact that they had integrated butt stocks and could never be made into pistols did not sway the proprietor or my local ATF office (you only have to be 18 to build an SBR). He also turned down my offer to sell him several AR uppers for $1 and buy back complete rifles. It was a very frustrating 6 months.
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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by Halfapint » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:25 pm

RonnyRonin wrote:If it is not stated which it is then it is a blank slate, theoretically whatever you build first sets it in stone. If you want to really cover your butt 100% borrow a pistol upper from a buddy and snap it in first thing (maybe even take a picture). The lower is now officially a pistol lower and you can do whatever you want with it.
If you throw a rifle upper on it first then theoretically it can NEVER be used to build a pistol.

I bought a bunch of CAV arms lowers when I was 20, walked into the FFL to pick them up and was told I had to be 21 to buy lowers and they had to sit on the shelf for 6 months until I came of age. The fact that they had integrated butt stocks and could never be made into pistols did not sway the proprietor or my local ATF office (you only have to be 18 to build an SBR). He also turned down my offer to sell him several AR uppers for $1 and buy back complete rifles. It was a very frustrating 6 months.
That's along the line that I had read, but because they weren't designated as pistol or rifle. I was thinking about using the lower from my pistol to make my new rifle. And the "they" would be the ATF, I doubt I would have any issues but hey, you never know.

I have a new stripped lower, so I'm not really worried about it. Was just thinking of the legality issue.
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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by Stercutus » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:30 pm

Halfapint wrote:
Stercutus wrote:Brings to mind a couple of questions:

- Who are they?
- What did the seller put on the 4473? or you on the form 1? Whatever is on there is whatever the gun is now.

You can convert a pistol in to a rifle (must be fully compliant with rifle rules) and back again without paperwork.

It is illegal to convert a a rifle in to a pistol at any time. You can however convert it in to an SBR if you do the paperwork nutroll.
On the 4473 it just stated caliber, no pistol/rifle, and they put multi

So you can swap as long as you don't SBR it, its legal? So as long as it is pistol length bbl and buffer tube or 16" bbl with stock and over the minimum OAL to be conceded a rifle it's legal? Huh.... Maybe that's why I couldn't find any real information online.
They did not put "multi". They have to check a box. Block 16 options are as follows:

- Handgun
- Long Gun
- Other Firearm

Instructions are as follows:
Question 16. Type of Firearm(s):
"Other" refers to frames, receivers and other
firearms that are neither handguns nor long guns (rifles or shotguns), such as
firearms having a pistol grip that expel a shotgun shell, or National Firearms Act
(NFA) firearms, including silencers.

If a frame or receiver can only be made into a long gun
(rifle or shotgun), it is still a frame or receiver not a handgun or long gun. However, frames and receivers are
still "firearms" by definition, and subject to the same GCA limitations as any other
firearms. See Section 921(a)(3)(B). Section 922(b)(1) makes it unlawful for a
licensee to sell any firearm other than a shotgun or rifle to any person under the
age of 21. Since a frame or receiver for a firearm, to include one that can only be
made into a long gun, is a "firearm other than a shotgun or rifle," it cannot be
transferred to anyone under the age of 21, nor can these firearms be transferred to
anyone who is not a resident of the State where the transfer is to take place. Also,
note that multiple sales forms are not required for frames or receivers of any
firearms, or pistol grip shotguns, since they are not "pistols or revolvers" under
Section 923(g)(3)(A).
https://www.atf.gov/firearms/docs/4473- ... 9/download
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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by Halfapint » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:38 pm

Interesting, I have no idea what they put then. Because they never asked me, on ANY of the lowers I've purchased.
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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by Stercutus » Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:30 pm

Halfapint wrote:Interesting, I have no idea what they put then. Because they never asked me, on ANY of the lowers I've purchased.
The seller doesn't have to ask but they normally do.
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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by emclean » Thu Aug 31, 2017 7:34 am

or they just mark the stripped lowers as "other" cause it is a receiver that isn't a rifle or pistol yet.

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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by JeeperCreeper » Thu Aug 31, 2017 12:42 pm

Halfapint wrote:Interesting, I have no idea what they put then. Because they never asked me, on ANY of the lowers I've purchased.
I've had 2 different gun stores tell me two different things (in Pennsylvania) and my online searching seemed to agree with one of them.

A small shop that sells junk told me that it HAD to be a pistol or rifle, and he would not do "firearm/other" on the form. It didn't matter to me because I always told them when they were filling out the paper "I wanna make this a pistol" so I can always change it later. So on that lower, it is classified at a "pistol" and I filled out the extra forms for a pistol in PA.

A big shop that I trust told me "I don't wanna know" when I said I was turning lowers into a pistol. They filled out the forms as firearm/other which meant I had to only do one form, not two (in PA, we have a separate extra form for pistols). After searching online, it seemed this is the generally accepted way to do any lowers in PA, regardless of build classification.

So I think you're good for whatever as long as it doesn't say "rifle" on your 4473.
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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by Halfapint » Thu Aug 31, 2017 2:51 pm

emclean wrote:or they just mark the stripped lowers as "other" cause it is a receiver that isn't a rifle or pistol yet.
Ok, I talked to them this morning and the "multi" or whatever was caliber but if it is a stripped lower they fill out as other. So I took pictures of it as I was building it to prove it was a pistol. So I should be good!
JeeperCreeper wrote:I've had 2 different gun stores tell me two different things (in Pennsylvania) and my online searching seemed to agree with one of them.

A small shop that sells junk told me that it HAD to be a pistol or rifle, and he would not do "firearm/other" on the form. It didn't matter to me because I always told them when they were filling out the paper "I wanna make this a pistol" so I can always change it later. So on that lower, it is classified at a "pistol" and I filled out the extra forms for a pistol in PA.

A big shop that I trust told me "I don't wanna know" when I said I was turning lowers into a pistol. They filled out the forms as firearm/other which meant I had to only do one form, not two (in PA, we have a separate extra form for pistols). After searching online, it seemed this is the generally accepted way to do any lowers in PA, regardless of build classification.

So I think you're good for whatever as long as it doesn't say "rifle" on your 4473.
Yes, so it sounds like I'm good to go I can make it a rifle as long as it meets the BATFA as a rifle, or convert it back to a pistol with no legal issues.

The reason I'm asking is living in WA we have some pretty funky laws. We can open carry, we can easily get a CWP (without training and now you file the form and the LEO office has to ACTIVELY look to see if you are a felon to say no you cant have one), we can have SBR's, suppressors, and even get a class 3. However there's been talk that they are looking to start cracking down on current laws and that includes the converting of items to and from pistols. A few people have asked me and I wanted to make sure we have the best information possible. Apparently some talk is that officials have been going to shooting ranges (the open pit/free shooting) and asking people. Whether or not I believe that or not, I dunno, it seems like a legal pain in the ass. So its probably just the local nut jobs running their mouth at the LGS.
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Re: AR Pistol Legal Stuffs

Post by NT2C » Thu Aug 31, 2017 4:09 pm

Here's my take on it... If you do something that pisses off the feds it's going to become an illegal SBR, no matter what the paperwork says.
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