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Old April 19, 2015, 09:08 AM   #1
Desolo
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An odd pistol question

Ive been thinking alot about something odd ive noted about the whole pistol brace issue and want to see what you all think...

Ok, say we have a stripped ar 15 lower, never built, and we make it as a pistol.
We assemble the lower with a pistol brace ( shockwave, sb15, or even one of those buffer saddles).
We then attach it to an upper with a 16in barrel. Pistols have no legal specification for barrel length.

Being a pistol CAN become a rifle, and back again, AS LONG AS IT WAS A PISTOL WHEN ORGINALLY BUILT, and that it wasnt assembled in such a way that it had a stock while equipped with a less then 16in barrel....

Like the mechtech CCU's or thompson contenders, etc

My thought is this: How is shouldering this theoretical 16in barreled pistol equipped with a brace any different then "assembling" a rifle conversion kit, and making it a rifle of LEGAL length, and then "disassembling" it back into a pistol that is ALSO legal, ala taking the frame off the ccu and putting it back together as a handgun, or simply putting the stock back on the contender with a 16+in barrel.

So the crux of this is, in theory, how is an ar ( or any pistol equipped with a brace) with
A 16in barrel, that is freely convert able back and forth between a pistol and rifle, and due to its configuration CANNOT have a barrel length short enough to be an sbr while shouldered, any different then any number of kits that allow a pistol to be come a rifle on the fly?

Couldnt this weapon be treated as a pistol as long as it was NOT shouldered? Thereby allowing it to be in a vehicle with a simple ccw, yet as soon as it was picked up and SHOULDERED it becomes a rifle, which in most places is legal to have in the open, unconcealed, and it becomes a pistol once it is UNSHOULDERED?

Maddness? Or valid thought? If this makes sense, I can very well see a use for a brace equipped pistol.

Last edited by Desolo; April 19, 2015 at 09:19 AM. Reason: darn smart phone mischief
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Old April 19, 2015, 02:30 PM   #2
F-111 John
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The difference, I believe, is that in your example you are making a "pistol" into a rifle with a legal length barrel, and in most other instances, you are making a pistol into an SBR that requires paperwork and a tax stamp.
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Old April 19, 2015, 07:39 PM   #3
jrmiddleton425
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Desolo View Post
Couldnt this weapon be treated as a pistol as long as it was NOT shouldered?
Yes, and it can be an ordinary rifle when shouldered, provided it is 26" overall with the stock attached. Be aware that some states do have maximum barrel lengths for pistols.
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Old April 19, 2015, 08:53 PM   #4
Desolo
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So im not alone in seeing how this could be a beneficial thing then?
Invidual state guidelines nonwithstanding of course...
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Old April 19, 2015, 09:47 PM   #5
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Quote:
Couldnt this weapon be treated as a pistol as long as it was NOT shouldered? Thereby allowing it to be in a vehicle with a simple ccw, yet as soon as it was picked up and SHOULDERED it becomes a rifle, which in most places is legal to have in the open, unconcealed, and it becomes a pistol once it is UNSHOULDERED?
So basically, you are trying to get around the whole "can't legally conceal a rifle with your concealed handgun permit" thing?

Yea. I guess you could interpret the ATF's opinion as saying that you can jump back and forth across some virtual line with a 16" barreled handgun.

You may have to prove that inn court though. If some sheriff's deputy or state trooper sees your concealed AR15, he might just arrest you and let the courts sort it out.
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Old April 20, 2015, 12:02 AM   #6
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If you are replacing the Brace (or saddle or other buffer tube accessory that is not a stock) with a stock, then you have a rifle with that 16" barreled upper.

If you are NOT replacing the brace or other accessory, and you shoulder it as a stock, it is still just a rifle, based on the ATF's opinion that if used as a stock, it is a stock, regardless of the intent of the design.


Although it MAY be argued that it's an "Other Firearm" because it's 26"+ overall length, and lacking a traditional stock.

But be careful with the 26"+ OAL and trying to conceal it. It is ATF's opinion that a firearms 26"+ OAL is non-concealable, but if concealed, becomes an AOW. At least that applies tot he 26"+ OAL 14"barrel shotgun thing.
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Old April 20, 2015, 10:12 AM   #7
Desolo
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Honestly, this is a bit of a "I wonder" type of thought process, as I have an AK pistol that I like to run with an elastic single point as a "road gun".

The whole brace thing seems so arbitrary and all, it seems that if you apply any logic to it, it becomes even dumber in light of other, conflicting laws....

All this came to mind because I got to thinking that a using a shockwave brace as an ultra light weight stock and a pencil barrel upper combined with a light weight handguard would be a pretty inexpensive ultra light carbine. But then it occured to me that starting with a virgin stripped lower that "technically" it would have never had an actually had a true stock attached due to the definitions given to arm braces, until it had been shouldered. And then the question of since it would have never had a barrel shorter then 16in, what would happen when it WASNT shoudered? What legal repercussions would THAT have? Would it be a rifle forever once the not-a-stock touched your shoulder? Or would it be like a pistol with a "conversion" kit that goes back and forth? Would it be a "firearm" ala the over 26in rule? Would it matter?

Its a rather confusing thing. Either way I think it would still be a neat ultra light "ar type weapon" project for the future... not sure id try and push it all the way to court just to see what it would ACTUALLY be classed as in the end l really dont think its worth the possibility of ending up in trouble for a completely ludicrous interpretation of a law that makes no sense.
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