PDA

View Full Version : AR pistol buffer tube w/ foam pad legality Q.


Calm Down
11-17-2009, 8:43 PM
I recently built an AR style pistol. A supervisor of mine stated he thought the firearm may not be legal in California as he thought it was a SBR. I cited federal and state definition of pistol (12001 P.C)/ rifle (per 12020P.C.) He contended that foam padding on the buffer tube, manufactured by Olympic Arms, converted the pistol to a shoulder fired weapon thus making it a rifle. "The foam padding on the rear of the buffer tube is for padding as the weapon is placed against the body to support it during firing." He also inquired whether or not the firearm was semi auto or a single-shot. He seems to be confusing several laws. Can someone point me to an BATFE ruling or case law regarding the buffer tube and foam padding .

freakshow10mm
11-17-2009, 8:52 PM
Second page, second paragraph.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v239/freakshow10mm/ATF%20Letters/batfeletterarpistols1.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v239/freakshow10mm/ATF%20Letters/batfeletterarpistols2.jpg

Josh3239
11-17-2009, 9:41 PM
Your supervisor is worried about nothing. There are plenty of letters floating around the internet to show it. One would think Anvil Arms, Spike's Tactical, Olympic, Bushmaster and all the other companies that make these pistols would be in trouble for putting them on their.

putput
11-18-2009, 12:19 AM
That's kinda funny since I've seen people put the foam on there so that you can't attach a stock and make it an SBR.

PS. I wanted that thing but I need a new roof.

PSS. This is in no way legal advice.

Calm Down
11-20-2009, 4:21 PM
Does anyone else have anything to add? Is there a web site that shows BATF approval letters or such for the various manufacturers' pistols; i.e. Bushmaster, Olympic Arms?

Josh3239
11-20-2009, 4:24 PM
I would imagine those companies are best to ask since they deal with the BATF more than anyone here.

Cokebottle
11-20-2009, 4:53 PM
Yes, his "issues" arise from a misunderstanding of multiple laws.
As indicated above, BATF has clearly blessed both construction and the buffer tube cover.
"The foam padding on the rear of the buffer tube is for padding as the weapon is placed against the body to support it during firing."
WRT this, he is misunderstanding the definition of "rifle".
The law (state and fed) only specify "shoulder-fired"... they do not specify that the device cannot be supported by any other part of the body, only that it is primarily designed and able to be fired with one hand.
Many competition pistols have stocks that are carved in a way that makes it apparent that they were designed to be supported by both hands, but they are still fully operational with one hand and meet the definition of "pistol".
He also inquired whether or not the firearm was semi auto or a single-shot.
Similarly confused.
The only reason a homebuild must be originally constructed or imported as a single-shot is because the single-shot status exempts it from the roster requirement, provided it is dimensionally compliant. You can't have the seller put a mag-lock and sled in an off-roster 1911 and import it because the typical 4-5" barrel is not dimensionally compliant.
It is not illegal to possess a non-rostered handgun, and once the handgun is in your possession, the roster matters not so it is legal to convert it from single-shot to semi-auto, and it can even be PPT'd as a semi-auto.

The problem with trying to show him that what you have is legal in the PC is that most things that are legal are not addressed. The PC cannot cover every illegal and legal action. The only time legal actions are mentioned in the PC is when they are exemptions to an otherwise illegal act, IE, CCW while having a restraining order issued against another can be legal without a CCW permit.

bwiese
11-20-2009, 5:03 PM
While BATF may have 'blessed' the situation, CA has its own SBR laws which generally track Fed law - though not necessarily in regulatory restraint or extent.

I would encourage those with various "pistols" to not make such a receiver extention too long or too comfortable. If it starts looking like you can cheek up to it, I'd stray away from that. I would never use anything BUT a pistol buffer/pistol receiver extension, either.

Now, the single-shot status written about above is FUD. Single-shot status is only needed to be maintained on import of the non-AW in CA and during its Roster-exempt sale, DROS, etc. to the Californian. Once he takes possession of a single-shot pistol, the new owner is free to modify it into any other legal configuration (i.e, non-AW, non-SBR, non-SBS, nonunconventional pistol, etc....)

freonr22
11-20-2009, 5:09 PM
what is the 4th word from the last @ the end of the letter? is that a freudian slip? it IS a RIGHT after all, or am I misreading it?

Cokebottle
11-20-2009, 5:10 PM
Now, the single-shot status written about above is FUD.
Do you mean my comment or the OP's supervisor's concern?
I believe I said basically the same thing that you said, perhaps not as clearly.

bwiese
11-20-2009, 6:09 PM
Do you mean my comment or the OP's supervisor's concern?
I believe I said basically the same thing that you said, perhaps not as clearly.

I was referring to the OP's supervisor's (incorrect/irrelevant) concern.

Cokebottle
11-20-2009, 6:11 PM
I was referring to the OP's supervisor's (incorrect/irrelevant) concern.
Gotcha, thanks.
I just wanted to be sure and edit the post if need be. I'm not a lawyer, nor have I studied the laws to the extent that you have. I've learned a lot in the last month and didn't want to spread FUD.

Calm Down
11-22-2009, 8:30 PM
So here is the response I received from my supervisor.

"Remember ATF is federal and what DOJ looks at is the state laws (big difference).... With that said, I looked into this more over the weekend and agree with you that its a pistol. The DOJ cops are a little out of sink with this one. Your average shooter/home protection/ collector does not own this. I would make sure that your DROS have it listed as pistol rather than rifle just for argument. Additionally, I view this as "pushing" the legal limit and not something I support as a Law Enforcement Officer. I am not a firearms extremist and do not believe cops should be."

He could have summed it all up by just saying; "You were right." I guess knowledge is extremism.

Cokebottle
11-22-2009, 8:39 PM
Saved face by feeding you even more FUD.

If you built it yourself, it doesn't even have to be DROSed or registered with DOJ.
It's not "pushing" any laws. His comment about "firearms extremist" shows his attitude.
He probably views maglocked AK's and AR's as "pushing the law".
Your average shooter/home protection/ collector does not own this.
What does this have to do with anything?

Maybe introduce him to Calguns so he can see how many "average shooters" own these types of weapons.

Flopper
11-23-2009, 9:45 AM
So here is the response I received from my supervisor.

". . . I would make sure that your DROS have it listed as pistol rather than rifle just for argument. Additionally, I view this as "pushing" the legal limit. . ."

It's nice that he suggests that you DROS it as a pistol, even though that's what you HAVE to do if you DROS it. Obviously this doesn't apply since it's home-built.

I also love his opinion that it's "pushing the legal limit." Tell that to the hundreds of thousands throughout the country that have done this and aren't in prison.

Obviously he is opposed to this because he thinks it's a loophole to SBR's. I'd like to know his reason for thinking that SBR's are so evil--that is, if he's actually ever even thought about it.