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View Full Version : I can't buy a stripped lower reciever???


hawkeye
07-06-2011, 2:54 PM
I went into a gunshop today and was told that even though I am under 21 I can buy a stripped S&W or DPMS receiver as it is marked "rifle." The second shop I went into to check around for prices said federal law prohibits me from buying a stripped receiver.


Okay so here is my questions

Can I buy a stripped lower IF it is marked rifle??? Assuming it is drossed as a rifle w/ serial #, what would be the problem? Whats the difference in the paperwork?

Can I buy a complete lower? (receiver w/ all parts a telescoping butt?)

How crazy is this? I can buy the complete gun, and just strip it to the lone receiver!

Thanks for any help answering these questions.

rockdogz
07-06-2011, 3:02 PM
The law is specifically written so that you have to be 21 to purchase a stripped receiver. I think it is because it is 'possible' to make it into a pistol - not sure.
edit: Actually I think it's because it can not be defined as a rifle or shotgun and thus the laws governing those arms does not apply.

Like many of the laws, yes it is crazy and no it does not make sense...par for the course in CA.

hawkeye
07-06-2011, 3:07 PM
The law is specifically written so that you have to be 21 to purchase a stripped receiver. I think it is because it is 'possible' to make it into a pistol - not sure.
Like many of the laws, yes it is crazy and no it does not make sense...par for the course in CA.

But can I buy a complete lower?

rockdogz
07-06-2011, 3:09 PM
But can I buy a complete lower?

When it's sold as part of a complete rifle. Is it possible for it to be disassembled back into a stripped lower? Sure. Again, do not try to make sense of the laws...

BannedinBritain
07-06-2011, 3:13 PM
But can I buy a complete lower?

No...In order to buy anything other than a complete rifle, you must be 21. A "complete lower" does not make the receiver into a "rifle", and therefore would still be checked as an "other" on the 4473...thus, you must be 21 to purchase.

CSACANNONEER
07-06-2011, 3:15 PM
A stripped lower is a stripped lower. ATF doesn't give a rat's azz if it's marked "rifle", "pistol" or even "Howdy Doody's left nut". The fact is, a virgin stripped lower can be made into a handgun no matter what the markings on it say.

hawkeye
07-06-2011, 3:16 PM
Alright. Thanks for the answers.

4x4Trooper
07-06-2011, 3:19 PM
The way I understand it, a 4473 has options for handgun, long gun, or other, but the DROS only has options for handgun or long gun. Some shops have been known to mark long gun in both the 4473 and the DROS paperwork, selling to those under 21.

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stix213
07-06-2011, 3:20 PM
18 year olds can buy long guns, you have to be 21 to buy all the other fun stuff, a stripped receiver is not a long gun.

CSACANNONEER
07-06-2011, 3:22 PM
The way I understand it, a 4473 has options for handgun, long gun, or other, but the DROS only has options for handgun or long gun. Some shops have been known to mark long gun in both the 4473 and the DROS paperwork, selling to those under 21.

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Filling out Ca's DROS paperwork really has nothing to do with following federal law. It is against federal law to sell a stripped receiver to anyone under 21 period! That said, a few years ago, FFLs all over the country were selling stripped receivers to peeople under 21 but, ATF has ruled that it is now illegal to do so.

BannedinBritain
07-06-2011, 3:47 PM
The way I understand it, a 4473 has options for handgun, long gun, or other, but the DROS only has options for handgun or long gun. Some shops have been known to mark long gun in both the 4473 and the DROS paperwork, selling to those under 21.

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And those shops sooner or later will learn a painful truth.

From Federal form 4473:

“Other” refers to frames, receivers and other firearms that are not either handguns or long guns (rifles or shotguns), such as firearms having a pistol grip that expel a shotgun shell, or National Firearms Act (NFA) firearms.


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, they still are “firearms” by definition, and subject to the same GCA limitations as any other firearms. See Section 921(a)(3)(b). 18 U.S.C. 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.

dantodd
07-06-2011, 4:03 PM
It has nothing to do with the ability to be made into a pistol. The minimum legal age to buy a firearm is 21. There are exceptions for rifles and shotguns. Purchasing any type of non-rifle, non-shotgun requires you be 2, this included AOWs, handguns and receivers.

Quiet
07-06-2011, 5:39 PM
It has nothing to do with the ability to be made into a pistol. The minimum legal age to buy a firearm is 21. There are exceptions for rifles and shotguns. Purchasing any type of non-rifle, non-shotgun requires you be 21, this included AOWs, handguns and receivers.

What he said.

Federal law [18 USC 922(b)(1)] states a FFL dealer can not transfer a firearm, other than a rifle or a shotgun, to a person under the age of 21.

Lead-Thrower
07-06-2011, 7:27 PM
ATF doesn't give a rat's azz if it's marked "rifle", "pistol" or even "Howdy Doody's left nut".

Maybe when I build my 80% I'll mark it "Howdy Doody's Left Nut" then. :D

Don29palms
07-06-2011, 10:16 PM
You can't legally buy a DPMS in California anyway.

tacticalcity
07-06-2011, 10:22 PM
Until you are 21, you have to "transfer" it as a rifle. But you don't technically need to buy an entire rifle at once.

Here is the trick. Just slowly buy everything else first as you have the money. Then when you have everything necessary to build a complete rifle, take it into your local gunshop and pay the $60 extra buck hourly rate (or less depending on the shop) for them to assemble the lower for you. The upper drops right on. Done. So it costs you $60 more than it otherwise would. Could be worse.

There is always a way to get the cheese. You just have to be smarter than the mouse trap.

cmth
07-07-2011, 2:32 AM
Until you are 21, you have to "transfer" it as a rifle. But you don't technically need to buy an entire rifle at once.

Here is the trick. Just slowly buy everything else first as you have the money. Then when you have everything necessary to build a complete rifle, take it into your local gunshop and pay the $60 extra buck hourly rate (or less depending on the shop) for them to assemble the lower for you. The upper drops right on. Done. So it costs you $60 more than it otherwise would. Could be worse.

There is always a way to get the cheese. You just have to be smarter than the mouse trap.

This can only be done by an type 07 FFL (manufacturer). Most FFLs are type 01 (dealer) or 02 (pawnbroker). Any FFL other an type 07 doing this work is manufacturing a firearm (converting a receiver into a rifle) and is in violation of federal law. If the firearm comes in as a receiver, and leaves as a rifle, they have broken the law unless they are a manufacturer.

This is an option for the under-21 buyer, but he must find an 07 FFL for this to be done.

CSACANNONEER
07-07-2011, 7:46 AM
Maybe when I build my 80% I'll mark it "Howdy Doody's Left Nut" then. :D

If you do, I want a picture of it!

CHS
07-07-2011, 9:03 AM
This can only be done by an type 07 FFL (manufacturer). Most FFLs are type 01 (dealer) or 02 (pawnbroker). Any FFL other an type 07 doing this work is manufacturing a firearm (converting a receiver into a rifle) and is in violation of federal law. If the firearm comes in as a receiver, and leaves as a rifle, they have broken the law unless they are a manufacturer.


Not exactly true.

An 01 can OCCASIONALLY manufacture a firearm. As long as it's not a normal course of business, it's fine.

I actually brought this up to the ATF once in regards to AR type firearms where "manufacturing" a firearm involves pushing two pins and attaching two pieces. They didn't really have a good answer to that scenario.

But they said it was fine if an 01 makes a firearm on rare occasion.

Just like an 01 without a SOT can occasionally transfer title 2 firearms (yes, including machineguns) as long as he pays the $200 transfer tax and it's not a normal course of business.

The key word is "occasionally" to the ATF.

If it appears that an 01 is doing it as a money-making venture with regularity, they will get smacked by the ATF and ordered to get an 07. If they do it too much, they could get their license revoked.

hawkeye
07-07-2011, 2:52 PM
You can't legally buy a DPMS in California anyway.

Really? Because the had one S&W and one DPMS panther arms striped lower in stock. In California.

CHS
07-07-2011, 3:08 PM
Really? Because the had one S&W and one DPMS panther arms striped lower in stock. In California.

Definitely a banned-by-name lower in CA.

CHS
07-07-2011, 7:11 PM
But does he need ITAR registration or licensing for that? I think so, but I'm not sure. Note that this is a question that neither the CA DoJ nor the ATF are particularly interested in, as ITAR is a State Department issue.

No, he does not. He doesn't even have to pay excise tax on those firearms.

CSACANNONEER
07-07-2011, 8:40 PM
Definitely a banned-by-name lower in CA.

If you want to get technical, it's only banned by name when built into a semi auto centerfire RIFLE. A virgin stripped DPMS Panther lower built into a handgun would be off list and, properly configured, not an AW at all. However, I would not recommend anyone try this. There are better fights to pick and this one shouldn't even be on the list.

CHS
07-07-2011, 8:49 PM
it's only banned by name when built into a semi auto centerfire RIFLE.

Fixed it for you :)

A virgin stripped DPMS Panther lower built into a handgun would be off list and, properly configured, not an AW at all. However, I would not recommend anyone try this. There are better fights to pick and this one shouldn't even be on the list.

Yeah, I know. I didn't mention it because A.) It's really stupid for any dealers to be selling listed lowers and B.) It's really stupid for anyone to buy a listed lower :)

Someone apparently didn't know what "OLL" meant when he placed an order for those DPMS's.

BannedinBritain
07-08-2011, 12:46 AM
Someone apparently didn't know what "OLL" meant when he placed an order for those DPMS's.

That's just a really bad episode waiting to happen...if it's true (a big "if" here), someone should politely speak to those in question about offering them to the public.

Anchors
07-08-2011, 3:50 AM
The law is specifically written so that you have to be 21 to purchase...[anything] that cannot be defined as a rifle or shotgun and thus the laws governing those arms does not apply.


Quoted/edited what you said for clarification.

This is correct. You have to be 21 to buy firearms, EXCEPT RIFLES AND SHOTGUNS. People 18-20 are exempt from the rule for rifles and shotguns only.
The 18+ for long guns is an exemption.
This is also why you have to be 21 to buy a pistol-grip only shotgun, but you can buy a butt-stoked shotgun and change it out for a pistol grip at 18.

Stupid laws indeed.