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View Full Version : Complete LW-15 lower without bb installed, illegal as is?


b18rexracer
03-03-2012, 9:14 PM
Ok so if I read/understood the posts correctly on an old unassembled AR thread then my local FFL is just being a PITA. (tried to post on that thread but it is too old)
Heres the situation:
I ordered a LW-15 (full composit lower) from Riflegear (a Ca FFL) shipped to my local shop. When it arrived it there was not BB installed and no magazine (I didnt need any more). My local FFL called me to tell me they are refusing shipment since it is an illegal AW by CA standards. Bear in mind this is a lower only (a complete lower but just a lower). They would not budge on this (I asked if they could just install the BB and allow me to purchase a mag from them). The owner of RG called them and got the same run around. Now I have to wait for it to be shipped back, bb and mag installed and then shipped again. Now I mentioned RG name because they did what they could to make it right. Including shipping a new lower before receiving the 1st one back and splitting shipping with me.

Back to my point, if I read the earlier posts right all this was BS and should have never happened since it was not an operable rifle. To add to it the locall FFL sells and assembles AR's anyway so again, where is the issue?

I have a call into CA DoJ BoF for clarification. I want to know if I disassemble my rifle for cleaning and remove the mag from the disassembled lower am I breaking the law?

EBR Works
03-03-2012, 9:26 PM
A lower without an upper does not require a bullet button or 10 rd mag since it is not a centerfire, semi-auto rifle. Your receiving dealer is misinformed. Feel free to have your dealer call me for clarification.

bohoki
03-03-2012, 9:37 PM
tell them you were going to put a rimfire upper on it

oldsmoboat
03-04-2012, 5:10 AM
Wife works with a guy that is out here for a short term job. He is employed by a company in another state that has offices here. He brought out his guns to shoot and has a non, BB AR. He wants to go shooting with us but I don't want him (or us) getting in trouble with his rifle.
If he wants to shoot it, I assume he can put a BB on it and get a 10 round mag.

But if he doesn't, how does he store it here?
Is it illegal to posses the non BB lower if you have a .556 upper to go with it but the rifle is not assembled?

emy
03-04-2012, 6:56 AM
yes, he just brought in an AW into CA,

NotEnufGarage
03-04-2012, 7:21 AM
Wife works with a guy that is out here for a short term job. He is employed by a company in another state that has offices here. He brought out his guns to shoot and has a non, BB AR. He wants to go shooting with us but I don't want him (or us) getting in trouble with his rifle.
If he wants to shoot it, I assume he can put a BB on it and get a 10 round mag.

But if he doesn't, how does he store it here?
Is it illegal to posses the non BB lower if you have a .556 upper to go with it but the rifle is not assembled?

yes, he just brought in an AW into CA,

If it's assembled, it's an illegal AW. If it's not, it's not.

OP - please identify the FFL so other can avoid this confusion and grief.

microwaveguy
03-04-2012, 7:27 AM
Wife works with a guy that is out here for a short term job. He is employed by a company in another state that has offices here. He brought out his guns to shoot and has a non, BB AR. He wants to go shooting with us but I don't want him (or us) getting in trouble with his rifle.
If he wants to shoot it, I assume he can put a BB on it and get a 10 round mag.

But if he doesn't, how does he store it here?
Is it illegal to posses the non BB lower if you have a .556 upper to go with it but the rifle is not assembled?

Having the 5.56 upper not attached to the lower would be legal , BUT both together is an AW with no BB installed. Show him the flowchart and have him get the BB ASAP. Also make sure it is not a named lower. Even a BB won't fix that.

gatesbox
03-04-2012, 7:34 AM
Complete BS, but when ordering stuff like this, you should always check with the FFL before purchase, the FUD abides with many FFLs and it is prudent not to just ship stuff to an unknown FFL.

I ran into a very good and friendly FFL that would not accept pistols from out of state shipped by the private seller. I still think the FFL is great, but don't use him for out of state private deals, he still gets me the best price on everything else. Assuming an FFL will play your game is a big mistake... ***-U-ME nothing..

cdtx2001
03-04-2012, 8:27 AM
This is why I don't go to gun stores to get my information.

Not to thread jack, I just helped a co-worker assemble his first CA compliant AR. He went to a local gun store (Center Mass) and the owner there told him that it was an illegal AW because it had a collapsible stock even though it had a BB installed. I told him the dealer didn't know the gun laws at all. The fact that this gun store SELLS bullet buttons AND collapsible stocks, then goes on to tell him what he did was illegal is further proof they don't understand the law.

eldonvieira
03-04-2012, 11:06 AM
My local shop told me the they have paperwork from doj stating that unless the lower has a rim fire upper attached they can not sell a complete lower without a bb. This is the same shop that is telling people they can not drop the magazine from their bb rifles while at the range to load they are telling people that they must load from the top

SilverTauron
03-04-2012, 11:41 AM
For situations where a firearm dealer has a policy in place which is not legally supported,an inquiry as to why may be in order.

I ordered a firearm from South Carolina for delivery in South Dakota. Neither state has any onerous laws with regard to sending or receiving firearms online,which is why I was surprised when I contacted the sending FFL in South Carolina to discover that they wished for my receiving FFL to sign a blank section of their FFL license in addition to the spaces provided on the license document. I then travelled in person to my local dealer and contacted the same to have the corrections done, to which he was confused as the license he'd used for 20 years didn't seem to be out of sorts. According to the sending dealer, the signed document originally faxed to them was invalid "according to the ATF".

My dealer being the great sport he was, the man signed & faxed another copy and life was good.That done I gently asked the sending dealer why it was that owner's original FFL copy wasn't any good for this transaction when he'd been inspected and operating for decades without a problem.

The sending dealer then confided that the local ATF inspector in his neck of the woods had been raking him over the coals. I got the impression the South Carolina FFL was on thin ice with the Feds and needed to ensure that every T was crossed to avoid being shut down, even if that meant dotting the I's twice.

Ask your receiving FFL the *honest* reason he won't complete the transaction. You may discover that he's just in a position where doing so is asking for trouble from the Feds or local authorities,who have no problems ruining a man's livelihood on a foolish interpretation.

b18rexracer
03-04-2012, 11:49 AM
The shops name is Bastiani Arms in Redding, Ca. While the physical shop itself is fairly new the owner and some of his staff are well known and have worked at Jones Fort which is a long established gun shop.

In the past when I have needed something shipped to an FFL I would call ahead of time. However in this case Bastiani Arms was listed on Riflegears website has being on file with them. That lead me to believe they had done business together previously and that this shouldn't be a problem.

bwiese
03-04-2012, 11:58 AM
Jones Fort referred to in post above is a rampant FUD distributor.

Now, this can be the product of early hyper-overcautiousness back in late 2005-early 2006. Stance was finally clarified by both the law and DOJ's writings in relation to background on AB2728.

An AR lower with all evil features is neither semiauto, centerfire nor arguably a rifle.

Possessing a separated upper from lower [with no BB/maglock] is defendable but may take an extended fight. Expect cops and DAs to file on this situation. One should have a BB if possessing both, unless there's a rimfire upper with bolt carrier installed in it also present.

ke6guj
03-04-2012, 11:59 AM
My local shop told me the they have paperwork from doj stating that unless the lower has a rim fire upper attached they can not sell a complete lower without a bb.

I assume that that shop has a copy machine.

Tell them to give you a copy of that CADOJ paperwork that states that.

ap3572001
03-04-2012, 12:09 PM
Jones Fort referred to in post above is a rampant FUD distributor.

Now, this can be the product of early hyper-overcautiousness back in late 2005-early 2006. Stance was finally clarified by both the law and DOJ's writings in relation to background on AB2728.

An AR lower with all evil features is neither semiauto, centerfire nor arguably a rifle.

Possessing a separated upper from lower [with no BB/maglock] is defendable but may take an extended fight. Expect cops and DAs to file on this situation. One should have a BB if possessing both, unless there's a rimfire upper with bolt carrier installed in it also present.

What about possesing a lower w/o BB and a rifle with a BB?

Or is it a constructive possesion ?

If You own a Mini 14 and its somewhere in the house. With a scope and a 5 -10 round magazine.
And them You have a little case with a factory folding stock and 6 (30 round magazines)

Is that ok?

aklover_91
03-04-2012, 1:06 PM
What about possesing a lower w/o BB and a rifle with a BB?

Or is it a constructive possesion ?

If You own a Mini 14 and its somewhere in the house. With a scope and a 5 -10 round magazine.
And them You have a little case with a factory folding stock and 6 (30 round magazines)

Is that ok?

So far as I know the AWB doesn't have a provision for constructive possession.

Parts is parts and all that.

ETA: Not to imply that it couldn't cause problems for someone, the real world being what it is.

bwiese
03-04-2012, 10:36 PM
My local shop told me the they have paperwork from doj stating that unless the lower has a rim fire upper attached they can not sell a complete lower without a bb. This is the same shop that is telling people they can not drop the magazine from their bb rifles while at the range to load they are telling people that they must load from the top


If you can get their copy of their DOJ letter saying that, we really want a copy please!!

b18rexracer
03-04-2012, 11:22 PM
Re the post from eldonvieira: I have also been told that I cannot remove the magazine while the gun is assembled (such as to reload) that I must remove the takedown pin and load from the top. Removing the magazine even with a tool while the gun is assembled makes it an illegal AW.


Back to the original topic: I sent an email request (in addition to the voice message I left) in to CA DoJ BoF to see if I can get a written "official" response from them regarding my issue. I'll keep you all posted.

bwiese
03-05-2012, 12:39 AM
Re the post from eldonvieira: I have also been told that I cannot remove the magazine while the gun is assembled (such as to reload) that I must remove the takedown pin and load from the top. Removing the magazine even with a tool while the gun is assembled makes it an illegal AW.

All BS. The whole purpose of the BulletButton and other maglock designs is to allow LEGAL magazine changes without triggering 'detachable magazine' status and derivative illegal AW status. The BB maglocks would have no value at all if they allowed AW
status even for a microsecond. [aside from using an over-10rd "hicap" magazine].

In no case does a properly operating BulletButton maglock ever allow the gun to become an AW as long as used with a 10rd or less magazine:


a freestanding mag is neither detachable, fixed or otherwise: its status is only determined by its relation
to the gun it's in;
.
lack of constructive possession means the gun must be regarded 'as it stands' at time of examination,
without consideration for any prospective parts additions, removals or changes;
.
a BB maglock'd OLL with a 10rd magazine in place isn't an AW since,as the gun stands, it doesn't have
the 'capacity to accept a detachable magazine': the magwell is full, and the mag would require a tool to
remove, precluding it being considered a detachable magazine per formal regulatory definition. There
are no considerations that can be factored in about prospects of tweaking the mag catch, or "what the
gun could be", etc.
.
a BB maglock'd OLL with an empty magwell isn't an AW since, as it stands, the gun doesn't have the
'capacity to accept a detachable magazine': the moment the mag is affixed to the gun it requires a
tool to remove it, making it fall out of the 'detachable magazine' category.



Back to the original topic: I sent an email request (in addition to the voice message I left) in to CA DoJ BoF to see if I can get a written "official" response from them regarding my issue. I'll keep you all posted.DOJ won't tell you crap. ASK IN WRITING, do not phone, do not accept a return phone call or a clerk will spin some BS. But that's moot anyway...

The actual official response is actually DOJ's response in the FEDERAL Richards (+ Haynie, etc.) v. Harris case where they stated (under oath etc.) that a BulletButton device does not allow an off-list rifle to become an AW.

VaderSpade
03-05-2012, 6:44 AM
Bastiani Arms owners are mostly clueless, they do have one good employee, but they keep him on a short leash.
I brought in a home built (from an 80% lower) and was ask if I had the serial number approved by the DOJ. When I told him I didn't even need a serial number I was run out of the shop!

The shops name is Bastiani Arms in Redding, Ca. While the physical shop itself is fairly new the owner and some of his staff are well known and have worked at Jones Fort which is a long established gun shop.

In the past when I have needed something shipped to an FFL I would call ahead of time. However in this case Bastiani Arms was listed on Riflegears website has being on file with them. That lead me to believe they had done business together previously and that this shouldn't be a problem.

b18rexracer
03-06-2012, 8:51 PM
Good news and bad news:

Good news: I got a phone call back from DoJ

Bad news: 1st it was a phone call not a
written response and 2nd I was unavailable to take the call so my buddy that happened to be over at the time (and knew the situation) talked to the lady and can't remember the lady's name! (Doh!!!)

He was told by (Melissa? Michelle?) that a complete lower must have an installed BB AND magazine to avoid being an illegal AW! :eek:

This is crazy when the BoF is giving out this info. (I know I was warned by an earlier poster)

I'm going to push for something written from them, futile as it might be. If I do manage to get it I'll post it. This is rediculous. This is moving from me being annoyed at my situation to a crusade!

curtisfong
03-06-2012, 9:56 PM
Give it up unless you can get something in writing.