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  #1  
Old 01-01-2009, 6:16 PM
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Default ATTENTION: Rock River Arms rifle & LAR-15 lower owners (AND FFLs!)

Various matters relating to Rock River Arms rifles and the poor construction of the Kasler list keep rearing their ugly heads.

And some newbie CA FFLs and/or their friendly out-of-state suppliers are getting a bit casual. (I think the original early-on OLL Leadership FFLs 'get it', and are not part of this issue.)

This is a very interesting situation where trivial cosmetic features that are not even related to 'characteristic features' in 12276.1PC could come into consideration.

Let's analyze and fix the situation....

  • Rock River Arms ("RRA") AR lowers are truly 'off-list' and legal to possess, acquire and to construct
    various legal rifle configurations upon.
  • The Kasler list (11 CCR 5499) of formally-identified, 'banned-by-name' AR/AK 'series' members includes the
    following banned RRA rifles, which nevertheless have OLL receivers marked with "Rock River Arms LAR-15"
    - Rock River Arms, Inc. Car A2
    - Rock River Arms, Inc. Car A4 Flattop
    - Rock River Arms, Inc. LE Tactical Carbine
    - Rock River Arms, Inc. NM A2 - DCM Legal
    - Rock River Arms, Inc. Standard A-2
    - Rock River Arms, Inc. Standard A-4 Flattop
    Such exact rifle configurations are regardable as 'named' assault weapons even though the receiver itself
    is an OLL ('off list')
    . Mere addition of a 'bullet button' may well not be effective at changing its status,
    though it could be argued that these specific models refer to rifles with fully-functional magwells & mag
    catches

  • FFLs should be wary of these matters and not ship/accept these specific rifles into CA regardless of BB
    installation or one minor change like a MonsterMan grip. It appears there are quite a few current RRA
    'generically described' models that differ from the banned items above and which would truly be 'off
    list' in the whole (as well as the receiver continuing to be off-list.) In the future, it'd be helpful if
    receipts and FFL books were to reflect the exact nature of a rifle (providing it's not one of the above
    'listed' items!)

  • Tons of other homebuilt 'parts guns' built on RRA receivers are also marked the same way ("RRA LAR-15").

  • There is no issue (other than the usual OLL-vs.-AW concerns) when RRA uppers are used on
    a non-RRA lower.

  • If one of the banned rifles above were questioned by busy LEOs, DAs/crime labs, etc. it's pretty likely
    they'd go with markings on magwell sideplate (RRA "LAR-15") - and not necessarily as one of the above.
    However, the chance does exist and it's not an infinitessimally small risk.

  • For safety's sake, one should simply not install one of the RRA upper assemblies on an RRA LAR15 lower
    receiver such that the end result would produce an exact duplicate of one of the Kasler-banned entities
    listed above.

  • Given that busy cops/DA/crime labs may have great difficulty in determining RRA uppers from identically-
    configured uppers from other mfgrs, it probably makes sense to not mimic the exact configuration one of
    the RRA banned rifles with a non-RRA upper assembly that looks really, really similar.

  • The RRA models banned on the Kasler list have specific features suites. (These may have had minor
    variations over time in their catalog/product line, I am not sure: a 2001 RRA, say, CAR A2 may have
    some differeces than, say, a 2004 or 2005 CAR A2.) To be absolutely pure, your rifle would need to
    be different than all prospective individual expressions by RRA of a given model - otherwise there's
    risk of "oops, your configuration is identical to that model back in 2002", etc.


    However, use of different stocks, handguards, muzzle devices, sights and grips from different mfgrs with
    the end result of visibly different appearing rifle would make such an RRA LAR15 rifle most certainly NOT
    one of the banned entities: those models refer to an exact configuration as sold/inventoried by RRA.

    (It can also be argued - at least tenuously - that an RRA 'parts gun', even though exactly duplicating a
    banned entity, is not the banned item because these RRA model names refer to factory-manufactured,
    factory-warranted guns. This would only be an element of a defense, and you shouldn't get here in the
    first place anyway!!)

    Note that Harrott requires clarity and make/model specificity, and if those names were to apply to multiple
    gun models with varying features, those banned entities would become in essence multiple "sub-series".
    However, we simply do not need divert ourselves to fight a "son-of-Harrott".


  • If you find yourself with a LAR15 rifle closely (or even closer!) approximating one of the named Kasler-banned
    entities above, immediately separate the upper from the lower. Make various changes to the upper: maybe a
    different sight set, change out flash hider vs. brake vs. thread protector, and differing handguards. The fact
    the bolt assy, barrel and upper receiver are still the same shouldn't be worrisome, as it appears these items
    are shared across multiple non-banned RRA platforms as well. Also, put a different grip and/or buttstock on the
    LAR15 lower. Just change out things so overall configuration is visibly different from the banned-by-name rifles.

  • For a fast solution, just swap an RRA upper with an upper of a different brand with a shooting buddy who
    owns a non-RRA lower, and compensate any price difference with, say, some ammo or some steaks
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Last edited by bwiese; 01-02-2009 at 10:44 AM..
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  #2  
Old 01-01-2009, 7:42 PM
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Timely and relevant.

These individual FAQs are important.

Thanks for laying this out again.
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  #3  
Old 01-01-2009, 9:39 PM
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Bill, your post confused me at first, and I had to read it a few times until I understood it. On my first reading, the situation wasn't immediately apparent (i.e., several RRA models are listed, but none of them actually had the listed model name marked on the receiver).

I think that the second bullet item ("Some newbie CA FFLs [...]") should be moved later in the posting, so that the "above 'listed' items" are actually above it. On my first reading, it just seemed to contradict the first bullet item. I don't think that the "Some newbie CA FFLs [...]" makes sense until the reader has digested some of the other details (that is, unless they already know about RRA's lowers and listed rifles).
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  #4  
Old 01-01-2009, 11:02 PM
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Thanks 383green, hacked it up a bit per your suggestion.
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  #5  
Old 01-01-2009, 11:25 PM
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thanks again for the update Bwiese. Thank God you are watching over us.
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  #6  
Old 01-02-2009, 7:25 AM
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Thanks Bill, and Mods shouldn't this be a sticky?
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  #7  
Old 01-02-2009, 9:19 AM
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So, a "quick" solution would be to just swap a similarly configured upper with one of your other non-RRA OLL rifles, right? Because we all have more than one OLL rifle. What's that? The RRA was your only OLL rifle? WHAT'S WRONG WITH YOU! You should have 2 or 3 by now!
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Old 01-02-2009, 9:23 AM
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Such exact rifle configurations are regardable as 'named' assault weapons even though the receiver itself
is an OLL ('off list'). Mere addition of a 'bullet button' may well not be effective at changing its status,
though it could be argued that these specific models refer to rifles with fully-functional magwells & mag
catches

You're reading way to much into w/ this statement......
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  #9  
Old 01-02-2009, 10:10 AM
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Thanks Bill. I actually started a thread earlier this week concerning the RRA's being listed by type and not make/model and the confusion it caused. I appreciate your replies and this thread to clarify the situation.
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Old 01-02-2009, 10:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PIRATE14 View Post
Such exact rifle configurations are regardable as 'named' assault weapons even though the receiver itself
is an OLL ('off list'). Mere addition of a 'bullet button' may well not be effective at changing its status,
though it could be argued that these specific models refer to rifles with fully-functional magwells & mag
catches

You're reading way to much into w/ this statement......

Hi Pirate,

I'm unclear about what you're implying. (??)

The issues of which I wrote do exist - perhaps they're not huge, but the risks do exists and they are best avoided, especially as it's simple to do.

Yes, these cases are defendable. I'd just like to keep people well away
from the issue since it's readily avoidable. No sense in having a fight that doesn't need to be fought.
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  #11  
Old 01-02-2009, 10:28 AM
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Thanks for the heads-up, Bill! I own an OLL RRA LAR-15, but it's got the Entry Tactical upper on it. Am I okay? I don't see Rock River Arms, Inc. Entry Tactical... just the LE Tactical Carbine...
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  #12  
Old 01-02-2009, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cpl. Haas View Post
Thanks for the heads-up, Bill! I own an OLL RRA LAR-15, but it's got the Entry Tactical upper on it. Am I okay? I don't see Rock River Arms, Inc. Entry Tactical... just the LE Tactical Carbine...
Sounds to me like you're clear, esp if the two guns look somewhat different, different stocks (or whatever) etc.
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  #13  
Old 01-02-2009, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bwiese View Post
Sounds to me like you're clear, esp if the two guns look somewhat different, different stocks (or whatever) etc.
Bill; since people are asking for your opinion I have a RRA Varmint A4 with a U-15 buttstock. Would my rifle be in the clear also in your opinion? Picture below.
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  #14  
Old 01-02-2009, 11:13 AM
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Bronc,

Note that I do not have full historical info on RRA catalog items or how they varied over time. I can only give you a reasonbly informed personal opinion.

The RRA 'Varmint A4' is not a listed entity.

I'll also add that a U15 stock also offers such a substantially different profile - plus a somewhat functionally-different buffer system - that even if rifle were listed, I believe the newly-configured rifle would no longer be equivalent to the banned entity.




Quote:
Originally Posted by BroncoBob View Post
Bill; since people are asking for your opinion I have a RRA Varmint A4 with a U-15 buttstock. Would my rifle be in the clear also in your opinion? Picture below.
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Old 01-02-2009, 11:24 AM
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Bill; your reasonbly informed personal opinion is a lot better then mine. The only reason I asked is that the upper is a flat top and was concerned about it being mistaken for an Standard A4 flat top. Thank you very much for your input.
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Originally Posted by ar15barrels
Unscrew the lid. There is a foil seal there.
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Then you can squeeze the mustard and it will come out of the bottle..

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Old 02-24-2009, 10:07 PM
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I'm new to the AR-15 scene and have been reading up as much as I can in prepeartion for my first build.

I just purchased a kit from M&A. Their catalog image of the kit I ordered is below.



(I ordered the 16" flatop M4, w/bayonet lug, and A2 flash suppresor)

I was planning on getting a RRA LAR-15 stripped lower (was going to call this Calguns seller tomorrow: RRA Lower).

Would others feel comfortable with this configuration or would you suggest looking at another lower to avoid the possiblity of perceived "mix ups" listed in this post?

Thanks for any opinions.
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rdiggidy View Post
I'm new to the AR-15 scene and have been reading up as much as I can in prepeartion for my first build.

I just purchased a kit from M&A. Their catalog image of the kit I ordered is below.

(I ordered the 16" flatop M4, w/bayonet lug, and A2 flash suppresor)

I was planning on getting a RRA LAR-15 stripped lower (was going to call this Calguns seller tomorrow: RRA Lower).

Would others feel comfortable with this configuration or would you suggest looking at another lower to avoid the possiblity of perceived "mix ups" listed in this post?

Thanks for any opinions.

An RRA LAR15 lower with an M&A upper cannot not form any Rock River Arms banned (or otherwise) rifle, as long as features are properly configured to avoid SB23 configurations.

[Aside from legal matters, why you're buying an M&A upper puzzles me, however, as they're not high up on the list (LMT, Bushmaster, Armalite, Colt, etc.)]
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Old 02-24-2009, 11:02 PM
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How about the Armalite AR-180A (or thereabouts) that one popular FFL is offering?

Any risk there?
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Old 02-24-2009, 11:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akguy999 View Post
How about the Armalite AR-180A (or thereabouts) that one popular FFL is offering?

Any risk there?
Yes, potentially plenty.

The Armalite AR180 is banned by name, but the 180A is not. I suppose a legal defense could be mounted based on that distinction, but is it really worth the potential risk involved?
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Old 02-25-2009, 12:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bwiese View Post
Hi Pirate,

I'm unclear about what you're implying. (??)

The issues of which I wrote do exist - perhaps they're not huge, but the risks do exists and they are best avoided, especially as it's simple to do.

Yes, these cases are defendable. I'd just like to keep people well away
from the issue since it's readily avoidable. No sense in having a fight that doesn't need to be fought.
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Old 02-25-2009, 12:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bwiese View Post
An RRA LAR15 lower with an M&A upper cannot not form any Rock River Arms banned (or otherwise) rifle, as long as features are properly configured to avoid SB23 configurations.

[Aside from legal matters, why you're buying an M&A upper puzzles me, however, as they're not high up on the list (LMT, Bushmaster, Armalite, Colt, etc.)]
Thanks for the reply.

I claim no personal knowledge of the M&A uppers (as I said I'm new to the whole game); my decision to purchase was based on several positive reviews I read about the M&A kits. Additionally numerous posts on AR15.com and other similar websites indicated that M&A uses LMT uppers and Wilson barrels for their kits. Apparently they ocassionaly use RRA uppers as well. Again this is not personal experience, but most of the people making the statements seemed to have personal experience and be fairly knowledgeable.

The most recent post I could find (without doing too much digging and just looking on AR15.com) was here: M&A Kits

A note on M&A's website in the FAQ also seems to indicate that they use LMT uppers. They state that they can't list specific lower receivers to recommend but that a list of lowers (including RRA) will match LMT uppers?? (Full FAQ here)

Again, according to others, the RRA uppers that do go out from M&A are stamped as RRA (whereas the LMT aren't stamped but do have LMT markings), if I did receive an RRA upper, would my configuration then constitute worry based on this thread?

Last edited by rdiggidy; 02-25-2009 at 12:30 AM..
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  #22  
Old 02-25-2009, 1:34 AM
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WHY am I Soooo confused with this whole thread? It is late but is anyone else confused? haha
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  #23  
Old 02-25-2009, 1:55 AM
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nope, just can't configure to the way they come from the factory in those variants, this should be a sticky since i asked this question before

Ernest
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Old 02-25-2009, 9:25 AM
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Does anyone have a screenshot or specs on the Rock River Arms LE Tactical Carbine? I've been trying to figure out how it differs from the Rock River Arms Entry Tactical that I own, but so far I've found nothing about it.
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Old 03-05-2009, 9:42 AM
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Bumping again.

Appears people may still be screwing up and ordering banned guns.

IF IT'S ON THE KASLER LIST DON'T FRIGGIN' TRY TO BUY IT - whether or not the receiver says LAR15.

These are defendable cases but we just don't need to fight Son of Harrott, etc.
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Old 03-05-2009, 9:47 AM
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I just want to be clear. If I have a RRA LR15 lower, but the rest of the build is non RRA components, you're GTG?
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Old 03-05-2009, 10:08 AM
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Why is this still an issue? AB2728 killed Kasler YEARS ago. The courts have CLEARLY said that the list would violate equal protection if the was no mechanism to add new manufactures/models to the list, and we eliminated that mechanism (thanks Jason!), YEARS ago.

This seems like a fight that is very much worth fighting, and almost a guaranteed victory with no factual issues to try (read: cheap lawsuit). When will it be time to go on the offensive? It should not be hard to get an out of state manufacturer to stand as a plaintiff. So wtf?

I'm looking at you Calguns Foundation.
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Last edited by Matt C; 03-05-2009 at 10:56 AM..
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Old 03-05-2009, 10:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PatriotnMore View Post
I just want to be clear. If I have a RRA LR15 lower, but the rest of the build is non RRA components, you're GTG?
Yup.

If your non-RRA upper looked too close to a banned RRA combination I'd keep the receipt for the upper. I doubt a cop/DA/crime lab is smart enough to differentiate between brands of uppers.
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Old 03-05-2009, 11:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackwater OPS View Post
Why is this still an issue? AB2728 killed Kasler YEARS ago.
Yes, but there's still risk of drama around 'subseries' and the RRA situation.

Quote:
The courts have CLEARLY said that the list would be violate equal protection if the was no mechanism to add new manufactures/models to the list, and we did that (thanks Jason!), YEARS ago.
The question revolves around how well the Kasler list requires identification.

Even though RRA LAR15s are off-list, the RRA Standard A2 Carbine may well pass muster for listing's sake: it's an identifiable make/model that can be avoided.

Quote:
This seems like a fight that is very much worth fighting, and almost a guaranteed victory with no factual issues to try (read: cheap lawsuit).
The problem is the case will likely revolve around a client popped for AW violation. The case will most likely go away, and the client's interests come first so there's no ethical way of stretching the case out that far.

We're bettah off just defending the odd case, they'll go away fast/cheap.

Quote:
When will it be time to go on the offensive? It should not be hard to get an out of state manufacturer to stand as a plaintiff. So wtf?

I'm looking at you Calguns Foundation.
Rather than fighting over details of series/subseries matters it'd be WAY more effective to take out the whole Roberti-Roos list. Let's hold til Nordyke and see how the world gets shaken up. We may well not have to fight fights that don't need to be fought.
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Old 03-05-2009, 11:02 AM
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Basically, the safest way to go about this is do not use a RRA brand lower. RRA uppers are fine on any brand lower except RRA and ones on the list. I have noticed there have been some complete RRA rifles being sold in the marketplace. Maybe this shouldn't be allowed as well to protect our members.
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Old 03-05-2009, 11:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackwater OPS View Post
Why is this still an issue? AB2728 killed Kasler YEARS ago. The courts have CLEARLY said that the list would violate equal protection if the was no mechanism to add new manufactures/models to the list, and we eliminated that mechanism (thanks Jason!), YEARS ago.

This seems like a fight that is very much worth fighting, and almost a guaranteed victory with no factual issues to try (read: cheap lawsuit). When will it be time to go on the offensive? It should not be hard to get an out of state manufacturer to stand as a plaintiff. So wtf?

I'm looking at you Calguns Foundation.
Yep, I'm also curious.
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Old 03-05-2009, 11:05 AM
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Here's my problem with this issue:

I built my rifle over two years ago... it's a custom-built firearm using a RRA LAR-15 lower, RRA single-stage LPK, RRA 6-position stock, RRA Entry Tactical upper with the lightweight R4 barrel, and an RRA Dominator mount. So basically, the gun is about 95% identical to the RRA entry Tactical model offered in the company's catalogue (the barrel and LPK is the only non-cosmetic thing that differs).

My issue that this thread has raised is whether my Cali-compliant rifle is too similar to the listed RRA LE Tactical Carbine. I've tried to get an answer to this, but so far have hit dead ends...

I checked the RRA website and their Fall '08 catalogue for the LE Tactical Carbine, but there is no such gun listed anymore...

I've asked here, but got no direct response from any other member...

I've searched online, but there is no detailed mention of the LE Tactical Carbine; image searches turn up current photos of the Entry Tactical model similar to what I own, and document searches turned up one old review of the LE Tactical Carbine which refers to it as a pre-'04 post-ban LE-only model.

My fear here is that the LE Tactical Carbine was phased out when the '94 Crime Control bill expired and was replaced by the currently offered Entry Tactical model... but I can't find any actual evidence of this!

As I said earlier though, my RRA is custom built... technically it's not even a true RRA Entry Tactical model; it's an RRA Whodunit model.

Obviously I don't wanna take unnecessary risks... but I also don't wanna shell out > $600 for a new upper when it's really not necessary.

How big of a risk am I really running here? I'm hoping this is reading way too far into the situation, but I wanna be sure.
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Old 03-05-2009, 11:08 AM
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Obviously I don't wanna take unnecessary risks... but I also don't wanna shell out > $600 for a new upper when it's really not necessary.
Or you can purchase a stripped lower receiver of an unlisted model of a different brand.
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Old 03-05-2009, 11:16 AM
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Or you can purchase a stripped lower receiver of an unlisted model of a different brand.
Definately the cheapest and easiest route if your worried.
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Old 03-05-2009, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
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Or you can purchase a stripped lower receiver of an unlisted model of a different brand.
True... but with the going rate of decent lowers these days, that's still a few hundred dollars that could go to ammo or another gun.

I'm not asking if there's any risk... that's a given with OLLs these days. What I'm wondering, however, is if there's a large enough risk here to necessitate paying a few hundred dollars.
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Old 03-05-2009, 11:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bwiese View Post
Yes, but there's still risk of drama around 'subseries' and the RRA situation.

The question revolves around how well the Kasler list requires identification.

Even though RRA LAR15s are off-list, the RRA Standard A2 Carbine may well pass muster for listing's sake: it's an identifiable make/model that can be avoided.
I think you are missing what I'm saying here, I am in fact talking about nullifying all of the Roberti-Roos list. Nordyke may help as it would allow us to argue that the equal protection violation also burdens a protected right, but we can and should pursue this independent from Nordyke and regardless of its outcome.

In Kasler v. Lockyer the court said the list only passed constitutional muster because the law provided:

Quote:
a mechanism for adding others [weapons not on the list] "which are only variations of these weapons, which are the same weapon but manufactured or sold by
another company under a licensing agreement, or which are new
models manufactured or sold by any company with just minor
modifications or new model numbers in order to circumvent the
[AWCA's] prohibitions"
That mechanism no longer exists.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bwiese View Post

The problem is the case will likely revolve around a client popped for AW violation. The case will most likely go away, and the client's interests come first so there's no ethical way of stretching the case out that far.

We're bettah off just defending the odd case, they'll go away fast/cheap.
Criminal court is a terrible place to make case lase, I'm talking about a civil suit (hence going on the offensive).
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Old 03-05-2009, 5:03 PM
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Old 03-05-2009, 8:22 PM
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I had a rifle that looked like one of the listed so I swapped the upper to another lower. I preferred the upper and lower matching, but it wasn't worth the risk.

I think in due time I will do a foliage green, OD or FDE build using that upper and some other accessories.
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Old 03-06-2009, 12:20 PM
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Do Leo's have pictures of ALL the listed guns, and in particular the listed RRA's?
If not,who does?

Do the listed RRA's have "LAR-15" markings ?
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Old 03-06-2009, 12:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sreiter View Post
Do Leo's have pictures of ALL the listed guns, and in particular the listed RRA's? If not,who does?
The DOJ has the outdated AWIG, sometimes known as the "DOJ Coloring Book".

That has *some* pictures, usu just of Roberti-Roos guns.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sreiter
Do the listed RRA's have "LAR-15" markings ?
As far as we know, all RRA rifles use RRA lowers marked with LAR-15.

If an encounter results in querying the gun, it most likely will be regarded as a LAR15 and not one of the Kasler-banned entities.

Should further drama ensue - let's assume BB'd 10rd mag or featureless + MonsterMan grip - it would behoove the owner to not be too close to one of the banned entity's feature lists with a real RRA upper. If it's a non RRA upper, even though it looks about the same as one of the banned entities, it's not an RRA <banned_gun>, it's an parts gun thrown on an RRA lower.
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