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Question about SBR rules

Discussion in 'NFA & Class III Discussion' started by Duck L'Orange, Oct 30, 2015.

  1. Duck L'Orange

    Duck L'Orange Sharpshooter

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    So, I understand that an SBR is basically a rifle with a barrel length of 16", and overall length of less than (idk some number). However, I see a lot of rifle-caliber guns (AR's, CZ Scorpion clones, lever actions, etc) labeled, marketed, and regulated as "pistols". Hell, some of them even have stocks on them.

    My question is, how do manufacturers and owners get away with not registering these as NFA firearms and not paying tax on them? It seems to me like these "pistols" walk and quack like a duck (er, rifle). They're rifle calibers, have stocks ("intended to be fired from the shoulder"), have barrels of around 10" or so, and yet are legally bought and sold as "pistols". What gives?

    Also, as a part 2 to my question, what the hell makes an sbr/sbs so "dangerous" that it needs additional regulation? Of course, I'd like "their" reasoning, not necessarily your personal opinion. I just feel like it's ridiculous that an essentially less-lethal weapon than its full sized counterparts is considered more dangerous.
     
  2. SoonerP226

    SoonerP226 Sharpshooter

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    Caliber isn't the defining characteristic that separates rifle from pistol, it's whether or not it's supposed to be fired from the shoulder. Basically, it's the shoulder stock that separates rifle from pistol. It was defined in NFA34:
    ETA: This isn't really new--check out the Remington XP-100. It was a bolt-action pistol offered in rifle calibers, but it didn't have any accommodation for a shoulder stock, so it was a pistol rather than a short-barreled rifle.

    That's also one reason AR pistols have different buffer tubes, and why the SIG brace was being reviewed by the ATF--if it could be considered a shoulder stock, then using it would turn your AR pistol into an unregistered SBR...
     
  3. Jack T.

    Jack T. Sharpshooter

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    If the *intent* was to use it to circumvent the NFA laws, THEN the ATF could say you had an unregistered SBR.
     
  4. Fyrtwuck

    Fyrtwuck Sharpshooter

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    An SBR has a barrel less than 16" and a buttstock.

    A "pistol" like you're talking about has a barrel less than 16" and no buttstock. In recent years the "Sig brace" has become popular and BATFE has been wishy washy about whether it can be fired from the shoulder or not. In one minute they say it's a shoulder stock and the next it's not. If my information is correct, Sig Sauer got into a lawsuit over the issue.

    You can thank the gangsters of the 20's and 30's for the creation of the National Firearms Act of 1934.
     
  5. Jack T.

    Jack T. Sharpshooter

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    If this is confusing, wait until you realize that some firearms are just "firearms" and some are "any other weapons."

    And a Rossi Ranch Hand is a pistol, but turning a Rossi lever gun *into* a Ranch Hand without the paperwork is a violation.

    Don't you feel safer now?
     
  6. SoonerP226

    SoonerP226 Sharpshooter

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    Is there an universe in which ATF wouldn't at least try to claim that your intent was to circumvent the NFA? After all, this is the same agency that claims "once a machinegun, always a machinegune" to keep us from buying M14 receivers...
     

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