Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #1
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    Default Question about building an AR Pistol.

    I keep hearing mixed information on this but the majority consensus from what I've heard, been answered is that if I buy a brand new stripped lower and it's transferred as a lower I can build either a rifle or a pistol out of it but not change it once it's assembled. Is that correct? (Trying to buy a stripped to build a pistol).

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Question about building an AR Pistol.

    Quote Originally Posted by NonLinearEdits View Post
    I keep hearing mixed information on this but the majority consensus from what I've heard, been answered is that if I buy a brand new stripped lower and it's transferred as a lower I can build either a rifle or a pistol out of it but not change it once it's assembled. Is that correct? (Trying to buy a stripped to build a pistol).
    Yes.
    With caveat. Pistol can be converted to rifle and back again legally. Rifle to pistol makes it an SBR which requires a tax stamp beforehand or is a felony and loss of firearms rights if caught.

    Also, you happen live in the same township as me. I'd be happy to help you if it's your first build, or loan you an AR armorers wrench and ar vice blocks.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Question about building an AR Pistol.

    Quote Originally Posted by NonLinearEdits View Post
    I keep hearing mixed information on this but the majority consensus from what I've heard, been answered is that if I buy a brand new stripped lower and it's transferred as a lower I can build either a rifle or a pistol out of it but not change it once it's assembled. Is that correct? (Trying to buy a stripped to build a pistol).
    If you build it as a pistol, you can change it later to a rifle and back and forth at your pleasure. If you build it as a rifle first, it is technically always a rifle. (yes I know it's stupid)


    Direct from the ATF->
    Assuming that the firearm was originally a pistol, the resulting firearm, with an attached shoulder stock, is not an NFA firearm if it has a barrel of 16 inches or more in length.

    Pursuant to ATF Ruling 2011-4, such rifle may later be unassembled and again configured as a pistol. Such configuration would not be considered a *weapon made from a rifle* as defined by 26 U.S.C. 5845(a)(4).

    [26 U.S.C. 5845, 27 CFR 479.11]
    Link:https://www.atf.gov/firearms/qa/can-...tering-firearm
    "It seems that the Constitution is more or less guidelines than actual rules"
    My feedback: http://forum.pafoa.org/showthread.php?t=305685

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Question about building an AR Pistol.

    Quote Originally Posted by icp4life162005 View Post
    Yes.
    With caveat. Pistol can be converted to rifle and back again legally. Rifle to pistol makes it an SBR which requires a tax stamp beforehand or is a felony and loss of firearms rights if caught.

    Also, you happen live in the same township as me. I'd be happy to help you if it's your first build, or loan you an AR armorers wrench and ar vice blocks.
    Actually it does not make it an SBR if you remove the rifle stock first. BUT it does make it "a weapon made from a rifle" which cannot be done legally unless you do a Form 1 and pay the tax
    Ron USAF Ret E-8 FFL01/SOT3 NRA Benefactor Member

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Question about building an AR Pistol.

    Quote Originally Posted by Xringshooter View Post
    Actually it does not make it an SBR if you remove the rifle stock first. BUT it does make it "a weapon made from a rifle" which cannot be done legally unless you do a Form 1 and pay the tax
    Did you actually read what I wrote?
    A rifle to a pistol requires a form one TAX STAMP, at which point is considered an SBR.
    Not sure why this needed repeated 4 times now.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Question about building an AR Pistol.

    I read what you said and it wasn't completely correct. What is an "SBR"? It is a Short Barreled RIFLE.

    Please read Form 1 Block 4b (Type of firearm to be made (See definition 1c)) then read Form 1 paragraph 1c (Firearm definition) and note that it says "(4) a weapon made from a rifle if such weapon as modified has an overall length of less than 26 inches or a barrel or barrels of less than 16 inches in length."

    Notice this uses the word "weapon" and nothing else. You can do a Form 1 and the Type of firearm can be "Pistol" or "Handgun". You can take a rifle and remove the action from the stock, cut the barrel down to less than 16 inches and put the action into a handgun stock (think of the Remington XP100) and turn it into a handgun, BUT, you must pay for the tax stamp BEFORE you cut the barrel on the rifle action. If you cut the barrel before having an approved Form 1 then you have made an illegal SBR (a short barrel on a rifle action be it a single shot, bolt or semi auto action). I have already discussed this with the NFA branch due to a question from a customer and they said that is correct, a form 1 and the tax stamp is required before a person turns a rifle into a handgun.

    I also asked them about turning an AR rifle into a AR pistol if the AR was transferred to the owner as a rifle on the 4473. They again said that by law, it would require the tax stamp. They were honest though and said that they knew of no way to prove a virgin AR receiver was built into a rifle and then taken apart and reconfigured into a pistol.
    Ron USAF Ret E-8 FFL01/SOT3 NRA Benefactor Member

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Question about building an AR Pistol.

    I may be wrong, I think those laws were aimed at sawed-offs, its writers never in a position to foresee the AR platform. That's why it seems silly today.
    There are only two kinds of guns. Those I have and those I want.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Question about building an AR Pistol.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bang View Post
    I may be wrong, I think those laws were aimed at sawed-offs, its writers never in a position to foresee the AR platform. That's why it seems silly today.
    ^^^That's very true since those laws were generated in the early 1930's to "control" the civilian ownership/use of highly lethal short barreled weapons and automatic weapons (and those dastardly silencers). The BATFE as a whole really had no good advisors when it came to the AR platform, and because of it's modularity, really didn't know what portion of the design to designate as the "firearm" because neither the lower nor the upper can easily perform the function of ignition by itself.

    I am willing to bet they didn't even ask Stoner his opinion, and I wonder what he would said. That said, I wonder if the ATF had talked to him, if a semi auto AR would have even been released to the public or would it have been added immediately to the NFA. Other "military" weapons were transformed to civilian use and we've had other semi-auto rifles and handguns through the years but really never anything quite like the AR platform.
    Ron USAF Ret E-8 FFL01/SOT3 NRA Benefactor Member

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Question about building an AR Pistol.

    Apparently saying it 3 times that a rifle to a pistol requires a tax stamp just isnt clear enough. Keep over explaining, I've already said it, and now you've confirmed it.
    If it was born a rifle it was born a rifle and it needs papers to he anything else legally. Stop pissing in the wind and trying to telling me it's raining while offering me an umbrella. This whole dialogue has been asinine.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Question about building an AR Pistol.

    Arguing with the resident "X"pert on the subject is also asinine.

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