AR15.Com Archives
 What is legal under federal law?
ezzrider  [Member]
11/1/2011 9:00:25 AM EST
I am new to these forums and am considering assembling an AR15 configuration. Someone in another forum suggested these forums for this information. Under Federal law what is legal in configuring or assembling lower receives with uppers and various barrel lengths and overall lengths?

I am over 21 and not a prohibited person. I am not looking to make an NFA or Class III weapon. That means no SBR (short barreled rifle). I was hoping to get input on what can be done without making an NFA or Class III weapon that must be registered. Again I am looking for input on the Federal and not State laws. Thanks for your input.
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Koshinn  [Member]
11/1/2011 5:02:37 AM EST
Originally Posted By ezzrider:
I am new to these forums and am considering assembling an AR15 configuration. Someone in another forum suggested these forums for this information. Under Federal law what is legal in configuring or assembling lower receives with uppers and various barrel lengths and overall lengths?


16" barrel, measured to the edge of the threading, unless the muzzle device is permanently installed via pin/weld, then you can measure to the tip of the muzzle device.
jaqufrost  [Team Member]
11/1/2011 5:27:13 AM EST
If you want to go shorter than 16" you can file a form 1 and pay your $200 tax. When your tax stamp comes back you can build your Short Barreled Rifle (SBR). I would reccomend a 16" or longer barrel for your first AR.

No new full auto's can be built for civilians, so were all limited to semi autos.

The easiest way to "build" your first AR is to start with a kit. Delton, J&T, and Palmetto State Armory all offer pretty good budget kits.

Your lower reciever must be transferred through an instate Federal Firearms License (FFL - pretty much your local gun shop). All of the other parts can be shipped to your door.

ETA: Overall length must be 26" with the stock extended.
brzusa  [Member]
11/1/2011 5:32:35 AM EST
NFA Firearms Act Handbook

Look on the second link on the right hand corner for a PDF - "What are "Firearms" Under the NFA" - find section 2.1.3 for Rifle
chibajoe  [Member]
11/1/2011 5:34:34 AM EST
A short barreled rifle is a rifle (which is defined as a shoulder fired, rifled bore firearm) with a barrel length of less than 16", or an overall length of less than 26", or any weapon made from a rifle falling into the same length parameters (like a pistol made from a rifle). In measuring barrel length you do it from the closed breech to the muzzle, see 27 CFR sec. 179.11. To measure
overall length do so along, "the distance between the extreme ends of the weapon measured along a line parallel to the center line of the bore." 27 CFR sec. 179.11. On a folding stock weapon you measure with the stock extended, provided the stock is not readily detachable, and the weapon is meant to be fired from the shoulder.
thepinkmist  [Member]
11/1/2011 7:45:00 AM EST
Originally Posted By ezzrider:
I am new to these forums and am considering assembling an AR15 configuration. Someone in another forum suggested these forums for this information. Under Federal law what is legal in configuring or assembling lower receives with uppers and various barrel lengths and overall lengths?


in addition to the rifles you may also make an ar-15 pistol (no buttstock attached, only the buffer tube) which can have any length barrel you want. no paperwork is required since it is considered a pistol, provided the lower has never been assembled as a rifle and you are old enough to own a pistol (state laws apply)

what exactly do you want?
jaqufrost  [Team Member]
11/1/2011 7:55:25 AM EST

Originally Posted By thepinkmist:
Originally Posted By ezzrider:
I am new to these forums and am considering assembling an AR15 configuration. Someone in another forum suggested these forums for this information. Under Federal law what is legal in configuring or assembling lower receives with uppers and various barrel lengths and overall lengths?


in addition to the rifles you may also make an ar-15 pistol (no buttstock attached, only the buffer tube) which can have any length barrel you want. no paperwork is required since it is considered a pistol, provided the lower has never been assembled as a rifle and you are old enough to own a pistol (state laws apply)

what exactly do you want?

The age issue is a good point. The way federal law is written you cannot buy a stripped lower from an FFL unless you are 21 or older. You can buy a stripped lower from an individual (such as a random person at a gun show, or a local instate person off of the equipment exchange) before you are 21.

ezzrider  [Member]
11/1/2011 8:49:56 AM EST
Thanks for your responses. Maybe I should add a little more information. I am over 21 and have no prohibiting factors. I am not asking about a full auto nor do I want to make an NFA weapon that requires registration. I do understand that a "rifle" must have a barrel length of 16" and an overall length of 26". I was advised in another forum that you can build an AR15 pistol first then later covert that into a rifle but you must have the pistol first. I have also read the you can have a kit with all the parts to make either a pistol or rifle from the start and make either a pistol or rifle at will. Then again I have read if you have an AR15 rifle and a shorter than 16" barrel in close proximity that is illegal. This gets sort of confusing.

warpig8654  [Team Member]
11/1/2011 10:21:29 AM EST
If you are in FL as your profile states then you can own NFA or non-NFA ARs, AR pistols, collapsible or folding stocks, bayo lug & threaded barrel with any muzzle device that you wish. However, check your local laws and ordinances to make sure that none of the above are prohibited. Welcome to the forum.
evlblkwpnz  [Team Member]
11/1/2011 10:57:05 AM EST
Get a lower, get a SBR stamp for it, and when you have the stamp in hand with the lower properly engraved with your info.... get that short barrel that you know you really want. I wish I had done this from the beginning instead of waiting so long.
ezzrider  [Member]
11/1/2011 4:37:06 PM EST
Again I am not looking to make an NFA or Class III weapon. That means no SBR (short barreled rifle). I was hoping to get input on what can be done without making an NFA or Class III weapon that must be registered. Again I am looking for input on the Federal and not State laws. Thanks for your input.
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