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 Standard AR-15 Carbine buffer tube OK on pistol?
Desert__Punk  [Member]
2/13/2010 2:20:48 PM
I don’t remember what the ATF ruling is in regards to using a standard AR-15 carbine buffer tube (without stock) on a pistol. What is the answer? And does anyone have a ATF letter from the Tech Branch.
RandyStacyE  [Member]
2/13/2010 3:40:25 PM
It's fine to use any buffer tube because a buffer tube is NOT a stock.

People will tell you that it would be wise to not have a spare stock lying around that could readily be applied to the buffer tube. Many will also suggest that you modify the buffer tube so that no one can say that the tube 'can' readily accept a stock.

Many people were saying that a bumper on the rear end of a stock 'could' be considered bad, but the BATF evidently stated what is also common sense ... a rubber bumper on the end of a buffer tube is NOT a stock.
MJL  [Team Member]
2/13/2010 6:06:20 PM
This issue at hand is not the word "stock". The legal definition of a rifle that the ATF uses does not include the word "stock" or a description of a "stock" The definition they use is based on how the gun is intended to be used. ...a weapon designed or redesigned, made or remade, and intended to be fired from the shoulder ...
If you build it with the intent of firing it from your shoulder, then it's a rifle.
Adding a traditional stock to your receiver extension just makes that intent obvious and undeniable.

In my totally un-professional opinion, you can probably use any extension you want, so long as it is not obviously intended to be used in such a way that it facilitates firing your gun from your shoulder. Most people just slide a sleeve of some type over the tube.
I bought an RRA pistol tube direct from RRA for 25 bucks. It's the standard carbine length length so it works with standard carbine springs and buffers, but it can't accept an AR stock.

A lot of people use the carbine receiver extensions because they are more readily available and less expensive, not because they have any intent of secretly sliding a stock on there. If someone hasn't already asked the ATF about this specific issue then it might be worth writing them a letter. Your intent here is obviously to comply with the law and you would be asking them how to best go about doing that. It' a lot better use of a letter than asking them how you can skirt the law and avoid getting in trouble, like so many other people seem to want to do.

Also, the whole cane-tip (rubber bumper) thing is widely misunderstood. There are multiple recent threads here where the guy who wrote that original letter to the ATF explains that they told him the cane-tip was OK because he was using it to keep his gun from sliding around on the floor of his safe and to keep carbon from blowing out the back of the tube when shooting. It had nothing to do with shooting the gun from his shoulder.
Big-Bore  [Team Member]
2/13/2010 9:01:28 PM
I had a letter tacked here for a long time but it went away for some reason. The letter from the ATFE said in no uncertain terms, you can use any buffer tube you want so long as you did not have a stock on hand which would make it an illegal SBR. Constructive intent and that sort of thing.
Here's the deal. Does that mean you cannot own a stock that could fit the pistol? Yes and no. Yes in the since if you had the pistol and the stock and no other rifles that the stock could be used on, then the only way it could be assembled would be on the pistol, ergo, constructive intent. If you own rifles that the stock could be used on, whether you have it on there or not, then you are OK because constructive intent is for when the ONLY way it can be assembled on a weapon would make it an illegal weapon. Since it could be used on the rifles, it would not be illegal to own the stock even if it could be used on the pistol too, just make sure you never put it on there unless you do the SBR paperwork first, which I highly recommend if you are allowed.
I like my pistols, but the SBRs are just as much fun and feel a whole lot better.
JesseCJC  [Team Member]
2/14/2010 4:59:53 AM
just pay the 20 bucks for a smooth pistol only extension and be done with it. Never have a worry or press your luck.
da_shotcaller  [Member]
3/21/2010 11:47:39 AM
I remember seeing a thread about this also but for some reason I can't find it anymore. I started looking for it yesterday after someone told me it's not legal. But if I remember correctly it's legal as long as you don't have a stock readily available or if it's modified not to accept a stock. I hope I'm right on this one.
AKsRule  [Team Member]
3/22/2010 7:49:08 PM
Originally Posted By Big-Bore:
I had a letter tacked here for a long time but it went away for some reason. The letter from the ATFE said in no uncertain terms, you can use any buffer tube you want so long as you did not have a stock on hand which would make it an illegal SBR. Constructive intent and that sort of thing.



Here she be.....






rjrivero  [Member]
3/23/2010 12:45:39 AM
Does any one else think it would be helpful to have all these ATF Letters in a tac at the top of this section?

Maybe they could be added to the "ATF Ruling on Vertical Foregrips" at the top?

This letter and the cane tip letter would be just two that I can think of off the top of my head that would be a good reference.
da_shotcaller  [Member]
3/23/2010 12:14:45 PM
Thanks for the letter atleast now i'll feel at ease.
bfips  [Team Member]
3/23/2010 5:56:46 PM
Originally Posted By rjrivero:
Does any one else think it would be helpful to have all these ATF Letters in a tac at the top of this section?



I think all ATF letters should be in a tac at the top or in a "ATF letter" thread at the top.
wildturl1  [Team Member]
3/25/2010 6:44:15 PM
I've used the Ace Pistol Buffer kit on several builds, it uses a carbine buffer and comes with everything you need including the foam sleeve. Directly from Ace or Midway sells them too for $59.00.
rjrivero  [Member]
3/25/2010 7:17:42 PM
Originally Posted By bfips:
Originally Posted By rjrivero:
Does any one else think it would be helpful to have all these ATF Letters in a tac at the top of this section?



I think all ATF letters should be in a tac at the top or in a "ATF letter" thread at the top.


Is there a "formal process" to asking for these letters to get Tacked to the top of this forum?
LastRites  [Member]
3/26/2010 10:04:21 AM
Originally Posted By rjrivero:
Originally Posted By bfips:
Originally Posted By rjrivero:
Does any one else think it would be helpful to have all these ATF Letters in a tac at the top of this section?



I think all ATF letters should be in a tac at the top or in a "ATF letter" thread at the top.


Is there a "formal process" to asking for these letters to get Tacked to the top of this forum?


Ya to a moderator who cares, and he feels if it's worthy.
ander254  [Team Member]
3/26/2010 10:29:48 AM
i like the spikes pistol kit. comes with a T2 buffer to boot.