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 If I have a registered SBR lower and two different <16" uppers . . . . .
VivaLaFrance  [Member]
11/6/2010 12:45:29 AM
Wanted to know what the deal is with this. Let's say I have a bunch of ARs. One is a registered SBR lower with an 8" upper on it. But I also have a complete lower with no upper on it. If I ended up getting another <16" upper, kept it OFF the complete lower and only swapped it on to the registered SBR lower when going out to the range, could I still end up having issues?

I suppose if I have to I could pay the $200 and register another lower as an SBR.
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spanky99l  [Member]
11/6/2010 1:14:22 AM
Originally Posted By VivaLaFrance:
Wanted to know what the deal is with this. Let's say I have a bunch of ARs. One is a registered SBR lower with an 8" upper on it. But I also have a complete lower with no upper on it. If I ended up getting another <16" upper, kept it OFF the complete lower and only swapped it on to the registered SBR lower when going out to the range, could I still end up having issues?

I suppose if I have to I could pay the $200 and register another lower as an SBR.


I wouldn't think so.

As long as you swap it onto the "registered" lower you would be fine. Also as long as you keep the upper that is "attached" to your paperwork you are fine. The switch is NOT permanent.

Will
r-2-k-b-a  [Member]
11/6/2010 4:54:06 PM
Originally Posted By VivaLaFrance:
Wanted to know what the deal is with this. Let's say I have a bunch of ARs. One is a registered SBR lower with an 8" upper on it. But I also have a complete lower with no upper on it. If I ended up getting another <16" upper, kept it OFF the complete lower and only swapped it on to the registered SBR lower when going out to the range, could I still end up having issues?

I suppose if I have to I could pay the $200 and register another lower as an SBR.




As long as the non-nfa lowers you have are a complete rifle with their top half installed, I wouldnt worry about it.


crazyelece  [Member]
11/6/2010 9:37:54 PM
you need as many legal uppers as complete lowers. So:

1 sbr lower, 2 short uppers, any number of complete legal rifles = good

1 sbr lower, 2 short uppers, any number of complete legal rifles, 1 complete lower w/ no legal upper to go with it = bad
VivaLaFrance  [Member]
11/7/2010 7:02:19 AM
Originally Posted By crazyelece:
you need as many legal uppers as complete lowers. So:

1 sbr lower, 2 short uppers, any number of complete legal rifles = good

1 sbr lower, 2 short uppers, any number of complete legal rifles, 1 complete lower w/ no legal upper to go with it = bad


Hmm - maybe I should get a totally fucked up, cheap, non-working legal upper to slap on the lonely non-registered lower just in case.
graysonp  [Team Member]
11/7/2010 9:14:44 AM
Originally Posted By crazyelece:
you need as many legal uppers as complete lowers. So:

1 sbr lower, 2 short uppers, any number of complete legal rifles = good

1 sbr lower, 2 short uppers, any number of complete legal rifles, 1 complete lower w/ no legal upper to go with it = bad


This, you should not have a standard lower with no upper if you have multiple SBR uppers and only 1 SBR. You need to be able to completely assemble all of your rifles legally. Once you meet this requirement, having an extra SBR upper is fine.

Originally Posted By VivaLaFrance:
Hmm - maybe I should get a totally fucked up, cheap, non-working legal upper to slap on the lonely non-registered lower just in case.


Why? Can you find a complete upper that doesn't work for under $200? I would think you would be better off putting your extra lower on a form 1 so you have 2 SBR lowers and you can run whatever setup you want. You can still posess a 16"+ upper and use it whenever you want on your SBR lowers. You're going to build the gun out anyways (I assume) so there's no reason to buy a junk upper just to make it legal for a few months.
ak_  [Member]
11/7/2010 1:43:41 PM
Originally Posted By crazyelece:
you need as many legal uppers as complete lowers. So:

1 sbr lower, 2 short uppers, any number of complete legal rifles = good

1 sbr lower, 2 short uppers, any number of complete legal rifles, 1 complete lower w/ no legal upper to go with it = bad



I do not believe this is correct. Because you have a legal use for the uppers on your registered lower.
Say you have one AR and two VFGs, but you also own a Glock. Does that make you in possession of an unregistered AOW?
TitleII  [Member]
11/7/2010 2:41:28 PM
If my reading comprehension is good today, then it looks like you need a pistol lower to make yourself feel better.

Cheap lower and a pistol buffer tube can be had for 125 bucks. For 75 bucks more you can add a LPK and a recoil spring and buffer and actually have a working pistol and no ATF worries.

Bottom line...you need a legal way to assemble everything in your possession.
Banger  [Team Member]
11/7/2010 3:25:09 PM
Everything here is speculative. Prima facie evidence (constructive intent/possession) only applies if you have a short barreled upper and do NOT own a registered SBR.

Unless you intend on committing a crime, and having your property legally searched, you have nothing to worry about.

If your worried, just put the SBR and associated uppers in a locked case, separate from your other AR-15's.
TheSpaniard  [Member]
11/7/2010 9:28:43 PM
None of the answers so far has been correct.

The short answer is that there is probably no precedent completely on point that will apply to all jurisdictions (i.e. a Supreme Court decision ––- note: the Thompson Center case is helpful but does not definitively resolve the issue raised by the OP), that different jurisdictions (both state and federal) can reach their own answers on this issue, and that the ATF's opinion on this issue would be highly persuasive to a court (but not binding on it).

IIRC, there is no mens rea element to the NFA. Intent is not the issue; a court will not ask whether you intended to possess an unregistered SBR, but rather merely whether you possessed one. Constructive possession occurs when one possesses all the parts necessary to complete the whole. If it were up to me, I would go the safe route and ensure that I had a pistol or SBR lower for every short upper I owned.

YMMV, and jurisdictions would not likely reach the same result when faced with this issue. Do some research to see what case law there might be in your State, as well as in your Federal District and Circuit.
TheSpaniard  [Member]
11/7/2010 9:30:23 PM
Originally Posted By Banger:
Prima facie evidence (constructive intent/possession) only applies if you have a short barreled upper and do NOT own a registered SBR.


The above sentence didn't make sense to me at all. Do you understand the meaning of the legalese you are using?
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