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Posted: 6/10/2003 10:38:54 PM EDT
I have a pre-ban Sporter. I was thinking of adding a few things to it. Rail, bi-pod, maybe new foreend, nothing drastic. If I get an upper only with the features and keep the original forend stock and swap them based on activity, is that legal? As long as when and if I ever sell the thing I sell it with the original upper and lower together?? I thought I saw this discussed before but couldn't find it.
Link Posted: 6/10/2003 10:42:59 PM EDT
An ATF puke wrote an opinion letter, non binding, that selling a stripped lower makes it post ban. The law does not support that position. You can do what you want to it. Hell, even if you bought a stripped gun, who's gonna know, and even more importantly, who cares?
Link Posted: 6/11/2003 7:54:53 AM EDT
As long as the rifle is in preban config, it stays grandfathered. You don't have to keep the ORIGINAL upper if you don't want to, just a preban upper. As far as the idiotic ATF opinion, if the gun (which is the serialized lower) is sold with more than 2 features (meaning if you sold a lower with the collapasable stock) it will STILL be grandfathered. Remember that opinions are like assholse, and this from the ATF one stinks, and excretes a peice of shit "ruling".
Link Posted: 6/11/2003 4:16:15 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Hydguy: As long as the rifle is in preban config, it stays grandfathered. You don't have to keep the ORIGINAL upper if you don't want to, just a preban upper. As far as the idiotic ATF opinion, if the gun (which is the serialized lower) is sold with more than 2 features (meaning if you sold a lower with the collapasable stock) it will STILL be grandfathered.
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NOT true - because a lower alone is not semi-automatic, so no longer meets the definition of a 'semi-auto assault weapon' - even with a telestock attached.
Link Posted: 6/11/2003 4:49:05 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/11/2003 4:55:56 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Circuits:
Originally Posted By Hydguy: As long as the rifle is in preban config, it stays grandfathered. You don't have to keep the ORIGINAL upper if you don't want to, just a preban upper. As far as the idiotic ATF opinion, if the gun (which is the serialized lower) is sold with more than 2 features (meaning if you sold a lower with the collapasable stock) it will STILL be grandfathered.
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NOT true - because a lower alone is not semi-automatic, so no longer meets the definition of a 'semi-auto assault weapon' - even with a telestock attached.
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How so? THe defining features of an "assault weapon" are 5: Bayo lug, Flash Supressor, Ability to accept Removable Standard capacity magazine, pistol grip, and Collapsable/folding/telescoping stock. If the weapon has 2 or more of these features, it's an assault weapon. And the LOWER is the firearm, per the ATF, so a preban with a collapsable stock is an "assault weapon", as set by the definition of the ATF, even if sold without th upper. The opinion, even though given by the lead of the tech branch, is still an unproven opinion.
Link Posted: 6/11/2003 9:03:21 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/12/2003 3:46:18 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Troy: A lower, by itself, regardless of configuration, is NOT a "semi-automatic rifle", despite the fact that it IS legally the "firearm." I know you want to believe that there is no difference between these two terms, but any lawyer, or anyone else familiar with law, will be able to explain to you that these terms have different legal definitions. -Troy
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Troy, if the lower is not classified as a semiautomatic rifle, then what keeps people from changing them into a pistol? It's illegal to make an AR pistol from a rifle, because you will have made a SBR,corect?
Link Posted: 6/12/2003 4:19:18 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/12/2003 6:07:32 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Hydguy: Troy, if the lower is not classified as a semiautomatic rifle, then what keeps people from changing them into a pistol? It's illegal to make an AR pistol from a rifle, because you will have made a SBR,corect?
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Further, you can use a completely stock AR lower to make a bolt or pump action rifle, by leaving the gas system off the upper. That's one of the reasons a firearm has to be a COMPLETE working firearm, or COMPLETE parts kit in order to be grandfathered. The "complete firearm" does not apply to the [b]named[/b] assault weapons, such as a Colt AR-15, or IMI Uzi, or FN FAL - those receivers, or even their bare frames or receivers are "semi-auto assault weapons" regardless of their configuration or state of assembly, by virtue of their manufacturer and model name. Anything not specifically named on the list, however, had to have been a complete working firearm or complete kit to be grandfathered.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 5:29:16 AM EDT
If it has to be a "complete" firearm, why do you have to do an FFL transfer of a completly stripped lower? It's incapable of firing, even if you drop an upper on it?? These types of "opinions" are just ways of making laws on the fly, without following the LETTER of the law. The law only requires that the weapon have been configured in the banned status PRIOR to Sept 13,1994. It says nothing about having to be sold in said configuration after the ban. The BATFE has been interpeting the law in detriment to gun owners since this crap first started, and has made criminals out of law abiding people, which is, of course, the whole idea. But I just hope (like Troy and MOST other AR owners) that this will be a non issue next September.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 3:19:25 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 9:57:04 PM EDT
So I guess the answer is I can put just about anything on it (except NFA stuff) since it is Pre-ban AND also registered in CA. as long as I keep it and the pieces?
Link Posted: 6/14/2003 4:46:59 AM EDT
Yes. Troy- I understand the minuet differences that we are talking about, but this is a case of the ATF having their cake and eating it too. They make these decisions and instantly make people "criminals" by changing their interpation of the law. The manufacturing of post ban lowers would STILL be legal using my interpation because the lower still only has 2 of the defining features, which are the 2 most desirable features of the AR, the pistol grip and the mag well. The difference is that if a criminal posseses even a stripped lower, without the fire contol parts in it (hell I could even be a damaged, unusable lower) ad STILL be convicted of possession of a firearm, since the lower, in and of itself, is the gun. All I'm saying is that the ATF is making some of these "opinions" on the fly, and will make the interpation that suits them at the time, regardless of law.
Link Posted: 6/17/2003 4:02:53 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Hydguy: The manufacturing of post ban lowers would STILL be legal using my interpation because the lower still only has 2 of the defining features, which are the 2 most desirable features of the AR, the pistol grip and the mag well. The difference is that if a criminal posseses even a stripped lower, without the fire contol parts in it (hell I could even be a damaged, unusable lower) ad STILL be convicted of possession of a firearm, since the lower, in and of itself, is the gun.
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The detachable magazine is not a feature - it's part of the definition along with semi-automatic. The pistol grip is the ONE defined, allowable "AW" feature on a post-ban AR type. Under the law, you could not be convicted for mere possession of a post-ban lower, with a telestock attached, and a pistol grip, even if it DID have the fire control components installed. Without an upper installed, it's not a SEMI-AUTOMATIC firearm. Until you've got a complete firearm, or complete kit in your possession which is 1) semi-automatic and 2) has the ability to accept a detachable magazine and 3) has more than ONE of the listed features (here they would be pistol grip and telestock), then you are not, by definition, in possession of a "semi-auto assault weapon". If you're in possession of an "SAAW", then the provenance and grandfathered status of the receiver are your defense or lack thereof. In the above example, if you also owned an upper with a gas tube, ATF might be able to make some sort of 'constructive intent' case against you. If that upper with the gas tube, etc was also in the same box/container with that lower, it'd be a complete post-ban SAAW by definition and there'd be no 'intent' necessary to prove. A criminal in possesion of a stripped firearm receiver is in possession of a firearm, yes - but not in possession of a "SAAW". Prohibited persons are not allowed to possess any firearms at all, while persons like you are me are simply not allowed to possess a post-ban "SAAW".
All I'm saying is that the ATF is making some of these "opinions" on the fly, and will make the interpation that suits them at the time, regardless of law.
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That is undoubtedly true - unfortunately, that's the function of a regulatory agency, which is to determine and define, within the limits laid out in the enacting legislation exactly what the law means in practice. If you can prove to a judge that the ATF's interpretation has exceeded the limits of the enacting legislation, then you'll win and the ATF will lose. Until that happens, ATF's arbitrary opinions have the force of law.
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