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Posted: 2/15/2006 2:53:17 PM EDT
When you legally acquire an AR SBR, is the SBR the barrelled upper, the barrel only or the whole gun? My reason for asking, particularly about AR's is; if you have an SBR and want to change uppers, can you do it or not?

Thanks,
WKM
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 2:58:24 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/15/2006 3:10:41 PM EDT by GA-Dawg]
The registered item and the only thing to keep you out of jail is having a lower receiver on a form 1. The barrels as I understand it can be exchanged as long as they are not shorter than stated on the form. THis requires a $200 tax stamp.

Edit to add: "lower"
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 3:02:25 PM EDT
Actually for AR type firearms the lower reciever is the SBR, or registered firearm. As for the upper debate on changing barrel sizes, I havent seen a clear enough answer to say what is exactly right. I know alot of people in the NFA section of the forum say when building a SBR on a form 1 they say to list the barrel size that will most likely stay on the gun, and they also have said deviating from that barrel size isnt a big deal as long as you have the stamp for SBR on that lower reciever. I have also heard from my reasearch that if you wish to change barrel sizes you could also send a letter of intent to ATF to update the record on your SBR.

If I FUBARD something Im sure someone here will correct me.
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 3:12:12 PM EDT
When I filed my SRB paperwork, I was able to put "Less than 16" barrel" and "Less than 26" overall length". That way, I can put any length barreled upper on the Colt_SBR.

I hear, they won't allow that anymore.

I would suggest, mark the shortest length barrel you ever plan on putting on the SBR. I'm sure, you can always go longer but not shorter that way.

______________________



Link Posted: 2/15/2006 3:12:44 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/15/2006 3:17:29 PM EDT by WKM]
I guess that makes sense, being that the lower is numbered. I wonder then if you could have more than one upper for the licensed lower. Say for instance, if I removed my SBR upper to temporarily use a 20" barrelled upper on the lower. SBR, just saw your post and that answers lots of questions. GA Dawg and Glockin it, thanks for the info. I think i'm beginning to understand some of this.

WKM
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 3:33:28 PM EDT
Go as short or as long as you want on a SBR as long as you have the upper that the form 1 specifies is suppose to be there. Say you have a form 1 that says bbl length is: 11.5" but you want to try a 7.5" out. Just stick it on the SBR lower and go for it. Now you must still have in your possesion the 11.5" upper. If you really like the 7.5 write a letter to the ATF and tell them you are permantly changing your upper length. DO NOT have a completed lower reciever just laying around if you did this you would then be in violation of intent to build!
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 3:53:35 PM EDT

Originally Posted By silentweapon338:
Go as short or as long as you want on a SBR as long as you have the upper that the form 1 specifies is suppose to be there. Say you have a form 1 that says bbl length is: 11.5" but you want to try a 7.5" out. Just stick it on the SBR lower and go for it. Now you must still have in your possesion the 11.5" upper. If you really like the 7.5 write a letter to the ATF and tell them you are permantly changing your upper length. DO NOT have a completed lower reciever just laying around if you did this you would then be in violation of intent to build!



This brings up a question I asked in the M16 forum, and received no answers to, just suggestions that I was somehow violating protocol by asking:

If you have an AR15 (non-SBR) and a short barreled upper the ATF will reputedly shoot your dog and throw you in prison for 10 years because their version of the law is not based upon what you do, but what they think you might do (stick short upper on a non-SBR lower).

So, being a law-abiding citizen I pay my tax and register a receiver as SBR and put on it the 10" barrel that I declare on my Form 1. Only after getting back my Form 1 do I buy the 10" upper.
A while later, I decide 10" isn't that wonderful and buy a 11.5" upper (and even send off a letter to the ATF telling them that I am doing so).

My 11.5" upper arrives, and I remove the 10", replacing it with the 11.5". I place the 10" upper in my safe alongside my ... oh ... er ... um ... AR15.

Am I not now in the same position as I would have been if I had bought my 10" upper before getting back the approved Form 1? Can I possess more short uppers than the total number of registered SBR lowers that I have? -- Can't get a clear answer to this -- only the answer that people WANT to hear.

-----

Don't EVER think you understand any of this - its totally illogical. Applying logic in this area can get you into a lot of trouble.
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 4:06:37 PM EDT
I'm in the same boat right now. I have a Colt H-Bar and I'm in the process of buying a Colt 6921 SBR on Form 4. Once I get it, I may want to buy another short upper for it. If I do that, will I be in violation for having more short uppers than registered lowers?
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 8:54:12 AM EDT
The only answer I can give is that a lot of people do this, and have never had any problem.

The real answer would be to ask the BATFE -- but I'm not certain that we would want to hear their response.

IMHO - and this only an opinion - having submitted the paper work you have shown good faith and an intent to follow the law. That would make it harder for the BATFE to get any jury to believe any "constructive intent" to break the law.
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 9:10:09 AM EDT



unless the ATF already has you on radar for something else, i really don't think having an extra shorty upper would cause a problem.


Link Posted: 2/16/2006 9:58:24 AM EDT
I have heard both 'yes' and 'no' to the question of multiple uppers. I wouldnt worry about it as long as you have the registered lower. If you are really worried, send a letter detailing the barrel lengths for all your short uppers. They are then linked to the registered receiver.
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 10:57:48 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/16/2006 11:03:24 AM EDT by DevL]
You can have as many uppers as you want and they can be shorter than what is listed on your tax stamp. You can have as many calibers as you want. The ATF does not consider an upper swap a "permanant change" so as long as you keep an upper in the original caliber you do not need to notify them.

To recap what you list for length and caliber means on your Form 1 or 4 for an AR15:

You can have any caliber uppers you want. Even ones not listed on your Form.
You can have any length uppers you want including shorter than is listed.
You can have as many uppers as you want. Any caliber any length from 1" to 30" whatever you want.

You can be arrested for murder tomorrow because you have an SBR and smell funny. That does not mean you did anything illegal or will be convicted. The ATF can charge you with anything they want but when you have a pistol lower and SBR upper with it and a spare stock and 16" upper this is totally legal. This was proven in the Contender case. This means as long as you CAN be legal you ARE legal. Just because you CAN be illegal is not constructive intent or posession of anything.

So if you can have as many shorty uppers as you want on a pistol why is it hard to believe that you can have as many short uppers for an SBR as you want? I will never understand the paranoia.
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 3:10:52 PM EDT
Well, this is really an education and I'm glad I asked the question. This is great info. Thanks to all who posted and anyone who has more info to add.

WKM
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 5:45:19 PM EDT

Originally Posted By PhilipPeake:

This brings up a question I asked in the M16 forum, and received no answers to, just suggestions that I was somehow violating protocol by asking:

If you have an AR15 (non-SBR) and a short barreled upper the ATF will reputedly shoot your dog and throw you in prison for 10 years because their version of the law is not based upon what you do, but what they think you might do (stick short upper on a non-SBR lower).

So, being a law-abiding citizen I pay my tax and register a receiver as SBR and put on it the 10" barrel that I declare on my Form 1. Only after getting back my Form 1 do I buy the 10" upper.
A while later, I decide 10" isn't that wonderful and buy a 11.5" upper (and even send off a letter to the ATF telling them that I am doing so).

My 11.5" upper arrives, and I remove the 10", replacing it with the 11.5". I place the 10" upper in my safe alongside my ... oh ... er ... um ... AR15.

Am I not now in the same position as I would have been if I had bought my 10" upper before getting back the approved Form 1? Can I possess more short uppers than the total number of registered SBR lowers that I have? -- Can't get a clear answer to this -- only the answer that people WANT to hear.



I can't quote you law/statute/sub-section or anything but two things come to mind. First, I'd be asking the AFT since they will have the final say (or maybe a judge ). Second, common sense would seem to me that yes, you would be trouble with two uppers of less then 16" and only one SBR lower, if you owned other AR's since only one of those uppers can be used at any one time on the SBR lower.

Here's another wrinkle. What if you have one SBR lower, one complete SBR upper, and just and SBR barrel, but all the tools to change barrels? Nothing like throwing a wrench in the works!
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 8:52:44 PM EDT

Originally Posted By GreenLantern:

Originally Posted By PhilipPeake:

This brings up a question I asked in the M16 forum, and received no answers to, just suggestions that I was somehow violating protocol by asking:

If you have an AR15 (non-SBR) and a short barreled upper the ATF will reputedly shoot your dog and throw you in prison for 10 years because their version of the law is not based upon what you do, but what they think you might do (stick short upper on a non-SBR lower).

So, being a law-abiding citizen I pay my tax and register a receiver as SBR and put on it the 10" barrel that I declare on my Form 1. Only after getting back my Form 1 do I buy the 10" upper.
A while later, I decide 10" isn't that wonderful and buy a 11.5" upper (and even send off a letter to the ATF telling them that I am doing so).

My 11.5" upper arrives, and I remove the 10", replacing it with the 11.5". I place the 10" upper in my safe alongside my ... oh ... er ... um ... AR15.

Am I not now in the same position as I would have been if I had bought my 10" upper before getting back the approved Form 1? Can I possess more short uppers than the total number of registered SBR lowers that I have? -- Can't get a clear answer to this -- only the answer that people WANT to hear.



I can't quote you law/statute/sub-section or anything but two things come to mind. First, I'd be asking the AFT since they will have the final say (or maybe a judge ). Second, common sense would seem to me that yes, you would be trouble with two uppers of less then 16" and only one SBR lower, if you owned other AR's since only one of those uppers can be used at any one time on the SBR lower.

Here's another wrinkle. What if you have one SBR lower, one complete SBR upper, and just and SBR barrel, but all the tools to change barrels? Nothing like throwing a wrench in the works!



Read the decision on the Contender case. Parts that can be used for a lawful purpose or unlawfull purpose is not illegal. It is only when the parts have no lawful purpose that it is illegal. A shorty upper and no SBR lower and no pistol lower is constructive intent because there is no lawful use fo rthe upper but to make a SBR. A pstol with a short barrel, a seperate stock and 16" upper is NOT constructive intent. This went to court already and is precident.
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