ATF Releases New Pistol Brace Guidance; One Step Closer to Ban
Pistol braces have been in the news several times in 2020, so it's surprising absolutely nobody to see the ATF and DOJ teaming up again to further encroach on shorter-barreled AR15s, shotguns, and everything else hosting a brace. While this is not an outright ban, it's the next closest thing. They have released documentation (with the official forms available for download on the Federal Registry HERE), outlining how exactly they will be separating a "Pistol", from a "Short Barrel Rifle/Shotgun" from now on. And for those unaware, an SBR/SBS requires a federal registration, a $200 tax stamp, notification if it moves over state lines, in only able to be possessed by the person or trust it is registered to, and is not legal in quite a few states.
Some of the concerning qualifications will include:
- Optics: What kind of optics you are using will change the classification. For example, a red-dot will be fine, but a popular LPVO scope will not be (or even a red-dot with a magnifier). Why? Eye-relief on magnified optics require you to shoulder them to use them.
- Secondary Grip: Have a vertical foregrip? Now you have an illegal SBR/SBS.
- Accessories: This is an extra scary one. Bipods, or even "high capacity magazines", could determine that you are no longer in compliance with the law, and they don't even specify what the magazine capacity limit is.
So what are your options? They give you four. You can destroy the firearm, give it to the government, strip it of the non-compliant accessories, or.... register it tax-free as an SBR/SBS. The final option is to register it while having your tax-stamp fee waved, which would be the largest federal gun registration in history, and many believe that that's exactly their plan. Keep in mind though, the ATF has less than 10 employees to process tax stamps nationwide for suppressors, machine guns, AOWs, and SBR/SBS as it is, so an influx of potentially millions of new applications would delay the process by years, effectively blocking civilians from owning these items.
As for us, we won't disclose which option we will be choosing, but you can likely figure out how we feel about registration. SB Tactical, the nation's leading pistol-brace manufacturer, seems to feel the same way we do.
ATF Raids Another Company
The ATF isn't stopping at pistol braces and 80% lowers either. It's being reported that they have raided Diversified Machine, a company that offers Form 1 suppressor solutions, commonly known as "Solvent Traps". For the unaware: You can acquire a suppressor in two ways. If you buy a suppressor, you register it with a Form 4. However, you can also manufacture your own suppressor (done with a Form 1), and since you can electronically file your paperwork, the wait time is significantly less for approval. And just like 80% lowers, many people just enjoy the process of building something themselves.
From what the owner of Diversified Machine has stated, the ATF took everything from machinery and computers, to his cell phone and customer lists. For the moment though, it seems they haven't pressed any charges. Which raises the question, how can an agency that has determined something is legal, take your possessions and raid your business, if they don't even have charges to press?
We Fight For 80% Lowers
It's no secret that California is against the 2nd Amendment, and especially against 80% products. Trust us, we're based here, and we've seen the worst of it. As we wrote a few months ago, California is actually suing the ATF to try and overturn their opinion on "receiver blanks", and ban them nationwide. We have intervened in this lawsuit, and are fighting back. Our ongoing fight for 80% lowers is why we have been matching donations to the FirearmsPolicy.org up to 500% this month.