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  #1  
Old 04-12-2013, 1:05 PM
mej16489 mej16489 is offline
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Default Why is it not legal to sell "handgun" receivers?

The following is perfectly legal and performed daily all over California:
Walk into local gun store and start DROS/4473 on an AR pattern 'built' lower receiver. By 'built' I imply that it has a stock, grip, and a complete lower parts kit with BB all installed. This is DROSed as a longun, 4473'd as an other. The same person has previously purchased a complete AR pattern upper receiver with a greater then 16" barrel.
After then 10 day wait the buyer picks up his complete lower assembly, goes home, attaches upper to lower and now has a legally configured rifle.

Similarly, its perfectly legal to purchase a completely stripped lower receiver; no LPK, stock, grips, etc. Its still papered as a long-gun/other. When the buyer picks up the lower, the buyer builds the lower to the same configuration as the 'built lower' from above and attaches the upper to lower. This is also a legally configured rifle.

Why can I not walk into a gun store and DROS a 'built' or stripped Glock or 1911 pattern frame and create a MechTech carbine (or similar) ?

This is also a legally configured rifle but I'm not allowed to buy the 'lower'. Why?

---------------------

There has also been talk lately that from a federal perspective, its also perfectly legal to build an AR pattern pistol using either scenario above so long as the stock is remove prior to combining the upper and lower assemblies.

It has been suggested that it is possible to legally build an AR Pattern pistol in accordance with CA law because pistols only need to be registered when they are transferred. This is of course unsettled and there would be 58 different opinions from potential prosecuting district attorneys.

If that's the case; why would it not be legal to
1) take a Gen4 Glock
2) separate the frame from the barrel/slide
3) DROS/4473 the frame as a long-gun/other
4) go home with barrel/slide
5) pickup frame in 10 days
6) go home and combine it all

-----------

What prevents a CA FFL from selling to me what is traditionally known as a handgun frame? Yet at the same time is perfectly comfortable selling to me what is traditionally known as a long-gun frame?

Last edited by mej16489; 04-12-2013 at 2:54 PM.. Reason: added quotation marks to title.
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  #2  
Old 04-12-2013, 1:15 PM
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ar lowers are sold as rifles

handgun frames cant be sold unless your a exempt person because you cant do a safe handling demo with just a frame and the rooster also applies

so your options for a frame are
A ) be a exempt person
b) build one from a 80%
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Old 04-12-2013, 2:07 PM
mej16489 mej16489 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chillincody View Post
ar lowers are sold as rifles

handgun frames cant be sold unless your a exempt person because you cant do a safe handling demo with just a frame and the rooster also applies

so your options for a frame are
A ) be a exempt person
b) build one from a 80%
Are you an FFL?

Specifically, what makes something a handgun frame and not a lower receiver for a carbine?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mej16489 View Post
Why can I not walk into a gun store and DROS a 'built' or stripped Glock or 1911 pattern frame and create a MechTech carbine (or similar) ?

This is also a legally configured rifle but I'm not allowed to buy the 'lower'. Why?
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  #4  
Old 04-12-2013, 2:31 PM
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You're free to buy a complete handgun and then dispose of the parts you don't want.

But handguns are regulated by the Roster of Handguns Certified for Sale; unless you are exempt from the Roster, or the sale is exempt from the Roster (e.g. PPT), an FFL cannot sell 'just a frame', because there are no 'just frames' on the Roster. (There can't be - 'just a frame' cannot pass the certification tests.)

CA law doesn't have the concept of 'a lower for a pistol-based carbine'.
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Old 04-12-2013, 2:46 PM
mej16489 mej16489 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Librarian View Post
You're free to buy a complete handgun and then dispose of the parts you don't want.

But handguns are regulated by the Roster of Handguns Certified for Sale; unless you are exempt from the Roster, or the sale is exempt from the Roster (e.g. PPT), an FFL cannot sell 'just a frame', because there are no 'just frames' on the Roster. (There can't be - 'just a frame' cannot pass the certification tests.)

CA law doesn't have the concept of 'a lower for a pistol-based carbine'.
I can buy a 9mm AR Lower Receiver which is roll-marked "Pistol" and build a 9mm AR Carbine. Why is that allowed? Why is that exempt from the certification process and safety demonstration?


At what point in time does a frame/receiver become considered a 'handgun'?

Last edited by mej16489; 04-12-2013 at 2:53 PM..
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  #6  
Old 04-12-2013, 4:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mej16489 View Post
I can buy a 9mm AR Lower Receiver which is roll-marked "Pistol" and build a 9mm AR Carbine. Why is that allowed? Why is that exempt from the certification process and safety demonstration?


At what point in time does a frame/receiver become considered a 'handgun'?
That receiver is not covered by the Roster. It clearly isn't a 'handgun'. It's not a 'long gun', either - feds call it 'other firearm' at question 18 of the 4473, but CA doesn't have a third category.

Do remember the Roster was created (2001) before the OLL thing took off (2007), and that the Legislature has no interest in making things easier for gun owners.

The Right Answer, of course, is to get rid of the Roster.
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  #7  
Old 04-12-2013, 5:38 PM
mej16489 mej16489 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Librarian View Post
That receiver [9mm AR Lower Receiver which is roll-marked "Pistol"] is not covered by the Roster.
That answer above certainly gets closer to answering the question of why..., 'if the receiver in question 'could be' covered by the roster, then you cannot buy the frame as a long-gun/other (DROS/4473)'

I'm not as well versed on FFL penal code as I am in other areas...where might I find this covered?
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Old 04-12-2013, 10:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mej16489 View Post
That answer above certainly gets closer to answering the question of why..., 'if the receiver in question 'could be' covered by the roster, then you cannot buy the frame as a long-gun/other (DROS/4473)'

I'm not as well versed on FFL penal code as I am in other areas...where might I find this covered?
It's PC 32015 and following - the Roster law - and PC 31905, the testing requirements. 'Just frames' cannot pass the tests, so cannot be sold as handguns; CA law does not recognize a lower as anything but 'firearm'.
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  #9  
Old 04-13-2013, 8:10 AM
mej16489 mej16489 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Librarian View Post
It's PC 32015 and following - the Roster law - and PC 31905, the testing requirements. 'Just frames' cannot pass the tests, so cannot be sold as handguns; CA law does not recognize a lower as anything but 'firearm'.
Which simply leads me back to my original question. Why is a Frame/Receiver of Firearm A subject to the roster, but the Frame/Receiver of Firearm B isn't?

The roster is specifically about, "pistols, revolvers, and other firearms capable of being concealed upon the person"

So, why is an AR pattern frame (which is certainly neither a pistol or revolver) legal to DROS, but the frame of a Glock35 (which is also neither a pistol or revolver) isn't?

Clearly a frame alone cannot pass the tests - but what criteria determines that it is subject to the test to begin with?

p.s. let's please not get mired in the specifics that its possible to buy a Gen4 Glock 35 via SSE. Substitute 'frame of a Glock35' with name of any 'handguns-style' frame i.e. MilSpec 1911A1.
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  #10  
Old 04-13-2013, 8:30 AM
WieDonE WieDonE is offline
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The state gets money from having the makers pay to have there firearms on the roster. Many pistols can not be purchased because they are inox and not black, the black model is on the roster. The ca roster is BS.
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Old 04-15-2013, 7:47 AM
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Default State Fee?

Quote:
Originally Posted by WieDonE View Post
The state gets money from having the makers pay to have there firearms on the roster. Many pistols can not be purchased because they are inox and not black, the black model is on the roster. The ca roster is BS.
Anyone know the Calif fee to "roster" test a pistol?
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Old 04-15-2013, 9:32 AM
mej16489 mej16489 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mej16489 View Post
Which simply leads me back to my original question. Why is a Frame/Receiver of Firearm A subject to the roster, but the Frame/Receiver of Firearm B isn't?
Anyone...Bueller?
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Old 04-15-2013, 9:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mej16489 View Post
Which simply leads me back to my original question. Why is a Frame/Receiver of Firearm A subject to the roster, but the Frame/Receiver of Firearm B isn't?
it isn't about the receiver itself, it is how you want to DROS it.

Quote:
The roster is specifically about, "pistols, revolvers, and other firearms capable of being concealed upon the person"

So, why is an AR pattern frame (which is certainly neither a pistol or revolver) legal to DROS, but the frame of a Glock35 (which is also neither a pistol or revolver) isn't?
you can DROS a Glock35 frame the same way you DROS a stripper AR receiver, as a Long Gun. YOu can do that so that you can put one of those carbine uppers on it. There are CA FFLs that will DROS it that way for you.

But if you decide to do that and then build it up as a pistol, you might run afoul of CA's SBR laws.




Quote:
Clearly a frame alone cannot pass the tests - but what criteria determines that it is subject to the test to begin with?
how it is DROSed.

you can DROS a AR frame as a long gun, but not as a pistol.

you can DROS a Glock frame as a long gun, but not as a pistol.
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Old 04-15-2013, 10:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ke6guj View Post
it isn't about the receiver itself, it is how you want to DROS it.

you can DROS a Glock35 frame the same way you DROS a stripper AR receiver, as a Long Gun. YOu can do that so that you can put one of those carbine uppers on it. There are CA FFLs that will DROS it that way for you.

But if you decide to do that and then build it up as a pistol, you might run afoul of CA's SBR laws.
Any idea where can I find one of these FFLs? It seems to me if they aren't on Calguns, its like hunting unicorns...

Is part of the 'problem' the fact that 'pistol' frames are incredibly rare? I suppose 1911 patterns are readily available, but Glock frames are essentially non-existent.

Do the legal factors change if a complete pistol arrives at a dealer from a distributor and the FFL separates the handgun into Frame + Parts?

Complete handgun arrives at FFL.
FFL logs into bound book as handgun.
FFL separates handgun into 'frame + parts'
FFL sells frame only to buyer as "Long-gun/other" for DROS/4473 ('parts' never go to the buyer)
Buyer builds carbine using frame. (If after 1/1/14 buyer submits volreg for rifle?)
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Old 04-15-2013, 10:49 AM
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I just went through one of the loopholes to get a 1911 frame here in Cali. I was in contact with a detective at my local sheriffs office who informed me of the "cleanest" way to do it. From my understanding there are 3 ways to get off roster handguns in Cali one is the intra-familial transfer or buying from a current owner and the single shot exemption.

There is a lot if miss information available and some FFL's don't fully understand how the process' work and even more so neither do some of the BATFE people.

I do not claim to be an expert or even an FFL. But what makes sense to me is to do it through one of the verified safe methods which would be one if the three listed above. I think if you try and get tricky you be pushing your luck.
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Old 04-15-2013, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Endofcomment View Post
I just went through one of the loopholes to get a 1911 frame here in Cali. .
its not a loophole its called the LAW .....
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Old 04-15-2013, 11:41 AM
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its not a loophole its called the LAW .....
Yes sir you are correct I did follow the law.
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Old 04-15-2013, 11:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ke6guj View Post
it isn't about the receiver itself, it is how you want to DROS it.

you can DROS a Glock35 frame the same way you DROS a stripper AR receiver, as a Long Gun. YOu can do that so that you can put one of those carbine uppers on it. There are CA FFLs that will DROS it that way for you.

But if you decide to do that and then build it up as a pistol, you might run afoul of CA's SBR laws.


how it is DROSed.

you can DROS a AR frame as a long gun, but not as a pistol.

you can DROS a Glock frame as a long gun, but not as a pistol.
This is correct the way I understand it. The DROS determines whether it is a pistol or not. Receivers are assumed to be long gun receivers. You can't DROS a pistol receiver because it is not on the CA Roster.

In order to have an AR pistol you need to have DROS'd a complete AR Pistol that has been converted to single shot. You can convert that to a rifle as long as you follow the AW rules, but you can not go from a DROS'd AR rifle to a pistol as mentioned above by ke6guj.

I am an FFL and I would be hesitant to DROS a Glock Frame as a receiver for a carbine. I would just do an SSE.
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Old 04-15-2013, 12:46 PM
mej16489 mej16489 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mw20 View Post
I am an FFL and I would be hesitant to DROS a Glock Frame as a receiver for a carbine. I would just do an SSE.
Thanks for your input as an FFL.

I understand your hesitation - after all, its your license on the line.

sidenote:
Glad to hear you are willing to perform SSE, just curious, where are you located? I'm in northern LA county and I can't even seem to find a shop willing to SSE within 75 miles. In particular a Gen4 Glock 19 and a Gen4 Glock 35.
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Old 04-17-2013, 9:22 AM
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I'm a little further than 75 miles. Near Sacramento in Citrus Heights.
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