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AR15 = pistol??

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I follow a few gun pages on Instagram and have always wondered why Americans call AR15 based guns pistols?? Anybody know?  Example below

 

 

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From what I gather an AR pistol is just an AR with a short barrel and no stock. The gun pictured above should really be designated as a 'Short Barreled Rifle'.  There's a bit more into it like is the receiver originally a rifle action or not but I don't know the specifics. 

 

The reason people go with AR pistols is to get around the NFA process. 

 

edit: Did some digging. Here's a better explanation: 

 

Quote

 

An AR-15 pistol is a weapon that has a barrel shorter than 16 inches, does not have a stock, and is shorter than 26 inches overall. The lack of a stock defines the AR pistol as a pistol. If you equip an AR-15 platform of any caliber with a barrel shorter than 16 inches and a stock it becomes a short barreled rifle. A short barreled rifle is legal to own in most states but requires the user to go through the NFA process, register the weapon, and pay a 200 dollar tax stamp.

 

An AR pistol allows the user to have a barrel shorter than 16 inches, without having to go through the NFA process. Some states will prohibit the ownership of short-barreled rifles regardless of the Federal law. This makes an AR-15 pistol the only option for someone wanting a short barrel AR-15.

 

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it's a stupid technicality in US law, you can own a 'pistol' with a short barrel no problem, so instead of having a stock on the buffer tube they have a brace instead, it's designed to be strapped around your forearm (not even joking!) but works perfectly well as something to put in your shoulder.  

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iirc it used to be using the "brace" as a stock was a no no, although apparently they've changed that.

 

it's a bit like the untwisted rifling they brought out to skirt that law- no twist means it's not a rifle (ergo not an sbr) and no smoothbore means not a shotgun (so not a short barreled shotgun either). all you sacrifice for this wondrous loophole that lets you have a proper folding stock and a short barrel is the ability to hit anything.

 

it really makes a mockery of what little gun related legislation america has, just as ridiculous as the bump-fire stocks and electric gloves for getting around full auto legislation.

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But stick a vertical foregrip on the front and it suddenly becomes illegal again.

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