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Old 12-14-2004, 06:41 PM
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Two grips on a pistol, a review of the curent status....

Discussion about topic:

Following is quoted from: http://www.sturmgewehr.com/webBBS/se...cgi?read=47797

Quote:
Two gripped pistol vs AOW... open a can of worms?

Posted By: Quarterbore <qtrbore-online@yahoo.com>
Date: 6/25/04 20:51

OK, I tried to answer the post below but that is another dream world so I would like to try a more direct question...

I know from everything I have read that the BATFE has indicated that a two-grip pistol is described as an AOW by the BATFE. We use this fact to make an AOW from an AR-15, AKM, UZI and other receivers. The rules for building an AOW have been described as such that the receiver can never had a stock mounted and the forward grip must not be removable.

Now, there was ONE case in the past where the BATFE tried to take a case to court where they charged an individual with building an NFA weapon by adding a forward grip to a pistol. The court hearing the case didn't buy the argument that simply adding a second grip made the pistol become an AOW or at a minimum implied this was their oppinion and the BATFE withdrew the charges before the hearing.

I am wondering if it would be a benefit or a liability to us to force the issue? All that would need to be done is to register a pistol like a glock with the forward rail as an AOW and then challange the BATFE to a tax refund indicating that the addition of this forward grip did not change the character of the Glock so that the Glock is no longer still a pistol. This would be similar to the way that T/C challanged the BATFE regarding the T/C Contender pistol and carbine kits. The worst that could happen is that the case has it's day in court and the BATFE wins and they don't owe a tax refund and we have something to point at as proof... Or, the courts could say that adding a forward grip doesn't make a pistol into a non-pistol anymore.

The big fear I would have is that if we "won" that case and the BATFE says that two grips on a hand held weapon are still a pistol then AOWs could be subject to the crime bill and god know that is not something we would want either. Now, I do realize that an AOW has a perminant 2-grip system and that would be the difference between these and a Glock where we put a KAC grip onto the front rail...

Is this best avoided or is this something that we would like challanged?

Quote:
Two gripped pistol = AOW

Posted By: Joe
Date: 6/26/04 13:39

In Response To: Two gripped pistol vs AOW... open a can of worms? (Quarterbore)

there is no lack of clarity on this issue

federal pistol definition includes language 'intended to be fired from one hand'

two grips = intended to be fired with both hands

two grips = aow

scroll down this form for federal definition of pistol:
http://216.239.41.104/search?q=cache...n&ie=UTF-8
Quote:
The question is if adding a second grip changes...

Posted By: Quarterbore <qtrbore-online@yahoo.com>
Date: 6/26/04 14:11

In Response To: Two gripped pistol = AOW (Joe)

From your link...

Pistol: A firearm designed and intended to be fired by one hand, the cartridge for which must be inserted directly into the chamber which must be inserted directly into the chamber which is an integral part of the barrel.

We are talking about a Glock... which is a pistol... and the question comes down to if adding a removable forward grip changes the fact that the Glock is a pistol. A rifle definition also includes that it is fired from a shoulder BUT thgere is no requirement that we keep a buttstock on a rifle. Also, how many people can shoot a 15-inch T/C Contender with a single hand... not me!

I appreciate the oppinion but I think there are plenty of examples that show where a pistol was intended to be shot with two hands (handgrips, srouds, forward straps, etc... I wouldn't argue all of these are AOWs would you?

Quote:
AOWs.....clarified...

Posted By: anon subguns user
Date: 6/26/04 21:05

In Response To: The question is if adding a second grip changes... (Quarterbore)

ading a fixed forward grip to a pistol(not a handguard, not a shroud, etc) but a fixed or folding forward grip to a manually operated or semiauto pistol DOES make an AOW, regardless if the grip is removeable or not.

the T/C has a forearm, not a grip.
the straps on semi m11s and m10s is not a fixed forward grip.

take a Knights k grip and slap it on a AR15 pistol, or an uzi pistol, or such would instantly make an AOW.
Same with the K grip for an HK SP-89.

conversely, omething like a Serbu Super Shorty 12 ga is NOT an AOW because of the fold down forward grip, but because the gun is classified as a smoothbore pistol. It just happens to have a folddown grip as part of Serbus design.

from Bardwells NFA FAQ:
" Any other weapons (AOW's) are a number of things; smooth bore
pistols, any pistol with more than one grip, (but see below) gadget
type guns (cane gun, pen gun) and shoulder fired weapons with both
rifled and smooth bore barrels between 12" and 18", that must be
manually reloaded "

further...
ANY OTHER WEAPONS

An AOW is:

"...any weapon or device capable of being concealed on the

person from which a shot can be discharged through the

energy of an explosive, a pistol or revolver having a smooth

bore designed or redesigned to fire a fixed shotgun shell,

weapons with combination shotgun and rifle barrels 12" or

more, less than 18" in length, from which only a single

discharge can be made from either barrel without manual

reloading, and shall include any weapon which may be readily

restored to fire. Such term shall not include a pistol or

revolver having a rifled bore, or rifled bores, or weapons

designed, made or intended to be fired from the shoulder and

not capable of firing fixed ammunition." 26 U.S.C. sec.

5845(e).

Thus the question to be answered in deciding if a weapon is an
AOW would be, does it fit into any of the three categories below:

1) Is the weapon both not a pistol or revolver, and capable of
being concealed on the person?

2) Or is it a smooth bore pistol or revolver? Examples of this
include the H&R Handy-Gun, or Ithaca Auto-Burglar gun. This does
not include weapons made from a shotgun. That would be a short
barreled shotgun. The receiver of a smooth bore pistol, in order
to be an AOW, must not have had a shoulder stock attached to it,
ever. The shoulder stock attachment deal on a very few H&R Handy
Guns, together with a stock, will make them into a short barreled
shotgun.

3) Or is it a combination gun, a shoulder fired gun with both
rifled and smooth barrels between 12" and 18" long, and which has
to be manually reloaded? Examples of this include the M-6 military
survival gun, with a single shot barrel in .22 Hornet, and a
companion .410 shotgun barrel, as well as most models of the
Marble's Game Getter.

Weapons that fit the first category above are commonly called
gadget guns; pen guns, stapler guns, cane guns, alarm clock guns,
flashlight guns, the list of objects is pretty long. A few have
been removed from the scope of the law because their collector
status makes them unlikely to be misused; original ##### belt buckle
guns for example. See the C&R list for these.

ATF has made the decision that a handgun (but not a machine gun,
since a machine gun is not also an AOW) with more than one hand
grip at an angle tot eh bore is an AOW. This is based on the gun
a) being concealable on the person, and b) not meeting the
definition of a "pistol" in the regulations promulgated under the
NFA, since they say a pistol has a single grip at an angle to the
bore. However, at least one federal magistrate has decided that if
the grip is added later, the gun is not "originally designed" to be
fired by holding in more than one grip, and thus putting a second
grip on a pistol does not make it an AOW. ATF does not regard the
decision as binding. The case is U.S. v. Davis, Crim No. 8:93-106
(D.S.C. 1993) (Report of Magistrate, June 21, 1993). The
prosecution was dismissed at the request of the Government before
any review of that determination by the trial judge.

By the same thinking ATF has decided that "wallet" holsters for
small guns, from which the gun can be fired, and which disguise
the outline of the gun, are AOW's. This would affect, for example,
the North American Arms mini-revolver and the wallet holster NAA
used to sell for the gun, as an accessory. Or the wallet holster
Galco used to make for the Beretta model 21 pistol. ATF seems to
be thinking that the grip has disappeared, and thus it fits into
the first category.

In all likelihood, the wallet holster decision was an outgrowth
of calling the combination of a briefcase from which the gun can be
fired, and the gun, an AOW. The cases were usually meant for the
SMG version of the gun, which was fine, but could accomodate the
semi-auto pistol version of the MAC, or HK MP5K as well, and that
combo of the case and semi-auto pistol was considered the AOW.

27 CFR sec. 179.11 - "pistol. A weapon originally

designed, made and intended to fire a projectile

(bullet) from one or more barrels when held in one

hand, and having: a) a chamber(s) as an integral

part(s) of, or permanently aligned with, the bore(s);

and b) a short stock designed to be gripped by one hand

at an angle to and extending below the line of the

bore(s). The term shall not include any gadget device,

any gun altered or converted to resemble a pistol, any

gun that fires more than one shot without manual

reloading, by a single function of the trigger, or any

small portable gun such as: ##### belt buckle pistol,

glove pistol, or a one-hand stock gun designed to fire

fixed shotgun ammunition."

There is also a revolver definition, but it does not add anything
except a provision for guns with revolving cylinders, rather than
permanent chambers.

Note that this definition is only in the rules for the NFA, and
not the GCA. It is designed to interact with the AOW definition.
For example even though this definition excludes such things as the
.410 T/C Contender pistol from the pistol definition, it is also
not an AOW as it has a rifled bore. And it is also a handgun under
the GCA. The NFA statute does not define "pistol" or "revolver".

for further info, see the link below

James Bardwells NFA FAQ
Quote:
That is fine and dandy but at least one Federal...

Posted By: AKR <AKR7.62@att.net>
Date: 6/26/04 22:48

In Response To: AOWs.....clarified... (anon subguns user)

Appeals Court does not agree with you. In United States v. Fix, the circuit court basically said that BATF's attempt to shoe horn a pistol which later has an added grip in the AOW catagory is total nonsence. The problem is that BATF's interpretation ignores 2 things and here is a quote from the decision:

"Fix argues that the government did not prove the Calico Liberty III, found during a search of his home and business, was a weapon that required registration. Fix was convicted under 26 U.S.C. § 5861(d) of possession of an unregistered firearm. In a related provision, HN2"firearm" is defined by a list of eight weapons and a catchall provision of "any other weapon." See 26 U.S.C. § 5845(a). "Any other weapon" includes "any weapon or device capable of being concealed on the person from which a shot can be discharged through the energy of an explosive," but not "a pistol . . . having a rifled bore . . ." See 26 U.S.C. § 5845(e). Weapons not included in the definition of firearm in § 5845 need not be registered under § 5861(d). Fix argues that his Calico was a pistol, [**5] met the exception in § 5845(e), and did not need to be registered under § 5861.

We agree that the Government failed to prove a violation of § 5861(d) for two reasons.

First, the weapon does not fit the definition required by the statute. HN3The provision defining "pistol" for the purposes of the statute is 27 C.F.R. § 179.11, which defines a pistol as "a weapon originally designed, made, and intended to fire a projectile (bullet) from one or more barrels when held in one hand . . . ." The government argues that because the Calico was modified to be fired with two hands, it "falls out" of the definition of pistol and falls back into the definition of "any other weapon" in § 5845. This argument ignores the definition's requirement that the weapon be capable of being held with one hand at the time it was originally designed and made. As written, this definition does not consider modifications of the weapon by the owner. The Calico was originally designed and made to be fired with one hand, and still could be, despite the addition of a foregrip.

Second, the definition of "any other weapon" in §§ 5845(a) and (e) expressly excludes weapons with a rifled [**6] bore. We assume that the "any other weapon" provision was intended as a catch-all category in which to gather sawed-off shotguns and other hybrid weapons. A sawed off shotgun may be concealed like a pistol, but would have the smooth bore of a shotgun. The Government's witness stated that the Calico Liberty III had a rifled bore, and thus, cannot be considered "any other weapon."

Accordingly, the conviction on Count V must be reversed for insufficiency of the evidence."

This is not the first time that the Court's have sh!t-canned the BATF's version of the law. While the opinion is not binding by its terms on future cases, the logic is there while the BATF's position is shear fantasy.

Remember, the BATF cannot even be held to its own "rulings" as a defense to prosecution. They cannot make law no matter how hard they try.
NEED TO FIND CASE LAW FOR FOLLOWING!!!
Quote:
This isn't the same example I had in mind but....

Posted By: Quarterbore <qtrbore-online@yahoo.com>
Date: 6/27/04 13:02

In Response To: That is fine and dandy but at least one Federal... (AKR)

The example above isn't the same as the one I had seen... The one I had seen was in the context of an individual prosecuted for illegal MGs where they tried to add on an AOW charge... I am working all weekend so I can't dig up the reference but the court implied the same type of oppinion as above...
Quote:
Re: That is fine and dandy but at least one Federa

Posted By: FlyingAttackPorcupine <flyingattackporcupine@comcast.net>
Date: 6/27/04 18:01

In Response To: That is fine and dandy but at least one Federal... (AKR)

"First, the weapon does not fit the definition required by the statute. HN3The provision defining "pistol" for the purposes of the statute is 27 C.F.R. § 179.11, which defines a pistol as "a weapon originally designed, made, and intended to fire a projectile (bullet) from one or more barrels when held in one hand . . . ." The government argues that because the Calico was modified to be fired with two hands, it "falls out" of the definition of pistol and falls back into the definition of "any other weapon" in § 5845. This argument ignores the definition's requirement that the weapon be capable of being held with one hand at the time it was originally designed and made. As written, this definition does not consider modifications of the weapon by the owner. The Calico was originally designed and made to be fired with one hand, and still could be, despite the addition of a foregrip. "

Does this mean you could legally add a pistol grip to an sp89? If the weapon was purchased without the foregrip and was origionally manufactured as a pistol, then later a k grip added by the owner, wouldnt the same thing apply? It may not be law but this case certainly sets a precedent of a situation like this being dismissed. The sp89 would still be fireable with one hand after the foregrip is added, just as the calico in the case was. Then again I doubt anybody here has the pockets to fund lawyer costs and test this theory..
Quote:
... your question is the same as my example (ctext)

Posted By: Quarterbore <qtrbore-online@yahoo.com>
Date: 6/27/04 20:03

In Response To: Re: That is fine and dandy but at least one Federa (FlyingAttackPorcupine)

This could be used with any "pistol" be it an AKM pistol, AR-15 pistol, UZI pistol, Tec-9, Glock, USP... anything that you can add the forward grip to...

The problem is that curently the BATFE says you can not do it!!!

The issue is that it is only an unchallanged oppinion... There is case law that indicates that the BATFE may well be pushing an oppinion that is contrary to what the LAW says. The way you challange this is to simply pay the registration (register a Glock on a Form 1 as a SBR) and take the BATFE to court for a tax refund indicating that registration was not necessary!

If you win, you get the money back and nobody needs to worry about this in the future and if you loose you don't get your tax payment back. Not a huge risk but I am not sure I have the money to hire someone to take the case myself. If someone was interested I would be glad to contribute to such a project and it seems like one of the manufacturers might benifit from having this challanged...

Then this funny response:

Quote:
my new idea for you...

Posted By: Joe
Date: 6/27/04 01:19

In Response To: That is fine and dandy but at least one Federal... (AKR)

Do WHATEVER you want. Get all coked up and erupt in an orgy of hacksawing and application of front grips. Apply the welder and drillbit till you collapse with glazed over eyes. Get naked, coat yourself with green jello and speak in tongues while wildly waving your (unregistered) sp89 + K grip combo at the local 7-11. Good for you. Don't let anyone tell you what's what. And so you know, you really told me what's what. I do feel like you 'took me to school'. And hey - thanks.
Quote:
LOL. , Hey, the question the guy asked ....

Posted By: AKR <AKR7.62@att.net>
Date: 6/27/04 07:52

In Response To: my new idea for you... (Joe)

is "can this be challanged", to which the answer is "Yes" (He didnt ask if it was a good idea to go and do it without straightening matters out in advance, to which the answer is of course, no).

Sorry if you do not like question or the answer.
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  #2  
Old 12-14-2004, 06:42 PM
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More references and information:

A letter but I don't have a link where it came from...

Quote:
DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms
Washington, D.C. 20226
NOV 25 1997 F:SD:FTB:GKD
3311
Dear Mr. :
This refers to your letter of November 6, 1997, requesting
information on the manufacture of a firearm to be classified as an
"any other weapon," as that term is defined in the National
Firearms Act (NFA).
You describe the proposed firearm as being manufactured using an
AR15 type lower receiver that has never been assembled as a
complete firearm and installing a "pistol length barrel," a rear
pistol grip, a vertical foregrip, shrouded barrel and a flash
hider. This firearm would utilize a detachable magazine installed
outside the pistol grip.
A firearm manufactured from the described components and in the
described manner would not be a pistol as defined in either Title
27, Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Part 178 or 179, nor would
it be classified as a rifle or shotgun, not being designed to be
held and fired from the shoulder. Further, it is not classified as
a semiautomatic assault weapon as defined in Title 18 U.S.C.,
Chapter 44, Section 921(a)(30), hence it is not subject to the
prohibition on the manufacture, transfer or possession of
semiautomatic assault weapons as provided in Title 18 U.S.C.,
Chapter 44, Section 922(v).
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) has previously
held that a firearm of the type described in your letter is
classified as an "any other weapon" and is subject to all of the
provisions of the NFA. Such a firearm could legally be
manufactured and transferred by a Class II manufacturer. An
unlicensed individual could manufacture such a firearm by first
submitting an AT Form 1, APPLICATION TO MAKE AND REGISTER A
FIREARM, to ATF. Upon receipt of the approved form, the individual
could then proceed to manufacture the firearm.
- 2 -
Mr.
We trust that the foregoing has been responsive to your inquiry.
If we can be of any further assistance, please contact us.
Sincerely yours,
[signed]
Edward M. Owen, Jr.
Chief, Firearms Technology Branch
...and then there is this:

From:http://www.titleii.com/BardwellOLD/nfa_faq.txt

Quote:
"ATF has made the decision that a handgun (but not a machine gun,
since a machine gun is not also an AOW) with more than one hand
grip at an angle to the bore is an AOW. This is based on the gun
a) being concealable on the person, and b) not meeting the
definition of a "pistol" in the regulations promulgated under the
NFA, since they say a pistol has a single grip at an angle to the
bore. However, at least one federal magistrate has decided that if
the grip is added later, the gun is not "originally designed" to be
fired by holding in more than one grip, and thus putting a second
grip on a pistol does not make it an AOW. ATF does not regard the
decision as binding
. The case is U.S. v. Davis, Crim No. 8:93-106
(D.S.C. 1993) (Report of Magistrate, June 21, 1993). The
prosecution was dismissed at the request of the Government before
any review of that determination by the trial judge."
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Old 12-14-2004, 06:42 PM
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Examples:



Photos shows: 5-A3,s rifles, 1- A5 Pistol and 1-m1a1 rifle

Note: The 1927 A5 Thompson pistol is the second weapon from the left. This is a pistol but retains the two grips.
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Old 12-14-2004, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anonymous
It seems clear to me that the intent of the AOW classification was to capture all the "odd" types of weapon not otherwise defined. IMHO, interest in the "dual-grip assault pistol" concept has really arisen out of the silly AWB (hopefully shortly to expire) and I suspect will dissappear back into obscurity soon after September 13th.

With the above said, from a legal perspective the question appears to hinge on what "originally" means. I know, this sounds like something Bill Clinton would say :shock:, but stay with me on this.

Now, when we come to the case law already quoted and your hypothetical test-case of a Glock with a foregrip, the weapons in question were already purchased as pistols (per the 4473), and the addition of the foregrip might be considered to be a minor aftermarket modification. In this case, a court might reasonably rule against the ATF on the "looks/quacks like a duck" rule; the weapons were obviously not originally designed with a foregrip in mind.

However, in the case of something less mainstream, like an AR15 pistol, I feel you would be on more shaky ground for two reasons: (1) the court might be less favorably disposed towards the weapon because it no longer "looks like a duck", and (2) if you custom built the weapon with the foregrip in mind, ATF might reasonably argue that shooting it with two hands was your original design intent... and in many cases they would probably be right !

Either way, I'd rather go SBR and get on with my life :D [/b]
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Old 12-14-2004, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anonymous

Either way, I'd rather go SBR and get on with my life :D [/b]
You are correct here as long as the crime bill goes away as clearly the SBR is more versitile! The issue really comes in with weapons like the Tec-9, M11/9, or even a Glock PISTOLS with a forward grip mounted. The current BATFE oppinion is that these examples would be AOWs but I don't agree in cases where the forward grip is removable.
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Old 01-16-2005, 08:15 AM
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I just got an e-mail from someone that found an old post that I had made on this topic elsewhere on the web.

Quote:
Here's the case for the pistol grip aow thing, I had done some research on it to start a discussion on ar15, it never got very far..

link to thread - http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.htm...6&t=303929

link to us vs davis - http://www-2.cs.cmu.edu/afs/cs.cmu.e...s_v_davis2.txt

Let me know if you find anything else,
Chris
I sent Chris an E-mail with this link and I will look at this when I get some time...
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Old 04-15-2006, 10:42 PM
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I finally had someone e-mail me a link to the official stand of this from the BATFE. Here is the link:

http://www.atf.treas.gov/firearms/041006-vert_grip.htm

Quote:

U.S. Department of Justice

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco,
Firearms and Explosives




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

Washington, DC 20226




Adding a Vertical Fore Grip to a Handgun

“Handgun” is defined under Federal law to mean, in part, a firearm which has a short stock and is designed to be held and fired by the use of a single hand…. Gun Control Act of 1968, 18 U.S.C. § 921(a)(29).

Under an implementing regulation of the National Firearms Act (NFA), 27 C.F.R. § 479.11, “pistol” is defined as a weapon originally designed, made, and intended to fire a projectile (bullet) from one or more barrels when held in one hand, and having (a) a chamber(s) as an integral part(s) of, or permanently aligned with, the bore(s); and (b) a short stock designed to be gripped by one hand and at an angle to and extending below the line of the bore(s).

The NFA further defines the term “any other weapon” (AOW) as any weapon or device capable of being concealed on the person from which a shot can be discharged through the energy of an explosive, a pistol or revolver having a barrel with a smooth bore designed or redesigned to fire a fixed shotgun shell, weapons with combination shotgun and rifle barrels 12 inches or more, less than 18 inches in length, from which only a single discharge can be made from either barrel without manual reloading, and shall include any such weapon which may be readily restored to fire. Such term shall not include a pistol or revolver having a rifled bore, or rifled bores, or weapons designed, made, or intended to be fired from the shoulder and not capable of firing fixed ammunition. 26 U.S.C. § 5845(e).

ATF has long held that by installing a vertical fore grip on a handgun, the handgun is no longer designed to be held and fired by the use of a single hand. Therefore, if individuals install a vertical fore grip on a handgun, they are “making” a firearm requiring registration with ATF’s NFA Branch. Making an unregistered “AOW” is punishable by a fine and 10 years’ imprisonment. Additionally, possession of an unregistered “AOW” is also punishable by fine and 10 years’ imprisonment.

To lawfully add a vertical fore grip to a handgun, a person must make an appropriate application on ATF Form 1, “Application to Make and Register a Firearm.” The applicant must submit the completed form, along with a fingerprint card bearing the applicant’s fingerprints; a photograph; and $200.00. The application will be reviewed by the NFA Branch. If the applicant is not prohibited from possessing a firearm under Federal, State, or local law, and possession of an “AOW” is not prohibited in the applicant’s State of residence, the form will be approved. Only then may the person add a vertical fore grip to the designated handgun.

A person may also send the handgun to a person licensed to manufacture NFA weapons. The manufacturer will install the fore grip on the firearm and register the firearm on an ATF Form 2. The manufacturer can then transfer the firearm back to the individual on an ATF Form 4, which results in a $5.00 transfer tax. If the manufacturer is out of State, the NFA Branch will need a clarification letter submitted with the ATF Form 4 so that the NFA Branch Examiner will know the circumstances of the transfer. Questions can be directed to the NFA Branch or the Firearms Technology Branch.

Still, with the wording of the law itself, I would really love to see someone pay the $200 tax stamp and then sue the Government for a tax refund as if a gun is originaly designed to be shot from one hand it is a pistol.... If the BATFE wants to have two grips be an AOW they really need to work to get the law changed or they need some case law that shows that the courts aree with them...

Now, I am not proposing an individual should put two grips on a pistol... the legal fees will get quite expensive and you might well lose 10-years of your life!!! The corect way to get this addresses is to pay the $200 taxes and take the ATF to court for a tax refund... Then, worst that happens is you lose the court costs...

Personally, it seems like a fight a manufacturer would be willing to take up for us but perhaps even the manufacturer doesn't want the BATFE to come a knocking in the middle of the night
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Old 04-16-2006, 10:29 AM
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Two hands?

I find this is a very strange line of reasoning by ATF considering I WAS ALWAYS TAUGHT TO SHOOT A PISTOL WITH TWO HANDS TO CONTROL IT. Either Weaver or Isosolies, I was taught to use two hands. What about you?
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