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Thread: TC Encore: regarding NFA classification and murky areas

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    TC Encore: regarding NFA classification and murky areas

    Ok guys, I got a confusing question that I can't seem to find an answer to regarding TC Encores and the NFA.

    OK, so I'm wanting to recreate the Rossi 12 gauge pistol (bottom pic) using the Encore. The goal is a 6.5"-8" smooth bore barrel.

    This is where it starts to get a little confusing.

    The encore can be bought as

    Just a frame, a pistol, rifle, a shotgun, or a muzzleloader. To make matters even more confusing, TC sued the ATF and WON.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unit...Center_Arms_Co.

    The ruling states that with the same receiver, you can switch between a rifle/shotgun/muzzle loader and a pistol. It is still illegal to put a stock on it with a short barrel, but the law of contagion doesn't apply to the receiver (meaning once it's a rifle, it's always a rifle).

    Now, I'm wanting to turn this into a 12 gauge pistol. In the ATF's eyes, shotguns can't be pistols. So it will be considered either a SBS, DD, or AOW. I'm really confident that this will not be an AOW due to the OAL being too short. And I'm pretty confident it won't be a DD as I will use a smooth barrel, so that leaves SBS.

    Now, here comes the trickiest question of them all. If I register the receiver as a SBS, will I still be able to swap barrels like a regular TC? If the rules of contagion doesn't apply, can I have it registered as a SBS with a 6.5" bbl, remove the barrel and throw on a pistol length rifle barrel? Or take the grip off, throw on the stock and a 16" barrel to make it a rifle? It's a very murky area... obviously if I put a stock on it with a short rifle barrel that would require an SBR stamp as well. I like to keep my interactions with the ATF to a minimum but I might have to run this past them. What are y'alls thoughts?
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  2. #2
    Boolit Buddy adcoch1's Avatar
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    Register as an sbs and engrave the short barrel. Then you won't have engraving on the frame. A SBS is only legally one when assembled as such, and any nfa weapon can be reconstructed into a title 1 firearm at any time. You can throw a long barrel on the frame and travel without taking the paperwork packet easy as pie. Just make sure to verify with your legal counsel since I am not a lawyer...
    "Give me liberty, or give me death!" Patrick Henry ,March 23, 1775

  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy
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    I was very curious is I could serialize the barrel... that seems like the best bet. Then the only registered item would be the barrel and I could swap all I wanted. Clever

  4. #4
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    Edit: Use the serial on the receiver. You are the manufacturer of the SBS. Your name and city needs engraved on frame. It can be hidden in the area the barrel sits. The SBS in non NFA configuration is a title 1 firearm. You can cross state boundaries with impunity in non NFA mode as long as it meets that stateís draconian law. This should not have any issues in long gun or pistol mode in even NYS or Illinois with an appropriate hunting license that allows that combination to take game.

    Again not a lawyer. Just some dumbo on the inter web.
    Last edited by DanishM1Garand; 01-17-2020 at 03:27 PM.

  5. #5
    Boolit Buddy
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    I believe that since you are not a manufacturer with an SOT, what you are doing is "modifying" a firearm. This would require dedicating the barrel AND receiver to this project and subsequent NFA registration. On the Form 1 you would submit for modifying the firearm, you would need to include complete firearm info- make, model, description, caliber/gauge, etc.

    The primary difference between your barrel and, for instance, a suppressor is that the barrel is a gun component and the other is an accessory. The National Firearms Act makes a gun enthusiast commit, not just dabble. I have an AutoMag pistol that I bought around 1982. It has a 10" barrel and a detachable shoulder stock. I "MAY" have attached the shoulder stock to the pistol, late at night, locked in my bathroom, and never told anyone about it. LOL! I have a 12" B&B Sales barrel with a 4" muzzle break permanently attached. I could use the longer barrel with the the shoulder stock and would break no laws. To use the short barrel and the stock would require NFA registration- Form 1. The gun gets registered as a SBR.

    The best situation for you is to register the whole thing. With a "controlled" firearm or a suppressor you have to carry paperwork with you when you take the gun out- no big deal to carry a briefcase or something similar when you go shooting. If you want to switch that Encore to a 26" 7mm Mag rifle for elk season, go ahead. You just throw your paperwork into your hunting pack along with your license and tag. It's no big deal.

    Personally, I wouldn't do it to an Encore. Finding a buyer for a Form 4 Encore will be a fantasy. Do it with an NEF or H&R shotgun and you duplicate the Rossi but don't lose much financially if you need to end your ownership and choose to surrender or destroy the gun. I have bought and sold NFA guns and accessories for almost 40 years. The number 1 lesson in this hobby is "Don't ever buy or build something that does not already have a market. At some point you'll want or need to get rid of it".

    Good luck!

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigbore.729 View Post

    Now, here comes the trickiest question of them all. If I register the receiver as a SBS, will I still be able to swap barrels like a regular TC? If the rules of contagion doesn't apply, can I have it registered as a SBS with a 6.5" bbl, remove the barrel and throw on a pistol length rifle barrel? Or take the grip off, throw on the stock and a 16" barrel to make it a rifle? It's a very murky area... obviously if I put a stock on it with a short rifle barrel that would require an SBR stamp as well. I like to keep my interactions with the ATF to a minimum but I might have to run this past them. What are y'alls thoughts?
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Firstly this is not a tricky question, you’ve gotten yourself wrapped up, just step back a bit and the answers become clear. Where it gets tricky is when someone asks for clarification from ATF and then we get a unique response that may or may not be consistent with prior guidance and that may or may not be treated as guidance for the rest of us.

    You are making a SBS, pay the tax and mark it as required.

    As others have said, it’s only an SBS when it is assembled as such. You can assemble it as a non-nfa item at any time, and can even sell the receiver as a non-nfa item should you choose to do so.

    You want to make it convertible to an SBR as well, I’d need to look at the marking requirements, but it is also pretty straightforward, just as if you were filing a form 1 for any other reciever.

  7. #7
    Boolit Buddy
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    No, the plan is to not ever have it configured as an SBR. The plan is to register it as a SBS. The plan is to buy a pistol reciever. If I bought it as a pistol, registered it as an SBR, I could still change calibers (like a regular TC) and have it configured as either a rifle, or a pistol.

    If I buy it as a pistol, I should be able to go from SBS to pistol, to rifle (non sbr) back to a pistol or SBS so long as a stock is not attached at the same time as the pistol barrel is (which would be an sbr). I think I got it figured out now. Sorry if my first post made it sound even more confusing and was not clear...

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    If you shorten a T/C fully rifled barrel 12ga. barrel to 8", you might be able to avoid the NFA issues when a pistol stock is installed.
    It would be just like the T/C 45Colt/410 barrel they sold. One area of concern might be the bore diameter being greater than 50 caliber.
    Generally the BATFE hasn't said boo about this, as the firearm uses conventional sporting ammunition.
    Last edited by johnly; 01-17-2020 at 08:39 PM.

  9. #9
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    Have the barrel rifled with .001 grooves and then it is just a pistol.

    How did Rossi handle this?

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy
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    If it had rifling it could possibly be considered a DD as it's over .5" in bore diameter.

    The rossi pictured was an oops on their part and only a handful were ever made. They are Canada only imports I believe. They had sub 18" barrels and a pistol grip so under Canadian law it designated them as pistols.

    As far as shotguns being classified pistols in the US, the only one able to do so is .410 and that's only because. 45 colt fits as well. So anything else would either be a DD or SBS

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by garandsrus View Post
    Have the barrel rifled with .001 grooves and then it is just a pistol.

    How did Rossi handle this?
    Rossi handled this by only releasing 50-60 of these, accidentally, IN CANADA. Gun laws are different in Canada than the U.S.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    I think you have it all figured, except that because of the lawsuit I think you could start with any TC receiver. I’m not quite 100% on this, would need to go back at look at the details of the ruling.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Todd N. View Post
    Rossi handled this by only releasing 50-60 of these, accidentally, IN CANADA. Gun laws are different in Canada than the U.S.
    Canada has no restrictions on smoothbore pistols. Itís just a pistol.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by DanishM1Garand View Post
    Canada has no restrictions on smoothbore pistols. It’s just a pistol.
    That's not quite correct. In case you were not aware, Canada has three classes of firearms: Prohibited, Restricted, Non-Restricted. EVERY firearm in Canada is accorded a place in one of these classes.

    The ones that were shipped to Canada were shipped as long guns although they had short, 18" barrels. Canada law requires a minimum 18.5" barrel to be legal as a long gun. Had they been shipped as handguns there would have been no problem. At that time, Rossi had no intent to ship any of these to ANY North American markets. These were an error by Rossi.

    As a point of fact, Canada does have regulations on smoothbore handguns just as we do, when they are altered from an existing long gun by cutting, sawing, or other means. Just as it is for us, Canada requires permission and registration for these, and it is virtually the same process for them to build one as it is for us: pay the fees ( or tax), submit the paperwork and get approval to do the build or modification, although in Canada you do the build first and then submit your application and photos. However, depending on the decision of the examiner at the Canadian Firearms Center (the gov't agency that grants the modification permit) these large-bore handguns will be determined to be either "Prohibited" or "Restricted".
    Only a handful of these conversions were ever granted by the Canadian gov't.

  15. #15
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    To each his own but I dont like guns that have a high probability of injuring the shooter just by firing them in a normal fashion.

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