The Truth About SIG SAUER’s AR-15 Pistol Arm Brace

38 responses

  1. avatar
    William Burke
    May 7, 2013

    “tough rubber-like compound”

    i.e., an elastomer?

    • avatar
      Tom in Oregon
      May 7, 2013

      Probably more like that yellow stuff on my Quarter Pounder…

    • avatar
      Eco
      December 18, 2013

      This item is made of a rubber compound that closely resembles the structural integrity of a car tire sidewall up towards the treads. Very solid and not at all flimsy.

  2. avatar
    Crunkleross
    May 7, 2013

    Constructive intent?

    • avatar
      DJ
      May 7, 2013

      Has constructive intent ever been exposed to judicial scrutiny? I can’t find any precedent.

      Closest is here:
      http://www.nevadashooters.com/showthread.php?t=15594

    • avatar
      DJ
      May 7, 2013

      After further research, it’s “constructive possession” that’s the concern. If I’m reading this correctly, it shouldn’t count as constructive possession, because the ATF has already ruled that adding the accessory to a pistol does not create an SBR.

      http://blog.princelaw.com/2009/07/08/nfa-and-constructive-possession-myth-or-reality/

    • avatar
      Pro-Liberty
      May 7, 2013

      A lot of gun guys are confused by the word “constructive” in the phrase constructive possession” and think it has something to do with building things. The word “constructive” is a legal term of art that you can basically read as meaning “the word that follows isn’t really correct, but we are going to pretend that it is.” So “constructive possession” means “an act that is enough to assert possession, even though there really was no possessing going on.”

      See http://dictionary.law.com/Default.aspx?selected=316

  3. avatar
    Tim U
    May 7, 2013

    For people who would use it as a stock, I’m not seeing how this would be much more advantageous to just the buffer tube. The contact point if you were going to ram it into your shoulder is only slightly bigger because the rest of the “stock” has been hollowed out for where the arm fits in the brace.

  4. avatar
    Armchair Command’oh
    May 7, 2013

    “[T]he process to get such a law enacted would be much longer and typically open for public scrutiny.”

    Tell that to the good people of New York.

  5. avatar
    My Name Is Bob
    May 7, 2013

    “They cannot contemplate possible mis-uses of the product, they can only evaluate it based on the designed usage. And should that product be mis-used by the consumers, they cannot take retroactive action based on that mis-use.”….
    Yeah, AT FIRST… The ATF can’t change their mind… You know, until they do. And would anybody here be surprised if they did?

  6. avatar
    Mark N.
    May 7, 2013

    I don’t think it will make any difference out here in LaLA land–they are already working on banning the pistol.

  7. avatar
    Ralph
    May 7, 2013

    OK, it’s legal. But it still looks, oh, ineffective. Or perhaps ridiculous. Pick one.

    • avatar
      AlphaGeek
      May 7, 2013

      Behind every AR pistol I’ve ever seen has been someone who really wanted a short-barreled AR, and had to use the “AR pistol” legal hack to get one.

      This is yet another SBR-but-not-really hack. Gotta admire how they’ve carefully followed the steps, CA-legal-AR-flowchart style, to get this onto the market as an ATF-approved device, though.

  8. avatar
    full.tang.halo
    May 7, 2013

    Nick, what about the original GSG5-SD “barrel shroud” issue? These were approved and imported and only after over a year for sale were they “deemed to be a silencer” and required to have everyone who owned one turn in their silencer tube for destruction and issued a non-silencer tube in it’s place. These tubes were to spec as to the importation docs and were administratively, retroactively classed as an NFA item, though ATI had to foot the bill to replace them.

    ATI was never given anything they could post that spelled out what happened from the ATF. Best we ever received was an MS-Paint drawing of what the “bad” ones looked like and how the “good” ones fixed the problem.

    • avatar
      TCBA_Joe
      May 7, 2013

      They approved the shroud until it was measured reducing the decible level of the rifle. The ATF approved a barrel shroud and ATI accidentally imported a bunch of silencers based on that approval.

      It’d be analogous to being given approval to import a bunch of 14.5″ Saigas with perm attached muzzle breaks to 16.1″ only to find out the importer used Rocksett and not a legal pin and weld.

      I dislike the ATF as much as anyone, but it’s necessary to look at the technical side of things before jumping on the hate wagon. I don’t see the ATF trying to screw with a company as large and established and with as many lawyers as Sig has. Plus, IIRC Sig makes the ATF’s sidearms.

    • avatar
      TCBA_Joe
      May 7, 2013

      The GSG-5 shrouds turned out to reduce the sound of the weapon.

      The ATF approved a barrel shroud and rescinded their approval when it turned out ATI had imported a bunch of silencers.

      It’d be analogous to getting approval to import 14.5″ Saigas with permed flash hiders only to find out the importer used Rocksett instead of a legal pin and weld.

      • avatar
        full.tang.halo
        May 7, 2013

        NOPE:
        “The previously submitted GSG-5SD barrel shroud incorporates a large expansion chamber and integral end caps and, therefore, was classified as a firearm silencer.”

        ATI tested it and there was no noticible change. The GSG5 used an identical hollow shroud, in a smaller dia, and wasnt recalled. There were no “alternate” configurations, the samples provied for the import tag were the same as the 13k that were imported.

        ATF appoved something then decided, oh shit, /unapproved

        I’m not assuming malice, when general incompetence will do.

  9. avatar
    Jewish Marksman
    May 7, 2013

    RE: ‘I’ve talked with people “in the know” about this new product ‘ and with respect to the ATF, “they will not reconsider their approval.”

    Respectfully, I would have to ask what legal foundation these people are relying on with respect to whether nor not the ATF can change its mind at a later date, due to either widespread misuse, or even contemplated misuse, and if it does so, why the determination could not be retroactively enforced.

    I realize that ATF Technical Branch letters have, as a practical matter, been relied on by the public as the be all end all of whether a device is legal or not. But I have never seen pointed out the specific legal framework which a) binds the ATF to any of its letter determinations, even with respect to the specific person to whom the letter is issued, b) binds the ATF to its determinations for eternity, unless a statute intervenes.

    Aside from “fair dealing,” what legal framework actually binds the ATF as so many people assume?

    • avatar
      full.tang.halo
      May 7, 2013

      The ATF will tell you that a Tech Branch letter is only good for the person to which it is addressed to

      http://i.imgur.com/Eh4Pe.jpg

      As far as changing their mind I keep these 2 letters on my phone just to prove such a point.

      Letter saying you do NOT have to mark the gun when you do a F1.
      http://i.imgur.com/wchsODl.png

      Letter saying you DO have to mark the gun when you do a F1.
      http://i.imgur.com/zHzEMV4.png

      • avatar
        Lisa
        May 7, 2013

        1. They aren’t saying that the presented letter is only “good” for the person who sent it. They are saying that only the person who sent it is privy to that info and can use it as he pleases. The FTB branch is there for people who invent stuff and need a legal answer. Those legal responses apply to everyone…and that is why the Slidefire is valid for everyone and not just the guy who invented it.

        2. This first letter is sent to the FTB and is asking about the registration and manufacture of a class 1 ar15 pistol and the validity of different buffer tubes.

        3. This letter is sent to the NFA not the FTB, so a completely different entity found at the ATF that responds only in regards to NFA items. The letter is also asking a seperate question regarding the requirements of what needs to be written on a firearm when manufactured.

        The ATF never changed there mind here…and if that is what you are attempting to demonstrate, maybe you should re-read the letters.

      • avatar
        full.tang.halo
        May 7, 2013

        1) Um, “is intended only for the use by the addressed individual or campany…” you and I read that completely differently apparently.

        2) that is the incorrect letter I uploaded. I keep that for people that say you cant use a standard buffer tube that can accept a stock on a ar-pistol.

        Correct letter is: http://i.imgur.com/VmutpPB.png

        Sent to the same department, NFA branch, 4 year prior to the 2nd letter and specifically says you do not need to add makers marks when making a SBR via Form 1.

        As for it being a “different entity”….yes I will hang my hat on the fact that only the NFA brach can change it’s mind 4 years after the fact….wait, how bout no.

      • avatar
        Lisa
        May 7, 2013

        So you are telling me that all of the gun manufacturers that send letters to the FTB apply only to them??? That is not what the letter says at all. Not to mention it would negate the whole purpose of having a Branch that is there to answer questions regarding legality about new technology. So if the theory you think holds true…the ATF approval letter for the slide fire applies only to slide fire and not to the people who buy the product????

      • avatar
        full.tang.halo
        May 7, 2013

        In my other post someone, I’d imagin it was the tech brach in conjuntion with the whoever oversees importing of firearms, allowed for ATI to import and then sell roughly 16,000 firearms that then administratively, retroactively, had their barrel shrouds declared NFA items, and reqired ATI, at their expense, to collect, cataloge and then destroy said NFA items. ATI then didn’t strictly have to but I don’t see how they couldn’t, replace all the barrel shrouds with “correct” ATF approved, non NFA versions.

        That incident, the corrected NFA branch letter I uploaded where they changed their stance on makers marks on SBR’s, another instance where there is an approved transfer of a machinegun that they say “shouldn’t” have happened, but we are going to let you keep it till you die….I have a legit skeptical view of anything coming out of the ATF being “forever ever”.

      • avatar
        Lisa
        May 7, 2013

        Again…in the case you sight it seems that ATF did not do its’ due dilligence and check what was under the “bonnet” so to speak (But I would be curious to see what was presented to the ATF and what was actually imported). If that was the case then I completely understand a retraction, as in the case of the Akins trigger actuator. Both cases are not a blatant nonsensical retraction but a thought out process done with the rules and regulations in mind. As to the first of your letters, I ask again…Do you think that the ATF approval letter placed in each box Slide Fire sells apply’s only to slide fire as a company or apply’s to the buyer too?

      • avatar
        full.tang.halo
        May 7, 2013

        This isn’t like the 80′s, samples of the firearm are provided to the ATF prior to importation. To this day there has not been an Official ATF letterhead public explination for the reclassification on the SD’s. ATI had/has asked for one and the ATF refuses to provide one.

        To answer your specific question regarding the slidefire, I think they “should”, do they, until someone goes to court and proves them to be binding, no one can say for certain. I’m not gonna volunteer to be a test case. I’ve seen too much nonsense come out of the ATF over the years.

      • avatar
        Lisa
        May 7, 2013

        Maybe the ATF has replied and ATI simply didn’t release that letter…better for business. Because it seems to me very strange that a company just keels over and decides to change things on the “whim” of the ATF. The United States is notoriously litigious and lawyers and court cases abound. If this was just a capricious decision on ATF’s part and it was me you can be damn sure there would be a lawsuit stating that the ATF due to their incompetence caused my company to lose money…and if it really was blatantly capricious, and negligent they most certainly would lose. On the other hand what if ATI failed to give the ATF the correct product…would they have told everyone that they failed to do things correctly?

      • avatar
        full.tang.halo
        May 7, 2013

        13k imported guns. If ATI made 20% selling each gun, you are talking 1.3 million dollars in revenue. That is nothing to go to war with the gov. And ATI doesn’t manufacture anything it sells, it’s dependent on ATF import documents. Even if it won, it’d be a Pyrrhic Victory, they’d be put out of business in a sea of red tape.

      • avatar
        Lisa
        May 8, 2013

        As I tell my husband…I’ll agree to disagree! It’s good to know that we can have a discussion without name calling though! ;-)

      • avatar
        elnonio
        May 8, 2013

        full.tang: After looking at the “good” first and second letter, I see that the second letter that says that nothing need to be added to the receiver (the second letter) does not, as is normal, restate the question asked of the ATF.

        So, if the question the ATF attempts to answer in the second was “I’ve already engraved my lower receivers with my name and all other SBR-like information even before I decided to turn it into an SBR, just because I like to have my firearms engraved with my information. Since then, I have decided to make them SBRs and so I sent my form for approval.” then yes, the answer “you don’t need to add any *additional* markings” could be both correct AND consistent with the first letter.

        Devil is in the details. That is why we are often told to not rely on others’ letters, because if your fact pattern is different from the other person’s (and, as may be the case here, you happen to not know of the differences) then the ATF could use to do that which attorneys (self included) love doing: distinguish the facts of one case from the other to reach a different result.

  10. avatar
    Soccerchainsaw
    May 7, 2013

    “In short, this wrist brace is here to stay.”

    Nick: Hope that this doesn’t become your version of RF’s “Obama isn’t coming for your guns” statement.

  11. avatar
    Blake
    May 7, 2013

    ATF is not to be trusted. Even if you get it in writing, ATF reserves the right to toss you in jail without ever really explaining why. Unless ATF decides they need to prove a point, then they’ll come in gun blazing.

  12. avatar
    akira
    May 7, 2013

    I kind of hope they do try to ban it, because it will bring public attention to the whole SBR thing, which is one if the stupidest feel-good laws on the books.

    • avatar
      AlphaGeek
      May 7, 2013

      100% agree. The SBR restrictions are right up there with “pistol grip + adjustable stock == assault shotgun” law here in CA for sheer irrelevant idiocy.

  13. avatar
    Jim Barrett
    May 7, 2013

    Interesting side note – the picture at the top of this post shows the pistol brace mounted on a Sig P556, not a P516 (Sig’s AR-15 pistol design). The P556 uses a long stroke piston and therefore does not need a buffer tube to catch the bolt on its trip back.

    So, someone evidently removed the cap at the back of the P556 and screwed in a buffer tube then wrapped this gizmo around it.

  14. avatar
    Wetwrks
    May 23, 2013

    “Will not reconsider their approval?”

    Oh really? Have you looked into the story surrounding the original Akins Accelerator?

    The ATF approved it for manufacture and sales. Stated that it is legal to own. Then a few years later revisited it and rescinded their approval and made them illegal to own. If you are caught with one (with the spring in it) you are charged with posession of an illegal machinegun.

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