Franklin Armory Reformation
Courtesy Franklin Armory
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Just shy of a year ago, Franklin Armory hit us with a press release for a gun that sure as heck looked like an SBR (a short barreled rifle, regulated strictly under the NFA, or National Firearms Act) but apparently wasn’t. In fact, they said it didn’t even classify as a rifle. Or a shotgun. I guess firearm identity is a fluid spectrum.

Man was there a lot of speculation and fanfare and curiosity leading up to Franklin Armory’s big reveal at SHOT Show 2018! The secret of the Reformation (wasn’t that a movie?) was the scoop to get. Once the market found out that the barrel has lands and grooves but they’re totally straight, and since there’s no spin imparted on the projectile it isn’t considered “rifling” (and therefore doesn’t meet the definition of a rifle), but also isn’t a smoothbore (so doesn’t meet the definition of a shotgun), there was a collective, “Oh, okay.” And we all moved on with our lives.

Oh yeah, the Franklin Armory Reformation! It has arisen a year later, resurrected, resuscitated, refined, reinvigorated, and reformed. It has rebounded in our minds for the first time and is now actually available for purchase. Good times.

All kidding aside, 300 Blackout is made for a short barrel, and even with standard ammo, Franklin Armory claims ~3.5″ groups at 100 yards with the Reformation. That’s way more than accurate enough for home defense and lots of other uses.

Assuming the Reformation is stabilizing subsonic 300 BLK projectiles so it’s safe to shoot this thing suppressed, I’m on board. It would represent all the good stuff about a suppressed SBR for home defense with none of the legal and regulatory hassles and cost of registering and owning the “real thing.”

Franklin’s email follows:

Now Available!

Franklin Armory's "Reformation" Non-Rifles Non-Shotguns Are Now Available
courtesy mfr

Reformation® RS7™

$1,179.99 – $1,409.99


Franklin Armory's "Reformation" Non-Rifles Non-Shotguns Are Now Available
courtesy mfr

Reformation® RS11™

$1,659.99 – $1,894.99


For more information go to

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    • Well, they do come with their binary trigger pre-installed…but yeah insanely priced in light of “braced-pistols”.

      What I love is the cognitive dissonance of this country. We’ll make all forms of ridiculous “legal” firearms and accessories to skirt something just because someone, somewhere says “it’s a law”, but we can’t come together, even at a State-level and just put all the cards on the table and collectively say, “No.”

      This all proves that all “pro-2A patriots” out there are nothing but talk and banter.

      Really want to start a “reformation”, Franklin Armory? Start giving away real “SBRs” to people a la Magpul with their 30rd mags in the face of Colorado’s “hi-cap” magazine ban.

      We sit idly by when armed men with guns use unjust force to incarcerate people who are merely exercising their rights all the while saying, “whelp, that guy played stupid games so he deserves to win stupid prizes.”

      The coming breakup of the US Empire, while I continue to hope and pray will be peaceful and sane, can’t come soon enough.

      • People are too well fed and comfortable for such a break up. Ain’t gonna happen. We sit idly by because we are too comfortable. And that isn’t going to change any time soon.

        • The world has a way of surprising us, sometimes. Nobody predicted the fall of the Berlin Wall, the breakup of the Soviet Union, and the freeing of Eastern Europe with any convincing influence. Even the Arab Spring, albeit replacing long time dictators with upstart dictators, came as a surprise for being so sudden and sweeping.

          I look at the long–decades long, even generations long–arc of history leading up to our own Revolutionary War and Civil War and see how it all seemed so inevitable. Replicate those same sentiments and issues today, with our modern communication and transportation technologies, and it’s easy to see similar inevitabilities racing to occur at unparalleled pace in a compressed time frame.

          In every facet of human endeavor, technology is redefining on a near daily basis the phrase “not any time soon.” We might consider bracing for a reimagination of our future, a future formerly and until just recently deemed “not in our lifetime.” God willing, cool heads will prevail and wisely preside over the deliberate, peaceful, planned, and lawful dissolution of this now-ungovernable country.
          We’ve become others to ourselves and, again, find ourselves living in a house divided against itself.

        • jwm hit the bullseye. Why do you not see flash mobs of conservatives rampaging like you see on the left? Too much to lose. You work hard to provide a comfortable life for your family and aren’t willing to risk that.

          There will only be change (a course correction) when the risk of doing nothing is greater than the risk of action.

        • The lead-up to the fall may take a very long time, but once the fall is triggered it’s hard and fast. These things happen gradually, then suddenly. Slowly, then all at once.

      • Magpul sold 20 and 30 round mags at reasonable prices to Colorado residents before the ban went into effect. SBRs are already illegal. Why should they risk federal felonies, loss of license/business, when there isn’t the political will to support them? Why don’t you go down to the steps of your local federal center and assemble an untaxed machine gun, SBR, or other NFA item. Why aren’t you asserting your absolute 2A rights?

      • “The coming breakup of the US Empire, while I continue to hope and pray will be peaceful and sane, can’t come soon enough.”


        And, whether deliberately or just as a slave to his personality Trump seems to be doing his best to break it up, however clumsily at times. He, regardless how ineptly may save the Republic and the world.

        Killary would have already forced an incineration of the world.

        • Obama was the most divisive POTUS since Lincoln. However, at least Lincoln was attempting to preserve the Union!

    • …That would be in the The People’s Republic of M-Assachusetts…Under commissar, AG. Maura Healey/ Re-elected by Stupid people & Marching Morons…As the DemoCRAPs stated over a year ago during a M-Assachusetts Public Safety and Homeland Security/Gun Control mtg./Rep. Creem, Exclaimed,” that there is NO 2nd Amendment Right to own weapons in the state of M-Assachusetts…Only a Barely Tolerated Privilage allowed by the state politicians and Massachusetts Law Enforcement Community…Issued and heavy-handedly controlled by the local/state police…”

  1. Make it in .458 socom and it would make an expensive middle ground Pizzly bear stopper, fitting between a hand gun and a long gun.

      • If you are referring to the DOJ handgun roster I’m not entirely sure this qualifies as a pistol, but I have very limited knowledge on the matter.

        • @Draven. That’s what I’m thinkin’; it has “evil features”. Making it single shot is the only way i think it would be legal in CA.

        • Single shot exemption still exists but in a more limited form. That’s an exemption to the handgun roster. There is no exemption to the assault weapon laws, which are totally separate. This firearm is not a handgun and therefore the roster has nothing to do with it whatsoever. But, it does violate various aspects of the CA assault weapons laws.

    • I would doubt that even the press release announcing them is legal in California.

      Think I’m kidding? Hell, it was only as recently as SEPTEMBER 2018 that California law barred gun retailers from using handguns as advertising props in their store windows and parking lots in the name of public safety. The near-century old free speech obliteration was finally struck down by a federal judge basically five minutes ago. California’s argument was that suicidal passersby could be thrust into an impulse purchase and life ending decision if they saw a firearm displayed in a gun shop window. Good grief.

      I wonder what fantastical lunacy California’s overlords might predict of people reading the press release for this non-SBR, SBR-ish, weapon and then use as a pretext for banning displeasing speech?

  2. You can just slap a sba3 on something for for a fraction of the price. Just put one on a Draco. I think it was $125 with free shipping…. But by all means spend away….😎

  3. I don’t know. Dropping 2 grand for an inaccurate AR that’s one ruling away from being banned doesn’t seem like a good idea.

    It’s a fancy zip gun.

    • Seeing as any semi-auto rifle is capable of bump fire, and given that bump fire stocks were just made verboten through a ruling based on doublespeak and factually incorrect assertions, I expect we have maybe 2-5 years until we get a ruling banning any auto-loading action or mechanism. Maybe their next redefinition magic trick will be to use the “readily restored” language in the NFA to ban all semi-autos whose action could conceivably be modified to full-auto. After all, if a criminal can make a semi-auto AR lower they can make a full-auto one too, so you’d have to ban all semi-autos so criminals couldn’t make them.

      I feel like there’s a parallel to the whole “if your state has crappy gun laws then move” argument in here – the antis will never stop, so none of us can run forever. The best that strategy can do is to let you live out your days and pass the buck to the next generation, and after 80 years of that it’s really starting to catch up with us.

  4. It pisses me off that we’re stuck with not being allowed to get Binary Triggers here in WA. From what I can tell from reading about this the state set a arbitrary limit on rate of fire that the binary trigger exceeded. Even though our own state constitution is similar to the federal constitutions in saying that the RKBA can’t be infringed. Or specially ‘shall not be impaired’.

    • No, that is not why. WA defined “machine gun” way back in the day as a firearm that fires more than one round per cycle of the trigger, whereas federally and in most states the laws say more than one round per pull of the trigger. The binary triggers don’t violate the second definition but they do violate the definitions that say “cycle.” Just bad luck, really.

      • Well that’s not quiet the issue. There’s an obscure section in WA state law that says that a gun that can fire more than 5 shots in a second is considered an MG, even if it’s mechanically semi-auto. And apparently one of these binary triggers can theoretically pull that off. There has been one court case involving the use of a binary trigger in WA, and the defendant actually won, but on a technicality that the DA screwed up on his end. So the result didn’t affect the law.

        It should also be noted that the state of Washington ‘rewarded’ the gun range where the defendant was operating at by pulling their license to operate. Look up the Kitsap Rifle and Revolver club.

        • That’s not true. 5 shots per second is part of the definition of an MG for some reason but that’s toward the end of the list of defining criteria.

        • Hmm, yes, that IS in the definition now. This must have changed with new WA laws? I see bump stocks are in there. I remember pulling the penal code definitions when I was living in WA and the binary triggers first came out. They’ve never been legal in the state due to the “function” or “cycle” thing rather than the “pull” thing, but now the whole definition is different. It actually says “pressed” now: “…not requiring that the trigger be pressed for each shot…”

          But, the things in the list are AND, not OR. Meaning it says it’s a machine gun if the trigger doesn’t have to be pressed for each shot AND it fires more than five rounds per second. Only firing at that rate isn’t enough to be a machine gun. ALL components of the equation must be met.

          I think the binary ones are still illegal under this definition, though, since they don’t have to be pressed for each shot — half the shots happen when the trigger is released.

  5. If I could afford it I’d support them just on principle but form the asking price I can have at least 2 nice braced “pistol” AR’s and money left for ammo.

  6. What if they welded on a silencer, would it then “not” be a silencer attached to “not a rifle”.
    Like that muzzle loader….

    • No, cuz it’s a firearm. A muzzle loader doesn’t meet the definition of “firearm” federally and in most states so, like an air gun, silencers for that aren’t regulated. Firearm silencers are, though, and it does not matter what form of firearm it is.

  7. So it took them almost a year to make barrels with straight rifling? Any chance they want to sell the barrels on their own? I could build something just as good with spate parts and the barrel.

      • The NRA only has money and organization to make their opinions heard. Ultimately, it’s Trump and the government who have the actual direct power to decide.

    • That attitude right there is a step closer to losing more ground. If people were not buying as many of the ‘ too strange for me’ firearms it would be an even harder sell to keep them legal. The hunters that see no place for a polymer modular rifle because it’s not what they use attitude…

      • Buying a pistol with a brace is much less of a danger. I can simply get rid of the brace once it’s considered a SBR and go back to having a pistol.

        You cannot trust Trump or Republicans. We can trust Democrats to be Democrats. Trump has no principles, which makes him highly unpredictable and dangerous; same goes for law enforcement.

        I don’t feel like giving law enforcement an excuse to no-knock my house and shoot me dead for exercising my civil/human rights. That’s not being a fudd… It’s all about risk reward at this point. I don’t think this particular risk is worth the reward at this time.

  8. “Assuming the Reformation is stabilizing subsonic 300 BLK projectiles so it’s safe to shoot this thing suppressed, I’m on board. ”

    Why? You’re already enduring the stamp for the suppressor and the Reformation is easily 200 dollars more than a normal short rifle upper.

      • But neither of which can be taken to a States that bans them.
        Suppressors require no ATF permission slip to travel interstate, but if caught with one where they are banned by the State, goodbye to your 2A right.
        ATF will not issue a permission slip for SBRs if the destination State bans them.

  9. The only difference between this and a good AR pistol is a slightly different butt. The “braces” function like a stock, and now that we have multi position braces, there’s literally no reason to buy this or even an SBR over a pistol with a good brace.

  10. I’ll just wait for a barrel manufacturer (like Faxon) to make a barrel with the straight grooves and then I’ll build my own upper and put it on a stripped lower. Price of that will be much less than what FA is offering and also, I don’t want a .223 or .300 BLK anyway, I want a 9mm or .40 compact long gun. Plenty powerful for home defense, cheap ammo, accuracy out to 75 yards even with a standard PCC isn’t all that great anyway.

    Now, when someone comes out with a shotgun that uses a barrel with straight grooves, you will have my money and lots of it.

  11. There is a reason for rifling.
    Straight rifling = no stabilization. I would definitely not put a supressor on this, i think that the bullets will yaw straight out of the barrel.

    This is a really expensive gimmick given that a brace on an AR pistol is $125.

  12. WAAAAYYYYY Overpriced!
    And why couldn’t a rifled muzzle device be used to stabilize the bullet?
    An opportunity to make some $$$ if it could be done.

  13. To me this just highlights how incredibly stupid the NFA is. If we lived in a world where politicians were sane and made decisions based upon any form of normal reason and logic it would have become apparent to them long before now that the dividing lines between pistol, rifle, shotgun, short, long, etc. are completely arbitrary and have been so blurred by things like the AR platform that the entire NFA should be scrapped just because it is stupid. If it has a 15″ barrel and also a stock – verboten – unless you weld a flash hider to it – unless you are in CA then that flash hider makes it an assault weapon. Take the stock off and it is a pistol but the barrel is too long, blah, blah, blah. The fact that anyone would even bother to come up with an oddball firearm that is a short rifle, only not, to get around such stupid and arbitrary rules should be an indication that the rules themselves need revision. Seriously, what is this terrible horror that is supposed to be unleashed upon mankind if I put a shoulder stock on a firearm with a 10 inch barrel? Does the sun go out? Earthquakes? Fire and brimstone raining down from the sky? Dogs and cats living together? I just don’t get how anyone can think these rules accomplish anything.

    Since, supposedly, the reason behind all the stupid firearms rules – from the NFA to the GCA to the myriad state and local laws – is to reduce crime (which is going down anyway) then why don’t we just stick with the rule that it is illegal to shoot at people who are not threatening you with imminent harm and not worry about what it is we are not shooting people with?

  14. Maybe they waited a year to try and let people forget about that horrible demonstration video. The one with the guy from franklin armory who didn’t appear to know anything about anything. Oh yeah and the whole every round keyholes since there is no stabilization. Talk about snake oil. Sadly Im sure people will purchase this garbage.

  15. How about this setup with a fin stabilised bullet, more expensive I know but feasible especially thinking along the lines of subsonic larger caliber.


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