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  1. #1

    Default Olympic Arms pre-ban lower, go or no-go?

    I have a deposit down at a gun shop for a stripped pre-ban lower. They called me yesterday and told me they just got a PB olympic arms lower in. I have read online that olympic arm's records were destroyed in a fire so they cannot legally prove the lower was made or assembled pre awb. Its right on their website. Should I be worried about this and wait for a different lower? Or is it not a big concern? Going to look at it tonight so hopefully I get some feedback from you guys.

    Thanks

    -sam
    -Snacks

    Sic semper tyrannis

  2. #2

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    The burden of proof is on the state to prove that it is post ban. Good luck to them in doing that. I'll just leave it at that.

    BTW, why is this in the NFA section? This really isn't an NFA issue... of course, for all I know you could be about ready to build an SBR.

    -Mike

  3. #3

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    Cuz I know this is where you hang out, haha.

    Ya, its gonna be an sbr w/ a can. I didn't know which section lol, definitely move it if it should be somewhere else.

    So I should be in good shape then, I trust the dealer too they wouldn't screw me like that. It mainly just peaked my interest. I figured that I just don't wanna get boned by something stupid.
    -Snacks

    Sic semper tyrannis

  4. #4

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    Though I agree it is tough for the state to prove it isn't post ban, if an officer confiscates it and charged you, you will pay a lot more in court/lawyer fees that the price to buy a verifiable preban Colt lower. My advice would be to buy a complete preban Colt (which can sometimes be had in the $850 range if you are patient). Remove and sell the parts you will not end up using (Though you will probably use most of the lower group). You will also not be worried everytime you are at the range and someone asks to see the gun, fearing they are the police.

    Dave
    Don't talk yourself out of your future.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tackdriver View Post
    Though I agree it is tough for the state to prove it isn't post ban, if an officer confiscates it and charged you, you will pay a lot more in court/lawyer fees that the price to buy a verifiable preban Colt lower.
    You could still get arrested with a preban gun by a dumb LEO that doesn't know the laws. Last I knew LEOs didn't carry around a preban serial number list in their back pocket.

    That said, the LEO in question would pretty much have to be a 110% douchebag anyways, and if one of those accosts you, you're pretty much screwed.

    In MA I've never heard of an "on the spot" arrest over the provenance of a rifle. All the AWB cases I've seen, that determination was made "post confiscation" (eg, an arrest was made or a 209A cleanout order was performed, or a confiscation after a permit revocation, etc. ) usually by the DA consorting with the police trying to figure out how to further screw the person they just arrested. In the case of an Oly lower, the DA would probably call the factory, and the factory would say something like "We have no records for that serial number" or some such- then their assertion is then dead in the water, because they have no way of proving when it was made.

    Not to mention in terms of CT, some Colt lowers are explicitly banned, even if preban, because of the byzantine "name" provisions in the ban, etc. Awhile ago dcmdon posted about this, and apparently some preban Colt lowers are OK and others are not, depending on what it says on the side of the lower.

    Owning guns in a commie state always puts you at legal risks simply by owning them. I'm not convinced that owning one brand of preban lower over another would "add insulation" that's worth paying a price premium for. I suppose those who are pedantic/anal retentive would want a preban lower that's accompanied by a letter from the manufacturer attesting to the provenance of that "rifle" as it left the factory and when it was manufactured. That said I had a Colt preban for years and I never felt the need to obtain such a letter.

    -Mike
    Last edited by drgrant; 12-02-2011 at 11:19 AM.

  6. #6
    NES Member 55_grain's Avatar
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    Hi Sam,

    While Oly's records were largely destroyed, they still have date ranges for most blocks of serial numbers. Get the serial number.
    Member GOAL & NRA
    NRA Highpower Rifle Expert

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by drgrant View Post
    You could still get arrested with a preban gun by a dumb LEO that doesn't know the laws. Last I knew LEOs didn't carry around a preban serial number list in their back pocket.

    That said, the LEO in question would pretty much have to be a 110% douchebag anyways, and if one of those accosts you, you're pretty much screwed.

    In MA I've never heard of an "on the spot" arrest over the provenance of a rifle. All the AWB cases I've seen, that determination was made "post confiscation" (eg, an arrest was made or a 209A cleanout order was performed, or a confiscation after a permit revocation, etc. ) usually by the DA consorting with the police trying to figure out how to further screw the person they just arrested. In the case of an Oly lower, the DA would probably call the factory, and the factory would say something like "We have no records for that serial number" or some such- then their assertion is then dead in the water, because they have no way of proving when it was made.

    Not to mention in terms of CT, some Colt lowers are explicitly banned, even if preban, because of the byzantine "name" provisions in the ban, etc. Awhile ago dcmdon posted about this, and apparently some preban Colt lowers are OK and others are not, depending on what it says on the side of the lower.

    Owning guns in a commie state always puts you at legal risks simply by owning them. I'm not convinced that owning one brand of preban lower over another would "add insulation" that's worth paying a price premium for. I suppose those who are pedantic/anal retentive would want a preban lower that's accompanied by a letter from the manufacturer attesting to the provenance of that "rifle" as it left the factory and when it was manufactured. That said I had a Colt preban for years and I never felt the need to obtain such a letter.

    -Mike
    good post mike. thanks for the quick reply yesterday it made my day cuz i got to do some paperwork. i ended up getting it.

    Quote Originally Posted by 55_grain View Post
    Hi Sam,

    While Oly's records were largely destroyed, they still have date ranges for most blocks of serial numbers. Get the serial number.
    right, i checked their website where they post the date ranges, mine is in the BS0001 - BS0699 range, which makes its date of manufactured (on?) 8/27/94.

    good read i found on the subject you guys might be interested in, kinda sucky because according to this, you could get nailed for anything unless you have proof it was made into a weapon pre-ban.

    Pre-Ban or Post-Ban?
    More than just a date.

    by Corey Sattler



    It's been a few years, and there is still confusion about what changed and what is legal since the passage of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, better known as the 1994 Crime Bill. Many people just want to know if they have in their possession a pre-ban or a post-ban receiver. These are the questions that I probably hear more often than any other. Even firearm dealers don't know sometimes, and I have talked to people who asked their local BATF agents what the determining factors are, and the agents are giving incorrect information. So what are the new regulations? Read on my friends.

    The Crime Bill "restricts the manufacture, transfer, and possession of certain 'Semiautomatic Assault Weapons'." So what, you say, is a "Semiautomatic Assault Weapon"? The law (Section 921 (a) (30), Title 18 U.S.C.) defines it as so:

    Any of the firearms, or copies or duplicates of the firearms in any caliber, known as:

    Norinco, Mitchell, Poly Technologies, Avtomat Kalashinikovs
    Action Arms Israeli Military Industries UZI, Galil
    Beretta AR70 (SC-70)
    Colt AR-15
    Fabrique National FN/FAL, FN/LAR, FNC
    SWD M-10, M-11, M-11-9, M-12
    Steyr AUG
    Intratec TEC-9, TEC-DC9, TEC-22
    Revolving cylinder shotguns, such as / similar to the Street Sweeper and Striker 12
    Any semiautomatic rifle that has the ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of the following features:

    a folding or telescoping stock
    a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon
    a bayonet mount
    a flash suppressor or a threaded barrel designed to accommodate a flash suppressor
    a grenade launcher.
    A semiautomatic pistol that has an ability to accept a detachable magazine and has at least 2 of the following features:

    an ammunition magazine that attaches to the pistol outside of the pistol grip
    a threaded barrel capable of accepting a barrel extender, flash suppressor, forward handgrip or silencer
    a shroud that is attached to, or partially or completely encircles the barrel and that permits the shooter to hold the firearm with the non-trigger hand without being burned
    a manufactured weight of 50 ounces or more when the pistol is unloaded
    a semiautomatic version of an automatic firearm
    A semiautomatic shotgun that has at least 2 of the following features:

    a folding or telescoping stock
    a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon
    a fixed magazine capacity in excess of 5 rounds
    an ability to accept a detachable magazine.
    Of course, some of the features listed are already regulated by previous laws, and none of them make any real impact in the so-called "war against crime", but there they are. Aren't your elected officials great?

    At this point you know what a Semiautomatic Assault Weapon (SAW) is defined as, but how do you determine what it is you have or what you can legally buy or make? What makes a gun "pre-ban?" What it all boils down to is when the firearm itself was built. The manufacture date of the lower receiver alone has virtually nothing to do with its classification as pre-ban. Edward M. Owen, Jr., Chief of the Firearms Technology Branch of the BATF, has this to say:

    "Semiautomatic pistols and rifles assembled after September 13, 1994, and possessing two or more of the features listed in [Section 921 (a) (30), Title 18 U.S.C.] are semiautomatic assault weapons as defined. The fact that the receiver may have been manufactured prior to September 13, 1994, is immaterial to classification of a weapon as a semiautomatic assault weapon. Additionally, payment or non-payment of excise tax is also immaterial to classification of a firearm as a semiautomatic assault weapon."

    What he's reiterating is, as far as pre-ban and post-ban is concerned, the date of manufacture of the receiver has nothing to do with anything. If your SAW was built into a whole SAW, or in a complete kit form, before Sept. 13, 1994 (The Date), you are the lucky owner of a pre-ban receiver. Notice I say SAW. The existence of firearm alone is not enough - it had to be in a form that would now be illegal to manufacture. If the gun was built after The Date, if the receiver was without all of the parts to make a SAW before The Date, or if it was not in a SAW form before The Date, then it is post-ban. Let me give you a few examples to clarify this:

    John Q. Public bought himself an AR-15 receiver in 1988 and put it in his safe. In April 1997, he decided to build it into a rifle. Was it a gun before The Date? No…so he has to build it into a POST-ban firearm.
    Mary Quite-Contrary buys an AR-15 lower from her dealer who purchased it 7 years ago, built it into a SAW 2 weeks later, and in January '94 tore it apart to sell as components. Did she buy a pre-ban receiver? Yes. It was a SAW before the date, and is therefore pre-ban.
    Billy Bob finds a respectable dealer at a gun show that is selling "pre-ban AR pistol lowers." The dealer says he bought them before "the Ban" and registered them as pistol lowers, but never built them into anything. Are they pre-ban? No way. Are they pistol lowers? Sure...just post-ban pistol lowers. As long as they don't have two or more "Deadly Features" when they are built, they are legal.
    Fred Foosball buys a complete semiautomatic assault rifle kit in August 1994, but doesn't assemble it until September 14, 1994. Is it a legal pre-ban rifle. Yes it had all (and I mean ALL) of the pieces to make a complete SAW on The Date. BATF accepts this as a complete pre-ban rifle.
    Josh the Impaler purchases a Remington 1100 on July 4, 1994 in order to celebrate Independence Day. Ax McGuitar purchases a Remington 1100 on July 4, 1994 for duck hunting that fall. A year later, he decides that he would like a pistol grip and folding stock added to make it a better home defense gun. Is this legal? No. The shotgun was complete before The Date, but it was not a SAW before The Date, and therefore cannot be modified to a SAW after The Date.
    Confused yet? Don't worry, it's a bit puzzling at first. The basic rule of thumb to use is, if you are planning to buy a pre-ban gun or receiver, make sure that the person selling it to you can prove that it was built as a SAW (or in a complete kit form) on or before The Date. If he or she can't do this, my best advice is do not buy it.

    Many people also believe that a serial number can tell you whether or not a receiver is pre- or post-ban. This is not always the case, contrary to several lists that can be found online or at gun shows.

    For example, if a manufacturer's books show a serial number as being manufactured on August 23, 1994, and also lists that serial number being shipped on September 3, 1994, is this a pre-ban receiver? Well, that information alone does not tell you. If the books only show when a serial number was made and left, you still don't know how it was shipped. Was it a rifle? or a receiver only? did the dealer who purchased it have it as a SAW before The Date? These are all questions that are unanswerable with the provided information, so don't go on these facts alone! Remember, you must know when the receiver was built into a firearm!

    I hope that the foregoing has been responsive to any misconceptions you as the reader may have about pre-ban and post-ban receivers/guns/regulations. Please pass this information on to your friends, neighbors, local gun shops, or anywhere you feel this could be helpful. The more knowledge we all possess, the better off our sport (and sportsmen) will be. Until then, play nice and shoot straight!
    -Snacks

    Sic semper tyrannis

  8. #8
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    Powerjoker - I just saw this but thought I'd contribute.

    There is no requirement in CT law that a receiver have been built into a functional rifle before the AWB date. This differs from several other states that require that the "firearm" (which is what a receiver is legally) be built into a functional rifle or handgun.

    This is the joy of our legislation. A receiver is a firearm. A suppressor is a firearm. A piece of sheet metal is a machine gun (google lightning link).

    Re Pre-ban Colts. 99% of pre-ban colts are still prohibited in CT. The law names the AR15 and Sporter as prohibited. (Joker's reference to an article by Corey Satler above is incorrect in that it fails to include the Sporter. Its incorrect for a number of other reasons, but I'll not get into that. If you want to know the law, read the law. Its pretty easy to understand: http://www.ct.gov/bfpe/cwp/view.asp?...&Q=418126&PM=1 ).

    Very Very few pre-ban colt ARs were named something other than AR15 or Sporter.

    I don't remember what they were called, but I believe CTBuilder has one. Maybe he can chime in.

    Don

  9. #9
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    on a side note...is your receiver 'in spec'? I have an OLY M-16 lower (converted by PAWS pre-1986) I bought in the early 90's and the lower was slightly out of spec. I got tired of modifying every upper I wanted to put on it and finally had the lower milled slightly to allow all mil-spec uppers to fit. Check the top surface of the lower (where it meets the upper) directly above the magwell..if it looks more 'polished' then it has already been adjusted. Try a different upper on it to be sure. Feel free to PM me with any questions.

  10. #10
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    my pre-ban oly lower is in spec, but it is on the snug side of the tolerance.

    Everything fits, but there is definitely no need for a rubber pad under the rear take down pin.

    One other thing to know about these old olys is whether it was cast or forged. Oly provides info on their web site on how to differentiate.
    It doesn't really make much of a difference since the lower on an AR really only holds the fire control parts in proper alignment and not much else, but it affects what its worth on the open market.

    Don

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