There are countless rumors and urban legends surrounding the National Firearms Act (NFA). Some of these ideas are believable, but many are patently untrue. That’s why so many people believe that short-barreled rifles (SBRs) are illegal because of a statement made by former President Roosevelt or that the government can classify any weapon as an NFA weapon at will. Unfortunately, there is some truth to these stories and false claims about why SBRs cannot be owned by civilians. In this article, we’ll dispel those myths and tell you exactly why one of the most popular rifle types is illegal for private citizens to own.
Why Are SBRs Illegal?
The Lot is Too Small to Build an SBR
This is a common issue that occurs when a city has no rules or laws in place to prevent SBRs from being built. While SBRs can be advantageous for real estate investors, it is important to note that they can have a negative impact on surrounding properties, such as increased noise and traffic. So, while SBRs might be great for an investor, they can be very problematic for a residential neighborhood. This is especially true if you live in a neighborhood that is already very dense and where there is limited space between neighboring houses. If a city has no code in place to prevent SBRs, one homeowner may decide to build an SBR on a very small lot, which may have an adverse impact on other properties nearby.
SBRs Require Excessive Construction
If the city in which you are building an SBR has rules in place to prevent excessive construction, it may be a sign that this is a code violation. The main reason cities may want to prevent excessive construction is that certain materials and methods can actually damage surrounding properties. For example, if you are building an SBR on a wooden frame, you may need to install a larger-than-normal foundation, which could disturb your neighbors’ foundations. Cities may also want to prevent excessive construction because they have existing codes that regulate the placement of utilities underground, and it may be difficult to add an additional utility line to your home if you need to tap into your neighbor’s line in the event of an emergency.
SBRs are not fire-safe
Even if a city does not specify or regulate whether or not SBRs can be built, it may still be against the fire code to build an SBR. The International Building Code (IBC) is the most common building code used in the United States. The 2019 IBC includes strict rules and regulations that all structures, including SBRs, must follow. This means that if a city is using the 2019 IBC to regulate building, it is illegal to build an SBR as a primary residence. For example, the IBC requires that all structures be installed a certain minimum distance from one another so that in the event of a fire, one building does not start a fire in the neighboring structures. The IBC also requires that all structures have sufficient fire-protection systems in place, including fire alarms, fire extinguishers, and/or fire sprinklers.
The SBR is Advertising as a Short Term Rental
Many cities have strict rules in place to regulate short-term rentals, such as Airbnb, VRBO, and other similar services. While it is true that there are some locations where SBRs are allowed to be built and rented on a short-term basis, many cities have rules in place to prevent this from happening. If a city has strict rules in place to prevent SBRs from being converted into short-term rentals, it is completely illegal to build an SBR as a primary residence and then advertise it as a short-term rental. This is especially problematic because it means that people who live in the neighborhood may not feel safe staying at an SBR, and it also means that people looking to rent these properties will not be able to find them on Airbnb or VRBO.
How Does A Short-Barreled Rifle Work?
They’re Short and Lightweight
One of the main reasons people buy short-barreled rifles is that they’re short and lightweight. This makes them very easy to tote around and use in different locations. One of the more popular uses for a short-barreled rifle is hunting, and there’s a good reason for this. If you’re hunting in a location that requires you to drive, you’ll likely have to abide by state laws that limit what firearms you can have in your possession while on a public road. Rifles longer than a few feet typically aren’t allowed. But what if you don’t want to travel around with a full-sized rifle? What if you want a little more accuracy and power at a shorter range? You’ll want to look into getting a short-barreled rifle.
They Produce a Good Amount of Firing Power
One of the common misconceptions about SBRs is that they don’t produce as much firing power as standard rifles. While this might have been true for some older variations, modern SBRs are just as powerful as other rifles. In general, most SBRs are chambered for rifle cartridges with a lower amount of pressure than that found in a standard rifle cartridge. Short-barreled rifles were used to fire reduced-power cartridges, but those are now more commonly used in shorter-length rifles. This means an SBR will still have the power to take down most large game animals such as elk and deer. Short-barreled rifles used to be used more by law enforcement because they could be transported and used more discreetly. Modern law enforcement agencies are now moving toward rifles that have longer barrels and higher levels of firing power.
They Are Incredibly Easy to Handle
Another reason people love short-barreled rifles is that they’re incredibly easy to handle. A shorter rifle is much easier to control and aim than a long rifle. This is especially true for people with shorter arms or smaller hands. This is because the distance from the trigger to the end of the barrel is shorter on a shorter rifle, making it easier to get the barrel lined up properly with the target.
What AreThe Confusion About Short-Barreled Rifles And The NFA?
- If you’re a firearms enthusiast, you probably already know that short-barreled rifles are illegal. However, there’s a good chance that you don’t know why the government has banned these weapons.
- If you want to own a short-barreled rifle, you must first register it as an NFA weapon. This means that if you’re caught with a short-barreled rifle, you will be in violation of the law. And you will be subject to expensive fines as well as incarceration.
- Short-barreled rifles are illegal because they are extremely dangerous and can be used by criminals. It’s important to remember that the law applies to everyone. If you have the desire to own a short-barreled rifle, you must be willing to take the necessary steps to comply with the law.
Where Are SBRs Legal?
- There are some locations where SBRs are legal, but only if they are built as an accessory dwelling unit, such as on the same lot as an SFR or on a property where there is already a legal SBR.
- There are even some cities that allow two SBRs to be built on one lot. If you’re thinking about building an SBR, you should check your local city or county ordinances to see whether they permit the construction of these types of properties.
- The best way to do this is to visit your local planning department’s website and search for the keywords “Accessory Dwelling Unit Ordinance” or “Single-Family Rooftop Ordinance.”
- You can also talk to your neighbors or even the owners of the SFR next door to see whether they have any insight into whether your city or county permits the construction of SBRs on a property.
When Can You Build An SBR As A Primary Residence?
- There are a few locations where SBRs can be built as primary residences, but there are certain requirements that must be met. For example, in Honolulu, Hawaii, people can build an SBR as a primary residence if their lot is at least 10,000 square feet.
- There may also be minimum lot size requirements that must be met in your city or county to build an SBR, so be sure to check with your local government.
A short-barreled rifle is a very dangerous weapon. It is illegal for civilians to own them because they are too dangerous. These rifles can be used by criminals, and they can also be used by law-abiding citizens who don’t have enough training to use them properly. Short-barreled rifles are illegal because of the National Firearms Act. The government has determined that civilians should not be able to own these dangerous weapons.