AR-15 pistol is a classification that exists due to some silly American gun laws and definitions. An AR pistol cannot have a stock, but can have a bare and exposed buffer tube. Another no-no is a vertical grip, but an angled grip like the Magpul AFG is legal.
Now of course nobody wants to run afoul of the Federal Government, so it’s imperative that you understand what makes an SBR an SBR, and what makes AR pistols legal. It may appear to be complicated and obfuscated but the defining characteristics are pretty straight forward if you know what you’re looking for.
AR-15 pistols can have barrels as short as you want them to. Personally, I own an AR-15 pistol with a 7.5-inch barrel and, while it is ridiculous, it’s a lot of fun.
Over the last few years, the popularity of AR-15 pistols has grown significantly. This growth is mostly tied to the advent of stabilizing braces. Stabilizing braces turned a gaudy, heavy, and awkward gun into a stable, comfortable-to-shoot weapon.
Why Would I Want One?
We won’t dive too deep into the NFA, but the section that concerns this article is the law that rifles must have 16-inch barrels, or else they are regulated under the NFA.
So, if you wanted an AR-15 with a 7.5-inch barrel, you’d have to pay a tax stamp, ask for permission, and wait for 3 to 6 months for approval. Once approved you could then own an SBR. Or you could just buy an AR pistol and skip all that.
There are a lot of other reasons you might want an AR pistol, besides just the tax stamp.