Author Topic: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol  (Read 11066 times)

Offline wendellgj

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Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« on: September 30, 2010, 09:50:34 AM »
I have legal question that involves a conversion from shotgun to pistol. I have read all the rules that constitute a rifle and pistol and still unsure if it would be legal. I have a Stevens model # 311 16 gauge two trigger double barrel 2/3/4" chamber with plastic furniture and a 18-1/4" long barrel. I would like to replace the stock with a hardwood pistol grip and and the forearm with hardwood furniture. The barrel length would be around 10". This firearm would be a weapon of last defense. Since we have revolvers like the "Judge" that fires either a 45LC or .410 shotshell can I make this to shoot either as a break open action? Or say a 16 ga. in one side and a large bore in a sleeved side? WGJ

Offline goober

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Re: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2010, 10:01:29 AM »
I have legal question that involves a conversion from shotgun to pistol. I have read all the rules that constitute a rifle and pistol and still unsure if it would be legal. I have a Stevens model # 311 16 gauge two trigger double barrel 2/3/4" chamber with plastic furniture and a 18-1/4" long barrel. I would like to replace the stock with a hardwood pistol grip and and the forearm with hardwood furniture. The barrel length would be around 10". This firearm would be a weapon of last defense. Since we have revolvers like the "Judge" that fires either a 45LC or .410 shotshell can I make this to shoot either as a break open action? Or say a 16 ga. in one side and a large bore in a sleeved side? WGJ

if its smooth bore you'll have to get a stamp for an SBS, DD or AOW. if it has a rifled barrel under .50" bore diameter it can be a pistol (or an SBR).
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Offline wendellgj

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Re: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2010, 02:19:49 PM »
Thank you goober, I had no idea about the bore and dia. characteristics for which I plan to convert. Some of the explanations seem a little in the gray zone so is easy for me to read into it something I am wishing it means. This firearm has a purpose and it is not to lay around another 40 years as is-so great information. WGJ

Offline Prototype Services

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Re: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2010, 01:23:30 AM »
Since it is now a "shotgun", meaning barrels longer than 18", overall more than 26", and having a buttstock, it can only be reclassed as an NFA "Short-Barreled-Shotgun", or SBS. Of course pending legal in your state, and by following federal regs such as paperwork approval, $200, and engraving. 
Old doubles have some collector value, you might be able to trade it off for a newer 12g and come out slightly ahead and have much more choice and availability of ammo.
Please post pics when you are done. I've wanted to do one too, but have too many other projects.

Offline goober

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Re: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2010, 11:02:39 AM »
Since it is now a "shotgun", meaning barrels longer than 18", overall more than 26", and having a buttstock, it can only be reclassed as an NFA "Short-Barreled-Shotgun", or SBS. Of course pending legal in your state, and by following federal regs such as paperwork approval, $200, and engraving. 
Old doubles have some collector value, you might be able to trade it off for a newer 12g and come out slightly ahead and have much more choice and availability of ammo.
Please post pics when you are done. I've wanted to do one too, but have too many other projects.
ah yes, thank you, Prototytpe  :D
if it had previously been a pistol-grip only gun or raw receiver never built w/ a buttstock attached, (and thus by definition a "firearm" but not a "shotgun"  :P ) it could be made into an AOW (if smooth bore d > 0.5") DD (if rifled bore  d > 0.5"), pistol (rifled bore d < 0.5") or SBS.
but if it's had a stock on it, SBS is all it can legally become.
btw, not a lawyer, nor a BATFE "agent". don't take my word on any of this as gospel.
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Offline wendellgj

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Re: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2010, 11:20:39 AM »
I was confused-now I see. Original designation is very important. I was thinking of sleeving to straight wall(ex.) 45/70 with rifling and using black powder like the old loads before smokeless. A person could definitely enjoy, however, the $200.00 + pending State acceptance kinda softens my enthusiasm. Looks like theres no legal way around original designation for this project? WGJ

Offline Prototype Services

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Re: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2010, 04:35:49 AM »
Last night I watched a movie with Sydney Poitier as a cowboy, and he had twin over/under doubles cut down to pistols.  In the movie El Dorado the character Missisippi carries a cut down SxS as a pistol.
But today, you must find if legal in your state, then file federal NFA paperwork and send $200 and get approval before you can enjoy your toy.

Offline gunnysgt

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Re: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« Reply #7 on: October 07, 2010, 10:08:44 AM »
its kinda funny that AOW (any other weapon) is only a $5 transfer fee.
http://www.impactguns.com/store/SER-SS12.html

Jeremy
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Offline Prototype Services

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Re: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« Reply #8 on: October 09, 2010, 12:38:59 PM »
Yes, but it still costs $200 to build an AOW on a Form-1 for yourself.

BP loaded 45-70 still operates at higher pressure than shotgun loads, not sure I would build one myself without looking into the strength of various receiver designs. I do remember many years ago reading about somebody out west, maybe named D'Arcy or something, that built European style double rifles out of a really strong shotgun action.
You can always shoot slugs out of your SBS and get the same or better effect than going to all the trouble to convert to 45-70. You might also look at one of the Italian made 45-70 double rifles and cut it down, but you still have to file a Form-1 and the NFA $200 for a Short Barrelled Rifle. But it would still be much cheaper than trying to convert the shotgun barrels to a rifle caliber.

Offline cornbelt

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Re: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« Reply #9 on: April 09, 2013, 06:12:43 PM »
 Dixie Gun Works has sold unfinished double actions that have NEVER been made into a gun. If you finished it, it would be whatever you made it into and only that.
 
 Another idea is to do a muzzle loader.

Offline wendellgj

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Re: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« Reply #10 on: April 09, 2013, 08:27:58 PM »
An old post that is still on my mind. I have recently taken a great interest in muzzle loaders, crossbows, big-bores, and BLUNDERBUSS. I have given up on the old actions I had and traded them off for some nice German knives at a dreaded evil local gunshow last year. Mostly my hunting mode has changed from moving around to stationary so I enjoy the stealth frozen body don't stink etc. and don't need long range equipment. I will check this Dixie unit, thank you cornbelt.

wendellgj

Offline fal308

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Re: Converting a Double Barrel Shotgun to a Legal Pistol
« Reply #11 on: April 20, 2013, 06:51:56 PM »
Was looking on the Dixie site about a week ago and saw they had Howdah pistols and kits
http://www.dixiegunworks.com/advanced_search_result.php?osCsid=ggkkuqss92vs0j8de7h2dv1c77&keywords=howdah&x=0&y=0