Firearm enthusiasts and hobbyists have always been on the lookout for ways to customize and build their firearms. One of the popular options that have gained prominence in recent years is the 80 percent lower receiver. In this article, we’ll delve into what 80 percent lower receivers are, their benefits, and the legal aspects surrounding them.
What Is an 80 Percent Lower Receiver?
An 80 lower receiver is a partially completed firearm component that is not considered a firearm by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) until it is fully machined. These receivers are typically made from materials like aluminum or polymer and come in various styles to accommodate different firearm platforms such as AR-15s, AR-10s, and Glock pistols.
Benefits of Using 80 Percent Lower Receivers
Legal Ownership: One of the primary advantages of 80 percent lower receivers is that they allow individuals to legally own and build their firearms. Since these receivers are not classified as firearms, they can be purchased and shipped directly to your doorstep without the need for a background check or an FFL (Federal Firearms License).
Customization: Building your firearm from an 80 percent lower receiver offers a high level of customization. You can choose the type of firearm, caliber, and components you want, tailoring it to your specific preferences and needs. This allows for a truly personalized shooting experience.
Cost-Efficiency: In many cases, building a firearm from an 80 percent lower receiver can be more cost-effective than purchasing a fully assembled firearm. You can shop for deals on parts and gradually build your firearm over time, spreading out the expenses.
Privacy: Building your firearm from an 80 percent lower receiver can provide a level of privacy. Since there is no federal record of purchase, you can maintain a higher degree of anonymity in your firearms ownership.
Legal Aspects of 80 Percent Lower Receivers
While 80 percent lower receivers offer numerous benefits, it’s essential to be aware of the legal aspects to ensure compliance with federal and state laws:
Finishing the Receiver: As mentioned earlier, an 80 percent lower receiver is not considered a firearm until it is fully machined. Once you complete the machining process to turn it into a functional receiver, it becomes a firearm in the eyes of the law. Ensure you follow all federal and state regulations during this process.
State Laws: State laws regarding 80 percent lower receivers can vary significantly. It’s crucial to research and understand the specific laws in your state, as some may have stricter regulations or outright bans on these components.
Serial Numbers: Some states may require you to apply for a serial number for your homemade firearm, even if it’s built from an 80 percent lower receiver. Be sure to comply with these requirements to stay within the bounds of the law.
Criminal Intent: Engaging in any illegal activities with firearms, including those built from 80 percent lower receivers, is a criminal offense. It’s essential to use these receivers responsibly and within the confines of the law.
80 percent lower receivers offer firearm enthusiasts a legal and customizable way to build their firearms. They provide benefits such as cost-efficiency, customization, and privacy, but it’s crucial to be well-informed about the legal aspects and regulations in your area before embarking on any DIY firearm projects. Always prioritize safety and compliance with all applicable laws when working with firearms, including those built from 80 percent lower receivers.