Many shooters like to add accessories to their guns. You can take a stock firearm and make it capable of doing a lot more.
But sometimes it can be taken too far, and you can end up breaking the law.
You should (obviously) never change, convert or accessorize any weapon to make it illegal – it’s not worth it.
A Waterloo, Iowa man found this out the hard way.
During a traffic stop, the man was in possession of an illegally modified .40 caliber Glock 23, and a .40 caliber drum magazine.
It had been modified with an aftermarket switch on the back of the slide.
The switch allowed the pistol to fire fully automatic, turning it into a small machine gun.
He was arrested for unauthorized possession of a weapon.
Glocks are designed to fire semi-automatic, meaning a separate trigger pull is required to fire each round.
But there is a small device known as a Glock switch that convert the pistol to fully automatic.
These devices are aftermarket, and not sold or manufactured by Glock.
In the past few years, these switches have been sold by companies in China.
The switches are advertised online for as little as $20, and they are easy to install.
The Chinese companies selling them even add the Glock logo and claim they are made in Austria, which is a lie.
Criminals are able to contact these companies through Facebook and buy them through PayPal. Then, the switches are mailed to the U.S. with fake paperwork.
Customs officials have intercepted some packages containing Glock switches coming from China, and they’ve even filed criminal charges against the buyers.
In light of all that, it’s helpful to know what a pistol conversion kit is, so you can stay legal when modifying your gun.
What is a pistol conversion kit?
The term conversion kit can have many different meanings.
When it comes to conversion kits, I’m talking about kits that you can add to your existing pistol that provide the shooter with a brace.
For example, you can take your standard Glock and turn it into a larger weapon called a personal defense weapon.
These kits can extend the range and improve the accuracy of your pistol, but the main reason for these conversion kits is to add a stabilizing brace.
Conversion kits add a shoulder stock and provide a forward grip for added stability, and depending on the kit, they can also allow for mounting sights and tactical lights.
But keep in mind, you are still shooting the same pistol as you were before.
What I mean is, accessories can be beneficial, yet they won’t change your pistol into a sniper rifle.
You are still shooting a pistol with pistol caliber ballistics.
On the plus side, the conversion kit will help reduce recoil and make the weapon easier to control.
I would never add a conversion kit to your pistol that makes it illegal. The last thing you want is the ATF knocking at your door.
You’ve heard me say it before that the problem is the ATF doesn’t even know what the ATF is doing.
They are under so much pressure from the current President that no one knows what laws they will try to pass.
The reason that pistol conversion kits were manufactured was to provide disabled shooters with a brace. It allowed many injured veterans to return to a sport they love.
Initially, the ATF said there was no problem with shooters adding a stabilizing brace.
The ATF determined that a stabilizing brace mounted on a semi-automatic pistol could legally be shouldered and fired without classifying it as a short-barreled rifle.
But in June 2021, things changed…
And the ATF proposed a rule that all firearms equipped with a stabilizing brace be subject to taxation and registration requirements related to the National Firearms Act.
The point I’m making here is this…
Before buying a conversion kit, contact a gun shop and lawyer in your state to ask about federal and state laws.
You want to always ensure you’re legal.
Which conversion kit to get?
There are a lot of options when it comes to stabilizing brace conversion kits.
A well-known company making conversion kits is CAA Industries. The company has received tons of press coverage for its products.
One of their most successful products is the Micro Roni. It can take your ordinary semi-auto pistol and make it reliable up to 200 yards out.
No tools are needed to assemble and disassemble the Micro Roni.
The conversion kit has both side and top Picatinny rails so there is plenty of space to add accessories.
Plus, it is ambidextrous, meaning that you can use it regardless of whether you’re a righty or lefty.
CAA Industries makes different conversion kits so you can find the setup you like.
There is an advanced kit that adds a 500-lumen flashlight, thumb rest, front and rear sights, and a sling swivel.
Depending on the specific kit you want, these can range from $200 to $400.
A conversion kit gives you a wide range of options when it comes to your semi-auto pistol.
Remember to double-check the latest laws and consult with an attorney. If you need to pay the NFA tax it could still be worth it to have a gun that can do a lot more.