Soon to own a T/C Contender pistol with .17 HMR and .44 Mag barrels.
If I own a Contender pistol, can I turn it into a rifle by ordering a rifle stock, forend and barrel for it? Is the frame for each different in some way? I heard something about the ATF not wanting people to use a rifle stock with a short, pistol-length barrel, but I still haven't gotten the final answer.
There was a controversy (in fact a law suit) about the combination of a short barrel and the rifle stock. BATF at the time insisted that simply owning that combination was illegal regardless if you never assembled it that way (you could have both rifle and pistol stocks and barrels and meet that BATF assertion). The BATF lost. The gun is only illegal if you assemble the rifle stock to the pistol barrels (barrel must be 16 inches to be legal rifle). If you have such a combination (short barrel and rifle stock) do not "test the waters" as the BATF has infinite money for lawyers if you get caught. Besides assembling that way makes no sense.
The T/C Contender receiver was meant to be versatile. It can be assemble as a rifle, a carbine, a short barreled pistol , a long barrel pistol, all in a staggering number of different calibers. The receiver is totally interchangable amoung all the different configurations. There are several styles of forearms: one for the short pistol barrels, on for the long barreled pistols, and at least one for the rifle/carbine barrels. The barrels in the past have been match grade or nearly so. Others (Bullberry for instances) make astonishingly accurate barrels too. The current Contenders are a step off the ones from the 1980's as the lawyers got to the triggers and screwed them up.
Thank you. I wouldn't have a use for a rifle/pistol barrel combo(reminds me of an artillery luger w/attachable buttstock), except maybe for plinking at the range--now I'm glad to know it is illegal even to attempt it. I just like the idea of having a receiver you can order pistol and rifle barrels for without going through an FFL.