View Full Version : "sawd off" type shotgun pistol?

November 19, 2011, 04:18 PM
hello, i am looking for some information on what i guess is best explained as a sawed off shotgun type pistol. the type you would see in western movies. i ask because is see a black powder front loader double barreled pistol available at cabalas. i used to know "sawed off" type guns were illegal but i see alot of guns available these days like a shortened ak-47 pistol, ar-15 shortened types available too, they call them pistols these days.
does anyone know if a shortened double barrel pistol is available and legal? i'm not interested in anything illegal, i'm just wondering if this type of weapon is available. thanks.

Jack O'Conner
November 19, 2011, 04:30 PM
This is commonly called a Coach Gun. They're 100% legal if you have the correct BATF papers.



November 19, 2011, 04:32 PM

November 19, 2011, 04:48 PM
The AK type pistols must have a certain barrel length & no forward grip to stay classified as a pistol. Add a front grip or stock & they become rifles & a boat load of paperwork in most states. I know where I live, you can legally own a "sawed off" pistol length shotgun (or darn near anything you can afford), BUT there's a catch...you must get it registered and aquire a class III license & fill out a stack of paper work as thick as a phone book & IMO it's just not worth an extra $500-$1,000 to own a shotgun like this where I live. Would be cool to have one though.:D

November 19, 2011, 05:35 PM
The pistol that Cabalas sells fall under a different set of guide lines. First it's a muzzleloader and uses blackpowder only. The feds don't care about that one, it is the short barreled shotguns/rifles they regulate.

November 19, 2011, 05:55 PM
I would like to buy a shotgun/pistol like that even if it costs more to do paperwork as long as it is legal. I would want the real thing though, and the picture seems to fit this bill. Where and how can I go about buying one? I've only seem them in the movies so I guess I am still wet behind the ears.

Dave McC
November 19, 2011, 07:03 PM
Google "Howdah Pistol".

November 19, 2011, 07:45 PM
OK thanx Dave

Bill DeShivs
November 19, 2011, 07:48 PM
You don't have to have a "class 3 license."
You pay a tax to the BATF-Usually $200. Once your paperwork has cleared and the tax stamp issued, you can then build your own.
Or, you can find a "Class 3 Dealer" and buy it from him. You will still have to pay the $200 tax, unless you buy a gun classified as "Any Other Weapon." The tax is $5.00 on these.

Dave McC
November 19, 2011, 08:14 PM
Jack, Coach Guns are not what your picture shows.

A coach gun is commonly understood to be a short barreled SxS double with a standard stock.

The "sawed off" in your picture is just that. Google "Ithaca Auto Burglar" for a look at a factory made sawed off.

I shot one of those once.

Just once...

November 19, 2011, 08:32 PM
Add a front grip or stock & they become rifles

No and yes. Adding a shoulder stock to a pistol AR or AK makes it a SBR (short barreled rifle). Adding a front grip (but no stock) makes it an AOW (Any Other Weapon).

I know where I live, you can legally own a "sawed off" pistol length shotgun (or darn near anything you can afford), BUT there's a catch...you must get it registered and aquire a class III license & fill out a stack of paper work as thick as a phone book & IMO it's just not worth an extra $500-$1,000 to own a shotgun like this where I live.

A gun such as the OP describes would be a AOW (unrifled, no shoulder stock). It is federally legal as long as you jump through the appropriate NFA hoops. Some states have their own laws, so one must do some research. However, you are incorrect about a class III license. No such license is required, the class III SOT license is only needed if you plan to deal in NFA items. The stack of paper work isn't near as thick as a phone book unless you live in a really small town. It's one page, and a good dealer will help you do it. Then you get fingerprinted and have your CLEO sign off on it. It's a $200 tax stamp, not $500-1000.

I don't know where you live, but if you're referring to federal laws, you're not even close. I'm not even sure that there's a state with the regulations you describe; if they're going to regulate such things to that extent the state will usually just ban NFA items.

The NFA hoops aren't too bad with a good dealer helping you, but they are time consuming (4-5 month wait for approval) and the $200 isn't something to sneeze at. But sometimes it's nice having something special.:D

November 19, 2011, 08:37 PM
Look here for short barreled shotguns www.hatchergun.com

It's $1100 for a Stoeger SXS with short barrels and a pistol grip.

Bill DeShivs
November 20, 2011, 01:53 AM
The only way to make an AOW is if the receiver has never had a shoulder stock. Otherwise, the gun would be an SBS. It's hard to find S X S shotgun receivers that have never had a stock.
Making either requires a $200 tax be paid. Selling the AOW would require a $5 tax. Both require NFA paperwork with the BATF.

November 20, 2011, 02:37 AM
The easiest way to go and the cheapest and no paper work and its legal is to buy a serbu super shorty.. Its a shotgun pistol.. Look them up on google.. give me thumbs up if yall like them, thumbs down if dont.

November 20, 2011, 04:00 AM
Uh, thumbs down.

Look them up on google

Why don't you? This (http://www.serbu.com/top/superShorty.php) quite clearly states that it's an NFA weapon, and in particular, carries a fee for order cancellation due to the lengthy paperwork involved.

November 20, 2011, 09:05 AM
That's quite a company, they make a 10 foot room blaster and a one mile target destroyer.

Onward Allusion
November 20, 2011, 12:19 PM
"sawd off" type shotgun pistol?

Like this? Kinda fun looking and w/o the paperwork! Shoots 3 inch .410. All for less than $200. :)

BTW, it's a Leinad DD 45lc/410 double barrel derringer w/ 11" barrel.

November 20, 2011, 02:51 PM
The Serbu is classified as an AOW and the transfer tax is $5

For a SxS, you would have to get an action that was never assembled from a factory or it is an SBS not an AOW with the 200 vs. 5 dollar fee

November 20, 2011, 04:37 PM
go to gunbroker and search leinad.

similar to a judge, but SxS or OU, might suit your fancy. I know i want one, just for fun.

EDIT- didnt notice, previous poster beat me to it.

November 20, 2011, 06:18 PM
I want one. I don't think I'd shoot it one handed but you can support with extra hand and during self defense I aint worried about it. It can snug up next to my shotgun and rifle nicely. I'll pay the fees for paperwork. I want it done correctly.

November 20, 2011, 06:57 PM
They are literally a blast, this is an SBS as it originally had a stock, sold it a year or so ago. It was made from one of the imported coach guns, think I let it go for $450 or so.

With Trap/Skeet loads it would make a watermellon sized fire ball at dusk.:D



Bill DeShivs
November 20, 2011, 10:17 PM
I've been "gonna build" one for years-a replica of the Holland Auto Burglar. They are so rare you can't hardly find a picture. Basically, they were an updated version of the Ithaca, and were made for Holland Firearms by Sarasqueta of Spain. I have the gun, the walnut for the pistol grip, the tools, and the skill to build it.

White Mamba
November 28, 2011, 10:32 PM
A shotgun that came from the factory with a pistol grip & has a modified short barrel is considered an AOW (Any other weapon) All you have to do is pay for a $5.00 tax stamp & have it registered with the BATF.

Here's a link to one that I think is especially cool: http://www.topnotchtactical.com/content-product_info/product_id-2192/serbu_super_shorty_remington.html

Just read the info on there & it explains the legal process.

November 29, 2011, 07:29 PM
If you can live with a sawed-off that's bigger than a large pistol, there's an inexpensive way to legally obtain one.

Cut the barrels of a SxS/O-U to 18" or more, then cut off the buttstock in the area just behind the pistol grip cap - first measuring the OAL with the barrel(s) mounted so a total OAL of 26" (minimum) is maintained.


It thus remains a shotgun. Modified/custom, to be sure - but still legally a shotgun, and not an SBS or AOW.

IOW, The laws on shotguns are pretty straight forward : !8 inch barrel and 26 inch over all length.

Cut off anything you want, that doesn't violate those laws.


November 29, 2011, 10:13 PM
The Ithaca Auto-Burglar and similar designs of the early 20th century were true shotguns with a pistol grip and barrels anywhere from 8 to 12 inches long. The intended (advertised) purpose of these guns were to prevent thugs from jumping onto the running boards of slow moving cars to hijack them -- or from doing the same thing with a farmer's wagonload of goods. Guns were chambered in 12 (ouch), 20 and 28 gauge and typically carried either muzzle down in the seat cushion/seat back or a holster under the dash. They were effective deterrents when someone suddenly looked at the business end.

Ithaca Auto-Burglar

WARNING: Some state laws restrict the ownership of any smoothbore pistols too. This means that even a federally approved shorty shotgun will still be illegal in that state.

November 29, 2011, 10:58 PM
I like the Ithaca

November 29, 2011, 11:00 PM
I would be willing to buy one from you...let me know no matter how far down the road. I am in VA Bill and can provide whatever plus am willing to throw an extra c-note for your troubles.

November 29, 2011, 11:38 PM
This http://www.cabelas.com/pistols-davide-pedersoli-howdah-pistol.shtml is the gun the OP is refering to. It doesn't require a $200 stamp, or a $5 fee, or sacrificing a goat over a phone book. No doubt it does require a particular set of "howdah"s to pull the trigger that first time tho.

November 30, 2011, 01:25 AM
I would enjoy paying to make this one legal

November 30, 2011, 10:00 AM
I actually thought about that Pedersoli until I realized that even with the $200 BATF fine I could make a cartridge gun cheaper.

Dave McC
November 30, 2011, 02:10 PM
I shot an Auto Burglar in 20 gauge, once.

That was enough.

November 30, 2011, 06:14 PM
I remember a silly young man who had put together a 12 pistol from an ancient old single shot by cutting the barrel back to about 4 inches and then cutting the stock off at the pistol grip. Used to make money betting folks they couldn't shoot it, twice. Ah to be young again.

December 1, 2011, 12:20 AM
A few forum members have made good points & posts.
The Serbu(check spelling) SBS(short barrel shotgun) or "Shorty" 12ga is rather bad-#*+ IMO, ;) .
It was a prop in Miami Vice(2006, www.imfdb.org ).
Det Sgt Ricardo Tubbs, a main character on the NBC crime drama Miami Vice used a cut-down 12ga double barrel in the first few episodes but to my limited knowledge, the censors & NBC legal had issues with it's use in production so the production company got a new SBS type 12ga meant for EP(exec protection) details & witness security. Vang-Comp & WilsonCombat are known for custom SBS work but a lot of it requires LE agencies ONLY or AOW/NFA stuff for the general public.
Outside of Hollywood, I've rarely seen anyone(public or sworn LE) carry a SBS anywhere.

December 8, 2011, 12:55 PM
Oddly enough, Russia is producing guns of this type for civilian self-defence purposes; as long as something doesn't produce over a certain muzzle energy, it's allowed to be sold on the open market, so several manufacturers make rubber-bullet "traumatic" pistols for self-defence. Izhevsk is now making what they call the MP-341 "Хауда" ("Khauda"/Howdah), based on a shortened IZH-43 side by side with shortened chambers, allowing 12-gauge rubber balls to be fired. Carrying it might be a problem, but I certainly wouldn't want to get hit with something coming out of this: