I think its safe to say that many of our readers view the AR-15 as a thoroughly modern weapon system. Admittedly, it’s hard not to with various companies and innovations popping up all the time. Various improvements to the base design, newer materials, and modern CNC milling have given this actually antique platform a long lease on life.
However, the ATF agrees that early AR-15s are now eligible for transfer under Curio and Relic status. Originally offered in 1964, Colt SP1 rifles are now considered C&R firearms due to their age. Per the ATF:
To be recognized as C&R items, 478.11 specifies that firearms must fall within one of the following categories:
- Firearms which were manufactured at least 50 years prior to the current date, but not including replicas of such firearms;
- Firearms which are certified by the curator of a municipal, State, or Federal museum which exhibits firearms to be curios or relics of museum interest; and
- Any other firearms which derive a substantial part of their monetary value from the fact that they are novel, rare, bizarre, or because of their association with some historical figure, period, or event.
Specifically, firearms up to and including those manufactured in 1967 are eligible for transfer which puts more than 10,000 eligible serial numbers in circulation, per Colt via Forgotten Weapons.
Colt SP1 receivers are fully compatible with modern offerings, assuming they have been manufactured to the same military specifications common to the AR platform.
If you are a C&R FFL, various receivers are available for sale on a semi-regular basis through the various auction websites. Or, the rifle shown in the video will be available soon through Rock Island Auctions available here.