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USMC and Army vet Alex Bosco was shooting with a disabled combat veteran when the range master asked Bosco’s friend to stop firing for safety concerns due to lack of control. Determined to help his friend and other wounded combat veterans, Bosco had an idea. He produced the first Pistol Stabilizing Brace prototype in his garage.
After testing his concept with disabled vets, Bosco sought approval from the ATF. In November 2012, the agency responded with an approval letter stating that “the submitted brace, when attached to a firearm, does not convert that weapon to be fired from the shoulder and would not alter the classification of a pistol or other firearm. While a firearm so equipped would still be regulated by the Gun Control Act … such a firearm would not be subject to NFA controls.”
Bosco co-founded SB Tactical with Grant Shaw and began making production prototypes for AR and AK platforms.
In January 2013, exclusive sales agreements were executed with SIG SAUER, Inc. and Century Arms International for the AR (SB15) and AK (SB47) braces, respectively.
In May 2013, the first Pistol Stabilizing Braces were delivered into the marketplace.
In March 2014, the ATF issued a second letter stating that "for the following reasons, we have determined that firing a pistol from the shoulder would not cause the pistol to be reclassified as an SBR: FTB classifies weapons based on their physical design characteristics. While usage/functionality of the weapon does influence the intended design, it is not the sole criterion for determining the classification of a weapon. Generally speaking, we do not classify weapons based on how an individual uses a weapon."
The product portfolio of Pistol Stabilizing Braces was expanded to include the SBX™, a pistol buffer tube compatible brace, and specialty braces for HK and CZ firearms.
The ATF issued a third letter just before SHOT Show in January 2015 that resulted in widespread confusion and legal concerns in the firearms industry. The letter stated that, "the pistol stabilizing brace was neither 'designed' nor approved to be used as a shoulder stock, and therefore use as a shoulder stock constitutes a 'redesign' of the device because a possessor has changed the very function of the item."
Despite lingering confusion in the marketplace relative to compliance, SB Tactical continued to innovate and develop new products. In December of 2015, the ATF issued an approval letter, enabling adjustable technology to be built into Pistol Stabilizing Braces.
After the exclusive sales agreements with SIG SAUER and Century Arms expired in 2015, SB Tactical underwent a significant rebranding effort including team, product portfolio and OEM partnership expansion. SB Tactical implemented a dealer and distribution sales strategy to better support the marketplace.
After the success of the adjustable braces, SB Tactical released the innovative SBT Series of integral, side-folding braces for B&T, HK and CZ Scorpion pistols.
In March 2017, the ATF issued a private letter to SB Tactical clarifying that the mere act of firing an unmodified, SB Tactical® Pistol Stabilizing Brace® from the shoulder does not constitute a “redesign” of the host firearm into an NFA short barrel rifle. When fired from the shoulder, a Pistol Stabilizing Brace must be in its original, approved condition and may not be physically altered for use as a shoulder stock.