Legal Questions Regarding Black Powder


PDA






LoneCoon
July 10, 2006, 01:12 AM
I've some questions regarding Black Powder pistols that don't seem to be adressed on gunlaws.com and other sights, so I thought to ask you, the experts the following questions:

1. Is it leagal to buy a blackpowder pistol in the state of which you are not a resident?

2. Is it legal to have a black powder pistol shipped directly to your door?

3. Is it legal to carry a black powder pistol without a carry permit?

I'm currently residing in New Hampshire, while a resident of Ohio. Question number 3 is more a curiosity question than anything else.

If you enjoyed reading about "Legal Questions Regarding Black Powder" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Hkmp5sd
July 10, 2006, 02:06 AM
1. Under federal law, Yes.

2. Under federal law, Yes.

3. NO.

You can check the local laws here: http://www.atf.gov/firearms/statelaws/25thedition/index.htm

mec
July 10, 2006, 07:33 AM
amazingly, the letter of the law in texas would include Number 3. replicas of guns made before a certain year and not firing fixed ammunition are categorically excluded from the the definition of "firearm". The same statute defines a Handgun as a FIREARM that has been designed, made or modified to be fired from one hand.

In real life, the Duck Principal applies. If it looks like, waddles like and quacks like a duck, then it's a duck

pohill
July 10, 2006, 09:16 AM
I live in Ma and have a MA permit to carry. I shoot in NH and have a NH pistol permit. I buy my black powder "stuff" (revolvers, powder, caps) in ME without any type of permit. In Ma, for example, you need an F.I.D. card (firearms ID) to own rifles, BB guns, BP revolvers, etc. But once you conceal the BP revolver or convert to conventional ammo, you need a permit to carry. ME will not sell conventional ammo guns to a MA resident. NH just doesn't seem to care about anything - if you have an out of state permit, NH will issue you one for $20 a year.

arcticap
July 10, 2006, 06:14 PM
No carry permits are necessary in Vermont, one is not needed to carry any pistol.

bigbore442001
July 12, 2006, 10:20 PM
New Hampshire allows open carry in certain situations to the best of my knowledge.Since you are in the Granite State, just get a permit to carry there. No problem, it is a shall issue state.

I want to say that if you do carry openly it would be adviseable to have a hunting license.

CNYCacher
July 13, 2006, 02:32 PM
For what it's worth to this discussion, New York State does not regard a BP pistol as a handgun unless you are also in possesion of propellant and a bullet to put in it. Your state may be similar, though it may be not.

ABTOMAT
July 14, 2006, 03:11 PM
In Ma, for example, you need an F.I.D. card (firearms ID) to own rifles, BB guns, BP revolvers, etc.

Are you sure about that? The first text is relating to the MGL sections on firearm laws. Second one is from the Dept. of Public Safety.

----------------------------------
The provisions of sections 122 to 129D, inclusive, and sections 131, 131A, 131B and 131E shall not apply to:

(A) any firearm, rifle or shotgun manufactured in or prior to the year 1899;

(B) any replica of any firearm, rifle or shotgun described in clause (A) if such replica: (i) is not designed or redesigned for using rimfire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition; or (ii) uses rimfire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition which is no longer manufactured in the United States and which is not readily available in the ordinary channels of commercial trade; and

(C) manufacturers or wholesalers of firearms, rifles, shotguns or machine guns.

-----------------------------

Q: Is a license required to possess an air gun (i.e. bb or pellet guns, so-called air rifles or air pistols, paint ball guns) or ammunition therefore (i.e. bb's, pellets, CO2 cartridges, paint balls)?

A: An FID Card is not required to possess an air gun in Massachusetts. Air guns are regulated by M.G.L. c. 269, 12B which limits their use by minors who are not accompanied by an adult, holding a sporting or hunting license, or holding a permit from the chief of police. Massachusetts law also prohibits anyone from discharging air rifles from across streets, alleys, public ways or railroads or railway right of ways. It should also be noted that an FID Card or an LTC are not required to purchase an air gun or ammunition. As such, the state FA10 form should not be used to record the sale of such air guns.

pohill
July 14, 2006, 03:38 PM
Good point about the MGL, but this is what I was told by the MA State Police, Dept of Public Safety and anyone else I called: you can receive a BP revolver via the mail without any kind of permit, but you must have a permit (FID card) to own the same weapon (I know, it makes no sense. Also, you cannot receive caps or round lead balls in the mail). Once you conceal the BP revolver you need a permit to carry license. Once you convert it to cartridge you need a permit to carry license. Same with BB guns, pellet guns, etc (FID card). I called everyone, even the ATF, to get answers and I really can't get the same answers from different people. The State Police even referred me to a Chief of Police in a small town who specializes in interpreting the gun laws of MA (I haven't called him yet). I'm in the process right now of re-registering my handguns because the Commonwealth lost something like 40% - 60% of all records in a fire or flood. And, try to buy BBs in MA without an FID card - not likely. If you or anyone else can make sense of these laws, let me know. They say one thing in the MGL and another in real life. I'm a retired cop and I really really want to stay out of jail.

Old Dragoon
July 14, 2006, 03:47 PM
I just learned of a retired police officer here in CA that had a lot of banned in CA guns in his collection when the law was passed....he moved to a gun friendly state so as not to have to sell his guns.

Pohil I think I'd move out of MA first chance I got or this afternoon whichever came first. LOL

I know, I know! I've been trying to get out of ********** for 5 years.

I have trying to reasearch what this statement really means.

"....the ordinary channels of commercial trade."

What does this really mean.

pohill
July 14, 2006, 03:55 PM
For an example, how would you interpret this?
"An FID Card is not required to possess an air gun in Massachusetts. Air guns are regulated by M.G.L. c. 269, 12B which limits their use by minors who are not accompanied by an adult, holding a sporting or hunting license, or holding a permit from the chief of police."

"...which limits their use by minors who are NOT ACCOMPANIED BY AN ADULT, HOLDING A SPORTING OR HUNTING LICENSE, OR HOLDING A PERMIT FROM THE CHIEF OF POLICE."
Sounds to me like the adult has to have a permit issued by a chief of police, since the minor is too young for a permit. So, a minor can only use a BB gun (for example) in the presence of a licensed adult? Does an adult need a license if no minors are present? It'll make your head spin.

pohill
July 14, 2006, 04:05 PM
I've been planning on moving to northern NH for a long time, but NH is being invaded by M*******s (which would include me if I moved). I have too many teeth to live in Maine (just kidding - I like Maine). Recently I checked to see what guns are actually registered in my name in Ma and I was kinda shocked - two that I now own are not on the list, seveal others that I sold are, and guns that I've never even heard of are on the list. The problem is, if your wife (in MA) gets a restraining order against you, they'll keep you locked up until all the guns on your list are accounted for. Ah...hold on a minute.
"Yes, Honey, I'll do the laundry. Yes, Honey, you do look skinny. Yes, Honey, I'll wash the floors again..."
OK, I'm back. Where was I...

ABTOMAT
July 18, 2006, 07:01 PM
Good point about the MGL, but this is what I was told by the MA State Police, Dept of Public Safety and anyone else I called: you can receive a BP revolver via the mail without any kind of permit, but you must have a permit (FID card) to own the same weapon (I know, it makes no sense. Also, you cannot receive caps or round lead balls in the mail). Once you conceal the BP revolver you need a permit to carry license. Once you convert it to cartridge you need a permit to carry license. Same with BB guns, pellet guns, etc (FID card). I called everyone, even the ATF, to get answers and I really can't get the same answers from different people. The State Police even referred me to a Chief of Police in a small town who specializes in interpreting the gun laws of MA (I haven't called him yet). I'm in the process right now of re-registering my handguns because the Commonwealth lost something like 40% - 60% of all records in a fire or flood. And, try to buy BBs in MA without an FID card - not likely. If you or anyone else can make sense of these laws, let me know. They say one thing in the MGL and another in real life. I'm a retired cop and I really really want to stay out of jail.

I realize that frequently what's said is what the local gov goes by, but I'd be curious as to how they'd respond when asked to cite the actual current law. For instance, Section 129C, which is what my previous post of the 3rd par from 121 deals with, is about what an FID is required for.

Now somewhere on the Fish & Game website I know I read that an FID was required to purchase blackpowder for certain purposes, but I can't find it at the moment.

Here's a section from 121L, the one that specifies that guns must be stored properly:

(f) This section shall not apply to the storage or keeping of any firearm, rifle or shotgun with matchlock, flintlock, percussion cap or similar type of ignition system manufactured in or prior to the year 1899, or to any replica of any such firearm, rifle or shotgun if such replica is not designed or redesigned for using rimfire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition.

ABTOMAT
July 18, 2006, 07:02 PM
For an example, how would you interpret this?
"An FID Card is not required to possess an air gun in Massachusetts. Air guns are regulated by M.G.L. c. 269, 12B which limits their use by minors who are not accompanied by an adult, holding a sporting or hunting license, or holding a permit from the chief of police."

The referenced section is pretty clear:

Section 12B. No minor under the age of eighteen shall have an air rifle or so-called BB gun in his possession while in any place to which the public has a right of access unless he is accompanied by an adult or unless he is the holder of a sporting or hunting license and has on his person a permit from the chief of police of the town in which he resides granting him the right of such possession. No person shall discharge a BB shot, pellet or other object from an air rifle or so-called BB gun into, from or across any street, alley, public way or railroad or railway right of way, and no minor under the age of eighteen shall discharge a BB shot, pellet or other object from an air rifle or BB gun unless he is accompanied by an adult or is the holder of a sporting or hunting license. Whoever violates this section shall be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars, and the air rifle or BB gun or other weapon shall be confiscated. Upon a conviction of a violation of this section the air rifle or BB gun or other weapon shall, by the written authority of the court, be forwarded to the colonel of the state police, who may dispose of said article in the same manner as prescribed in section ten.

I belive that prior to some point in the '90s (GCA of '98?) that BB guns did require an FID. But last time I tried looking for the chapter that specifically mentioned that I think it was listed as repealed.

If it's any indication, on the news when they list the charges against some kid who shot at cars or whatever with a BB gun, they never mention possesion violations:

The problem is anyone 18 years or older can buy BB guns in Massachusetts, without having to seek any permits like regular gun users, Lt. Warchol said. The weapons keep getting stronger, too, he said.

"With the strict gun laws in Massachusetts, I find it kind of surprising," he said.

pohill
July 19, 2006, 12:04 AM
They actually repeal gun laws in MA? Wow. Last I knew, you needed an FID for BB guns and mace. In fact, a friend of mine gave me a pellet gun because he didn't want to get the FID card. That was some time ago, and I haven't paid much attention to it...
Anyhoo, my concern is black powder revolver possession. Like I said, you can buy one in Ma without an FID but you cannot own it without the FID. You cannot conceal it or convert it without a permit/license to carry. My question now is, if you plan to conceal it (which I don't), or convert it (which I might someday) do you need to register them? Cannot get an answer on that one...

ABTOMAT
July 19, 2006, 12:44 AM
Mace still needs an FID, although they created a special one just for sprays that doesn't have much paperwork. One person talking about it said something like "the College Girl FID." Electrical weapons are still illegal.

Can you point me to the state laws that say you need an FID to posses a BP revolver? I'm not trying to argue, I'm genuinely curious. The MGL, Public Safety, and Game laws are searchable online. The main gun laws are Ch.140 Secs.121-136. Ch.269 is gun crimes.

I realize you need an LTC to carry or conceal one or own a converted one, and further looking through the MGL does state you need an FID to purchase projectiles and propellant.

The question of how or if to report a conversion is interesting though. Since you already(?) have an antique reproduction and I don't think the cylinders count as firearms that makes for a quandry as you've noticed. Technically sales have to be reported but guns don't actually have to be registered just for existing. A person previously uninvolved in the state can (on paper) move to MA with already owned guns and just get an FID/LTC whatever and be legal. No sales, no change of possesion, no transfer. I suppose towns or counties might march to their own drummer, though.

As far as repealing stuff, yeah they change them now and then. Antiques and reproductions were removed from the "locked storage" requirement after they were faced with putting trigger locks on muskets hanging in the state house, IIRC. Same deal with BB guns. But not many people are hip to that. I think either pre-'98 or circa '98 MGL copies are listed on various websites like the NRA. Might have to look at the changes.

pohill
July 19, 2006, 01:47 AM
Truthfully, as far as the law the says you need a permit for a BP gun, I never read it - the info I got was from the State Police, on the phone. I asked if I could receive a BP revolver in the mail and they said Yep. They (he) said that I did not need a permit to receive it but I needed an FID card to own it. He even admitted that it was a dumb law, but... It's like the karate weapons, stars, nunchucks, etc - you can buy them but you can't own them.
The last time I called was to ask about registering a converted revolver. I was referred to a Chief of police in a small town who specializes in interpreting MA gun laws. I spoke to an ATF agent at the beginning of my inquiry - I wanted to ship a BP revolver back to Traditions and the US Post Office wouldn't do it. The agent was pretty helpful in explaining Federal law, which, supposedly, MA law follows pretty closely. Even though it's perfectly legal to ship an antique firearms via the Post Office, they can refuse if they want to. UPS shipped it after consulting with their home office.
As far as moving into MA with weapons, then getting a permit - rifles, which require an FID card, might not be a problem, but handguns might - if the Chief doesn't want to issue you a license to carry, you are screwed.
Maybe you hit on something when you said that you need an FID card to buy propellants and projectiles. That would explain the need for a permit to own a BP revolver or even a BB gun - can't shoot the revolver without black powder, caps and balls, and BB guns need BBs. You can own the guns but you can't buy what's needed to shoot them without a permit.

ABTOMAT
July 19, 2006, 12:42 PM
The ammo issue seems to only be for actual "fire" firearms, as air guns are exempt from that. From what I've read elsewhere many local PDs put pressure on retailers like Wal-Mart to ask for FIDs when selling BBs or pellets, but it's not legally required.

As far as blackpowder guns I'm thinking this at least partially has to do with ornamental antiques. If you're not buying ammo for it, no permits needed. But it's sure a mess to actually figure out.

The ninja weapons stuff seems to be that you can't sell it or carry it, but you can own it in the privacy of your home. It's intersting that double-edgeed or dirk knives are also illegal to sell. I guess no one's told the trendy surplus/snowboarding stores that have shelves of them.

If you enjoyed reading about "Legal Questions Regarding Black Powder" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!