Black Powder Revolvers


March 3, 2010, 09:17 PM
Can anyone tell me how the law looks at black powder revolvers as fare as CCW. Do you need a permit?

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March 3, 2010, 09:21 PM
What state are you in? They each have their own concealed carry laws, although some are honoring other state's permits for travelers.

March 3, 2010, 09:33 PM
Indiana, But I dont think we even recognize BP Revolvers as handguns, but I dont really know for sure.

March 3, 2010, 09:45 PM
I believe you can carry a loaded black powder revolver in Indiana without a license. I could swear I read somewhere that they are specifically exempt from carry restrictions. However, I'm no legal expert, so you should get more qualified advice before attempting to carry one without a license.

March 3, 2010, 09:51 PM
I did some reading about this (in Florida) because I was curious whether a black powder revolver would be banned on a university campus like an ordinary firearm. The best answer I arrived at was that although the law does not consider most BP arms to be firearms unless used in the commission of a crime, the definition of a "concealed weapon" includes any "deadly weapon" which a BP revolver certainly is.

So carrying a BP revolver is effectively exactly the same as a modern firearm in that it requires a license to carry and is prohibited in all the places a modern firearm would be. The only difference as far as I know is that in Florida getting caught carrying unlicensed is a lesser crime with a non-firearm "concealed weapon" than a "concealed firearm".

I don't know of any precedent where it's been tested though. I'm only familiar with the Florida situation so it may be different up there. I'm also not a lawyer of course and this is just my recollection of the various information I found on the internet.

Here's the relevant Florida laws if it helps:

March 3, 2010, 10:19 PM
I would call a local attorney if I were you. You know what they say.......ignorance of the law is not a good enough excuse.

March 3, 2010, 10:42 PM
I know Michigan treats them as regular guns when it comes to CCW.

March 3, 2010, 11:02 PM
Most places, certainly here, BP revolvers are no less a deadly weapon than any cartridge gun and they are treated as such. If you want to carry one, you'll need a CCW.

March 3, 2010, 11:27 PM
cap and ball revolvers and muzzleloader pistols, whether old or new in pa are exempt from some of the handgun regs and subject to others. For instance, since they are classified as antiques, they may be transported in the car without a permit. Regular modern cartridge pistols may only be transported in a vehicle under certain circumstances without a permit. You can carry any manual or semi pistol openly (not concealed in any way, except in Filthydelphia) HOWEVER, they may not be carried concealed on the person without the CCW permit. And people who have some disability to possess firearms, may not have a muzzle loader pistol or C&P revolver under any circumstance. Disability can be because of an involuntary committment to a hospital, felenoy convictions, abusive spouse orders etc,

March 4, 2010, 12:45 AM
The federal Gun Control Act of 1968 exempted muzzleloading firearms from restrictions on interstate shipping through the US Postal service by defining them as not a firearm for the provisions in that particular FEDERAL law, i.e. you could still buy them via mail order unlike centerfire handguns. The various states have written their own laws as to whether they are considered a "firearm" and under which circumstances. You need to check with an in-state firearms organization that keeps tabs on the current state laws in which you live. What's legal out here in Orygun does not have relevance in other states.

March 4, 2010, 02:14 AM
Like others have said, check your local laws thoroughly before you stuff a loaded cap and ball revolver in your coat thinking that it's not a concealed weapon because it's not classified as a firearm.

Texas Moon
March 4, 2010, 07:04 AM
In Texas they are exempt from regular firearm regulations EXCEPT when you carry it as a weapon.
Get caught with it out on the street and the Po-Po will treat you the same as if it were a Glock.

March 4, 2010, 08:19 AM
Every state is different but every one I have lived in considered and loaded and capped percussion cap revolver a fire arm and all concealed carry laws applied to it.

March 4, 2010, 09:04 AM
Get a permit ...better than a night in Jail .
If you view it as leathal chances are the Cops will too .

March 4, 2010, 10:22 AM
Well, I'd rather have the permit and not be forced to carry a cap and ball, anyway. Not disin' those that do, just sayin'....:D My 9mm Kel Tec and .38 snub are a lot easier to hide and require a lot less maintenance. If nothing else, I'm lazy.

March 4, 2010, 10:30 AM
I have a CC license in Kentucky and the law here speaks of Concealed DEADLY weapons, which includes more than just handguns. As your cap and ball is surely a deadly weapon, I would imagine it would come under Ky. law as requiring a license. But I'm not a lawyer. I always made an honest living. An interesting question though.

March 4, 2010, 01:46 PM
Here you are, from the Indiana codes:

IC 35-47-1-5
Sec. 5. "Firearm" means any weapon:
(1) that is:
(A) capable of expelling; or
(B) designed to expel; or
(2) that may readily be converted to expel;
a projectile by means of an explosion.

Your loaded and capped bp revolver is a firearm. Don't go out with one concealed without a permit.

March 4, 2010, 01:57 PM
Now there`s an arguement #2 expel a projectile by means of an explosion ..
There are those on the forum that will argue that black powder doe not explode , (they say it just burns ) sure burns loud doesn`t it ...ha ha ha

March 4, 2010, 04:17 PM
I have on several occasions carefully loaded and carried a couple of my C&Bs during deer hunts then left them loaded a while in the safe. Several months later decided to shoot them dry. Lets just say I would not rely on them to fire the first time every time. Stick to cartridge guns if your life depends on it. If you have no other choice then OK, but be sure there is no oil or debris blocking the flash holes or that could contaminate the powder.

March 4, 2010, 05:08 PM
Thank all of you for the info, may have saved me a night in jail

March 4, 2010, 06:53 PM
Actually they saved you a lot more than that. Violation of a concealed carry law is a felony in every state, and in the majority of states it carries the additional distinction of being a gun law violation, which would mean that you'd never be able to buy a gun again.

March 4, 2010, 10:15 PM
I'm in Indiana, and I read the code pretty thoroughly on this. It seems that indeed, one can carry in Indiana.

Indiana code dealing with firearms is IC 35-47. From IC 35-47-2 and IC 35-47-5:

IC 35-47-2-19
Application of chapter
Sec. 19. This chapter does not apply to any firearm not designed to use fixed cartridges or fixed ammunition, or any firearm made before January 1, 1899.
As added by P.L.311-1983, SEC.32.

IC 35-47-5-5
Application of chapter
Sec. 5. This chapter does not apply to any firearm not designed to use fixed cartridges or fixed ammunition, or any firearm made before January 1, 1899.
As added by P.L.311-1983, SEC.32.

Essentially this says that the stuff of Chapters 2 and 5 don't apply to muzzleloaders. Chapter 2 deals with possession, transfer, and concealed carry of handguns.

Chapter 5 deals with "prohibited instruments of violence", which from a firearms perspective pretty much mean machine guns and sawed-off shotguns.

So the exclusions essentially say that regulations pertaining to handguns, sawed off shotguns, and machine guns don't apply as long as they're muzzleloaders or made before 1899.

EDIT - added links:

Article 47 index:

Chapter 2:

March 4, 2010, 11:28 PM
It's best to ask the various state and local law enforcement agencies about how they interpret the law.
Just because carrying may not be a direct CCW violation, that doesn't necessarily mean that nothing will happen if someone is found to be carrying a loaded C&B pistol.
Even though there's a clear exemption in state carry law for pre-1898 guns here, the police will charge someone with reckless endangerment and confiscate the gun if someone is caught carrying a loaded pre-1898 pistol without a permit.
They don't interpret the exemption as applying to loaded guns but rather only to unloaded guns even though the law doesn't state that there's any distinction between them.
So it's important to at least ask even though there is often the suspicion that their answer will be biased.
Who wants to make a test case out of it and then need to rely on the interpretation of a lower level criminal court judge and prosecutor to stay out of jail?
My point is that it doesn't always matter what the statute says as much as how law enforcement and the courts interpret it.
The written law is there if push comes to shove, but law enforcement can still have an upper hand when it comes to making arrests on the scene.
If you do end up asking law enforcement please let us know what they say. :)

March 5, 2010, 07:42 AM
Good advice, for sure.

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