Interstate Inheritance


AJ Dual
February 13, 2004, 03:22 PM

My Grandfather passed away this week, and I am flying out to Nevada for the funeral tonight. It's sad, but he died peacfully, without pain, and 89 years isn't a bad run. My memories are good. :)

My mother was out there already to help with his home care before he died, and she mentioned that he'd wanted me to have some of his "civil war guns".

Now I know that anything that's muzzleloading, cap and ball etc. or pre-1900, is not even legally a firearm by Fed. regs, it's just an "antique" with no more legal oversight than say, furniture. Shipping, other than UPS pinheads manning the counter, that shouldn't be a problem.

Considering the ignorance of my non-gunner family, I know he had at least two "modern" firearms, a Llama .22 pistol he kept in the nightstand, and a 1903 springfield that had been sporterized sometime in the 1950's or 60's, and I suspect he may have had several more.

I've done some searching on THR, and the TFL archives, and I just want to state what I've gleaned, and run it one more time for accuracy.

- Self-shipping or interstate transport of inherited post 1900 firearms does not requrie an FFL as long as said firearms are legal in the destination state, and you are not otherwise a prohibited person. i.e. a felon.

Am I forgetting anything?

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February 13, 2004, 03:26 PM
You can ship the weapons to yourself since they are now yours, unless your state laws require something different. I'd pack'em up, insure them, and ship them either UPS or FedEx. I wouldn't declare the contents. If they have to have something, use "machine parts". I've done this in the past when I didn't want to risk my package being stolen in transit.


February 13, 2004, 03:29 PM
You don't even have to ship them. If you want, you can bring them back with you. Just put them in a case and check them as baggage. Simply tell the airline clerk what's in the case and you're good to go.

February 13, 2004, 03:40 PM
What Hkmp5sd said, plus, I strongly suggest you check with your airline FIRST regarding their rules. It IS legal to travel with UNLOADED firearms in CHECKED baggage, so long as you declare them at check in . . . but airlines may interpret the rules creatively when it comes to whether or not your luggage is acceptable. (Wrapping the gun in a rag and putting it in a soft duffle bag may not be OK - they may insist on "hard sided" luggage.)

February 13, 2004, 03:43 PM
If you fly the guns back -- be aware of the weight restrictions. I believe most airlines dropped down to 50 lbs per bag recently. Most will require that you lock your bag, so you will have to open it up for the TSA check and then relock it -- so you need some sort of locking hardside luggage or gun case.

Also -- If you check any ammo, it is supposed to be in the original packaging. I believe an ammo can also works. You cannot have any ammo loose in a bag.

Check your airline's website and print out any firearms rules you find. Many of the baggage folks are clueless.

AJ Dual
February 13, 2004, 04:00 PM
I'm thinking I'll just go the shipping and insurance route. I'd declare what I'm shipping as it'd make it hard to get a claim if anything was damaged or missing and I lied on the forms. Also, since I'm shipping it to myself, there won't be any "steal me" gunshop names on the package. I'd hope that the UPS office in a state like Nevada would be a bit less uptight about guns than elsewhere. And even if they aren't, I'm with in their regs, so I'll just scream for a manager.

IIRC, contents declarations don't go on the outside of the package, just addy and the bar-code stuff, and I don't think that the sorters and loader people that are the biggest risks for theft have access to that info.

I've no idea if Grandpa had sufficient lockable hard cases (if any) for his firearms, so checking anything with the Airlines on the way back will probably not happen, unless there's one or two items that stand out as being exceptionally more valulable then the rest. Then I'd find a sporting goods store and buy a suitable case.

Unfortunately. Midwest Airlines dosen't have their policies online. I'd just have to call the 1800 number and hope that I get someone with a clue.

I wouldn't bring back ammo, unless it was a sufficiently rare caliber, or of an extrordinary ammount to be worthwhile, and if so, I'll just ship it to myself ORM-D with adult signature etc.

February 13, 2004, 04:37 PM
One major thing - check to see if they're LOADED! That may sound silly, but more than a few old smokepoles which have hung on walls and gathered dust for decades have actually had charges and balls rammed home... Pull out the ramrod, and slide it in - if it doesn't make it to the touchhole, you've got a problem.

February 13, 2004, 04:54 PM
If you decide to fly with any of these guns, make sure that you ask the TSA representative at the check-in counter to call a supervisor. Ask the supervisor (nicely! :D ) if he/she would please check your suitcase containing the guns at the check-in counter, and then lock and security-seal it. This will prevent enthusiastic TSA officials in the baggage handling area detecting firearms via X-ray or residue tests, and then breaking open the suitcase(s) to check what's in there.

I've learned to follow this procedure every time I fly, and have so far had no problems. On the other hand, I know several people who left the suitcase checking to the baggage-room officials, and found their cases broken open at their destination. NOT fun... :mad:

AJ Dual
February 13, 2004, 04:57 PM
That's the first thing I'm going to do.

I'm going to ask to check every gun in that house to see it's status to be sure they're unloaded etc. No matter what ones I'm being bequeathed.

February 13, 2004, 09:08 PM
I did what HKMP5D did. I had to rescue some shotguns, sheriff's pistols, and rifles that were my Grandfathers in California.


If you are looking for a good case, Sams Club has starlight cases for 81-99 dollars right now.

AJ Dual
February 16, 2004, 02:10 AM
Looks like I have a bit more to ship than I originally thought.

- Springfield Trapdoor 1878 .45-70 rifle

- Sporterized P14 Eddystone Enfield

- M1 Carbine

- Browning (Howa) takedown .22 rifle

- Winchester .22 WRF pump action rifle.

- S&W Mod. 66 .357

- S&W Mod. 60 .38 snubbie (His daily carry piece, it was indeed loaded, with lead wadcutters that look to be his own handloads, in a Galati Fanny-pack holster)

- Springfield Armory 1911 mil-spec

- Remington "New Model" cap & Ball revolver

- Iver-Jhonson .22 short revolver.

- "Bulldog" revolver in some kind of .32 caliber.

- 11mm French pinfire revolver.

The only "cases" are two badly worn soft-side rifle cases for the sporterized P17, and the Winchester pump, and a canvas milsurp M1carbine bag of some kind. Everything else is "naked" or in factory boxes, so shipping via airline would be an investment of several hundred, even were I to trust these to the 9.99 plastic Koplin cases should I find them at a local Vegas sporting goods store.

There's also a Llama .22 caliber TPH clone around here somewhere that I haven't been able to find, which worries me, as it may be loaded too, even when he wasn't carrying it, he'd used it as his nightstand gun. It has to be here somewhere though, as it's one of the pieces registered on his NV carry permit. :confused: And since I found an En-bloc clip full of .30-'06 black tip AP, there may be a chance there's a Garand hiding somewhere. :eek: Although, milsurp .30-'06 often came in M1 en-bloc clips, so that's hardly any confirmation, and I can't imagine where it would be, as I've been everywhere something the size of an M1 could hide. I'm hoping his neighbor, who was his shooting buddy, can fill me in on the whereabouts of either tomorrow.

I hope to God that UPS isn't closed tomorrow for President's day, because I'm taking the red-eye back to Milwaukee Monday Night through to Tuesday morning. Even if they are closed, I could actually still legally recieve about three quarters of the above list, from my Grandmother and/or my Mom on my C&R license, but the "modern pieces" like the Browning .22, Springfield 1911, the two Smith and Wessons, and the Llama (if I can find it) would have to be FFL'ed over. And most Milwaukee FFL's charge $50 per gun. :mad: If it does come to that, perhaps, the local gun store (Monkeleg, can you call in a favor with the Shooter's Shop?) would take pity on me and do all the sub-50 year old guns for one fee instead of five.

This is all not even mentioning about another 80 Lbs. of Ammo (shipped ORM-D), magazines, scopes, two air pistols, and accessories.

I'm also leaving out another 200 lbs. +/- of high grade engineering and antique tools, pocket knives, a homeade teloscope, and ham radio gear, as getting that home is merely a financial struggle, not a "legal" one.

It's a veritable treasure trove, but I'd trade it all to hang out with him one more time.

AJ Dual
February 16, 2004, 02:40 AM
From I get this:

When you are shipping a package that contains a firearm through a UPS Customer Counter, you must have a letter on record with UPS stating your status as an authorized firearm shipper

So now, even if shipping my own firearms (via inheritance) to myself is legal, UPS won't let me? How can joe-blow even ship to an FFL or a manufacturer under this policy?

Now it looks as though I'm in the position of hoping the legendary UPS counter clerk's ignorance will work in my favor.

I just wish I had the time to have driven here. The simplicity of it all would have made the nail-biting nights with all that stuff unattended in a hotel parking lot worth it. :mad:

February 16, 2004, 08:15 AM
Find a ggod friend ..Rent a van and make or take a long weekend run and drive out and back...By the time you get through all the shipping cost and hassles..It just may be cheaper...

PS..Take lockable luggage to place the hand guns in..and get a letter from your grand mother that state these arms are your inheritance..Just to be safe if stop for anything..With a phone number they can call and verify...

And just make a fun trip of it...

Be safe.:cool:

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