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22LR Revolvers in California?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by TYY, Aug 10, 2006.

  1. TYY

    TYY New Member

    May 8, 2006
    It seems the only 22 revolvers legal for sale in CA are Smiths (617) which are a bit pricey for a plinking and practice range gun. I love shooting my 4" GP100, but a few boxes of magnum loads plus range fees is getting pricey. I was looking into something like a Taurus 94 4" to give me a similar style revolver that I could shoot a bunch for cheap.

    Are there any good, inexpensive 22 revolvers that I should look into in the used market in CA? I have been told that the only way I can do this is to find a used gun from a private party IN California, then meet the seller in person at a gun store for the transfer; i.e. the gun cannot be shipped to me or the shop. Is this true?

  2. Shear_stress

    Shear_stress Senior Member

    Apr 27, 2005
    Yes and no. California gun stores are often filled will consignment guns that you can purchase legally.

    As for finding a nice .22 revolver on the used market, I say just be patient and one will turn up. When I lived in that state I was able to get pretty much anything if I was willing to wait. There are a lot of guns in California.

    If you are sick of waiting, there are alternatives. First, you can cruise the usual online auction sites and look for a .22 wheelgun that is more than fifty years old. You can then have it shipped to your friendly local FFL who can do the dealer record of sale and the various and sundry whatnot they make you go through in California.

    Second, if you have a parent who lives out of state, they can gift you an off-list firearm. Again, the gun will still have to go through an FFL for the DROS. However, I believe you can legally pick the gun up out of state. Check out the California Attorney General's website for details.

    Third, single-action guns are exempt from the California drop test requirements. Lots of Ruger Single-Sixes out there.
  3. Troggy

    Troggy New Member

    May 20, 2006

    I live in CA and never heard of "illegal" .22's. I see Ruger single sixes all the time. I see a .22 every time I hit a gun shop.
  4. MCgunner

    MCgunner Senior Elder

    Dec 3, 2005
    The end of the road between Sodom and Gomorrah Tex
    I don't live in California...... THANK GOD!
  5. AJAX22

    AJAX22 Participating Member

    Nov 9, 2005
    It all has to do with the california approved 'safe' list.

    If you want to import a new gun into california (even a used gun) The state of california has to perform destructive testing on three of the same make model and finish.

    You can get around this legislation by importing 50 year old guns as curio and relic items.

    Its dumb. Really dumb. Manufacturers nowadays don't produce unsafe handguns, they're too worried about liability.
  6. Lonestar

    Lonestar Active Member

    Jul 10, 2006
    Also it must have a lock feature. The Taurus 94 is not legal?
  7. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Senior Elder

    Sep 8, 2005
    Doesn't have to have a lock feature, AFAIK.

    Single Actions are exempt from the "not unsafe" list, one way or another. Any single action should be available here (not that I'd buy some of them).

    Double actions have to be drop tested and listed.

    The most common DA .22 revolvers over the years were probably the H&R's, but those are no longer made. You'll only find them used. I think there just plain aren't that many being made any more, apart from expensive ones, since H&R quit.

    BTW you can find out here if any gun you want is on the list: http://certguns.doj.ca.gov/

    Remember that single action revolvers and single shots like the Contender are exempt, so they won't be on the list.
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2006
  8. depicts

    depicts Member

    Oct 29, 2005
    I'd keep my eye out for a used S&W Model 17 .22 or maybe a Model 34 or 63 Kit gun. They are around all the time.They are worth whatever you have to pay for them in California, but here in Massachusetts, any one of them would run $300-$400 in great condition.

    I'm sure other people would have other ideas as well, but you can't go wrong with a Mod 17
  9. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Senior Elder

    Sep 8, 2005
    I'd look at old H&R's. A lot cheaper, kind of neat in their own right, some are 9-shots, some are top-breaks. Top break is a good design for .22, though it is too weak for centerfire magnums.

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