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Can a black powder firearm be used for home defense?

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by massnee, Sep 30, 2006.

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  1. massnee

    massnee Member

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    First let me say that my question is only being asked because the communist state I live in has forced me into a corner. Here is the reason for my question. My wife is not a US citizen. In my state (Massachusetts) it is not legal for her to have access to any of my firearms. However, it is legal for her to have access to black powder. In light of this could a black powder firearm be used for home defense?
     
  2. massnee

    massnee Member

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    I did a little searching on the site and discovered that my question may not be as unusual as I originally thought. I have a few more questions that arise out of my total ignorance of BP firearms.

    Can such a firearm be stored loaded for a period of about 2 weeks time?

    I really need a recommendation on what to get. I would prefer to go with a revolver. What would you recommend?
     
  3. wdlsguy

    wdlsguy Member

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    It wouldn't be my first choice, but a black powder firearm could work for home defense. What paperwork (if any) is required in Massachusetts for her to have access to a shotgun?
     
  4. massnee

    massnee Member

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    For my wife to have access to a shotgun she would have to go through an application process of about 4 months, take a safety course ($100 application fee), and pay an annual fee of $100.

    After all this she still would not be allowed access to any of the firearms I currently own.
     
  5. wdlsguy

    wdlsguy Member

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    $100 per year? Sounds like a nonresident LTC A. Isn't an FID sufficient for a non-large capacity rifle or shotgun?
     
  6. armoredman

    armoredman Member

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    Ouch. Double check all BP laws there, if Taxachussetts deems BP firearms as firearms, in regards to ownership, carry, or use.
     
  7. bakert

    bakert Member

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    I don't know about your laws but if that is your only choice, a well maintained and loaded right good quality black powder firearm, pistol, rifle or shotgun is pretty dependable and some are very powerful. Our forefathers did quite well with them.
     
  8. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Member

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    I don't know about the legalities, but black powder firearms are no less lethal than they were a century and more ago.
     
  9. massnee

    massnee Member

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    Thank you for responding to my questions. The license I referred to is called a resident alien FID. The fees involved are the same as a non-resident LTC. However, such a license is very restrictive (she would not have access to my evil black rifle).

    Black powder would be legal for her. Due to recent case law she would not be able to possess a bp handgun outside the home. But she is allowed access to such a firearm inside our home. Some day we will move our family to America...until then Massachusetts is our home.

    I am going to see about picking up a .44 revolver this afternoon.
     
  10. mike101

    mike101 Member

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    Get her a stainless Ruger Old Army. It's the most dependable BP revolver there is. You wouldn't want to keep it loaded with black powder for a real long time, because it's corrosive, but a substitute like Triple Seven wouldn't hurt it.

    I use Remington #10 caps. They seem to fit better than CCI's and I think they burn a bit cleaner and hotter, these days. I would use as much Triple Seven as the chambers will hold. Any modern made BP revolver will handle a full chamber. You can use a .457 ball from Hornady or Speer, or conicals from Bigiron or Buffalo Bullet Co. Balls might be easier for your wife to load, and they will do the job. And get stainless steel. It's a lot easier to deal with.

    If you want to save some $$$, you can get a good deal on the Old Army, new or used, at Gunsamerica.com.

    I push the Old Army because of the overall quality vs. the Italian replicas, and more importantly, reliability. They have modern lockworks (coil springs, etc.) as they are based on the Blackhawk/Superblackhawk. The parts don't break. Nothing more annoying than a broken Cylinder bolt, and if your using it for home defense, it could be a lot worse than annoying.

    Lastly, have fun! Black powder revolvers are a blast to shoot. Pun intended.
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2006
  11. Geno
    • Contributing Member

    Geno Member

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    If 17th century dead men could talk...

    If the 1800s house intruders could be polled, I am certain that some, if not many, would assert to have been put in the grave by Granny's BP wheel gun, and perhaps even a few by end-pushed-type rifles, carbines and shotguns.

    Seems to be that dead is dead. If it will drop a deer, what chance would a 2-legged critter (varmint) have? I know I'm mixing joke with serious, but it's an accurate statement. Check your laws for definition of a firearm.

    By the way, firearms made before 1898 have some additional degree of freedom regarding shipping, sales, etc. Again, check your state's laws.

    Doc2005
     
  12. pohill

    pohill Member

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    If you think MA is bad now, it will be worse if Deval Patrick is elected governor. He has already stated that he wants more gun control in MA.
     
  13. pohill

    pohill Member

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    just had a thought...

    Is MA unique in not allowing non-citizens the right to own guns? Do any states allow non-citizens to own firearms?
     
  14. Nicky Santoro

    Nicky Santoro Member

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    Black powder was killing people half a millennium before smokeless powder was invented. No problem with two weeks. I suspect no problem with two years.
    FWIW
    YMMV
     
  15. wdlsguy

    wdlsguy Member

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    Wow, that's really messed up. How about a nice double-barrel coach shotgun? :evil:

    PS0914.jpg
     
  16. mike101

    mike101 Member

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    Hi Pohill

    You're not going to believe this, but New Jersey allows non-citizens to own firearms. I had an Uncle from Denmark (He passed away recently) who had lived here for about fourteen years when he got his Firearms ID and Handgun Permit. He bought a Browning Hi-Power, because he liked the one he had in the Danish Army.

    At least, they allowed them to own guns at that time. This was in the late 80's.
     
  17. armoredman

    armoredman Member

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    Very restrictive now, since both 9-11, and that Egyptian at the Empire State Building. Call a local gun shop, but when I sold guns, a resident alien had to jump through some hoops, non res could rent. Now, non res cannot touch a firearm.
     
  18. wdlsguy

    wdlsguy Member

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    If you look at 18 USC 922, there is no problem with aliens here on an immigrant visa. Aliens here on a nonimmigrant visa have to jump through some hoops.
     
  19. pohill

    pohill Member

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    I can see the logic in preventing non-citizens from owning firearms, but if an alien is legal, and their spouse is a citizen with a LTC (with the assumption that there are weapons in the house) it only makes sense to...ha, there's the answer. SENSE.
     
  20. massnee

    massnee Member

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    Here is what I purchased:

    Euroarms of America, Rogers & Spencer .44
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  21. Plink

    Plink Member

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    I don't know about your local laws, but the ATF considers them non guns for the purpose of transfer and regulation ONLY. They are still considered firearms in useage though. For example, carrying one concealed where it's not legal to carry a concealled handgun.

    That said, it wouldn't be my first choice either, but they have been used for hundreds of years for self defense. I'd avoid pelleted anything as a load. Pellets are harder to ignite. I don't know how often you get out to the range, but I'd suggest rotating your carry load every couple of weeks. Make sure your caps are tight fitting and you have grease over the ball. This will help keep dampness from getting to the powder, and rotating it regularly will keep it fresh too.

    As for load, I'd go max recommended charge, preferably with one of the hollowpoint conicals that Big Iron Barrels sells. A round ball will work fine though and people hunt with them regularly. In rifles they usually work better than sabots and conicals, and expand and flatten on impact. I don't know how much the lower pistol velocity would effect that though.

    If it's all I could use, I wouldn't hesistate. Just keep your powder fresh!
     
  22. EmGeeGeorge

    EmGeeGeorge Member

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    pellets tend not to work too well in anything other than inlines...
    I had a buddy who had a 1858 remington, loaded for 6 years +... we shot it one day... 1st shot; fired, 2nd, no-ingnition, 3rd, 4th, 5th, fired, 5th was a hang fire... but it went... 5 or of sixth, stored in a bureau dresser... not bad...
    he had triple ff bp in it too, so go figure...

    I'd go something stainless though...
     
  23. Dave Markowitz

    Dave Markowitz Member

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    That Euroarms R&S should work well. I'd be interested in a range report on it.

    If I was in your shoes I'd load the maximum recommended charge of 3Fg black powder, a .457 ball, and grease sealing the chambers. I'd use the correct size CCI or RWS caps (try No.10 and No.11 to see which fits best) slightly pinched to make sure they stay on the nipples. I'd lube cylinder base pin and wipe down the exterior of the gun with Ballistol.

    I would avoid the pellet propellents, since they don't ignite as easily as black powder. If that's all you can get, use it but I'd really prefer BP.

    I would also shoot, clean, and reload the thing at least once a month. Windex is a great, cheap BP solvent and really make short work of cleaning.
     
  24. Smokin_Gun

    Smokin_Gun Member

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    In CA State Laws say that anythng that is ingited with a porellant exploded forcing a projectile out the barrel is a firearm. Even the antique firearms and replica BP Revs or pistols. If capped and concealed or on person or in vehicle are concidered a loaded firearm. If cylinder is seperate or out of revolver or uncapped and in revolver it s not concidered loaded.
    Go figure...so much for Federal Laws.
     
  25. mrelijahgardner

    mrelijahgardner Member

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    Not the best, but...

    I used to keep a cap and ball revolver for home defense. It's not the best idea, but better than nothing. I was 17 and lived in a trailer by myself out in the middle of nowhere. I mainly used it to shoot at the stray dogs that would get into my trash.

    If I were to ever have shot an intruder with it, I doubt I'd be in any less trouble with it being BP or not. If you ever shoot anyone the risks better be higher than all the litigation you will be subjected to.
     
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