First Flight with Firearm Checked: Easy

This is a discussion on First Flight with Firearm Checked: Easy within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Departed DFW yesterday with the EDC and ammo packed in two separate hard-sided locked pistol cases inside a checked bag as per TSA and AA ...

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Thread: First Flight with Firearm Checked: Easy

  1. #1
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    Exclamation First Flight with Firearm Checked: Easy

    Departed DFW yesterday with the EDC and ammo packed in two separate hard-sided locked pistol cases inside a checked bag as per TSA and AA rules. The cases were not "TSA Locks". The luggage was also locked with TSA locks. Declared it, signed the statement which went into the bag. Uneventful and easy.

    Proceeded to the gate. While I was chatting to the Gate Agent 30 minutes later, a TSA fella shows up, and asks the Gate Agent to page me. I introduce myself. TSA needs the key to the pistol cases. He was very polite and very professional. I gave him the key and obtained assurance he would return it and re-lock everything. He concurred, and confirmed the gun was not loaded and the ammo was also locked up.

    Twenty minutes later he returned the key, confirmed everything was all re-locked, and told us to have a great trip.

    Arrive in the City of Brotherly Love, reclaim bags, check locks and that the pistol cases are present and weigh the "correct" amount.

    Arrive at hotel, check in, go to room, "load and arm up".......Happy happy happy! Re-read PA CHL, all well!

    I sure like reciprocity!

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array Kerbouchard's Avatar
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    Good stuff and good info...Haven't flown out of DFW with my carry, yet. I was wondering how that was going to go. Glad to hear everything went like it should.
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    Distinguished Member Array SixBravo's Avatar
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    The only times I have ever been asked for inspection was when I left the slide forward on my carry or when I flew with rifles. Just FYI. Don't know what you did in your case. The guys at the X-ray machine at Sky Harbor always like to chat so I never really care about waiting around for them. I actually flew out of there 3 times in 4 weeks and saw the same guy every time - got a good laugh.
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    Distinguished Member Array T Bone's Avatar
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    Oddly, this is one thing about flying that changed very little after 9/11. I first flew with a checked, unloaded pistol back around 1986. Nearly the same exact procedure.

    Only thing I'd do differently than you is peak inside the reclaimed pistol case, rather than rely on wt. You don't have to open it wide, just crack it open to see your pistol is still there. I'd hate to leave the airport environment only to discover my pistol had been replaced by a paper weight by some unscrupulous baggage handler.
    Regards, T Bone.


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  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by SixBravo View Post
    The only times I have ever been asked for inspection was when I left the slide forward on my carry ........
    That's exactly the way it was - I did not lock it back. I'll try that on the return flight. Good idea. Thanks.

    Quote Originally Posted by T Bone View Post
    Only thing I'd do differently than you is peak inside the reclaimed pistol case, rather than rely on wt.
    Agreed - I was just being in a hurry - your idea is better. Thanks.

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    Member Array Obiwan's Avatar
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    I disagree with the concept of TSA locks, and I'd never give someone the key unless I was standing right there. The regs actually state that ONLY YOU can have the key/combo. Next time make them escort you to the suitcase, THEN give him the keys. You'll be in compliance with the law although you'll probably have to force them into compliance by showing them a copy of the law. Been there, Done that!
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    Member Array Cofaler's Avatar
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    I run a cable lock through the barrel when it's in the case, one, so under x-ray it's obviously unloaded, and two, maybe there's a slim chance it will look a little less attractive to some guy looking for an easy score. I know that's unlikely, but you never know....

    I agree with Obiwan. I would really hesitate to give my keys up to a TSA guy. I always give myself a ton of extra time at the airport, especially if I'm taking a gun.

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    Member Array GHFLRLTD's Avatar
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    Who Controls the Keys

    Make sure you have the keys to the lockable hard-sided case with you and you alone (Per Federal Regulations 1540.111 Carriage of weapons, explosives, and incendiaries by individuals - Electronic Code of Federal Regulations: at all times.
    George H. Foster
    Orlando, Florida

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    One clarification: The suitcase was locked with TSA locks. The pistol case is a non-TSA lock keyed to the key only I carried.

    On the return flight today I locked the slide back. Declared it, signed the paperwork, took it to X-Ray, watched it sail through with flying colors, hit the conveyor belt, and disappeared into PHLs' underbelly. It arrived in DFW with the suitcase TSA locks untampered with by TSA. Pretty easy.

    Thanks for the feedback, folks. I like the cable idea too.

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    New Member Array Strapped's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rock and Glock View Post
    Departed DFW yesterday with the EDC and ammo packed in two separate hard-sided locked pistol cases inside a checked bag as per TSA and AA rules. The cases were not "TSA Locks". The luggage was also locked with TSA locks. Declared it, signed the statement which went into the bag. Uneventful and easy.

    Proceeded to the gate. While I was chatting to the Gate Agent 30 minutes later, a TSA fella shows up, and asks the Gate Agent to page me. I introduce myself. TSA needs the key to the pistol cases. He was very polite and very professional. I gave him the key and obtained assurance he would return it and re-lock everything. He concurred, and confirmed the gun was not loaded and the ammo was also locked up.

    Twenty minutes later he returned the key, confirmed everything was all re-locked, and told us to have a great trip.

    Arrive in the City of Brotherly Love, reclaim bags, check locks and that the pistol cases are present and weigh the "correct" amount.

    Arrive at hotel, check in, go to room, "load and arm up".......Happy happy happy! Re-read PA CHL, all well!

    I sure like reciprocity!
    My first flight with my weapon went something like this, check in bag at the counter and declared my firearm, firearm was in a locked case, unloaded and the case was inside my bag, nobody ever checked inside the case, dropped off bag at the xray machine and was asked to standby until it cleared, watched them inspect my bag by hand and then the TSA guy turned to me and gave me the thumbs up and I was on my way.

  12. #11
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    Good to hear that Richard ....... I also have had trouble-free experience.

    Funny thing tho - on way to Tulsa 2 years ago - we stopped off in Denver overnight and so next morning before getting the hop on to Tulsa ... the TSA must have been totally bored, because they took our baggage and we watched from outside as they looked thru.

    No (zero!) interest in the locked gun case - and anyways the orange label deal was in there - but we had to laugh when we saw the guy ''wanding'' the sides of a 2/3 full bottle of whiskey we had included. ......... not even now sure what he expected to discover
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  13. #12
    New Member Array Strapped's Avatar
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    I guess when they xray the gun they can see if it's loaded or what not, right? If not, seems to be quite an oversight on their part for not making sure.

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    Member Array Raider39a's Avatar
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    Strapped, I like your avatar... succint and to the point.

    for all y'all, do you leave the mags loaded or are the mags and ammo separated when you checked these firearms in?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raider39a View Post
    for all y'all, do you leave the mags loaded or are the mags and ammo separated when you checked these firearms in?
    AA requires ammo in boxes and mags empty.

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