When a gun isn't legally a gun

This is a discussion on When a gun isn't legally a gun within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; There is a long standing exception in federal firearms law for guns that were manufactured prior to 1898, and it includes all replicas of those ...

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Thread: When a gun isn't legally a gun

  1. #1
    Member Array Boyntonstu's Avatar
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    Exclamation When a gun isn't legally a gun

    There is a long standing exception in federal firearms law for guns that were manufactured prior to 1898, and it includes all replicas of those guns that do not used fixed ammunition. This would include cap & ball percussion revolvers from the era of the Civil War until the mid 1870s when the center fire cartridge revolver came into being. That is what this article is about, cap & ball, or percussion revolvers. They are extremely effective weapons and were carried by Wild Bill Hickock and many other gunfighters throughout the old west. They may look like antique mechanical marvels, but are just as effective today as they were back then. And modern propellants have made them even more so.

    Call it a “loophole.” The federal government says that the guns that killed tens of thousands of Americans in the bloodiest war in our young history aren’t guns, and so they are therefore not included in any of the laws regarding the purchase and possession of firearms as we know them today. You don’t have to fill out a form 4473 to buy one. There is no NICS check. You can transfer them over state lines with no paperwork, and believe it or not, you can even order them in the mail, delivered right to your door like Netflix.

    Food for thought.

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    Member Array sebring's Avatar
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    better get one now if you think they will be the only legal option in the future

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    That may apply at the Federal level, but regulation exists at the state level. New Jersey, Massachusetts and California come to mind as states that regulate functioning antique firearms pretty much the same as modern firearms.
    Smitty
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    VIP Member Array suntzu's Avatar
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    What is there to think. It is what it is. I am a collector so of course it benefits me. I almost always buy F2F anyway so going through a NICS or FFL is not usually an issue. As far as rationale......how man folks use these as a "gun" in the sense they are used in SD, HD, CC, OC. Most folks I know will not use "modern propellents" in these weapons because (1) they are collectibles and not being used as guns and (2) the guns themselves can not handle the muzzle velocities experienced with modern propellents.

    If a BG wants to aviod going to an FFL to buy a gun and bypass NICS I am sure they will find a better way...like buying a Glock from a F2F or stealing one or getting one from anotheer BG.


    Not sure what food there is to think about. (
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    FL statute 790.01:

    (6) “Firearm” means any weapon (including a starter gun) which will, is designed to, or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive; the frame or receiver of any such weapon; any firearm muffler or firearm silencer; any destructive device; or any machine gun. The term “firearm” does not include an antique firearm unless the antique firearm is used in the commission of a crime.
    Retired USAF E-8. Lighten up and enjoy life because:
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    If I was gong to rob a bank or defend my home I would try to find something better than a 1853 Enfield. Yes it is very effective and with practice you can fire 3-4 rounds a minute, and it will hold one of those deadly bayonets but there are so many choices that are better, cheaper and easier to get.
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

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    Yeah, like a Colt-Paterson.
    Retired USAF E-8. Lighten up and enjoy life because:
    Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid... "For What It's Worth" Buffalo Springfield

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    VIP Member Array oakchas's Avatar
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    Grape shot revolver. hard to carry concealed... But an interesting choice for a HD weapon.

    lemat.jpg
    blitzburgh likes this.
    Rats!
    It could be worse!
    I suppose

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    Many years ago I knew some folks that could not own a firearm. They had black powder handguns. They actually carried the big ole replicas concealed under a motorcycle vest. Once they had fired them you did not need to see the firearm to know they were packing. You could smell them. With the current law in Mississippi that would not work.
    Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around laws. Plato

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    If you're going to go the 'cap and ball' revolver route as was used in the American Civil War (The War of Northern Aggression) as Southerner's refer to it DO NOT USE MODERN PROPELLANTS Use Black Powder or Pyrodex (an alternative to Black Powder).

    Furthermore anyone acquiring a 'Cap and Ball revolver manufactured in or before 1898 is taking an unreasonable risk loading and firing said weapon. If you have some kind of insatiable desire to handle, own, and shoot said guns find a friend who is an active participant in the Civil War Reenactors Association or Skirmishers as they are sometimes called and quiz him/her in the sport.

    Don't go off half cocked and buy a 100+year old 'cap and ball revolver' and load it with ANYTHING BUT BLACK POWDER unless 1)you have a death wish or 2)EXCELLENT Medical Coverage or 3)your affairs ie your Last Will and testament are in Order or 4)You're dumber than a box of rocks.
    I can't stress this ENOUGH.
    Firing a suppressed is on my Bucket List.

    I'm just a spoke in the wheel but not a big deal.

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    VIP Member Array suntzu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NONAME762 View Post
    If you're going to go the 'cap and ball' revolver route as was used in the American Civil War (The War of Northern Aggression) as Southerner's refer to it DO NOT USE MODERN PROPELLANTS Use Black Powder or Pyrodex (an alternative to Black Powder).

    Furthermore anyone acquiring a 'Cap and Ball revolver manufactured in or before 1898 is taking an unreasonable risk loading and firing said weapon. If you have some kind of insatiable desire to handle, own, and shoot said guns find a friend who is an active participant in the Civil War Reenactors Association or Skirmishers as they are sometimes called and quiz him/her in the sport.

    Don't go off half cocked and buy a 100+year old 'cap and ball revolver' and load it with ANYTHING BUT BLACK POWDER unless 1)you have a death wish or 2)EXCELLENT Medical Coverage or 3)your affairs ie your Last Will and testament are in Order or 4)You're dumber than a box of rocks.
    I can't stress this ENOUGH.
    You forgot to add: Don't forget your video camera so we can all watch it on You Tube at the memorial service
    Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”
    And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

    Isaiah 6:8

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    VIP Member Array NONAME762's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oakchas View Post
    Grape shot revolver. hard to carry concealed... But an interesting choice for a HD weapon.

    lemat.jpg
    I can't recall the maker of this revolver. These were sold to the CSA towards the end of that war. The cylinder had more than 6 shots, I want to say 7. The second barrel was a 12G single shot for close in engagements.
    Firing a suppressed is on my Bucket List.

    I'm just a spoke in the wheel but not a big deal.

    America...a Constitutional Republic. NOT a democracy as the liberals would have us believe.

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    VIP Member Array NONAME762's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by suntzu View Post
    You forgot to add: Don't forget your video camera so we can all watch it on You Tube at the memorial service
    I got out of Blackpowder guns in the mid 90s.
    Firing a suppressed is on my Bucket List.

    I'm just a spoke in the wheel but not a big deal.

    America...a Constitutional Republic. NOT a democracy as the liberals would have us believe.

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    blitzburgh likes this.
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

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