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Thread: Carrying at gun shows?

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    Regular Member Lincoln7's Avatar
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    I've heard a few instances of people carrying at gun shows but also heard that they unload and zip tie your firearm. What is/isn't allowed? Open, concealed, shopper, attendant behind counter? Do they have to be unloaded/get zip tied. I tried searching but came up empty handed. Thanks! Oh, I think this is my first post here. Great site!

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    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    Bring a revolver in a holster. In your pocket carry nail clippers and ammo. After you get in go the the bathroom and into a stall. Use the nail clippers to remove the zip tie, load the revolver and holster it before comig out of the stall.
    He wore his gun outside his pants for all the honest world to see. Pancho & Lefty

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    Regular Member streetdoc's Avatar
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    Most of the gun shows post no loaded weapons allowed, and some of them will have the local police making the announcement while you are in the line to get that you can't have any ammo on you. Of course, they are not stopping you from buying ammo once you are inside. The promoters will tell you it's there insurance company that says you can't have a loaded gun on you while you are inside to let them off the hook for being a bad guy.
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    I pull the magazine and unload the chamber in my truck when I get there then place the mag and cartridge in my pocket. I have a CHP soIthen conceal and go in. I got tired of the goobers (security as well as local police) at the table almost droping my pistol and pointing it at me while trying to "secure" my pistol with a wire tie.My policy is don't ask, don't tell.
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    Regular Member 45acpForMe's Avatar
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    You are supposed to follow their rules or not shop at the show.

    Concealing or reloading is not allowed so you are tresspassing. The first time I OC-ed at a show they ziptied my gun but I was able to keep ammo/mags in my pocket. The second time they specifically asked if I had ammo and when I answered yes they made me unload the mag and put it in a plastic bag with my name on it. I retrieved the ammo when I left.

    I understand people that want to be armed everywhere (I am one of them) but don't go around bragging about breaking the rules/law especially on a public forum like this.

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    Regular Member Riana's Avatar
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    I carry. Unloaded only, per show rules.

    Last time I went to a show, I unloaded my revolver and zip-tied it myself in my car. I discovered last time that if I let the show people zip-tie it, I can't reholster. I do let the door folks see it, though.

    I drop the 5 rounds in my pocket, and carry a set of snips in my purse.

    The whole point of that show visit was to find a holster for my new 9mm, so I did let them zip-tie that, after explaining that it needed to remain holsterable. No problems there (it's a whole lot simpler to zip-tie a semi-auto than a revolver, apparently).

    I hate that I have to unload it to comply with the rules. But I'd rather have to do that than have no gun show to attend.

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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    Thundar wrote:
    Bring a revolver in a holster. In your pocket carry nail clippers and ammo. After you get in go the the bathroom and into a stall. Use the nail clippers to remove the zip tie, load the revolver and holster it before comig out of the stall.
    You are kidding me right?

    Did you really just post that on the internet?

    Terrible advice to give someone asking a legitmate question.
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    I hate all the signs they have now at the Dulles show, threatening me with being arrested right and left. I've been less impressed with that show over the past year anyhow.

    One of the women who zip ties firearms is very nice though, when she sees you're carrying in a holster she'll ask if it fits your holster. If not, she'll cut the tie and try again until it does fit. She's also very friendly when cutting the tie upon exiting.



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    Founder's Club Member - Moderator longwatch's Avatar
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    Well they arrested the dude who had the ND from the last show, so they mean it. Personally I just carry a zip tied revolver and fixed blade knife.

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    longwatch wrote:
    Well they arrested the dude who had the ND from the last show, so they mean it. Personally I just carry a zip tied revolver and fixed blade knife.
    Never heard about an ND. Do you know which day that happened? Any more details?

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    Founder's Club Member - Moderator longwatch's Avatar
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    A dealer had one before the show started, he caught a fragment from the .25 in his leg. It was the last show of the year, last year.

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    longwatch wrote:
    A dealer had one before the show started, he caught a fragment from the .25 in his leg. It was the last show of the year, last year.
    Oh ok I remember that one now.

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    State Researcher HankT's Avatar
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    Lincoln7 wrote:
    I've heard a few instances of people carrying at gun shows but also heard that they unload and zip tie your firearm. What is/isn't allowed? Open, concealed, shopper, attendant behind counter? Do they have to be unloaded/get zip tied. I tried searching but came up empty handed. Thanks! Oh, I think this is my first post here. Great site!

    What is/isn't allowed depends on the show. Almost all shows prohibit carrying (CC or OC) in any loaded gun by a non-LEO. Most shows prohibit carrying a loaded magazine or ammo for a carry gun.

    Often, signs at the entrance are are posted to detail these prohibited articles. Often, show personnel will verbally announce the prohibitions tosome (or all) attendees. Sometimes, show personnel will ask attendees directly whether they have any of the prohibited items (e.g., "Sir, do you have a loaded gun on you?")

    Some attendees (of thegun carryingkind)obey the rules. Either, they know the rules and leave the loaded carry gun in the car orunload it (leaving the ammo/mag in the car) and get it zip-tied at the entrance.

    Some attendees (of the gun carrying kind) will forget or not know the rules and when asked at the entrance ("Sir, do you have a loaded gun on you?"), they will say "Yes" and will unloade it, get it zip-tied or take it back to the car.

    Some attendees will intentionally ignore the rules, intentionally ignore the signs, and will lie to the person who asks the question (e.g., "Sir, do you have a loaded gun on you?"), saying "No" or "Ahhh, nice weather we're having, eh?"

    Of this latter subgroup, some will come up with most interesting rationales for disregarding, following, changing or evading the rules. They question the existence of the insurancerequirements, the logic/legalityof the prohibitions, thevalidity of the LE's authority in asking the attendendees any questions, and the patriotism of the show's promoters. Occasionally, the Brady Campaign will be evoked.

    If you ask a member of this latter subgroup, "Why do you flout the clearly posted rules about loaded guns--why do you intentionally lie to the show personnel?, they are very likely to answer directly: "Concealed means concealed!"

    The best assumption to have at a gun show is that there are many, manypeople who are CCing (or OCing) loaded weapons.

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    Regular Member ChinChin's Avatar
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    I see at least 5 to 6 guys walking around each show with fully loaded firearms on their belts. They're not trying to hide the fact that they have loaded firearms on their belts, so I guess the "no loaded firearms, no exceptions" sign is a suggestion.
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    State Researcher HankT's Avatar
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    ChinChin wrote:
    HankT wrote:
    ...Of this latter subgroup, some will come up with most interesting rationales for disregarding, following, changing or evading the rules...
    I see at least 5 to 6 guys walking around each show with fully loaded firearms on their belts. They're not trying to hide the fact that they have loaded firearms on their belts, so I guess the "no loaded firearms, no exceptions" sign is a suggestion.

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    ChinChin wrote:
    I see at least 5 to 6 guys walking around each show with fully loaded firearms on their belts. They're not trying to hide the fact that they have loaded firearms on their belts, so I guess the "no loaded firearms, no exceptions" sign is a suggestion.
    And I see plenty who are in uniform but aren't there as police either...I've seen Falls Church PD and even Secret Service Uniformed Division people there. No exceptions my @$$.

    (I'm not saying they shouldn't get to carry, I'm saying the show policy is bull and is not applied to everyone.)

    That said, the police that are there as police are friendly, both local and state.

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    Regular Member Lincoln7's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the info. I became confused when someone stated "I open carried to the gun show today", when I thought loaded firearms weren't allowed. But now I know!

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    Regular Member 45acpForMe's Avatar
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    Lincoln7 wrote:
    Thanks for all the info.Â* I became confused when someone stated "I open carried to the gun show today", when I thought loaded firearms weren't allowed.Â* But now I know!Â*
    Yes that statement usually means, OC-ed "to/on-the-way-to" the show up and until they forced me to zip-tie my gun, then OC-ed an empty-zip-tied-gun-in-its-holster at/during the show. :-)

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    This is actually relevant, since I'm about to leave in a few minutes to do some volunteer work at a VCDL table.

    Yes, getting zip-tied is pretty normal. Welcome to private property.

    I'm sure someone on here will gladly argue about how they can't do it, since it's at the fairgrounds.
    Why open carry? Because 1911 > 911.

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    Regular Member virginiatuck's Avatar
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    nova wrote:
    longwatch wrote:
    A dealer had one before the show started, he caught a fragment from the .25 in his leg. It was the last show of the year, last year.
    Oh ok I remember that one now.
    I remember that one, too. In fact, I heard it from inside. I was a bit unnerved by that.

    I heard two versions of what may have happened. 1) That a vendor's personal handgun was placed on the table for a moment; someone doing some 'early' shopping picked it up and pulled the trigger. 2) The gun was part of a collection being sold from an estate; it was never checked; someone doing some 'early' shopping picked it up and pulled the trigger. At least it was pointed at the floor (not that there's even any safe place to point a firearm in there).

    The rule prohibiting loaded firearms at the show does a little harm in that many people assume that every gun they pick up is already unloaded. Some of these are people who know the basic safety rule that all firearms are loaded until you have checked it yourself; but they automatically forget about that when they're told by a sign that the guns are unloaded and that there are no exceptions.

    I've also seen many firearms on tables that have zip-ties on them, but could still potentially have a round in the chamber. The only thing the zip-tie appears to do on some of these firearms is prevent you from being able to check whether it's loaded or not. Nevertheless, there's no shortage of people pulling those triggers without check for themselves that the firearm is unloaded.

    They ought to have a "NO TRIGGER PULLING" rule.



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    Campaign Veteran marshaul's Avatar
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    AbNo wrote:
    This is actually relevant, since I'm about to leave in a few minutes to do some volunteer work at a VCDL table.

    Yes, getting zip-tied is pretty normal. Welcome to private property.

    I'm sure someone on here will gladly argue about how they can't do it, since it's at the fairgrounds.
    As I understand it, most "No Trespassing" signs in Virginia hold little weight (despite the letter of the law) and in reality a direct (usually verbal) request for the person to leave must be ignored for that person to be charged with trespassing. Correct me if I'm wrong.

    This is the reason that many people CC in places like, say, Springfield Mall, despite their knowing the mall has a firearms prohibition. 'Concealed means concealed', and as long as they leave when asked in the unlikely event their CC is discovered, they are at no risk of legal penalty.

    Now, I'm asking this question out of genuine curiosity. What makes the signs at a gunshow different? Can one really be arrested for trespassing if one is discovered with a loaded gun, without being given a chance to leave?

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    virginiatuck wrote:
    nova wrote:
    longwatch wrote:
    A dealer had one before the show started, he caught a fragment from the .25 in his leg. It was the last show of the year, last year.
    Oh ok I remember that one now.
    I remember that one, too. In fact, I heard it from inside. I was a bit unnerved by that.

    I heard two versions of what may have happened. 1) That a vendor's personal handgun was placed on the table for a moment; someone doing some 'early' shopping picked it up and pulled the trigger. 2) The gun was part of a collection being sold from an estate; it was never checked; someone doing some 'early' shopping picked it up and pulled the trigger. At least it was pointed at the floor (not that there's even any safe place to point a firearm in there).

    The rule prohibiting loaded firearms at the show does a little harm in that many people assume that every gun they pick up is already unloaded. Some of these are people who know the basic safety rule that all firearms are loaded until you have checked it yourself; but they automatically forget about that when they're told by a sign that the guns are unloaded and that there are no exceptions.

    I've also seen many firearms on tables that have zip-ties on them, but could still potentially have a round in the chamber. The only thing the zip-tie appears to do on some of these firearms is prevent you from being able to check whether it's loaded or not. Nevertheless, there's no shortage of people pulling those triggers without check for themselves that the firearm is unloaded.

    They ought to have a "NO TRIGGER PULLING" rule.

    I'll have to agree with this. There have been several ND's at gun shows with "no loaded firearms" rules simply because people fail to follow the unposted rules of safe gun handling they should be following 24/7.

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    marshaul wrote:
    AbNo wrote:
    This is actually relevant, since I'm about to leave in a few minutes to do some volunteer work at a VCDL table.

    Yes, getting zip-tied is pretty normal. Welcome to private property.

    I'm sure someone on here will gladly argue about how they can't do it, since it's at the fairgrounds.
    As I understand it, most "No Trespassing" signs in Virginia hold little weight (despite the letter of the law) and in reality a direct (usually verbal) request for the person to leave must be ignored for that person to be charged with trespassing. Correct me if I'm wrong.

    This is the reason that many people CC in places like, say, Springfield Mall, despite their knowing the mall has a firearms prohibition. 'Concealed means concealed', and as long as they leave when asked in the unlikely event their CC is discovered, they are at no risk of legal penally.

    Now, I'm asking this question out of genuine curiosity. What makes the signs at a gunshow different? Can one really be arrested for trespassing if one is discovered with a loaded gun, without being given a chance to leave?
    I'm curious about this as well. There was a recent thread posted here on OCDO that explained the result of a recent VA sup. Court case about posting property, the outcome saying what you just posted...that you have to verbally be asked to leave and you refuse before being able to be charged. Signs have no weight.

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    State Researcher HankT's Avatar
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    virginiatuck wrote:
    The rule prohibiting loaded firearms at the show does a little harm in that many people assume that every gun they pick up is already unloaded. Some of these are people who know the basic safety rule that all firearms are loaded until you have checked it yourself; but they automatically forget about that when they're told by a sign that the guns are unloaded and that there are no exceptions.
    :what::what::what:

    I've never seen a sign that said "all guns in the show are unloaded." Never.


    Wow. That's a stretch in logic.

    So if the subgroup you're talking about know the rule...but get told something is true (which they don't really get told)...and then "forget" the rule that they know...and what they know is that the rule does not have exceptions....and then they pull the trigger .....and BLAMM!

    And in such an event, the rule prohibiting loade fire\arms is at fault....

    Gotcha. :?



    virginiatuck wrote:
    They ought to have a "NO TRIGGER PULLING" rule.
    That might work.

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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    nova wrote:
    marshaul wrote:
    AbNo wrote:
    This is actually relevant, since I'm about to leave in a few minutes to do some volunteer work at a VCDL table.

    Yes, getting zip-tied is pretty normal. Welcome to private property.

    I'm sure someone on here will gladly argue about how they can't do it, since it's at the fairgrounds.
    As I understand it, most "No Trespassing" signs in Virginia hold little weight (despite the letter of the law) and in reality a direct (usually verbal) request for the person to leave must be ignored for that person to be charged with trespassing. Correct me if I'm wrong.

    This is the reason that many people CC in places like, say, Springfield Mall, despite their knowing the mall has a firearms prohibition. 'Concealed means concealed', and as long as they leave when asked in the unlikely event their CC is discovered, they are at no risk of legal penally.

    Now, I'm asking this question out of genuine curiosity. What makes the signs at a gunshow different? Can one really be arrested for trespassing if one is discovered with a loaded gun, without being given a chance to leave?
    I'm curious about this as well. There was a recent thread posted here on OCDO that explained the result of a recent VA sup. Court case about posting property, the outcome saying what you just posted...that you have to verbally be asked to leave and you refuse before being able to be charged. Signs have no weight.
    I'm too tired to go look it up tonight - I may come back tomorrow & edit to include the case citation.

    The Va Supreme Court merely said that you must have the legal authority to post the "No Trespassing" sign in order for it to be valid -- in other words you can't be just some schmo and tack up a sign somewhere. Essentially some handiman for an apartment complex put up the signs without being told/ordered to by the owner or manager under orders from the owner.

    No, you do not have to be told verbally before you are in violation of trespass law. OTOH cops prefer to get someone in charge to tell you to go away so there is no question you were trespassing before they arrested you for trespassing.

    What bothers me is everybody jumps up and declares they have a "right" before they figure out if is the government saying they can't do something, as opposed to a private property owner. And as for fairgrounds, I am not aware of a single county fairground that is owned by the county - just as the State Fair grounds are not owned by the state. If I'm wrong would someone please show me the documentation?

    stay safe.

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