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Thread: Can a foreign tourist carry or transport a cap and ball revolver in your state?

  1. #1
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    Can a foreign tourist carry or transport a cap and ball revolver in your state?

    I hope this question fits here - it's a little unusual and I don't know where else to ask it.

    I'm an English tourist travelling around the US by bicycle. The bicycle has bags on it, much like motorcycle bags.

    I'm not going to be a resident of any state, so I can't buy a firearm. And I'm assuming that as I can't buy a firearm I can't get a CCW permit. But according to the ATF I can buy a cap and ball revolver. So long as I don't modify it for rimfire ammunition or use it to commit a crime, federal law says it's not a firearm - just a deadly weapon.

    As far as I can see, in most states I can buy a cap and ball revolver through the mail. Legally my bicycle, although it's not a vehicle, is (I think) a 'conveyance'. I see that word in plenty of statutes, and I suppose it's used to include horse-drawn buggies or whatever. So if a bicycle is a conveyance I am hoping I can transport a C&B revolver in the same way that a motorcyclist carries a firearm, i.e. in a fastened bicycle bag, unloaded. If I go to a range or some private land where I have permission to shoot, I can remove the gun from the bag and fire it.

    But when I park the bike to go to a store or a coffee shop I can't unclip the bag and carry it with me - that would be 'concealed carry.' So I have to leave the bag on the bike and hope it doesn't get stolen. (Is it an offence not to lock the bag and the bike?)

    When I camp in a park or on the beach or under a bridge or something, what then? If I lock the bike to a tree and lock the bags on the bike and leave the gun in the bags, will I be OK? (So long as I'm not in a place where guns are prohibited.)

    When I stay in a motel, what then? Can I have the gun in my room? How do I get it into the room without breaking the concealed carry law? (Actually I should be OK on this one - in most cases motels allow me to wheel my vehicle right into the room - perhaps this is the only time when a bicycle and a gun is a good combo.)

    If anyone is still reading can they please tell me how your state laws would affect me? I'd really appreciate it.

    In the unlikely event that your state allows me to open carry it in a holster, expect a visit!
    Last edited by Dozy Rider; 08-03-2010 at 09:39 PM.

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    I think that your best bet on a safe vacation (legally and otherwise) is Vermont. I'm somewhat sure that it doesn't matter whether you are a U.S. citizen for that state (perhaps a residency requirement - check on this). Open or conceal carry is legal (no permit required for either). I hear it is a very pretty state too!

    You'd almost have to post this question in each State forum (check the forum rules first) to get a specific state-by-state answer as gun laws (and the consequences for breaking them) vary widely by jurisdiction.

    Good luck!

    I'm also pretty sure that foreigners also can obtain Utah concealed weapon permits (unless they repealed that provision in their law) ... assuming you can find a Utah-specific class in your area. There are Utah classes held in varius states from time-to-time. That might help you stay legal in some areas.
    Last edited by OC4me; 08-03-2010 at 10:26 PM.

  3. #3
    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    Did you try the SEARCH FUNCTION? Did you look in the LAW LIBRARY section?

    Last edited by simmonsjoe; 08-03-2010 at 11:06 PM.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
    [SIZE=1]"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. "Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent." - Thomas Jefferson
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    Quote Originally Posted by simmonsjoe View Post
    Did you read my question? It's not about firearms.

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    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    You don't know what your talking about.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dozy Rider View Post
    Did you read my question? It's not about firearms.
    A cap and ball revolver is a firearm. "Cap guns" (childrens noise makers - toys) can sometimes be converted to a real rimfire cartridge.

    If you wish to carry a handgun in the US (any type, modern or relic), immigrate.

    My personal belief is you should be able to carry here on vacation, as the right to bear arms, as defined by our constitution, pre-dates government. Therefor residency/citizenship shouldn't be relevant.

    PS - attempting to use a cap-n-ball revolver for self defense requires a LOT of skill.
    Last edited by simmonsjoe; 08-04-2010 at 03:27 AM.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
    [SIZE=1]"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. "Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent." - Thomas Jefferson
    G19 Gen 4; Bersa Thunder 380; Sig Sauer P238; Kel-Tec su-16c

  6. #6
    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Seems I recall reading somewhere where firearms made before 1899 are referred to as curios and not firearms so there could be something to this regarding a cap and ball revolver. Good question.
    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

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    Quote Originally Posted by simmonsjoe View Post
    A cap and ball revolver is a firearm.
    Not according to the ATF.

    Seems like I'm in the wrong place for awareness of antique/replica laws. SimmonsJoe, I suggest you do some reading before giving your postings such rude and ridiculous headings.
    Last edited by Dozy Rider; 08-04-2010 at 11:53 AM.

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    I cannot say for other states but in South Carolina you should be good to go.

    1) "Handgun" means any firearm designed to expel a projectile and designed to be fired from the hand, but shall not include any firearm generally recognized or classified as an antique, curiosity, or collector's item, or any that does not fire fixed cartridges.
    A C&B revolver would not be a handgun in SC and I don't know of any other restrictions on carrying one so you should be fine. I will say that I would not push it by OC'ing it in SC as OC is not permitted except while hunting or fishing and traveling to and from and I don't know that all LEO would be aware of the difference but normally as long as you behave in SC you are fine. The law does permit the carry of a handgun in a saddlebag of a motorcycle but it does not say anything about a bicycle.

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    I am curious how you are going to sneak it through customs myself. They used to have a real problem if the gun had no serial number, and I bet they are even more ignorant and asinine now with Janet 'system works' in charge.

    AL law is very bad for vehicles, so the definition of your bike is the main issue you need to worry about. No case law to CYA.

    Best of luck with your touring of what used to be "the land of the free".

  10. #10
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    I think legally, you would be ok since even a child can buy a cap and ball revolver.

    BUT...

    Do not expect every law enforcement officer to the difference between a cap and ball revolver and a firearm.

    There are a few states the regulate the sale and transfer of C&B products. Illinois and New York are 2 that I know off the top of my head.

    You will really need know which states you will be passing through and find their statutes on C&B products.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dozy Rider View Post
    I hope this question fits here - it's a little unusual and I don't know where else to ask it.

    I'm an English tourist travelling around the US by bicycle. The bicycle has bags on it, much like motorcycle bags.

    I'm not going to be a resident of any state, so I can't buy a firearm. And I'm assuming that as I can't buy a firearm I can't get a CCW permit. But according to the ATF I can buy a cap and ball revolver. So long as I don't modify it for rimfire ammunition or use it to commit a crime, federal law says it's not a firearm - just a deadly weapon.

    As far as I can see, in most states I can buy a cap and ball revolver through the mail. Legally my bicycle, although it's not a vehicle, is (I think) a 'conveyance'. I see that word in plenty of statutes, and I suppose it's used to include horse-drawn buggies or whatever. So if a bicycle is a conveyance I am hoping I can transport a C&B revolver in the same way that a motorcyclist carries a firearm, i.e. in a fastened bicycle bag, unloaded. If I go to a range or some private land where I have permission to shoot, I can remove the gun from the bag and fire it.

    But when I park the bike to go to a store or a coffee shop I can't unclip the bag and carry it with me - that would be 'concealed carry.' So I have to leave the bag on the bike and hope it doesn't get stolen. (Is it an offence not to lock the bag and the bike?)

    When I camp in a park or on the beach or under a bridge or something, what then? If I lock the bike to a tree and lock the bags on the bike and leave the gun in the bags, will I be OK? (So long as I'm not in a place where guns are prohibited.)

    When I stay in a motel, what then? Can I have the gun in my room? How do I get it into the room without breaking the concealed carry law? (Actually I should be OK on this one - in most cases motels allow me to wheel my vehicle right into the room - perhaps this is the only time when a bicycle and a gun is a good combo.)

    If anyone is still reading can they please tell me how your state laws would affect me? I'd really appreciate it.

    In the unlikely event that your state allows me to open carry it in a holster, expect a visit!
    In Nevada you can carry it openly in a holster as long as it visible to ordinary observation. Riding your bike you could also transport it in the bags, but if you "carry" the bike in your hands (as opposed to riding it,) it might be found to be concealed. You could also leave it in the parked bike as long as the bike is not in a prohibited area. In Nevada it is best to carry it openly in a belt holster. In Nevada the only places you couldn't really open carry into legally would be the school property, university property, child care facilities, postal property, the insides of buildings owned by the Federal government, and the secure parts of the airport. "State Parks" (which are like National Parks but owned by the State instead,) disallow open carry but allow a firearm that is unloaded and inside of a "vehicle." Private businesses like stores, coffee shops, motels, and hotels are legal for open carry, although private property reserves the right to kick you out if they don't like you. You can carry in a bar but it is illegal to be drunk while armed.

    If you go to this thread you can find a pamphlet that summarizes the Nevada laws:

    http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...evada+Pamphlet

    Have fun in the United States. It might be difficult to find a path that leads between all the states that you want to visit that would work by bicycle. In many states there may not be a legal method for you to transport it through. (Title 18 USC 926A uses the federal definition of firearm I believe.)
    Last edited by Felid`Maximus; 08-04-2010 at 05:47 PM.

  12. #12
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    Holy **** everyone stop telling this guy lies! Your going to cause him to be arrested

    You cannot carry ANY FIREARM. Just because it is NOT a HANDGUN is irrelevant.
    (This is federal law and covers all 50 states! For more info check the Law Library)

    CAP & BALL revolver = FIREARM
    CAP & BALL ≠ HANDGUN

    You can't purchase ANY FIREARM, regardless if it is a handgun.

    -----
    This is like be telling you your not allowed to drive a vehicle in the US, and you arguing it's OK to drive an SUV because it isn't a car.
    (This is an analogy, not legal advice about driving.)
    Last edited by simmonsjoe; 08-04-2010 at 07:09 PM.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
    [SIZE=1]"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. "Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent." - Thomas Jefferson
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  13. #13
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    A cap and ball revolver is not a regulated firearm according to Federal law.

    Antique firearms and replicas are exempted from the aforementioned restrictions. Antique firearms are defined as: any firearm (including any firearm with a matchlock, flintlock, percussion cap, or similar type of ignition system) manufactured in or before 1898, and any replica of a firearm as designed above if the replica is not designed or redesigned for using rimfire or conventional centerfire ammunition, or uses fixed ammunition, which is no longer manufactured in the United States and which is not readily available in the ordinary channels or commercial trade, any muzzle loading rifle, muzzle loading shotgun, or muzzle loading pistol, which is designed to use black powder, or a black powder substitute, and which cannot use fixed ammunition. (Note: Antiques exemptions vary considerably under state laws.)
    Last edited by flb_78; 08-04-2010 at 07:31 PM.

  14. #14
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    According to North American Arms, they cannot ship a cap and ball revolver to District of Columbia, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, or Washington.

    Anyone else can order one online and have it shipped directly to their house with no FFL involved.

    http://www.naaminis.com/naac&b.html

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    Right off the ATF site.

    Q: I am a nonimmigrant alien. Do I need a Form 6 NIA import permit to import a muzzle loading gun that is considered an antique firearm under the Gun Control Act?

    No. Because antique firearms are not considered firearms for purposes of the Gun Control Act, none of the import regulations apply to the importation of antique firearms. Moreover, a nonimmigrant alien may possess antique firearms, even if the alien does not fall within an exception to the nonimmigrant alien prohibition. If you are not sure if your firearm is an antique firearm as defined by the Gun Control Act, contact ATF’s Firearms Technology Branch.
    http://www.atf.gov/firearms/faq/noni...nt-aliens.html

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    Come to Arizona, I believe that you would be legal there.

    It is legal for a non-resident alien to posess a firearm if they have a hunting license or a letter from a club or organization that conducts organized shooting matches, as I recall. Therefore, you might want to join the NRA or a state muzzleloading club that conducts matches.

    (y) Provisions Relating to Aliens Admitted Under Nonimmigrant Visas. - (2) Exceptions. - Subsections (d)(5)(B), (g)(5)(B), and (s)(3)(B)(v)(II) do not apply to any alien who has been lawfully admitted to the United States under a nonimmigrant visa, if that
    alien is -
    (A) admitted to the United States for lawful hunting or sporting purposes or is in possession of a hunting license or permit lawfully issued in the United States;

    http://www.alphecca.com/?p=1180

    Basically, you need to have a hunting license. As long as you follow all other state laws, a legal non-resident alien can buy and use firearms. And it doesn’t matter the type of firearm either. Milsurp, handgun, EBR, you name it.

    But overall, this behavior is discrimination against potential citizens who have been held to a higher standard than your average American. They do not deserve this treatment. Justice must be blind or equal or it isn’t justice. As an LPR, I’m glad I don’t live there.

  17. #17
    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    I stand corrected.

    Thanks for the post and link. I will be updating the Law link.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
    [SIZE=1]"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. "Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent." - Thomas Jefferson
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  18. #18
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    Dozy Rider

    BE CAREFUL -- Many cap and ball revolvers are of newer manufacture. This includes replicas which may look, or be of an older design.

    Finding a working (and safe) cap-n-ball revolver of sufficient vintage will be expensive.

    Good luck, and I'm glad I was wrong. At least you can get a taste of your rights!!!

    PS - Before you leave the states, make sure to visit a range that rents fully automatic weapons. Give it a go before you ... go. If you come through Richmond, VA, There is a range, (Dominion Range) which rents full auto Mac-10 and Uzi, with silencers.
    Last edited by simmonsjoe; 08-04-2010 at 10:09 PM.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
    [SIZE=1]"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. "Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent." - Thomas Jefferson
    G19 Gen 4; Bersa Thunder 380; Sig Sauer P238; Kel-Tec su-16c

  19. #19
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    Federal and State

    Federal law may not classify a cap and ball [muzzle loading, not a fixed cartridge] as not a regulated firearm.
    But be assured most states definition is any device that expels a projectile by means of expanding gas.
    There are some states where a citizen or a lawful visitor with a visa can open carry.
    There are many questions that are hard to answer and many dealers are not experts at law. Many times a licensed dealer will refuse to make a lawful sale because they just don't know.
    In some states having a replica of a 1849 Colt .31 caliber revolver in a bicycle bag will be considered as unlawfully concealed and other states, maybe just across a river will have greatly different laws.
    Just about every state is now on-line with their state police and attorney general's web pages. Most states have a rifle and pistol association and sometimes they have links to their laws.
    The average cop on the street does not know all the laws, often if you're stopped for any reason [traffic accident, stolen bicycle] the officer who comes to investigate may react to finding that you have a cap&ball in your saddlebags with lots more questions. It might take several hours before the police get an answer from somebody who may be up their chain of command [and they may not know either].
    So it will be in your interest to get copies of all the laws and contact numbers for state's attorney general, the state rifle association, the NRA can be helpful [membership is not restricted to US citizens and the magazines and technical advise is very good].
    Federal law regulates interstate commerce, state laws define criminal acts, you have to know and follow both...

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by simmonsjoe View Post
    BE CAREFUL -- Many cap and ball revolvers are of newer manufacture. This includes replicas which may look, or be of an older design.

    Finding a working (and safe) cap-n-ball revolver of sufficient vintage will be expensive.

    Good luck, and I'm glad I was wrong. At least you can get a taste of your rights!!!

    PS - Before you leave the states, make sure to visit a range that rents fully automatic weapons. Give it a go before you ... go. If you come through Richmond, VA, There is a range, (Dominion Range) which rents full auto Mac-10 and Uzi, with silencers.
    The Gun Control Act of 1968 defines antique firearms as

    (16) The term "antique firearm"
    means—
    (A) any firearm (including any firearm
    with a matchlock, flintlock, percussion
    cap, or similar type of ignition
    system) manufactured in or before
    1898; or
    (B) any replica of any firearm described
    in subparagraph (A) if such
    replica—
    (i) is not designed or redesigned
    for using rimfire or conventional
    centerfire fixed ammunition, or
    (ii) uses rimfire or conventional
    centerfire fixed ammunition which
    is no longer manufactured in the
    United States and which is not
    readily available in the ordinary
    channels of commercial trade; or
    (C) any muzzle loading rifle, muzzle
    loading shotgun, or muzzle loading
    pistol, which is designed to use
    black powder, or a black powder
    substitute, and which cannot use
    fixed ammunition. For purposes of
    this subparagraph, the term "antique
    firearm" shall not include any weapon
    which incorporates a firearm frame or
    receiver, any firearm which is converted
    into a muzzle loading weapon,
    or any muzzle loading weapon which
    can be readily converted to fire fixed
    ammunition by replacing the barrel,
    bolt, breechblock, or any combination
    thereof.

    Yes it is a firearm but due to it being an "antique firearm" it basically exists in a pre-1968 world where you could still order one out of the Sears catalogue.

  21. #21
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    But if they catch him having an ice scream in AZ he will be deported back to england.

    Just realized that england has no guns, so how is he bringing one hear? If a non working WW1 pistol is banned, there is no way they would allow something that still works in or out of the country.
    Heathrow is very efficient, so don't put in carry bag, or step lively when you put it through the x-ray machine.

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