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Old June 18th, 2013, 01:55 PM
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Default Transport a hand gun to the shooting range, some questions

Hello all,

I am pretty new to the "gun business". So far I don't even have a gun.

Plan is to get a (Hand-) gun, do some training and target shooting, maybe later get a rifle and a hunting license.
In the last weeks I tried reading as much as possible about Pennsylvanias gun laws and I talked to some gun dealers.
It seems to me that carrying (without LCF) a gun to a shooting range is legally:


(2) when engaged in target shooting or while going to or from shooters’ places of assembly or target practice, provided the firearm is unloaded and the ammunition is carried in a separate container;


this is easy to understand. However, I heard from some other people that you can only go straight to the shooting range, no stop e.g. at supermarket or at a friends house inbetween, is that correct?

Do the firearm has to be in the trunk of the car and seprated from the ammunition, for e.g. the ammunition under the front seat?

Do the ammunition and/or the gun has to be in a locked container/case? Or is it enough if the gun has a trigger lock on?

I do know that it is easier with a LCF, but I will not be able to get one because of my workload (you have to show up in person) until the beginning of July.

Appreciate any input!

Thanks,
Chris
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Old June 18th, 2013, 03:42 PM
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Default Re: Transport a hand gun to the shooting range, some questions

First question: no, you can have the handgun in a case and ammo in a box next to that case. Loaded means in a mag in the handgun or within the same container and in a mag for the purposes of the law.

Second: the gun needs no lock nor does the container need a lock.

Also regarding stopping. You are correct. There are no stops allowed. Bring a beverage and pee before you go because there are no exceptions in the law whatsoever. From my understanding if you got A flat or other mechanical problems you'd still technically be in violation of the law if you went to a mechanic.

Funny how that works.

As always IANAL and if I'm wrong someone pease correct me.

Last edited by Totez; June 18th, 2013 at 05:20 PM. Reason: Edited to amend slightly off information.
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Old June 18th, 2013, 05:05 PM
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Default Re: Transport a hand gun to the shooting range, some questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by Totez View Post
First question: no, you can have the handgun in a case and ammo in a box next to that case. Loaded means in a mag in the handgun for the purposes of the law.

Second: the gun needs no lock nor does the container need a lock.

Also regarding stopping. You are correct. There are no stops allowed. Bring a beverage and pee before you go because there are no exceptions in the law whatsoever. From my understanding if you got A flat or other mechanical problems you'd still technically be in violation of the law if you went to a mechanic.

Funny how that works.

As always IANAL and if I'm wrong someone pease correct me.
A loaded mag in the same container as the firearm, much less in the firearm, is 'loaded'.

Quote:
18 Pa CS 6102 "Loaded." A firearm is loaded if the firing chamber, the nondetachable magazine or, in the case of a revolver, any of the chambers of the cylinder contain ammunition capable of being fired. In the case of a firearm which utilizes a detachable magazine, the term shall mean a magazine suitable for use in said firearm which magazine contains such ammunition and has been inserted in the firearm or is in the same container or, where the container has multiple compartments, the same compartment thereof as the firearm. If the magazine is inserted into a pouch, holder, holster or other protective device that provides for a complete and secure enclosure of the ammunition, then the pouch, holder, holster or other protective device shall be deemed to be a separate compartment.
Simple rule of thumb: either all ammo in its own separate container or unload all mags. Neither the unloaded firearm (you could even wear it!) nor the ammo, unless you have loaded mags, need be encased .

As to no stops, I'm unaware of that yet having being adjudicated but best to avoid stopping wherever possible.

That being it would seem that a cogent argument could be made for stops intrinsic to the range trips provided they could be reasonably justified. Consider the travel from Philadelphia to a match in Erie (400 miles 6.75 hours).
Obviously stops for fuel, rest, nature calls, food etc are a reasonable and an expected part of such a trip. On the other hand going to a range an hour or two from home would less likely necessitate such stopping and fall into a grayer area. Stopping by your favorite neighborhood restaurant during the trip is obviously pushing reasonableness. Supermarket, visit friends, other non-trip related excursions are not permitted. Unplanned stops, like for exigent mechanical problems, could also be justifiable.
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Last edited by tl_3237; June 18th, 2013 at 05:09 PM.
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Old June 18th, 2013, 05:21 PM
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Default Re: Transport a hand gun to the shooting range, some questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by tl_3237 View Post
A loaded mag in the same container as the firearm, much less in the firearm, is 'loaded'.



Simple rule of thumb: either all ammo in its own separate container or unload all mags. Neither the unloaded firearm (you could even wear it!) nor the ammo, unless you have loaded mags, need be encased .

As to no stops, I'm unaware of that yet having being adjudicated but best to avoid stopping wherever possible.

That being it would seem that a cogent argument could be made for stops intrinsic to the range trips provided they could be reasonably justified. Consider the travel from Philadelphia to a match in Erie (400 miles 6.75 hours).
Obviously stops for fuel, rest, nature calls, food etc are a reasonable and an expected part of such a trip. On the other hand going to a range an hour or two from home would less likely necessitate such stopping and fall into a grayer area. Stopping by your favorite neighborhood restaurant during the trip is obviously pushing reasonableness. Supermarket, visit friends, other non-trip related excursions are not permitted. Unplanned stops, like for exigent mechanical problems, could also be justifiable.
Thanks. Edited my post to reflect the correct answer. I knew that but forgot to type it in as well. Thanks for catching that!
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Old June 18th, 2013, 05:21 PM
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Default Re: Transport a hand gun to the shooting range, some questions

True that you can take your gun to the range without a LTCF, but it does make it easier if you have one. If there is no reason that would prohibit you, I'd suggest getting the LTCF. I got mine for mostly that reason at first. That way I can stop and pee on the way home, and that is getting to be more and more important as I get older....
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Old June 19th, 2013, 07:29 AM
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Default Re: Transport a hand gun to the shooting range, some questions

Hi all!

Thanks for the answers and information!

So most of what I heared and read seems to be true and the impression is, that it almost makes no sense leaving the house to a shooting range with a firearm but without a license to carry. The chance not be compliant with the law is fairly high.
Sounds like the solution is to get a LTCF before I even buy a gun.

Chris
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Old June 19th, 2013, 08:42 AM
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Default Re: Transport a hand gun to the shooting range, some questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nube View Post
Hi all!

Thanks for the answers and information!

So most of what I heared and read seems to be true and the impression is, that it almost makes no sense leaving the house to a shooting range with a firearm but without a license to carry. The chance not be compliant with the law is fairly high.
Sounds like the solution is to get a LTCF before I even buy a gun.

Chris
I know how work situations can impact getting personal stuff done during business hours. But get your paperwork ready to go now. That way when the opportunity presents itself you can jump on it. There is no reason that if you plan on buying a firearm to postpone getting your LTCF after, especially if your schedule makes it difficult.

There are allot of good range bags out on the market with separate compartments for your pistol and your loaded mags. This should satisfy all the requirements. From big duffle bags that will hold everything to smaller ones that will hold a pistol and mags.

P.S. Rep to you for doing your research ahead of your purchase.
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Last edited by QuackXP; June 19th, 2013 at 08:46 AM.
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Old June 19th, 2013, 02:34 PM
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Default Re: Transport a hand gun to the shooting range, some questions

+1 on doing your research.

Also, good for you for trying to be as safe as possible with regard to firearms.
As far as two compartments go, I personally use two different pockets in one bag. I cannot currently obtain a LTCF, and use public transportation to go to and from the range. Technically, I am stopping at every train station along the way. If you drive, I assume they would still expect you to stop at stop signs and red lights.

Here is my advice:
1: take the Half day to get your application in. You seem like they type of person that would be better off with the piece of mind this would bring.
2: If you are going to travel to a range without a LTCF, then don't have loaded mags banging around in the same place as the weapon itself... seems like a good idea to me regardless of the legality.
3: spend your worrying on important things, like safety and training.


Now, i assume you will be doing a similar amount of time researching your purchase as the implications, so what kind of gun are you thinging about getting?
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Old June 20th, 2013, 09:33 AM
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Default Re: Transport a hand gun to the shooting range, some questions

It still amazes me how differently each County is in their implementation of the application process.

Dauphin County is requiring that you go in person to apply when in Allegheny County I can email my application with scanned images of the proper ID to the Sheriff's Office and only have to go in person to pay and get my picture taken/pick up my license.
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