Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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Thread: FFL Etiquette

  1. #1
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    Question FFL Etiquette

    Hopefully this is in the right place & hasn't already been discussed & isn't a stupid question (first forum post).

    I have been keeping my eye out for an M1 Garand for a while now but have not been able to find anything close enough & in my price range that would allow a FTF transfer. In short, I've begun expanding my search beyond PA in hopes of finding one that I can afford but realize this means I must enter the world of transfer via an FFL. What's considered the proper "etiquette" (for lack of a better word) for your first transfer through an FFL? I would assume that I need to get in touch with the person in some way prior to committing to purchasing a firearm and having it shipped to them but does it need to be anything more than "Is this alright?" and then we communicate further when they receive it?

    Sorry, I'm relatively new to the state/area and gun ownership in general and was just curious. Haven't really had the time to build up these kinds of relationships within the community due to a busy work schedule & I would rather start them off right!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: FFL Etiquette

    Just call them and ask. They are usually willing to take your money, which can vary widely between shops. I would call before you purchase so they can fax their certificate to the seller.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: FFL Etiquette

    Find an FFL near you that you'd like to use. Call and ask if they're willing to receive an out of state purchase for you and if so, how much they'll charge (I pay $20 but some guys in the area want up to $60 which is crazy). Just in case, ask if they have any problem receiving from a non-FFL seller. If they don't, ask what info they want from the seller and what shipping method they prefer (an FFL seller will include a copy of his license but a non-FFL seller should include a copy of his driver's license). Let them know that once you make the purchase you'll send them the seller's email so they can send a copy of their license. Finally, confirm that you'll provide them the tracking number once you have it from the seller.

    Understand that you may have to shop around to find an FFL that works for you. I use a couple kitchen table dealers meaning they have full-time jobs during the day. As a result, there isn't always someone home to sign for the gun so I make sure to give them the tracking number ASAP which allows them to have the shipment held for pickup. I also know what information they want from the seller and that there are some sellers they won't receive from for various reasons. Best to get it all out before you start the deal.
    Last edited by thebearpack; February 28th, 2017 at 02:06 PM.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: FFL Etiquette

    Welcome. Have you looked into the cmp? You need to be an NRA member and meet a few other requirements but they usually go for as low as $650 for rack grade. Currently it seems the special grade is the cheapest in stock at $830 shipped. http://thecmp.org/cmp_sales/rifle_sales/m1-garand/

    ETA: requirements http://thecmp.org/cmp_sales/rifle_sa...-requirements/
    Last edited by Wildbill990; February 28th, 2017 at 02:53 PM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: FFL Etiquette

    Agreed seriously look at the CMP as they will be in good firing condition and if you have problems they will take care of it. My two came from them and both have been great shooters. The hoops to go through them aren't too bad if you are patient. Right now they are sold out of most of the options as they are getting to the end of their inventory and demand is high.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: FFL Etiquette

    The one nearest me (not relevant for you, unfortunately) is very good about this. $20 and they have no issue with OOS non-FFL sellers. I've been in the store many times when a transfer comes in and they handle it well, not like they 'resent' it or you go to the back of the queue or something.

    Then again, they're a newer store and I think appreciate a 'potential customer' coming in to start a relationship with them.

    As others have said, just call and ask. My only addition would be judge attitude as well. If they're hesitant, like they're doing you a favor, give any pushback... Call some more.

    Hope someone in your area can rec one that's 'friendly' to transfers.
    I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer... I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: FFL Etiquette

    Step 1: Find the exact firearm you want (No need to cross the FFL bridge, if you don't have to)

    Step 2: Find an FFL you want to use (I like using GunBroker's FFL finder as it gives prices. http://www.gunbroker.com/ffl/searchforffl.aspx ).

    Step 3: Call your local FFL and ask how much they charge for an incoming FFL transfer (even if you know, ask anyways just to double check and act as an easy ice breaker). If you find their fees too high or their service unacceptable, then repeat step 2.

    Step 4: Purchase your new firearm online. They will usually ask for your FFL dealers name, address, and phone number. Depending on where you purchase it from, the online store you are purchasing from may already have your FFL information on file, depending on how big of an online retailer they are. If they do not, then ask for an e-mail address or fax number, for your FFL to send their information to your online dealer (if not already provided)

    Step 5: Contact your FFL again, and inform them that you had made the purchase, and you would like them to send their license information to the e-mail address or fax number that the online retailer gave you. This also gives your FFL dealer a heads up that a firearm will be coming in the mail for you. Generally they will ask you for your contact information now, so they can contact you when it comes in.


    Some easy tips:

    Don't constantly call your FFL, asking if your firearm came in.

    Don't call your FFL the second it gets delivered, if you are watching the tracking number online. They could have dozens of firearms to in-process, all at once (if you have seen a FedEx or UPS man at your LGS on a Monday, you know what I'm talking about). Give them some time to do their jobs.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: FFL Etiquette

    Quote Originally Posted by danhr View Post
    Step 1: Find the exact firearm you want (No need to cross the FFL bridge, if you don't have to)
    Good point. Although the OP mentions out-of-state, which I believe means FFL is required for anything, let's not forget that PA in-state private sales of long guns DO NOT require FFL transfer.

    In fact, I will only buy in-state long guns "face to face"... Some sellers insist on FFL, which is their prerogative, but a deal-breaker for me. I'll happily let them see my DL and LTCF as evidence I'm not prohibited and give them a bill of sale. I'm not trying to 'hide' anything or 'pull a fast one'... but FFL is an unnecessary hassle/expense I simply don't want.
    I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer... I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: FFL Etiquette

    CMP ships them directly to your house no need to go outside. You do need to be home to sign for it though so you do need to interact with the Fedex guy at the very least.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: FFL Etiquette

    Quote Originally Posted by theCreature8 View Post
    Hopefully this is in the right place & hasn't already been discussed & isn't a stupid question (first forum post).

    I have been keeping my eye out for an M1 Garand for a while now but have not been able to find anything close enough & in my price range that would allow a FTF transfer. In short, I've begun expanding my search beyond PA in hopes of finding one that I can afford but realize this means I must enter the world of transfer via an FFL. What's considered the proper "etiquette" (for lack of a better word) for your first transfer through an FFL? I would assume that I need to get in touch with the person in some way prior to committing to purchasing a firearm and having it shipped to them but does it need to be anything more than "Is this alright?" and then we communicate further when they receive it?

    Sorry, I'm relatively new to the state/area and gun ownership in general and was just curious. Haven't really had the time to build up these kinds of relationships within the community due to a busy work schedule & I would rather start them off right!
    The details are covered above but this is a good question it's been covered in parts but no big deal and a nice break from the I/my "friend" can't buy due to (drugs/302/gen bad conduct) what do I do 1st threads.
    Bonus points for using this section correctly.


    So what is you price range?

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