View Full Version : FFL, Mail Order Questions

08-20-2008, 01:23 PM

Please pardon my ignorance and educate me on the process of buying a new action or used gun through the mail. I'm contemplating doing one or the other but completely clueless on how the process works. What is step 1? How do I locate FFL holders? What paper work is involved? Do I have to go there to get things started or can the process begin with a phone call? What is a reasonable fee for the service? How does the ridiculous DC gun registration process fit in?

Paul Fielder
08-20-2008, 05:00 PM
1. Most gun stores or pawn shops will receive your gun for a fee. I see $25-$50 for the service. Find someone you trust & ask for a signed copy of their ffl or they may even want to mail / fax it seperatly.

2. Find the action / gun you want to buy & send a signed copy with your payment. It can faxed now, although some sellers request an ink signed copy.

3. If the seller is a private individual, he will need to send a current photo ID (drivers Lic) along w/ the copy of your receivers ffl with the action / gun.

4. If the seller is another ffl, he will send a signed copy of HIS/HER ffl with the gun to the ffl of your choosing with the gun.

5. Pick up the gun & fill out the 4473.

I know there are some slight rules from state to state but this is basically the skinny on how it's done. Many sellers will not ship to California due to a new law recently passed.

Good luck.


Larry Elliott
08-20-2008, 06:19 PM
Unless it's a state regulation I don't think that it's necessary for the shipper to send any form of ID with a gun being sent to an FFL. If one party holds an FFL they're able to receive firearms from private citizens, other FFL holders, or distributors without having the shipper id'd except for a return address for their bound book.

Paul Fielder
08-20-2008, 06:33 PM
I was told by ATF they want a photo copy ID for the aquisition books to confirm tacking & ownership. How else can they prove where the gun came from??

Whether it is a formal rule or not, I do not know....that is what I was told.


Larry Elliott
08-20-2008, 07:07 PM
If ATF says to stand on one leg, spin clockwise, and whistle Yankee Doodle or Dixie it's best to do it I think. I've never been asked for id though.

Paul Fielder
08-20-2008, 07:23 PM
....and he refused to send his copy?? Didn't return emails or phone calls?? I called ATF and all I could do is save email correspondence & the address I used for payment for the books & made notes. This clown has been around and had a bunch of guns for sale on one of the bigger web sites.

The ID makes sense to me....if I sent you a gun, It would certainly be easy to put a fake name on the money order & return address on the box??

If a guy is a weasel, he could give you a fake ID too....what are you gonna do?? The world is full of strange folks.

Like you said, just doing what was requested to cover my butt. I think you are correct, maybe not an ATF requirement for TX but a noteworthy practice to adhere to.


08-21-2008, 11:05 AM
Guys, I think he is located in DC.

My advice is - Good Luck.

Even though the Supreme Court ruled strongly against the local government of DC, the District is still trying to do everything in their power to keep you from buying a gun.

Luckily, the NRA has good lawyers. If you are not an NRA member - join now.


Paul Fielder
08-21-2008, 01:38 PM
...I thought we were talking about the USA.....sigh. Are there no ffl's in the DC area??

Man I love Texas!!

Good luck is correct....I do not know the laws for DC.


08-22-2008, 12:50 AM
I do live in DC and the hand gun situation is very frustrating to people who think rationally (as opposed to politicians that just want to appear to be doing something about crime without really doing anything), but that is a whole topic in itself. For rifles and shotguns things are a little better although not by much. We still have to register every gun (for whatever that is worth) but we can go to Maryland, Virginia, and maybe further away to get them. I'm always confused about the paperwork and how it works. In this case I'm not sure how the DC registration process fits together with the requirements for receiving a gun through a FFL.