INGunOwners FAQs (sticky)



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Mar 13, 2008
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Other contributions to the FAQ + Answers to help pull this together would be much appreciated. :)
Please note them in this thread:

This is obviously a "living document." ;) I broke out the questions into "categories" and made them separate posts for easier reference. I hope this helps. Please don't hesitate to poke me if something needs to move or another category should be added, and *definitely* correct me if I'm completely (or even partially) wrong about something.

Where can I find a list of INGO's forum rules?

Table of Contents for this thread:
About the LTCH (License to Carry a Handgun):

About Carrying Your Handgun:

About Guns (in General):

About Women & Guns:

About Shooting with Other People:

About INGO:

About Getting Training:

About the INGO FAQ:

About Gun Shows:

About INGO Reputation Points:

About shipping a firearm:

All About NFA (also known, incorrectly, as Class III):

Obtaining your own Federal Firearms License (FFL):

Or you might read the excellent PDF files that Kludge put together for his classes. You can find them all together here:

And just in case that didn't answer your questions:
You may just want to post a link to [The ISP Firearms FAQs]. It answers a lot of the questions I've been asked.

You might try that.

Or you might try this:
snojet said:
I thought this would help the community as a whole. I've read through many posts and some questions that people are asking are answered in this link that is provided below.

Recently I got this information in a printed form from the Carmel Police department when I applied and had an interview with the police chief for my LTCH permit.

Or you might start a new thread in the appropriate forum and see what happens. :)
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About the LTCH (License to Carry a Handgun)

This thread actually covers a wide range of questions about the LTCH in general (except how to apply for it):

How do I apply for my LTCH?

Of note, it's often said that you go to whichever local law enforcement agency would respond if you called 911. It should go without saying, but just in case, please do not test this by calling that number! Look in the front of your phone book if you're not sure. Call the NON-EMERGENCY number for your local police department or sheriff's office and ask them to verify for you whether it would be their department or another that would respond to your home.

What's the difference between an LTCH and a CCW?
LTCH is a License to Carry Handgun. Concealed or open is not specified. The type of weapon is specified. This is the type of license/permit that Indiana offers to its residents. CCW is a Concealed Carry Weapon (permit). Concealed is specified. The type of weapon is not specified (although it is usually restricted to certain types). Indiana does NOT offer this type of license/permit.

What the heck IS an LTCH?
LTCH is a License to Carry Handgun. All the cool kids call it a "Larry" (License to cARRY). This is the type of license/permit that Indiana offers to its residents. It is ONLY legal to carry a handgun if you have a valid LTCH, with very few exceptions to that rule in either direction. Also, note that it's a license to carry a handgun. It's not an authorization for any other type of weapon.

Two things to note:
1) If you do not have an LTCH, you can still buy a handgun and transport it in your or someone else’s vehicle that you are lawfully present in (no carjacking, now…;)). The gun must be unloaded, not readily accessible, and in a secure wrapper (such as, but not necessarily, a locked, hard-shelled case).
2) You can now transport your handgun to your favorite range without an LTCH, if the gun is in a secure wrapper, unloaded, and not readily accessible.
These things have changed as of July 1, 2011. You will probably see old references all over INGO to having to have the LTCH to transport a handgun. If the post was made before that date, those references were probably correct at the time they were made, but are now outdated.
For further reference, note this Indiana Code, amended and effective July 1, 2011: Indiana Code 35-47-2

IC 35-47-2-1
Carrying a handgun without a license or by person convicted of domestic battery
Sec. 1. (a) Except as provided in subsections (b) and (c) and section 2 of this chapter, a person shall not carry a handgun in any vehicle or on or about the person's body without being licensed under this chapter to carry a handgun.
(b) Except as provided in subsection (c), a person may carry a handgun without being licensed under this chapter to carry a handgun if:
(1) the person carries the handgun on or about the person's body in or on property that is owned, leased, rented, or otherwise legally controlled by the person;
(2) the person carries the handgun on or about the person's body while lawfully present in or on property that is owned, leased, rented, or otherwise legally controlled by another person, if the person:
(A) has the consent of the owner, renter, lessor, or person who legally controls the property to have the handgun on the premises;
(B) is attending a firearms-related event on the property, including a gun show, firearms expo, gun owner's club or convention, hunting club, shooting club, or training course; or
(C) the person is on the property to receive firearms related services, including the repair, maintenance, or modification of a firearm;
(3) the person carries the handgun in a vehicle that is owned, leased, rented, or otherwise legally controlled by the person, if the handgun is:
(A) unloaded;
(B) not readily accessible; and
(C) secured in a case;
(4) the person carries the handgun while lawfully present in a vehicle that is owned, leased, rented, or otherwise legally controlled by another person, if the handgun is:
(A) unloaded;
(B) not readily accessible; and
(C) secured in a case; or
(5) the person carries the handgun:
(A) at a shooting range (as defined in IC 14-22-31.5-3);
(B) while attending a firearms instructional course; or
(C) while engaged in a legal hunting activity.

(c) Unless the person's right to possess a firearm has been restored under IC 35-47-4-7, a person who has been convicted of domestic battery under IC 35-42-2-1.3 may not possess or carry a handgun.

(d) This section may be not construed:
(1) to prohibit a person who owns, leases, rents, or otherwise legally controls private property from regulating or prohibiting the possession of firearms on the private property;
(2) to allow a person to adopt or enforce an ordinance, resolution, policy, or rule that:
(A) prohibits; or
(B) has the effect of prohibiting;
an employee of the person from possessing a firearm or ammunition that is locked in the trunk of the employee's vehicle, kept in the glove compartment of the employee's locked vehicle, or stored out of plain sight in the employee's locked vehicle, unless the person's adoption or enforcement of the ordinance, resolution, policy, or rule is allowed under IC 34-28-7-2(b); or
(3) to allow a person to adopt or enforce a law, statute, ordinance, resolution, policy, or rule that allows a person to possess or transport a firearm or ammunition if the person is prohibited from possessing or transporting the firearm or ammunition by state or federal law.

IC 35-47-2-2
Excepted persons

Sec. 2. Section 1 of this chapter does not apply to:
(1) marshals;
(2) sheriffs;
(3) the commissioner of the department of correction or persons authorized by the commissioner in writing to carry firearms;
(4) judicial officers;
(5) law enforcement officers;
(6) members of the armed forces of the United States or of the national guard or organized reserves while they are on duty;
(7) regularly enrolled members of any organization duly authorized to purchase or receive such weapons from the United States or from this state who are at or are going to or from their place of assembly or target practice;
(8) employees of the United States duly authorized to carry handguns;
(9) employees of express companies when engaged in company business; or
(10) any person engaged in the business of manufacturing, repairing, or dealing in firearms or the agent or representative of any such person having in the person’s possession, using, or carrying a handgun in the usual or ordinary course of that business.

OK, so wait a second. I'm getting corrected when I call it a permit. What's the difference between that and a license?
Honestly? No real difference. In states that call it a permit and in states that call it a license, you have to get permission from the state to be allowed to lawfully exercise your right to keep and bear arms off of your own property. In Indiana, the technically-legal name is a License To Carry Handgun, or LTCH. In all cases, it is a restriction on (or an infringement of) your Constitutional (and more importantly, Natural) rights. If you have to ask permission, it's not a right. The states of Alaska, Arizona, and Wyoming have all removed the necessity of having a permission slip, and the state of Vermont never had one to begin with. Interestingly enough, all of those states' firearm crime rates seem to be low. Constitutional Carry seems to be a good thing: Let's all lobby our legislators to pass it and eliminate this silly nonsense.

How long does it take to get an LTCH?
As of May 2010, we're hearing reports of people receiving them in as little as 1 week (using the L-1 process and applying online). If you're stuck going into your local PD and doing everything manually, it's still a several week process. As of July 2010, the manual wait time appears to be about 12 weeks.

Indiana State Police Firearms Licensing Section: 317-232-8264

What is this L-1 process?
L-1 Identity Solutions is a third-party contracted by the State to perform the fingerprinting and background check. It's available in all counties and the only choice available in some. Combined with submitting your LTCH application online (in the available counties), this greatly speeds the process of receiving your pretty pink piece of paper.
Home - L-1 Identity Solutions

Should I get the Lifetime or the 4-year? Personal Protection or Target/Hunting?
Lifetime Personal Protection. Yes, it costs more to get the Lifetime rather than the 4-Year, but Indiana is currently the only state that offers it, and it saves you the hassle of having to remember to renew your license every four years. Go ahead and get the Personal Protection license rather than the Target/Hunting license. This gives you the option to carry it should you ever decide you want to, and on the off chance you "forget" to take it out of your car and somehow managed to get pulled over, your Personal Protection license clearly covers you. This is also a strong reason why your Significant Other and anyone else who may be driving your vehicles (children..?) should have a LTCH also.

Of note: While the Lifetime LTCH is usually recommended, those of you who are not IN residents the 4 year is the only one you can have. Also, the cost breaks even after what, three renewals? So if you don't plan on being here more than 12 years, perhaps the 4 year would be better.

When can I renew my current license?
Within 365 days of your current license's expiration date and not before.

Can I convert my current 4-year license to a Lifetime license?
Sorry, Charlie. You should have gotten the Lifetime when you had the chance. You'll have to wait until your current license is within the 365-day renewal period noted above before you can renew and choose the Lifetime option.

My license expired two months ago, but I reapplied for a new license yesterday. Can I still carry my gun?
No. If the application for renewal of an existing license is filed within thirty (30) days of its expiration, the existing license is automatically extended until the application for renewal is passed upon. You'll need to carry your application receipt along with your license until the renewal arrives. If you reapply after the license expired, (even if it's within 30 days), even the receipt does not allow you to carry legally. You must wait until your new license arrives.

Some tips once your LTCH arrives:
In this order:
1) Make copies. If you can, scan it and save it to your computer.
2) Store the original in your safe.
3) Sign each of your copies.
4) Laminate each of your copies.
5) Have one EVERYWHERE.
One of our members, Printcraft, is offering free LTCH lamination to members of INGO:

So am I really allowed to make a copy of my LTCH?
Technically... No. But you still may find this thread interesting. INGO member Cordex actually ASKED the people who should know!

Oops. I didn't make a copy of my LTCH, and I've managed to lose the one I have. Can I get a replacement?
Yes. You just need to request a duplicate from the ISP. At this time, it's a $20 replacement fee. When you get it, make copies.

What happens if I move?
You need to inform the Indiana State Police within 60 days of your address change. They won't send you a new license with your new address unless you also pay $20 for a new copy. Your old license will still be valid, provided you've notified the ISP of your address change. Here's a link to the form:

Or call the Indiana State Police Firearms Licensing Section at 317-232-8264.
Also, INGO member Dwight called and spoke with Megan at the above number in re: his daughter living at college and keeping her address of record at his home. He was told that as long as she can receive mail there, she can list it as her address.

How will I know that my address has been updated?
You won't. The ISP just updates their database. They will not notify you that they have done so, but you are free to call the Firearms Licensing Section to verify your address on file. You might as well just go ahead and spend the $20 on a new license at the time you update your address so you'll not only get a freshly-minted license (with your new address), but it will also serve as your notification that they've updated their records.

What happens to my Lifetime LTCH if I move out of state?
INGO member CountryBoy19 called the ISP and asked them. There are special provisions for military deployment as their residency may still technically be in Indiana, but for civilians, you notify the ISP of your new address and your license will be "deactivated". If you move back to Indiana, you can have it "re-activated" without going through the licensing process again.

Not to invalidate the call CountryBoy19 made, but more recent info suggests that you just notify ISP of the change in address. No change invalidity, as such is not provided for in the Indiana Code. Member Chezuki mentioned some Lifetime LTCHs that are valid without state addresses. They just can't be originally issued to someone who is not a resident.

I heard that the lifetime LTCH won't be available anymore. Is this true?
NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO. Doing away with the lifetime license would involve introducing and passing legislation to change the law. Currently, there are no bills in the State Legislature to amend the existing law. Whoever told you that it's going away doesn't know what they're talking about.

When can I renew my four-year LTCH to a Lifetime?

According to Indiana Code, one year before expiration.
IC 35-47-2-6
Granting or rejecting initial application; renewals
Sec. 6. (a) Every initial application for any license under this chapter shall be granted or rejected within sixty (60) days after the application is filed.
(b) The period during which an application for the renewal of an existing license may be filed begins three hundred sixty-five (365) days before the expiration of the existing license. If the application for renewal of an existing license is filed within thirty (30) days of its expiration, the existing license is automatically extended until the application for renewal is passed upon.
As added by P.L.311-1983, SEC.32. Amended by P.L.190-2006, SEC.4; P.L.47-2010, SEC.2.

Someone should create a list of pertinent Indiana Codes that I can carry around in my wallet in case Something Bad happens!
Interesting you should mention that...

If an LEO runs my driver's license(DL), my LTCH status shows up, too, right?
[strike]From numerous LEOs: Your DL information is not in any way tied in the BMV database to your LTCH. An officer running your license will not automatically be told of your carry status. There is a separate state-level database in which they can look to verify (but will probably have dispatch do it for them) and many counties and cities have a RMS (Records Management System) into which they input that information when you make an application in their county for your LTCH. That latter means that if you make an application in Brown County and begin carrying, then you get pulled over afterward for a traffic stop, if you're in Brown County, the officer might be aware of it, but if you're in Marion County or any of the other 90 counties in the state, they would not, without going to that specific state-level database.[/strike]
*UPDATE 11/2011 - Rumor has it that this has changed. Some officers are now reporting that the LTCH database is now tied directly into the Indiana Data and Communications System (IDACS, the state-wide law enforcement computer system) and will appear when they run any inquiry by driver's license number, or name and DOB.
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About Carrying Your Handgun


I have a handgun. What do I carry it in?
A holster. I recommend Raven Concealment Systems :)
Although, there are a plethora of threads on this topic, asked and answered by people much less biased than me:

Where am I allowed to carry in Indiana?
Assuming you have your LTCH...not schools (including churches with preschools), not most Federal property. Yes, you can carry it in most state parks.

A more specific list of where you can NOT carry:
  • k-12 schools, property used for school functions
  • school buses
  • Head Start
  • preschools
  • private schools
  • riverboat casinos
  • airport sterile areas
  • shipping ports
  • State fairgrounds during State Fair
  • Post office (questionable, as it may not actually be Federal property)
  • Where prohibited by local ordinance, on gov't property
(Of note, as of July 1, 2011, those local ordinances are mostly voided. You can be prohibited from carrying in any building with a courtroom and no residential or business tenants. You cannot be prohibited from carrying in a state, county, or city government building unless it either has a courtroom or is school property, as long as you have your LTCH.

Some of these are not mandated by state statute but are delegated. For example, there is no actual law prohibiting carry on riverboat casinos. However, there are laws delegating the authority to the Indiana Gaming Commission to define their own administrative rules. The IGC has significant "teeth" to enforce their administrative rules, including providing for criminal prosecution.

I can't find the Indiana Code that prohibits carry in casinos or at the State Fair. I think you're full of it and you'll be hearing from my mom about this!

Settle down, there, Buckaroo. The authority to regulate firearms on their property is delegated by the IC. This authority is spelled out in the Indiana Administrative Code for the relevant body. Here is the IAC for carry during the State Fair, along with the IC granting the authority to regulate:
80 IAC 4-4-4
Deadly weapons prohibited
Authority: IC 15-13-2-9
Affected: IC 15-13-2; IC 15-13-7

Sec. 4. (a) This rule does not apply to a federal, state, or local law enforcement officer or to a person who has been employed
or authorized by the state fair commission to provide security protection and services during the annual state fair.
(b) No person in possession of a deadly weapon shall be permitted onto or be permitted to remain on the fairgrounds during
the annual state fair.
(c) Any deadly weapon found in the possession of a person while on the fairgrounds during the annual state fair is subject to
immediate confiscation by law enforcement officers or other persons authorized by the executive director of the state fair commission.
(d) Any person properly licensed to carry a firearm must secure the firearm in a locked compartment of his or her vehicle, and
it shall not be visible to passersby. (State Fair Commission; 80 IAC 4-4-4; filed Jul 7, 2003, 3:15 p.m.: 26 IR 3538; readopted filed
Oct 4, 2007, 10:29 a.m.: 20071024-IR-080070451RFA)
And the IAC for Riverboat Casinos (specifically riverboat casinos, but generally assumed to apply to ALL casinos in Indiana):
68 IAC 1-7-1
Weapons on the riverboat
Authority: IC 4-33-4-1; IC 4-33-4-2; IC 4-33-4-3
Affected: IC 4-33-8; IC 35-41-1-17

Sec. 1. (a) The following definitions apply throughout this rule:
(1) "Federal enforcement officer" has the meaning set forth in 5 U.S.C. 8331 or IC 35-41-1-17, or both.
(2) "Law enforcement officer" has the meaning set forth in IC 35-41-1-17.
(3) "Security personnel" means an employee of the riverboat licensee or a supplier licensee who:
(A) holds the appropriate level of occupational license under IC 4-33-8 and 68 IAC 2-3; and
(B) is employed in the riverboat licensee's security department or by a supplier licensee that contractually provides
security services to a riverboat licensee.
(b) No individual other than an enforcement agent shall carry a weapon on board the riverboat. A law enforcement officer or
a federal enforcement officer:
(1) whose sole purpose for being on the riverboat is the performance of official duties; and
(2) who has advised the enforcement agent or the commission that the officer will be on board the riverboat;
shall be allowed to carry a weapon on board the riverboat.
(c) The riverboat licensee shall post a sign in a prominent place at the point of passenger ingress stating, "No weapons are
allowed beyond this point. Failure to comply with this rule may result in the immediate removal from the riverboat, immediate
detention by security personnel, the imposition of civil penalties, or exclusion under IC 4-33.".
(d) The riverboat licensee shall provide a secure place to which patrons do not have access to store weapons checked by:
(1) patrons;
(2) off duty law enforcement officers; or
(3) off duty federal enforcement officers.
(e) Security personnel may carry a weapon on board the riverboat during times that patrons are not present. (Indiana Gaming
Commission; 68 IAC 1-7-1; filed Jun 23, 1995, 2:30 p.m.: 18 IR 2649; readopted filed Oct 15, 2001, 4:34 p.m.: 25 IR 898; filed Dec
18, 2006, 1:16 p.m.: 20070117-IR-068060190FRA; readopted filed Sep 14, 2007, 1:40 p.m.: 20071003-IR-068070354RFA)
The list above doesn't mention bars. Does that mean I can carry in a bar? Am I allowed to have a drink while carrying?

Yes, there is no law that prohibits carrying while in a bar or while drinking. However, it is STRONGLY recommended that if you choose to carry in these situations that you absolutely know your limits. If you're a lightweight like me, leave it at home, leave it in the car, or bring an armed friend with you. If you know your reason does not leave you when you have a drink or six, then by all means, continue to carry and continue to respond with the understanding that pulling out your firearm is a last resort (as it should be when sober). Just be aware that if you are in a situation where you need to use your firearm after you have consumed alcohol, the alcohol consumption will likely go in the police report. While a clean, justified shoot may save you in a criminal case, the alcohol may go against you in a civil case.

Please use your head when making this decision.

OK, wait. Up there it said something about schools. What about colleges and universities? Is it illegal to carry there?
The moderator team at INGO does not consist of any lawyers. With that fact in mind, we do have some basic concept of the English language and most of us have a fair command of its use. As such, this seems to be the relevant and applicable law. Colleges and Universities do not seem to fit the criteria of a "school":

IC 35-47-9-2
Possession of firearms on school property, at school function, or on school bus; felony

Sec. 2. A person who possesses a firearm:
(1) in or on school property;
(2) in or on property that is being used by a school for a school function; or
(3) on a school bus;
commits a Class D felony.

IC 35-41-1-24.7
"School property" defined

Sec. 24.7. "School property" means the following:
(1) A building or other structure owned or rented by:
(A) a school corporation;
(B) an entity that is required to be licensed under IC 12-17.2 or IC 31-27;
(C) a private school that is not supported and maintained by funds realized from the imposition of a tax on property, income, or sales; or
(D) a federal, state, local, or nonprofit program or service operated to serve, assist, or otherwise benefit children who are at least three (3) years of age and not yet enrolled in kindergarten, including the following:
(i) A Head Start program under 42 U.S.C. 9831 et seq.
(ii) A special education preschool program.
(iii) A developmental child care program for preschool children.
(2) The grounds adjacent to and owned or rented in common with a building or other structure described in subdivision (1).

IC 20-18-2-16
"School corporation"

Sec. 16. (a) "School corporation", for purposes of this title (except IC 20-20-33, IC 20-26-1 through IC 20-26-5, IC 20-26-7, IC 20-30-8, and IC 20-43), means a public school corporation established by Indiana law. The term includes a:
(1) school city;
(2) school town;
(3) school township;
(4) consolidated school corporation;
(5) metropolitan school district;
(6) township school corporation;
(7) county school corporation;
(8) united school corporation; or
(9) community school corporation.
(b) "School corporation", for purposes of IC 20-26-1 through IC 20-26-5 and IC 20-26-7, has the meaning set forth in IC 20-26-2-4.
(c) "School corporation", for purposes of IC 20-20-33 and IC 20-30-8, includes a charter school (as defined in IC 20-24-1-4).
(d) "School corporation", for purposes of IC 20-43, has the meaning set forth in IC 20-43-1-23.
Colleges and universities do not seem to meet the criteria to be called "school property" according to the IC.
Also, if you will be/would like to carry on a college/university campus, there is an excellent organization trying to spread the word about carrying on campuses across the nation: Students for Concealed Carry on Campus -

Some states require that an LEO be informed if the LEO and a lawfully-carrying citizen have contact related to the officer's job. What about Indiana?
Indiana law does not require this. The ISP FAQ advises that you should inform the officer and many officers do likewise. The converse opinion of that is that in the absence of a legal duty to inform, your lawfully-carried firearm is legally identical to, say, an extra key for your car in your pocket. It's an item you have on you that you hope not to have to use. If you don't inform the officer about the extra key, why would you inform him about a firearm that is no threat to him? It's none of his business and is just one more thing he has to worry about. Let him concentrate on the reason for the stop, be polite, and wish him a good day when you part. (Note that if the officer asks you specifically if there are any weapons in the car, lying is a violation of the law.)

So what if I don't have my properly issued and valid LTCH with me and I get stopped?
Fortunately, the law provides for this situation.

IC 35-47-2-24
Indictment or information; defendant's burden to prove exemption or license; arrest, effect of production of valid license, or establishment of exemption

Sec. 24. (a) In an information or indictment brought for the enforcement of any provision of this chapter, it is not necessary to negate any exemption specified under this chapter, or to allege the absence of a license required under this chapter. The burden of proof is on the defendant to prove that he is exempt under section 2 of this chapter, or that he has a license as required under this chapter.
(b) Whenever a person who has been arrested or charged with a violation of section 1 of this chapter presents a valid license to the prosecuting attorney or establishes that he is exempt under section 2 of this chapter, any prosecution for a violation of section 1 of this chapter shall be dismissed immediately, and all records of an arrest or proceedings following arrest shall be destroyed immediately.
Note that you will probably still be arrested (although that is not a certainty), and if so, having your arrest record expunged is subject to all of the fun of a typical over-sized bureaucracy. In other words, it may take a while. Possibly years.

There was an amusing bit of poetry posted by one of our members. It’s no longer completely true, but it was amusing enough to leave in the FAQ:

Originally Posted by jsharmon7
You cannot transport it out to Pop's,
You'll be arrested by the cops.

You cannot transport it in a box,
Nor can you do it using locks.

You cannot transport it all in pieces,
Asking of this question never ceases.

You cannot carry it 'round the bend,
Nevermind what says your friend.

You cannot carry it when unloaded,
Your freedom will be eroded.

You cannot transport it in your trunk,
If you're caught you will be sunk.

If this desire you cannot sate,
The thing to do is simply wait!

What states have reciprocity with Indiana?

I'm not an Indiana resident. Is my CCW/LTCH (resident or non-resident) permit valid in Indiana?
Indiana recognizes licenses from any state or foreign country as long as the holder is not an Indiana resident. Indiana residents must have an Indiana LTCH.

I'm moving to Indiana. How do I "establish residency"? (In other words, what act will make my permit from elsewhere no longer valid?)

IC 9-13-2-78
Indiana resident
Sec. 78. "Indiana resident" refers to a person who is one (1) of the following:
(1) A person who has been living in Indiana for at least one hundred eighty-three (183) days during a calendar year and who has a legal residence in another state. However, the term does not include a person who has been living in Indiana for any of the following purposes:
(A) Attending a postsecondary educational institution.​
(B) Serving on active duty in the armed forces of the United States.​
(2) A person who is living in Indiana if the person has no other legal residence.

(3) A person who is registered to vote in Indiana.

(4) A person who has a child enrolled in an elementary or a secondary school located in Indiana.

(5) A person who has more than one-half (1/2) of the person's gross income (as defined in Section 61 of the Internal Revenue Code) derived from sources in Indiana using the provisions applicable to determining the source of adjusted gross income that are set forth in IC 6-3-2-2. However, a person who is considered a resident under this subdivision is not a resident if the person proves by a preponderance of the evidence that the person is not a resident under subdivisions (1) through (4).

(6) A person who:
(A) is enrolled as a student of a truck driver training school;​
(B) has legal residence in another state but is living in Indiana temporarily for the express purpose of taking a course of study from the truck driver training school; and​
(C) intends to return to the person's state of residence upon completion of the course of study of the truck driver training school.​
How do I transport a gun across Illinois (or any other State where my Indiana License is not recognized)?
The Federal Peaceable Journey Statute allows you to transport a handgun through intervening states provided you may legally do so at both the start and end of your journey. For example, you can legally pass through Illinois on your way to Iowa provided you are legal in both Indiana and Iowa. It's been said that anywhere you actually stop (gas, food, etc.) may be considered your "destination," although others have said small stops such as gas and food are still considered "traveling through." That said, Illinois is hostile to gun owners and you may not be able to assert your rights under the statute until after you've been arrested and charged, especially in the Chicago area. Here is the relevant statute:

Code of Federal Regulations

Title 18 > Part I > Chapter 44 > § 926a

§ 926A. Interstate transportation of firearms
Release date: 20050803
Notwithstanding any other provision of any law or any rule or regulation of a State or any
political subdivision thereof, any person who is not otherwise prohibited by this chapter from
transporting, shipping, or receiving a firearm shall be entitled to transport a firearm for any
lawful purpose from any place where he may lawfully possess and carry such firearm to any
other place where he may lawfully possess and carry such firearm if, during such transportation
the firearm is unloaded, and neither the firearm nor any ammunition being transported is readily
accessible or is directly accessible from the passenger compartment of such transporting vehicle:
Provided, That in the case of a vehicle without a compartment separate from the driver’s
compartment the firearm or ammunition shall be contained in a locked container other than the
glove compartment or console.​

As always, laws are subject to change, so please seek competent legal advice before your journey.

But what if I'm going TO Illinois, not just passing through? Since Illinois is my destination, the Federal Peaceable Journey Statute doesn't really apply, does it?
It's actually not as complicated as you think. Lock the firearm in a secure container, completely unloaded, but the ammunition CAN be in the same container (even loaded in a magazine... just don't have the mag loaded in the firearm!).

Melensdad did some great explaining in this thread here:

Concealed or open carry?
Yes. The Indiana LTCH does not specify whether a gun must be carried openly or concealed, therefore either manner is acceptable and is entirely your personal preference. There are many schools of thought on this, but either way is legal.

There are certain areas west of Indianapolis where officials will tell you it is illegal to carry openly, but that is absolutely not true.

Can a LEO really stop me (as a pedestrian) just to check my LTCH if they see my gun? They can't stop a car and check the driver's license status!

Yes, they can stop you to check your LTCH. The carry of a handgun in IN is a criminal act. Having a LTCH or other recognized, similar-in-purpose document is a defense against that charge. Driving a car without a license is also a criminal act, however, the US Supreme Court ruled in Delaware v. Prouse that stopping a vehicle solely to check the driver's license is unconstitutional. No such ruling has been made specific to the carry of firearms.

(The INGO mod team is not giving legal advice here, just advising of a relevant fact. For legal advice, please contact an attorney licensed to practice in Indiana or whatever state you may happen to be in while reading this.)
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Mar 13, 2008
Next to Lars
About Guns (in General)

Where do I register my guns?

You don't. There is no Indiana state or federal law that requires you to register any of your guns, with the exception of NFA items. If you can legally carry a firearm, chances are pretty good you can legally own a firearm. When you purchase a handgun from an FFL holder (several private citizens as well as every gun shop), you will have to fill out a form and pass a NICS check, which essentially checks to make sure you have no felonies or history of mental illness. If you purchase your firearm from a private individual without an FFL, this is considered an FTF (face-to-face) transaction, and legally requires no paperwork, although many insist it is prudent to give and/or receive a bill of sale (BoS) when doing this sort of transaction. You are no longer required to have a License To Carry Handgun(LTCH) to transport your handgun to the range to practice, however, if you do not, the handgun must be unloaded, cased, and not readily accessible while you are en route to the range to comply with the law.

Which is better? Glock, SIG, or HK? (All other manufacturers need not apply.)
SIG. But I'm biased. Actually, if you go based on the popularity of carrying, it's Glock of the 19 variety. /sigh

What is an NFA item?
Anything that is covered by the National Firearms Act of 1934, such as machine guns, suppressors (aka "silencers"), short-barreled rifles, etc.

So about this Assault Weapon Ban...
Bringing up the AWB of 1994 is a bit of a hot topic around here, especially in light of the current political climate. You'll find dozens of posts where the AWB was brought up and ranted about for pages and pages and pages. Just to give you a taste, here's a thread where a new member brought it up just to "light a fire" so he could make an informed decision in voting for the presidential race.

What is the best ammo to carry?
The kind that fits in your gun without blowing up your gun.
On calibers specifically:

I was denied on my Form 4473 NICS check, but I haven't done anything to make me ineligible! Now, what do I do?
When buying from a dealer as an Indiana resident, you will fill out BATFE Form 4473, which is the National Instant Check System. This is the form that the BATFE will use to do your instant background check to ensure that you are eligible to purchase a firearm. The dealer will provide this form and can answer any questions you have about filling it out.

Once you've completed the form, the dealer will call it in and receive either a "Pass", "Fail", or "Delay". If you pass, you can leave with your firearm as soon as you complete your transaction. If you receive a "Delay", the dealer must sit on the transaction until the BATFE returns a "Pass" or "Fail". If the dealer does not get a response from NICS within 3 business days, he may transfer the firearm on the fourth business day, not counting the day on which the transaction was initiated (many will deny you the sale without an official "Pass", though). That is if the transaction is initiated on Monday the 1st and you are delayed, NICS has until Thursday the 4th to give a result. If they do not, the dealer may transfer the firearm on Friday the 5th. Note that NICS does not count Saturdays, Sundays, or holidays as "business days," even though the gun shop may be open, and NICS may call back with a result on those days. Delays happen for many reasons and you should not be alarmed if you receive one. If your 4473 comes back "Fail" and you know that you have nothing in your history that precludes you from owning a firearm, you may submit a Voluntary Appeals Form (VAF) and receive a Unique Personal Identification Number (UPIN). This UPIN may be put on future Form 4473's to prevent any confusion or delays.

Here is the form for the VAF:

Also, here are a couple of other useful links from our forums:

Can I sell/purchase a gun out of state?
Handguns through an FFL only. Long guns may or may not be legal, depending on in which state you’re purchasing (at a FFL dealer, that is.) The state in which you’re buying must also allow sales to residents of states that don’t border them. IN law on this point changed on July 1, 2011 (SEA 94, 2011)

Can I buy a handgun without having a valid LTCH?
Yes. An LTCH is not required to purchase a handgun or a long gun either from a dealer or in a private sale. However, there are tight restrictions on transporting without a license. Please see the rest of this FAQ for more information.

Where is a good gun shop?
There are lots of great gun shops all over the state. We even have a few that are Advertising Supporters right here on INGO! Support the shops that support your forum! There are many threads discussing each store. Check this sub-forum for reviews:

Where is a range close to me?

Oh, NO! Some scumbag stole my gun! Can INGO help get it back?
Well, you obviously need to report the theft to your local law enforcement agency, but we have a way to alert your fellow INGO members of the theft so that they can be on the lookout for it. PM a moderator with all of the information and it will be posted to the Official Firearm Theft Report Thread.

So I'm doing this paper for school about "gun control"/the Second Amendment/etc.
Great! Welcome to INGO! We get students asking questions quite often, hence the addition of this to the FAQ. INGO is a great reference site, but unfortunately, with some exceptions, our members' opinions are not necessarily what teachers and professors think of as "authoritative". One site that we often see recommended for good, researched statistics and facts is The author of the site states in his introduction: said:
All sources cited in this work are accurate to the best of my research. I use the most recent data I can easily find. If any more recent data is available (even if it weakens my arguments), I welcome receiving the same.
We're happy to help, though, with opinions and points of view. We also like seeing the papers when you're done writing them, but of course we strongly discourage plagiarism. As your teacher or professor has no doubt told you, if you quote it, cite it.
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Mar 13, 2008
Next to Lars
About Women and Guns


My [wife/sister/daughter/girlfriend/mom] [is afraid of/hates/won't talk about] guns. What do I do?
Don't expect a reasonable or quick turn to a firearms fanatic. It takes time, often in the category of "years," definitely not overnight. Ask her why she's afraid of guns. Show her yours if she's willing. Talk about why it's important to learn to defend yourself. This is really a very long discussion, but essentially, go slow, keep talking, don't push. Take an interest in something she enjoys to reciprocate.

My [female] [needs/wants] her own gun. What should I get her?
Ask her. It needs to be her decision, not yours, and not the shopkeepers. Help her make an informed decision, but it needs to be her decision in the end. And remember: a .22 in the pocket is better than a .45 in the safe.

Help! My wife just joined INGO!
Oddly enough, it does occasionally happen. In some cases, the wife actually joins BEFORE the husband. In either case, when the spouse joins the forum, it is necessary for the husband to celebrate with the purchase of a new firearm for the wife (even if the wife joined first), just so she'll have something to discuss on the forum. Just trust us. It will make your life easier.

I'm not married, but I've seen wimmins before. They're scary, but they know..."curvy bits"...and...stuff, and they look like people I'd like to get to know a LOT better. Can you help me get a date? might try coming out to an INGO event or ten. And take a shower first. Maybe put on some clean clothes. Seriously, pull yourself together, man, you've got Cheetohs in your hair.
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Mar 13, 2008
Next to Lars
About Shooting With Other People


How do I get involved in USPSA?
Quick answer... PM rhino or obijohn.

How do I get involved in IDPA?
Quick answer... PM rhino or obijohn.

International Defensive Pistol Association

How do I get involved in an Appleseed shoot?
The Appleseed Project

What other shooting sports are there?
Check out the Shooting Sports section of the forum to learn more about shooting steel (MCFG has Friday Night Steel matches pretty regularly), skeet, trap, and bowling pin shoots!
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Mar 13, 2008
Next to Lars
About INGO


Where can I find a list of INGO's forum rules?

Why do I have to have 50 "quality" posts to be able to send a PM to a member or to post in the Classifieds section of the forum? What is a "quality" post anyway?

This is really two separate questions, but they frequently get asked together, so it's a little easier to answer them together.

For the first question: the short answer is "to reduce spam." We created this forum to be a community of firearms enthusiasts in the state of Indiana. It is first and foremost a place where like-minded people can get together and chat about a topic that is relevant to them and that they are passionate about - firearms (of all types). We added the Classifieds section as a perk to our contributing members so that individuals could buy, sell or trade items (not necessarily firearms related) within the Indiana firearms community.

We do not intend for the Classifieds section to become another "Craigslist" or "eBay" for guns. We're also not interested in boosting our membership numbers with people who are here to grab a deal out of the Classifieds and then vanish forever (something that happens all too frequently). We require 50 "quality" posts because many of our members do not like to do business, especially in regards to firearms, with people they do not know. Posting in other places in the forums can give members an idea of what kind of person you are (in general). You do not have to necessarily post about firearms. You can spend all of your time posting on the silly threads in the Break Room. The idea is to show us a little bit of your personality. You don't have to give us your life history. A small blood sample will suffice. ;)

As far as the "quality" of your posts goes, we just want to see something more than a "one-liner" in response to a thread. In some contexts, a "one-liner" is appropriate. For example, if the topic is "What do you carry?" a response of "G19, 3:00" is entirely acceptable. However, 50 "Thanks for the info!" posts may not be construed positively when you yourself are brand new to the forum and then you subsequently head straight to the Classifieds section. In other words, we would like to see a post that actually contributes to the thread and not something that just takes up space.

You will find that once you get past the initial water-testing phase, INGO actually has a very welcoming community around here. In fact, one of our members created a whole thread giving a proper welcome for our new members:
Be sure to check it out!

In short, the idea is to encourage you to participate and contribute to making INGO a great site.

Please remember that INGO is a discussion forum with a classifieds section, not a classifieds with a forum. Our members like it that way and we intend to keep it that way.

INYooper said:
Actually, for some people it might be easier to avoid the "50 quality posts" rule by:

  • invest in bulletin board software
  • invest in computers, routers, servers, etc
  • invest time learning about how all the software and hardware work
  • invest time putting everything together
  • invest time reconfiguring everything when it doesn't work the first time
  • put the word out that you've got this fantastic gun forum and that everything is free to anyone who would like to post anything
  • discover the concept of online anarchy after you realize your forum has no guidelines ...or FAQ :dunno:
  • come back to INGO and realize that having a "50 post rule" really isn't so bad after all
I may be missing a few steps, but ...that's the general idea, I imagine. :D

And, if you'd really rather read than write (nothing wrong with lurking), consider that the average gun magazine (the kind on the news stand, not the kind you load your gun with ;)) runs somewhere around $4-5 or so, and consider that you probably buy at least a few of them a year ...springing $15-20 a year for something you can read every day that offers:

  • direct access to several firearms, knife, training, and related equipment retailers
  • personal and professional reviews of firearms and related gear
  • updates, trends, and general discussions on issues concerning Indiana firearms laws and policies
  • all manner of topics that aren't necessarily firearms related (though, categorized nicely in there appropriate forums).
  • announcements and discussions of regional happenings, opportunities, meet & shoots (and eats), etc.
  • the opportunity to participate in NFA Day!
  • posts on all things bacon!
  • at least a dozen or two other things
  • ...and, even, classifieds!
Really, if that ain't a deal, I don't know what is! :dunno:
Couple guys at work told me they had a decent classified section, far better than armslist at least. If they would have told me from the beginning that you have to have at least 50 posts, I probably would have never showed up. Glad I did though, INGO is addictive.
I joined for the intent of using the classified section but because of the 50 post rule, I am much more informed about the gun that I actually want to buy (which is different than when I joined), my 2nd amendment rights, holster options, and more. I for one am thankful for the 50 post rule. :ingo:
I am still working on my 50 posts. Actually kind of glad that it's set up this way. If not I would not have started reading all of the posts I have and would not have found out how much info is on this site. It's been great reading some of the other members stories, tips, and legal info. Stick around and keep reading. Promise you won't be sorry....I know I'm not.
not gonna lie i came for the classifieds and have stayed around much longer for TONS of helpful info. :ingo:
On a lighter note, read this thread and watch the videos in the OP!

Here's another great thread in case you missed in it the book above:

Your "50 post rule" is stupid! You're losing out on a sale because you jerks won't let me into your classifieds! You bunch of elitist idiots! (Yes, this is really how the angry PM generally reads)
Yeah, yeah, yeah. They all say that until they've got their 50 posts and then suddenly the rule makes perfect sense. Look, if you just can't deal with the fact that we aren't interested in trading with you when you're not a member in good standing, then we recommend trying Armslist, Gunbroker, or Hoosiertopics. Clearly, INGO isn't for you. Furthermore, you're obviously under the misapprehension that INGO gets a cut of all sales, which just isn't true. We're not a gun shop. Even if it were true, it still wouldn't change the rule.

50 posts?! REALLY?! You've gotta be kidding me. There's a gun I want to buy RIGHT NOW, not in three weeks! That'll take FOREVER! NO ONE talks that much! Certainly not me. I just like to read!
Recently, Fenway has decided to offer a way around the 50 post requirement, and that is to become a Site Supporter. His feeling is that becoming a supporter will give you a vested interest in helping the site and reduce the likelihood that you will spam the board. See this link for more info:

When you say we need 50 posts to participate in the Classifieds, what does that mean exactly? I can still buy from people even though I don't have 50 posts yet, right? That's not really participating because you mean I just can't sell in the Classifieds, right?
There's a reason we chose the word "participate."
We didn't say you have to have 50 posts to sell in the Classifieds section.
We didn't say you have to have 50 posts to trade in the Classifieds section.
We didn't say you have to have 50 posts to buy in the Classifieds section.

You have to have 50 posts to participate in the Classifieds section. said:
to take part, be or become actively involved, or share
This includes participation by PM. Many INGOers follow the spirit of this rule and won't buy from or sell to you if you have fewer than 50 quality posts and are not a Site Supporter.

How about if I "private message" one of the moderators to contact another member for me to complete a sale before I have 50 posts?
Seriously? You're going to ask the staff to help you bypass our own rules that we're charged with enforcing? Yeah, that's going to happen. And yes, we get asked to do this often enough that it warranted a FAQ entry. You should go back and read the previous entry because you're clearly not getting the point.

What ARE the Classified Rules, anyway? :dunno:
I'm glad you asked! You can read all about posting in our classified sections right here:

I paid to be a Site Supporter but still can't get into the classifieds!
When you signed up for Site Supporter status using the automated tool in your UserCP, there was a prominent notice that read as follows:
If you are donating to bypass the 50-post Classified restriction, please PM Que after becoming a Supporter to let him know as additional work will need to be done to allow you into the Classifieds.

Do I need to post pictures in my Classified ad?
classifieds (by members) on INGO require a picture of the item being sold/traded. Ads that do not contain a picture will be removed.
WTB ads do not require a picture.
INGO ADVERTISERS are exempt from this rule.

I can't figure out how to post pictures!
That's not a question, but I'll try to help anyway. The picture uploading feature on INGO is currently disabled to save bandwidth. You must host pictures offsite for the time being. Please see this thread for a handy tutorial on using a couple of different free picture hosting sites:

Sooo... Since I can't post in the Classifieds yet, can I discuss politics on INGO?
So far, yes. Please keep discussions civil and leave out the personal attacks. This site is for ALL Indiana Gun Owners, from all walks of life and political beliefs. So far, political discussions (when they have remained specifically about politics) haven't caused too much tension here, and some really interesting and stimulating debate has occurred because of it.

What about politics that involve race? Or just racial discussion in general?
Big Fat No on this one. Discussions that involve race (ANY race: black, white, Native American, Indonesian, Purple, whatever) have become WAY too heated and involved WAY too many personal attacks, causing some very good members to leave the site and never look back (and not necessarily because *they* were the ones offended). In short, racial discussions of any kind are a big no-no.

How about religion? Can we talk about that?
Again, a big, resounding NO. And let me be painstakingly clear on this one: ANY discussion of religion will NOT be tolerated. At all. None. If it even hints at being religious in ANY way, the thread will be closed and/or deleted. It is VERY possible MANY infractions will be handed out. In many instances, it is cause for a ban from the site, which may or may not be permanent. Right now, we are being VERY black and white on this. There is NO GREY AREA. This is unfortunate, because, like politics, religion has stirred up some very thought-provoking discussions. However, it has also stirred the pot WAY too many times and until everyone can become civil again, Religion Must Not Be Discussed. Even then, it's unlikely to come back. Just. Don't. Do. It.

So I can't discuss what I want to? You guys (or sometimes, "Your rules") suck!

We hear that every once in a while. You're certainly welcome to your opinion. Feel free to find a place where you can discuss what you want to, but while you're here, we must insist that you follow our rules- they apply to everyone, and yes, that includes you. Yes, you.

If you're looking for other places that might have different rules where you can still discuss firearms and their ownership specifically created for gun owners in Indiana, other boards can be found by searching Google. We're happy to see the other options and wish them good fortune, though promoting other boards here is discouraged unless they choose to be Advertising Supporters, just like any other business.

So, about this copyright thing... Can I quote even a sentence from another source?
Right now, because of many lawsuits that are going on in the blogosphere, we are requiring that no further content from any off-site source be quoted on INGO unless you can prove immediately without a doubt that you own the copyright or have permission to reprint the material. We don't care if you're a copyright lawyer and you "know better". We don't care if you think you own the material because it's "in the public domain". It's our butts on the line, not yours, and so the point is not up for argument or discussion. If it wasn't personally written by you, then don't post it. If you're looking for a loophole, then you're missing the point. If you're not sure if it's OK to post, PM a mod and ask. If they say "no" and you post it anyway...well, it was nice knowing you.

Rather than put any of our members, the staff, or the site at risk, we would just rather not have quoted material at all. You may still link most other sites. It is STRONGLY recommended that you also include a brief sentence or three about why you feel our members should read the linked article to provide a start for discussion. We are not a news aggregate. We are a site for Indiana Gun Owners to learn more about guns, laws, and training, as well as other subjects pertinent to the average Indiana Gun Owner.

What happened to my post? Why was it deleted/edited/moved? Don't you believe in the First Amendment as much as the Second?
This question comes up from time to time. The short answer is that of course, we support the First Amendment, but the First Amendment doesn't apply here. Think of it this way: You got invited to a party at someone's house. If you are disruptive or obnoxious, you may be asked to settle down or leave the party. INGO is owned and operated on Fenway's dime and is presented to you 100% free of charge. He has asked that certain topics not be discussed here and that a certain level of civility is maintained. He has charged the moderators with maintaining those rules. In a sense, this is Fenway's house and Fenway's party. This does not mean that you have to agree with everything everyone else says. You just have to follow the rules. Be polite. Don't be disruptive. Don't bring up banned subjects (especially this, as it's hard to run a website when your server has been subpoenaed).

Eric (Glocktalk's maintainer) put it succinctly in a post on GT not too long ago. It applies to message boards in general:
It is an enormously complicated balancing act to keep such a large melting pot of personalities and cultures and ideologies and religions as we have represented in the members here coexisting in anything close to harmony. In order for any society to work, individuals are going to have to conform to a minimum set of standards that the whole society can live with, in order for that society to endure. Anarchy as a societal model does not work. Ask any of the message board communities that have sprung up and were dedicated to having zero rules, many of which were created by people who were pi**ed off at how I run this site. Only, you can't ask any of them, because none of them are still around.
As long as you behave and follow the rules, we'll all be happy. The moderator's job is to ensure that the rules are followed to maintain the integrity of the site. Occasionally that means we need to delete or edit posts. If you can't deal with that, then you shouldn't be on INGO. Asking about the policies is perfectly fine, but if you're just going to complain about it, then please keep it to yourself. We've heard all the complaints and insults (Nazi mods!) before and we don't want to keep hearing them. They haven't changed the board policy yet, they won't in the future, and it'll just lead to you getting banned for being disruptive.

Here is a post from Fenway that might help shed some light on his philosophy and vision for INGO and what he's trying to accomplish:

How do I become a Site Supporter?

Who is in charge of this place anyway?

How do you identify an INGO member out in the "real world"?
They talk in purple. Or, they might have an INGO bumper sticker on their cars. Or they might be wearing a super cool INGO hat or t-shirt. Or they might have a bright yellow INGO chamber flag hanging out somewhere (like in their daughter's Barbie trucks). But don't you DARE call them out on it. Be sure to make the sacred peace offering first: offer them bacon.

So when is the next INGO Get Together?
That depends on when you organize it! :D

Keep your eyes peeled for random shoots hosted by Moderators, Site Supporters, and other members! You never know when someone might be looking for a range buddy or six. :) Many members are now organizing monthly breakfasts and dinners to get to know the other members in your area. Hamilton County, Johnson County, NWI Indiana, Bloomington, and Evansville all have strong groups that meet frequently. Check out the INGO Events forum for the next great event!

Where can I get one of those super cool INGO hats?
Weren't you paying attention? We just mentioned it. Go up one line. Sheesh.

What does [insert favorite acronym here] mean?
Some popular ones:
FTF = Face to Face, or Failure to Feed/Fire, depending on the subject
INGO = Indiana Gun Owners website
IANAL = I am not a lawyer
SHTF = Stuff Hits the Fan (hey, it's a PG13 site, ok?)
WTS/WTB/WTT = Want to Sell/Buy/Trade
NIB = New in Box
AAR=After Action Review (a report of what happened)
NSFW/NSFK=Not Safe For Work/Not Safe For Kids (language, violence, sexual situations. Be forewarned)
EDC: Every Day Carry (the gun/knife/flashlight(s) you carry with you every day)

When a group of INGOers gets together, what am I supposed to call it?
The preferred nomenclature is "A baconing of INGOers". Also, please note for the official record that Pami is neither "old" nor "a fart".

At the bottom of the home page it says Active Users, (Members, Guests, and Spiders). What is a Spider?:dunno:
In this case, a Spider is an automated program that traverses the mysterious interwebs in search of pertinent information that goes into a fancy algorithm to make YOUR words show up in search engines like Google, Yahoo, etc. In other words, the spiders are indexing the pages of INGO so that we show up when someone searches for things like "gun laws Indiana" or "Glock 19 for sale Indiana" or "bacon." (Ok, so *maybe* INGO isn't on the first page of results for "bacon." But we should be!!!!)

INGO needs a live chat!
No matter how many times you request it, the answer will always be NO. We've tried it and it's The Suck. Occasionally, a member will start a channel offsite and it will run for a couple of days and then close down. It's generally interesting while it's up. Keep your eyes peeled for threads about it as it comes and goes.

What is a Shill Account?
A shill account is any account you have created after your first initial registration. It is often used by those who have been banned. It is also used to impersonate other individuals or falsely represent one’s self. These accounts will be banned permanently and your initial username may be temporarily banned.

I already have an account. May I create a new one? (Sometimes called a Shill Account)
No, you may not. You are allowed one and only one account. If you have created an account and are unhappy with the username, please send a PM to the moderator(s). Please include why you want it to be changed and what you want it to be changed to. The more information you can provide, the better we will be able to assist you. Name changes are not guaranteed and are taken on a case-by-case basis, so please be thorough in your request.

What happens if I create another account?
The new one you create will be banned permanently. Your original username may receive a temporary ban as well.

I have two accounts but am only using one. What should I do?
Please inform a moderator and we'll close the account you're not using. If you are caught with two accounts without informing the staff, the newest one will be closed. If you let us know ahead of time we're a lot more likely to be lenient with your remaining account.

May I have my membership canceled/account deleted?
We do not cancel memberships or delete accounts. If you do not want to use your account anymore, please just stop using it.

Where is _________?
If you're looking for a specific member, go to the member list and search by their name (that is, if you're looking for, say, Fenway, look under F.) If that person's name is no longer there, it means either that they've requested and received a name change or that they've been banned. Alternatively, you can use "search" to try to find some post of theirs. If under their name is the title "Shooter", they are banned. In some cases, it is possible that the ban is temporary (as in a few days, generally). In others, it is not.
Member banning is not up for debate, discussion, or appeal.

May I have my name changed?
Username change requests are approved on a per user basis. If you are granted a name change, you will receive one and only one. Please send a PM to the moderator(s). Please include why you want it to be changed and what you want it to be changed to. The more information you can provide, the better we will be able to help you. If you are rejected, you will receive an email from one of the moderators. Please do not yell at this moderator. They are just doing their job. You may calmly ask them why it was rejected but being nice will get you a lot further than being rude.
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Rating - 100%
1   0   0
Mar 13, 2008
Next to Lars
Getting Training

Training is important as it is a key element of responsible gun ownership. Train early and often, especially if you choose to carry your firearm as a self-defense weapon. Learning how you react to stressful situations should not learned as "on the job" training. Learn how you will react BEFORE you need to react.

Why should I get formal training?

It's great that you have decades of experience with your firearms. It's awesome that your Marine-trained dad taught you everything you know. But, have you ever had to USE that informal training in a real-life scenario? Do you KNOW without a doubt how you will react in a real-life situation?

During some down-time in a personal training session I had recently, my trainer related a few stories to me about some force-on-force classes he had taught in the past.

One gentleman, he trained found out that he stops listening when put into a stressful situation. His focus was so completely on what was going on in front of him that he stopped listening to what was going on behind him. Even if an instructor was standing right beside his ear, this student didn't hear the instructor. This is bad because (as an example) if the police do come on to the scene and shout for you to drop your gun, you need to drop your gun. This gentleman learned that because his ability to hear evaporated during stress, he needed to work on extending his other senses like being more aware of his peripheral vision to acknowledge the lights of police vehicles or noticing additional BGs coming up behind him.

Do you really KNOW how you will react when under stress? As many of your actions as possible need to be trained and practiced so they become second nature. If your gun fails, you need to automatically tap-rack-bang. If the bang part doesn't happen, drop the mag and put a new one in without thinking about it. Get back in the fight. Move while you're clearing your malfunction. Quality training will provide you with instructors who generally have spent years learning about and teaching the most effective techniques to keep you in the fight if you can't defuse the situation. Being in an actual fight is not the best time to find out what your weaknesses are. Get training frequently and practice often.

I've taken training where the class members ranged from complete newbies (usually me) to people who have been shooting for years but have had no formal training to people who have had over 600 hours of formal instruction. Every single time, every single person has taken at least one thing away from the class and found it worth every penny he (or she) paid for the class. Even if you take away what not to do in a situation, you learned something.

Where do I get training?
Check out the Tactics & Training forum. There are a lot of options as far as training goes: some are good and others are not so good. If you are completely new to guns, or even new to just handguns or just long guns, it is strongly recommended that you at least check out an NRA Basic class. From there you can move on to use-specific types of training, such as defensive pistol training by Tactical Response, TDI, Gunsite, etc. Some schools offer training on shooting sports in addition to their defensive courses, like our own ACT. For someone new to shooting long guns, the Appleseed program is an excellent source of training as well. There are a lot of options for just about everything; take advantage of as many opportunities as you can! A single well-placed round is a lot more effective than a magazine of rounds that miss.

A couple of links to some training companies we've discussed in threads on this forum (in no particular order)

Indy Gun Safety
Adaptive Consulting & Training
Tactical Response
Gunsite- NRA firearms training pistol carbine rifle
Tactical Defense Institute
Defense Training International, Inc.
Front Sight Firearms Training Institute
Realistic and Practical Firearms Training

Just remember when looking for a company to train with that what you take away from the class depends most on the open mind you take to it. Even the same course offered by the same instructor at the same range by the same company may give you something different just based on how receptive you were to the material and/or how your classmates received the material. Not all classmates are the same; not all instructors are the same; not all courses are the same; and not every company is the same! :)

Should training be required to own a firearm?
There are a lot of opinions on this. Some die-hard gun enthusiasts will say that some form of training should be required in order to receive a license to carry or to purchase a firearm. Others who are training junkies themselves will say that requiring training is just a crutch: those who understand the importance of training would seek it out anyway, and those who take the training solely because it's required won't get anything out of the required training anyway. That is something that you will have to decide for yourself, but here is a couple of threads where we have discussed it before:

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Next to Lars

Why doesn't INGO have a FAQ with questions that seem to be asked often around here?

Amazingly enough, INGO does actually have a FAQ. It was officially stickied in January 2009, and is periodically updated by the Moderators of this forum. As soon as we can remember where we put it, we'll post a link.

Where can I find a link to the INGO FAQ?
Most Moderators actually have a link to the FAQ in their signatures. Just find a post by a Moderator and click the link!

Or, if you can't seem to find a post by a Moderator, you might try actually clicking the big green FAQ button on the far right of the button links at the top of every single page. On that page, click the super-sized, bolded link that says, "The Official INGO FAQ (START HERE FIRST!!!)." Once you click through to the next page, click the super-sized, bolded link at the top of the page that states, "Click here for the INGO FAQ!"

I know that seems really complicated, but the FAQ button at the top of every single page simply goes to the standard vBulletin forum FAQ, which has absolutely nothing to do with this particular INGO forum.

When someone asks a question, why do people direct them to the FAQ, rather than just answer them?
This is the primary reason for having a FAQ, or "Frequently Asked Question" list in the first place, because the questions are asked frequently and the answers are typed out in more detail than someone might remember on his or her own. In addition, the usual follow-up questions are also answered in close proximity and it just saves everyone's time to allow for more talking about guns. Of course, some people consider it rude to do this and we're aware of that fact. Quite simply, we know that we can please some of the people some of the time and we can please some (others) of the people none of the time. That latter group is welcome to their opinions. The fact that we disagree with them does not seem to dissuade them in the least from repeating those opinions both vociferously and incessantly. ;)

I couldn't find the answer to a commonly asked question in the FAQ. Can I submit a request for it to be added?
Of course you can! Just go to this thread (CLICK HERE) and submit your request. Actually posting an answer and relevant links to threads about your question will get the question/answer added a lot faster!

Oh, and just in case you actually did NOT find the answer to your question (about INGO, anyway), check out this thread for answers (and a whole lot of mod-lovin's). If the question wasn't answered in the FAQ already, I think this thread covers it.
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Gun Shows

When is the next Indy 1500?

How much does it cost to get in?
Parking is usually $5 and admission is $10. If you sign up for their mailing list, you'll get a postcard in the mail a week before the next show for a dollar off admission.

Which building is it in?
The 1500 generally alternates between the South Pavilion and the West Pavilion. Check their website for more info. Frankly, it's not hard to figure it out once you get down there.

Will INGO have a table at the next 1500?
Yes. We're usually set up with Bryan Ciyou's table (the Indiana Firearms Reference Manual folks) along the wall at the end of the rows. Come with cash -- Fenway will have hats and patches and various other INGO swag for sale! :) We're not usually set up at the smaller regional shows, though.

Will there be any cool INGO swag?
Maybe. Definitely possibly. Fenway usually tries to have some nifties for sale, but they won't always be announced ahead of time. Also, don't expect the same things as the previous show. If you missed out on that cool t-shirt or patch at the last show, you might not have another chance. Get it while you can.

Can I carry my self-defense gun into a gun show?
Virtually all gun shows require you to unload all guns PRIOR to entering the show. Unload outside and then present your guns with the action open to the people manning the tables inside the entrance. They will zip-tie them for you. Be sure you do not present them noisy-end first as people don't generally like having a gun pointed at them, unloaded or otherwise! Note that "unloaded" is usually taken to mean that the magazine is empty of rounds, too.

At the Indy 1500, the zip tie will be a different color from the vendor zip ties. They serve as a sort of receipt to show that the gun is yours upon exiting the facility.

Can I carry any other gun into a gun show?
Yes. Many people bring their guns to the shows to sell or trade. See the part above regarding zip-tying.

How do I go about selling or trading my gun at a gun show?
Again, making sure to get your gun zip-tied is a requirement. Many people like to make a sign and either pin it to their back, or tape it to a dowel to insert in the barrel (in the case of a long gun).

Indiana Statute requires that the person you sell a handgun to in a face-to-face transaction must be 18 years old and an Indiana resident. Furthermore, you may not sell a gun to a person prohibited from owning one. Since you have no way of performing a background check, you may prefer to have an FFL broker trade for you and perform a NICS check. Otherwise, many people ask to see a driver's license to verify residency and age, and an LTCH to make at least a token effort to verify if the buyer is a "proper person". If the buyer resides in another state, the sale must go through an FFL. The FFL will have full details about the requirements and procedures. You should also plan to write out a receipt for the sale. Have two copies, one for you and one for the buyer. He may need it to get out of the building with his new purchase, and you may need it for your records.

In general, face-to-face sales can happen inside or outside the show. Most gun shows have a sign asking you not to sell in front of the door as it usually blocks traffic.

Will there be food at the show?
I've never been to a gun show yet that didn't serve food of some kind. In general, the food is concession-stand prices (and quality....) Be prepared to pay for it, both with your wallet and your digestion.

What's the best way to make a good deal?
Cash is king! Dealers who see you walk up with cash in hand (not credit cards) will be far more likely to cut you a deal. Remember, if you don't buy it, they have to haul it back to their shop on Sunday. Don't be afraid to haggle, but don't be a jerk about it either. Some dealers don't bargain.

Take along a small notebook. Note the price and location when you find an item you're interested in. Ask if the price is good all day or if it goes up when you walk away from the table. If you decide to continue to shop, you'll be able to find your way back to the table later on.

(Psst! Some dealers are INGO advertising supporters and will cut you a special INGO deal if you ask them about it...;))

I don't have my LTCH yet. If I buy a gun at the show, can I take it home?
The answer used to be “yes, but only if you go straight home.” As of July 1, 2011, the law changed, and now, as long as the handgun is unloaded, in a “secure wrapper”, and not readily accessible (and you’re not otherwise prohibited from possessing a firearm), the answer is a simple, “yes”.
See the previous sections of this FAQ for more information.

Of course, long guns don't require a license at all, so you're good to go either way for that.
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Shipping a Firearm

This FAQ is currently under construction and may not be complete or accurate. Please see the following thread for discussion regarding this FAQ:

The term "firearm" in the context of this FAQ refers to the serialized portion (such as the frame or receiver). By "serialized" and "un-serialized", we mean the part that's considered a "gun", not just any part that happens to have a serial number. In other words, whatever part would require a Form 4473 if you were to purchase it from an FFL. Everything else can be considered "machine parts" or whatever other nomenclature you prefer. As with the rest of this FAQ, this is not legal advice, we are not lawyers, etc.

  • What must I do to ship a pistol or a rifle to another Indiana resident?
Rifles may be shipped via USPS. Pistols may not be shipped via USPS, but must be shipped via Common Carrier (e.g. UPS, FedEx, etc.). In either case, an FFL is not required to be involved in this process. For USPS, Priority Mail with Delivery Confirmation is recommended but not required. You may also select "Signature Required" and purchase insurance as well if you like.
  • What must I do to ship a pistol or a rifle to a resident of another state?
Same as above, but the destination must be an FFL in that resident's home state. Note that you can ship to yourself in another state without having an FFL involved.
  • What must I do to ship a pistol or a rifle to an FFL (such as back to the manufacturer, or to an FFL in another state)?
You may ship directly to an FFL, following the rules as above.
  • Do these rules cover a whole gun? What if I want to ship just the serialized receiver? How about just the un-serialized frame/barrel/stock/etc.?
If you're just shipping a receiver, the rules above apply. If you're just shipping, say, an un-serialized barrel, it ships like any other package.
  • Must ammunition follow the rules listed above, or are there special provisions?
Loaded Ammunition:

Best advice: ship ammo UPS. You can NOT send ammo USPS. Must be declared by DOT regulations. The shipping carton will get a sticker. You can not ship ammo larger than .50 caliber or 8 Gauge.

Shipping powder and primers:

Incurs a HazMat fee (~$24 for up to 50 pounds); powder and primers can be mixed.

Shipping brass cases, bullets, or other non-hazardous components:

Brass cases and bullets are not regulated. For bullets, a flat rate box @ USPS with an adequate inner pack is the cheapest route.
  • Can I ship anything gun-related via USPS?
Yes. You may ship rifles via USPS either in-state or out-of-state. You may also ship parts.
  • What is a "common carrier" and which ones can I use?
A common carrier is a shipper other than the USPS. UPS and FedEx are the two used most often. They will both ship firearms. UPS and FedEx both require you to use Overnight Delivery for firearms shipments. Note that you are required to declare that you are shipping a firearm when shipping via Common Carrier.
  • Which one is the best/cheapest/easiest to work with?
  • Do all "satellite" offices accept firearms or must I ship them through a "hub" office?
Satellite offices are often privately-owned (e.g. Mailboxes Etc., The UPS Store, and so on). They are not required to ship your firearm but many of them will with no issues.
  • How can I find out which satellite offices will accept my firearm?
The easiest way is to call them or stop by. Some people have reported that it can vary even from employee to employee. It's best to ask the store manager or owner directly. Try to get his/her name if possible in case the counter clerk disagrees.
  • About how much can I expect to pay to ship my firearm?
  1. For USPS, a small Priority package (such as for just a receiver) with delivery confirmation is around $10, depending on weight. A full-length rifle will be more expensive. If you use the USPS-provided boxes, it can be cheaper.
  2. For UPS/FedEx, Overnight delivery can be in the $50-$100 range. If you are shipping to the manufacturer for warranty service, try to get them to send you a shipping label so it's on their dime and not yours.
Tips and tricks:
  • Package but do not seal the package. You will need to declare that you are shipping a firearm and the shipper has the right to inspect the contents. You may wish to disassemble it or field-strip it to make it evident that it's unloaded without having to handle it.
  • Do not put anything on the outside of the package that indicates the contents. Package as discreetly as possible, including abbreviating the addressee: e.g. "S&W" instead of "Smith & Wesson". Do not allow the shipper to place any stickers or notes on the outside of the package indicating the contents.
  • The ATF FAQ regarding shipping firearms has additional information: ATF Online - Firearms - Frequently Asked Questions - Unlicensed Persons
  • FFLs may ship pistols via USPS. If you have a good relationship with your local FFL, it may be cheaper to do a standard transfer through him and have him ship it via USPS for you. Otherwise, you may have to pay $100+ to ship 2nd-Day via common carrier.
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All About NFA

What is NFA?

NFA refers to the National Firearms Act of 1934, and covers regulation of items such as full-auto machine guns, suppressors (silencers), short-barreled rifles, etc.

Which NFA items are legal in Indiana?

MG's, or Machine guns, are legal.
SBS's, or Short Barreled Shotguns, are legal.
SBR's, or Short Barreled Rifles, are legal.
Suppressors, or silencers, are legal.
DD's, or Destructive Devices, are legal, though explosive DD's are not legal.
AOW's, or Any Other Weapons, are legal.
SBS's, or Short Barreled Shotguns, are not legal.

How do I acquire NFA items?
There is no blanket "license" to own NFA items for non-dealer individuals. For each item that you want to purchase, you must pay the Federal Government a one-time $200 transfer tax. This happens when you go to transfer a machine gun or suppressor or any other NFA item from a dealer, or if in-state, an individual. You submit the application for transfer (in duplicate) along with $200 to the NFA division of the BATFE and upon approval, you can take possession of your item. Along with your submission of the appropriate transfer form, you must also submit a Citizenship Certification, a set of your fingerprints (taken by a qualifying agency, and in duplicate) and the transfer form must be signed by your Chief Local Law Enforcement Officer. It sounds complicated, but rest assured that it is not. In most jurisdictions in Indiana, obtaining the CLEO sign-off is as easy as walking into the police station and asking to see the Chief/Sheriff, however there is a more formalized process in Indianapolis that takes more on the order of a couple weeks to complete.

What, exactly, is the $200.00 that is paid to the ATF? Is it a tax on the purchase of the item? Is it a transfer fee? Or is it a license fee?
The $200 (or $5, in the case of an AOW) is a tax on the transfer of Title II firearms, in the case of transfer (Form 4 used to apply for transfers)

Or, it is a tax on the manufacturing of Title II firearms, if you're making one (Form 1 used to apply for making)

If it's a tax on the transfer or manufacturing then why doesn't a dealer have to pay it on each item?
The dealer has opted to pay the tax as a "Special Occupations Tax" (or SOT). This means he is in the business of dealing with these items, has the proper manufacturing or dealer's FFLs and he is permitted to pay an annual tax to transfer or manufacture as many Title II firearms as he would like.

Do I have to pay the tax every year?
No. It's a one-time tax paid at the time of transfer (or construction).

What exactly is a Machine gun?
Sounds like a dumb question, but it is not.

Section 5845(b) of the NFA defines “machine gun” as
“any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot,
automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the
trigger. The term shall also include the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any part
designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and
intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machine gun, and any combination of
parts from which a machine gun can be assembled
This means that the part that causes an otherwise semi-auto firearm to become a machine gun is itself the 'machine gun'. The popular examples of this being the Drop In Auto Sear and the Lightning Link for the AR series of rifles. These items by themselves are just hunks of metal, but by definition, they are a machine gun because of what they are designed to do. The nuts and bolts of it are that if you pull the trigger one time and more than one round goes off, you have yourself a machine gun.

While machine guns are legal to own, only machine guns manufactured and registered before May 19, 1986 are legal. Every machine gun that is legal for a non-dealer person to possess was manufactured 20+ years ago. This is why the price is so high. What there is is all there is. There can never be any new ones. Nope, not even if you build your own (see below).

But I see new machine guns on Youtube all the time!
Well, obviously machine guns can still be built or our military and police would not have any, they just cannot be owned by private individuals. The new ones you see are either post-1986-ban dealer samples (or "post samples") owned by SOTs or they are owned by individuals outside the jurisdiction of the United States. No machine gun built after 1986 is transferable to a private citizen.

What exactly is a Short-Barreled Rifle (SBR)?
By definition a short barreled rifle, or SBR, is a rifle (which is defined as a shoulder-fired, rifled bore firearm) with a barrel length of less than 16", or an overall length of less than 26". In measuring barrel length you do it from the closed breech to the muzzle. On a folding stock weapon you measure with the stock extended, provided the stock is not readily detachable, and the weapon is meant to be fired from the shoulder. The rules are pretty cut-and-dry as to the definition of a SBR. If the overall length with stock is less than 26" you have an SBR. If the barrel itself is less than 16" you have an SBR. You can still buy or manufacture SBR's. You can buy one by filing a Form 4 or you can make one yourself by filing a Form 1 (we'll get to that later).

What is a Suppressor (silencer)?
18 U.S.C. 921(a)(24)
The terms “firearm silencer” and “firearm muffler” mean any device for silencing,
muffling, or diminishing the report of a portable firearm, including any combination
of parts, designed or redesigned, and intended for use in assembling or fabricating
a firearm silencer or firearm muffler, and any part intended only for use in such
assembly or fabrication.​
Pretty specific here. If it makes your gun quieter, it is a silencer. At least one report that I have seen lists the reason for adding them to the NFA was for fear of poaching during the depression years, not for fear of them being used in other street crime. There is no "cutoff date" for legal suppressors. Suppressors are still being manufactured, and you can own a brand-spankin'-new one if you wish. In fact, suppressor technology is still evolving and there are units out there that are very efficient (read: quiet).

What is a Destructive Device?
A destructive device (DD) can be two basic categories of things. It can be an explosive, incendiary or poison gas weapon, like a bomb or grenade. It can also be a firearm with a bore over 1/2" with exceptions for sporting shotguns, among other things. I call the second category large bore destructive devices. As a general rule only this second category is commercially available. Some obvious items I can think of are 37mm and 40mm launchers, and the Striker-12 & Streetsweeper shotguns. This category does contain some of the most subjective language in the NFA. The Striker-12 and Streetsweepers were ruled to be DD's and thus part of the NFA not because of any measurable characteristic, but because they were "declared" not to be suitable for any sporting purpose. The Strikers were banned from importation and the ones already owned were ordered to be registered (tax free at the time) or destroyed. The language used in the definition of a DD in the United States Code says: Destructive device.--The term "destructive device" means * * * any type of weapon by whatever name known which will, or which may be readily converted to, expel a projectile by the action of an explosive or other propellant, the barrel or barrels of which have a bore of more than one-half inch in diameter, except a shotgun or shotgun shell which the Secretary or his delegate finds is generally recognized as particularly suitable for sporting purposes; ..." This is where subjectivity comes into play. If the Sec. doesn't like it, then it is no longer a shotgun, but a DD.

What is a Short Barreled Shotgun?
Let's examine the definition first. A Short Barreled Shotgun, or SBS, is defined as any shotgun (which is defined as a shoulder fired (read "has a stock" this is important), smooth bore firearm) with a barrel of less than 18"or an overall length of less than 26", or any weapon made from a shotgun falling into the same length parameters. There is always some confusion as to whether a weapon is a SBS or an Any Other Weapon (AOW). We'll get to that later, but if your weapon has a smooth bore, a shoulder stock, and has a barrel less than 18" or an overall length of less than 26", then you have an SBS, and those are not legal in Indiana.

What is an Any Other Weapon (AOW)?
Any other weapons (AOW's) are a number of things; smooth bore pistols, any pistol with more than one grip, gadget type guns (cane gun, pen gun) and shoulder fired weapons with both rifled and smooth bore barrels between 12inches and 18inches, that must be manually reloaded. This category always causes some confusion. I'll provide some examples to try and clarify things. A weapon is an AOW and not an SBS if the weapon never had any kind of stock attached. If a virgin (shotgun) receiver was delivered without a stock, has a barrel length of less than 18inches and registered with the NFA, then it is an AOW. As soon as you ad a stock, it becomes a SBS. This is a bad thing, because the AOW's transfer with only a $5 tax. Uncle sam will want his $195 if you want to put a shoulder stock on. You cannot go from an AOW to an SBS without re-registering. You can, however, remove a stock from a registered SBS and put a pistol-grip on without penalty, it's still an SBS. The important part is how the receiver started it's life.**I'll add more info to this one as time permits.**

Because I own NFA items, Can ATF search my home?
No they cannot. Individuals who legally own NFA items are NOT subject to random inspections from ATF. This is a huge misconception of the NFA laws. Agents from ATF cannot conduct any sort of checks of your premises without a warrant. This, of course, does not apply to licensed dealers, however.

Which form do I need to use?
There are many forms to be used when dealing in firearms. NFA owners need be familiar with only five. They are Forms 1,3,4 & 5, as well as the Declaration of Citizenship.

  • Form 1: A Form 1 is an application to make and register a firearm. If you wanted to, for example, make your AR15 into a Short Barreled Rifle, you would need to file a Form 1. Even though your AR15 is already a complete rifle, you are "making" it into an NFA item, thus the application to "make and register" it. Any time you "make" an existing firearm into an NFA firearm, you would use this form. Form 1's require a $200 tax.
  • Form 3: A Form 3 is a dealer-to-dealer transfer of an NFA firearm. Lets say I wanted to buy a suppressor from a dealer in another state. I would have to get that dealer to transfer the suppressor to a dealer in my state before I could have it transferred to me. Form 3's usually get processed in a matter of days or a week, not nearly as long as transfers to non-dealer individuals. Form 3's do not require any tax be paid.

  • Form 4: A Form 4 is an application for tax-paid transfer of a firearm. When you go to buy an NFA item, whether it be from a dealer or an individual in your state, you use a Form 4. If you go to your local dealer and decide you want to buy a suppressor, you must first file a Form 4 in order to have that suppressor transferred from your dealer to you. Form 4's require a $200 tax for all NFA items, except AOW's. If the item being transferred is an AOW, the tax is $5.
  • Form 5: A Form 5 is an application for tax-exempt transfer of a firearm. Form 5's are most commonly used to will a firearm upon the death of the owner. If your Grandfather passes-on and leaves you his Thompson SMG, you must file a Form 5 before you can take possession of the firearm. Form 5's do not require any tax be paid.
  • Declaration of Citizenship: This is a form that certifies you as an American citizen or otherwise legally allowed to be in the country. Officially called the Certification of Compliance with 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(5)(B), ATF form 5330.20

I don't know how to get started with my first NFA item. Where do I start?

See this thread for a first-time NFA buyer's experience, detailing the entire process from start to finish, of buying a suppressor.

Can I build my own suppressor, SBR, machine gun, etc.?

In most cases, the answer is Yes, provided you submit the proper Form 1 to the ATF for approval PRIOR TO CONSTRUCTION. Machine guns, on the other hand, are a No Go. No new (civilian-ownable) machine guns may be produced after May 19, 1986, thanks to the Hughes Amendment to the Firearm Owners Protection Act. The details of the process for approving and building your own NFA are outside the scope of this FAQ.
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I wanna get my FFL so I can buy guns cheap!

From this thread:

I'm tired of going to gun stores and I want my own FFL so that I can have guns shipped direct to my house and pay wholesale costs. How do I get my FFL?

(Quoting from the thread linked above): This topic comes up quite frequently and as an individual who, up until December 2010, had their (01) FFL and ran my business out of my home let me see if I can shed some light onto the subject and help as many people out as I can.

Things To Think about:

First and foremost there are a few things one must think about prior to making the decision to move forward with the FFL application. These things include but are not limited to:
Why do you want/need an FFL?
  • Many folks have the idea (myself included in the beginning) that with an FFL you’ll be able to purchase firearms for yourself at a significant discount over what you could purchase them for in a big box store (GM) or even a firearms shop (name your favorite one). The reality, however, is that your savings are only around 1% - 2%. Why? There is a multitude of reasons for this:
  • Many firearms distributors will not work with non-stocking dealers or dealers without a store-front (these two factors need to be proven to the distributors in order to become a customer of theirs.
  • Those distributors that you can work with will not provide you the same discount (based upon the volume that you're purchasing) that they will for stocking dealers and dealers that they’ve worked with for many years. (i.e. your dealer price is closer to street prices than the big box stores or local firearms shops
  • Most distributors do flat rate shipping no matter how many firearms you’re purchasing and most ship overnight or two-day which costs more. So now you must add your already higher dealer price with the shipping price and you’re nearly at the street price for the firearm.
  • NOT ALL FIREARMS ARE AVAILABLE... As a non-stocking dealer and one that doesn't place a significant number of orders, you will not be high on the priority list for what is called RESERVED, which means that there are very few and they are being held for high priority customers only and as such it is hard to actually get your hands on one. (example right now would be the new Kimber 9mm, Sig P238, etc)
  • Many folks think that they also get away without paying sales tax but this is also a myth. Dealers who decide to take inventory out for their own personal use pay use-tax which, in the state of Indiana, is 7%. This means once again that you’re paying virtually the same as if you purchased the firearm from your local shop or online.
  • I will no longer have to pay FFL fees for firearms that I have transferred in and it’s convenient because they can ship them directly to me.
  • Although this may be convenient, remember that you’re still paying a use tax (or you should be) on each of these firearms as they are being taken out of your inventory for your personal use. In addition, this cannot be your only reason for opening a firearms business (i.e. FFL) as the BATFE requires certification that you are applying with the intent of making a profit. In other words, actually running a business and not just to enhance your own collection.
Running a business out of your home:
  • Another aspect that many don’t think about is the fact that they are running a firearms business out of their home and the implications that result from doing this.
  • First and foremost, the county/township zoning board must approve of such a business within your home/development, etc. (As of July 1, 2011, IN law no longer allows discrimination by type of business. If they’d allow a bicycle repair shop in your garage, they have to allow you to have a gun-related business also. Ref: SEA 292, 2011)
  • You MUST have hours of operation! This is on the FFL application and must be filled out. These hours of operation are used by the BATFE in order to make surprise visits to your business (i.e. home) in order to check on your documentation and business practices.
  • This is a business and if you’re in it to make a profit (BATFE requirement) then you will have customers coming to your place of business (i.e. Home) whom you do not know in order to purchase firearms/accessories who could potentially be denied/declined by the FBI background check and become disgruntled.
  • If you advertise your business at all, there is now a general awareness that new, unused firearms exist within your place of business (i.e home) and there may be a greater risk of theft and home invasion (especially when you’re not there – on vacation etc)
  • Although not required by the BATFE, the installation of both a video surveillance system and additional firearms safes should be taken into consideration and added to your start-up budget

Running of a Business
  • Many folks are not used to or are unprepared to actually run a legal business and as such should remember the following points which are needed to do so successfully.
  • Accounting – as with any business, your accounting will be crucial in order to be successful. Accounting will be vital in order to successfully complete your business income taxes and file/pay your yearly sales tax with the state.
  • Paperwork – probably more important than with most businesses is the fact that paperwork relating to firearms sales/transfers are vitally important and the lack of paperwork or the incorrect filling out of this paperwork can get your business shut down and put lives in danger.
  • All 4473 documents must be retained for the life of your business and must be filled out correctly each and every time. If a customer doesn’t fill out a question (that they needed to) and you complete the sale and later find out that this person committed a crime with it, it can and would come back to you as the dealer who sold it to them with improper paperwork
  • Advertising – To be successful, you’re going to need to advertise and honestly, that can get quite expensive. In addition, what you’ll find is that many folks already have their “favorite” gun shop so you need to find out what you’re going to do that is “better” for the customer than what their shop already does. This is not easy on a part-time basis…

Application Process:
  • After you’ve looked into the Why and have addressed all of the items (there are probably more that I have missed but it’s a good starting point) and have decided to still move forward with the process, the next step will be to begin the application process. This too has a multitude of steps:
  • Download the FFL Application:
  • Download the Certification of Compliance:
  • Download the Finger Print Card instructions and example:
  • Order official Fingerprint cards: Distribution Center Order Form (bottom right-hand corner 3rd from the bottom)
  • Fill out and complete the FFL application (if you’ve completed other government forms before – income taxes, etc – this will be easy just be sure to read it carefully)
  • Fill out and complete the Certification of Compliance
  • Go to your local Sheriff’s office or Police Department and attain fingerprints after your fingerprint cards arrive.
  • Get a Certified check for $300.00 to send in as the application/license fee
  • Mail all of the necessary items to the BATFE (according to the information on the application)
While waiting to hear from the ATF, you’ll need to do the following: (most of which have some kind of fee associated with them)
  • Register for and obtain a federal business Tax ID
  • Register your business with the state (Sales Tax) as a registered retail merchant
  • Go to your local Sheriff’s department and apply for your license to sell handguns
  • Go to your local zoning board to gain the approval of your business from a zoning perspective
BATFE Interview:
  • If all is going well with your application, the BATFE will schedule an interview with you at the desired place of business (i.e. your home) this interview consists of the following:
  • Review of the actual facility
  • Questions pertaining to business practices (firearm storage, surveillance, etc)
  • Training on the needed paperwork and the plethora of legal ramifications if it’s not done appropriately
  • Overview of your application
The Waiting Game and Financial Impact:

A waiting game now begins for your license to be approved and arrive.

The average time that this entire application process takes (from beginning to end) is approximately 4-6 months and your initial financial out-of-pocket expenses (before ever purchasing a firearm) will run between $400 and $4,000+ (depending on the size of safe, type of surveillance equipment, license fees, LLC Fees, etc)
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