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View Full Version : Taking the AR to San Diego Airport....OMG!!


Timmay
05-26-2009, 12:12 AM
Well tommorow I have a flight to MD to visit the folks. My pops wants to have a shoot off with me ( you know how it is, Navy VS Marine) so with that said I know the MD laws with my AR. My question is if any of you have any tips for me when I transport my Evil, black rifle. I have a Storm Case, Chamber Cable Lock, and 4 locks on the case. I think that would be sufficent lol. Any one have any experience with traveling through SAN with an AR? I just hope when I declare it and show clear they don't all freak out and I got National Guardsmen with M16A1's chasing me down the baggage claim lol. Any tips would be appreciated. Thanks!

Gio
05-26-2009, 12:15 AM
I believe when flying with Firearms you have to make arrangements first with the Airline. I do not think you will be rushed by TSA or anyone if the case is locked and you do not pose a threat to anyone. Good Luck with your travels ;)

-Gio

slick_711
05-26-2009, 12:26 AM
Go with 2 locks on the case instead of 4. It varies airline to airline but this is from my experiences:

For starters no ammo in the case with the gun. Just don't bother bringing ammo at all, although on some airlines you can. Go in and check in at the ticket counter, can't check in at the curb. Tell the clerk you have a firearm to declare. They will give you a little ticket to fill out that certifies the gun is unloaded and you sign it. Then you put that IN the case WITH the gun. The clerk should visually look at the gun. Some clerks are stupid, just make sure the card is in with the gun.

Now here you have a decision to make, TSA will have to inspect the gun, and you can't go back there with them. So you can give them your lock combo, or what I suggest (and do) although it takes longer: use a key padlock, tell the clerk at the checkout counter you want to have TSA check the gun and return the key to you for security purposes. They may or may not hassle you, but they'll do it. I have had good luck with friendly TSA guys (with 2LT bars, though I doubt their rank system is the same) coming out, talking to me for a second, then taking the key to their little area, inspecting that the gun is unloaded, re-locking the case, and returning the key to me. I just like to do this to limit access to the gun without my knowledge. It's probably not necessary.

Then get on your plane. Get to MD. Get your luggage/case. I normally find a deserted corner (or wait till the car) and just pop the case open for half a second to do a quick visual inspection for tampering/missing gun. Just don't freak anyone out by pulling it out and doing a function check and sight alignment. :rolleyes:

aermotor
05-26-2009, 12:36 AM
Sounds scary no doubt lol... maybe have the upper and lower unpinned so they are separate and a fixed empty 10 rounder. Let us know how it goes for the future.

slick_711
05-26-2009, 12:44 AM
Sounds scary no doubt lol... maybe have the upper and lower unpinned so they are separate and a fixed empty 10 rounder. Let us know how it goes for the future.

I'd nix the fixed empty mag. TSA/airline clerks are not there to enforce CA law, and the mag is just going to make it that much more confusing to them that the gun is unloaded. I don't think either way would be too big a deal, but why make it harder than it needs to be. Having the rifle split isn't a bad idea if your case will allow for it?

Richie Caketown
05-26-2009, 12:45 AM
i wonder what happens if he has that SPikes Lower that says "Infadel" on the side

slick_711
05-26-2009, 12:49 AM
i wonder what happens if he has that SPikes Lower that says "Infadel" on the side

He does not pass go, and does not collect $200.

AirflowPimp
05-26-2009, 1:08 AM
I think it has to be seperated into at least three parts. ie: upper, lower, mags. Each of the three sections need to be in three seperate bags. ie: a carry on bag, and 2 checked bags. If doing this they will require you to fill out paperwork stating these specifics. Dont have a link, just from what ive heard. You may want to go to your local airport and check with them in advance so you can get the paperwork and the specifics sorted out. Even with it all sorted out, i would go in a couple hours early to your flight. Good luck.

Timmay
05-26-2009, 1:21 AM
I think it has to be seperated into at least three parts. ie: upper, lower, mags. Each of the three sections need to be in three seperate bags. ie: a carry on bag, and 2 checked bags. If doing this they will require you to fill out paperwork stating these specifics. Dont have a link, just from what ive heard. You may want to go to your local airport and check with them in advance so you can get the paperwork and the specifics sorted out. Even with it all sorted out, i would go in a couple hours early to your flight. Good luck.

Webpage mentions nothing of the sort. But I have read online that sometimes the ticket counter will call the cops at the airport to come look at the weapon...now that really scares me. On top of the chance that a few grand comes up missing...I think I am getting cold feet.

DirtRacer151
05-26-2009, 6:57 AM
you will be fine. They inspect it and give you the keys back just as another member stated. In jan i went pheasant hunting with my uncles in Nebraska and the airlines lost my shotgun :mad: They ended up leaving it on his front porch in the middle of the night with out so much as ringing the door to let us know it was there. :rolleyes: When you arive at the airport to claim your luggage make sure you go straight to you airline security booth right next to the baggage claim and ask if you will be receiving it there or if they will be dropping it in the odd ball sized items bin. Its been in either of those places every time i go. Id even make a family member guard the belt system incase some baggage guy throws it on there by mistake. Good Luck! :thumbsup:

CnCFunFactory
05-26-2009, 7:10 AM
You could always just ship it to yourself.... I have a friend that has done this in the past and according to him it has worked 100% of the time. Just food for thought on the matter.

ocabj
05-26-2009, 7:18 AM
You don't have to separate the receivers. Not sure why people are making this up.

Although, to limit the losses in a possible baggage loss or theft, I would personally ship the upper receiver and just check-in the lower as the firearm. Then when traveling back, you can ship the complete rifle to yourself if you felt so inclined, but I would probably do the same thing in the way back (ship upper, check-in lower).

I take it you are shipping your ammo to MD?

gose
05-26-2009, 7:33 AM
I went out of San Diego a few months ago, flying back home from a 3-gun match, no hassle at all.
Locked everything in a hard case, declared it at counter, put the little red "Unloaded Firearm declaration form" into the case, locked it and off it went.

I think I had the option of giving them the keys, and that they would later be returned to me, but I opted for locking the bag and keeping the keys. The downside to that is that you have to wait an additional 10 mins before passing through security if TSA wants to check your bag. Personally, I much prefer this way to handing off the keys.

The separating guns into several locked containers is a rule most international carriers have, so if you're flying out of the country with Lufthansa or KLM, you're likely to have to disassemble your guns. I dont know of any domestic airlines with this rule.

Fjold
05-26-2009, 7:38 AM
I've flown a half a dozen times with firearms and even the ticket agents who have never seen one before do not call cops over to look at guns. I've had agents call their supervisor because they don't know how to do it but everything works.

Just make sure that you allow an extra half an hour at the ticket counter in case the agent doesn't know the rules.

Print out and have in hand, a copy of the "Special Baggage Handling" policies for that airline so that you can tell the agent where she has to look in her computer for them.

Don't let them tie the red tag (for unloaded firearms) to the outside of the case, it goes inside.

They will usually make you hand carry the case to the TSA for screening. leave it unlocked when you carry it over there and hand the case and the key (put it on a seperate keyring) to the agent clearing it and make sure to tell them that you will wait right there for the key to be returned to you since Federal Law says that you can be the only one who has a key to the case.

Take an extra key with you just in case they muck it up.

xibunkrlilkidsx
05-26-2009, 7:58 AM
save time on the pad lock and buy one that is TSA approved. It uses a 3 digit code but the TSA has special key that opens it. And you can see that they opened it by a little window that is green and when they open it it turns red. They ususally arent expensive, 8 bucs or so.

glock_this
05-26-2009, 8:11 AM
save time on the pad lock and buy one that is TSA approved. It uses a 3 digit code but the TSA has special key that opens it. And you can see that they opened it by a little window that is green and when they open it it turns red. They ususally arent expensive, 8 bucs or so.

those TSA locks are a joke.. they are for your luggage, but not for something as valuable and necessary to secure as a gun. if you bite hard enough, you could bite through a TSA lock. I travel a decent amount and always have TSA locks, but those are not the kind of 'locks' you want on a gun case.

personally, I would not even worry about it. nor would I dissemble the gun, and no way in hell would I ship it. I want to take it on and off the plane with me. I have a Pelican case and would leave the gun as is, have them come inspect and as others said, put the red tag INISDE the rifle case, and move on. I would allow extra time for hassle factor, but it should be no problem.

Fjold
05-26-2009, 8:42 AM
save time on the pad lock and buy one that is TSA approved. It uses a 3 digit code but the TSA has special key that opens it. And you can see that they opened it by a little window that is green and when they open it it turns red. They ususally arent expensive, 8 bucs or so.

Federal regulations say that "you" are the only one allowed to have the key (or combination) to the lock for a firearms case.

ERdept
05-26-2009, 9:28 AM
Get ready to be stared at.

When i transported my rifle, I got looks from everyone. Good on you. Let them see a firearm in not evil in itself.

It's the person who uses it that does the bidding for evil or good.

MFortie
05-26-2009, 9:31 AM
Having never flown with a firearm this all seems pretty straightforward. And fine for a single 'leg' of a flight.

What about when one is required to change planes? The idea of adding a set of baggage handlers in the middle of the trip worries me somewhat. Is it possible to retrieve your bags after say, leg one and recheck for leg two? Or do they always check straight through?

I suppose the easiest way around that is to fly a carrier that goes straight through, but it doesn't seem to be that way with most of the flights I take (except to Hawaii -- not a whole lot of places to change planes on the way there! :D )

Regards,

Mark

dfletcher
05-26-2009, 9:39 AM
I've flown with guns a few times. The police have never come to the counter, the gun has never had to be broken down into any parts. The folks at the ticket counter really could not have cared less, to the point I was clearly more concerned than them. The only issue raised even in passing was ammo, as in "do you have any?" and I did not. I was told I could have ammo, so long as it was in it's original packaging - don't recall if it had to be in a different suit case, but I travel with only one so I'm not certain why they would tell me that if separation was required.

TSA did let me come down to their inspection area, but of course not inside. They had the suitcase for about 5 minutes, handed the key back to me and that was it.

Since this is a CA AR, what interests me is the reaction to having the magazine in. Most folks associate a mag in the gun with the gun being ready to go, that the gun could be loaded. I realize it serves another purpose here but still, alot of folks figure "magazine in gun = loaded". I'd be kind of curious to learn if anyone at TSA or airport security/airline wanted the mag out.

pullnshoot25
05-26-2009, 9:49 AM
Wow, there are some interesting responses on here. I will share mine.

I have carried guns multiple times on airplanes, sometimes in the same case with my bow. Here is how it works.

1) Go up to counter and say HI to the oftentimes cute teller.
2) Inform her that you have a firearm to declare.
3) At her request, you open up the case and show the firearm.
4) You sign a tag saying that it is unloaded.
5) Gun goes through scanner.
6) Get fondled in security and go on about your day.

Now, there may be variations to the routine but the airline agent will inform you of what they are. It is a fairly painless process and a routine one for myself.

You do not have to break your gun into pieces or worry about the agents freaking out about your ARs, as they don't even give a crap about that sort of stuff. In fact, they are supposed to do an initial loaded check and most of the time they tell me to just sign the ticket saying it is unloaded and send it on through to the TSA guys. The TSA guys probably don't care either about your AR either, to be honest.

As for locks, make sure every hole is locked. I recommend the padlock sets at Home Depot, as they are cheap and you get multiple keys. If they need a key, break one off your ring and you will get it back after the gun has made it through the x-ray machine.

Again, it is a fairly normal procedure.

Go in peace :)

-N8

pullnshoot25
05-26-2009, 9:50 AM
Having never flown with a firearm this all seems pretty straightforward. And fine for a single 'leg' of a flight.

What about when one is required to change planes? The idea of adding a set of baggage handlers in the middle of the trip worries me somewhat. Is it possible to retrieve your bags after say, leg one and recheck for leg two? Or do they always check straight through?

I suppose the easiest way around that is to fly a carrier that goes straight through, but it doesn't seem to be that way with most of the flights I take (except to Hawaii -- not a whole lot of places to change planes on the way there! :D )

Regards,

Mark

I have never lost a firearm and if it is lost, a lot of people are in big trouble AFAIK.

If you are nervous about firearm transport via airplane, ship it from yourself to yourself via regular parcel post through FedEx or UPS. If they ask what it is, just say "pneumatic tackdriver" :)

Timmay
05-31-2009, 8:42 PM
Dude... that is one of the most awesome things I have ever seen. Can you order that dust cover from Noveske? My friends and I all want one now. Definitely a cool addition to your rifle. Nice!

Yeah go to Noveske and check out the 556 parts section. They have a ticker on how many are left in stock.

As for the travel. So far so good. Went to the airport, declared it. They asked me to show clear and I told the lady it's a scary rifle and she said that is fine I have to show her so I pulled that beat out and she jusy stared at it in fear plus everyone around was like "holy crap". So the TSA dude came up and checked it and gave me the little red paper that I sign stating it is not a loaded weapon. BUT the only problem I had was they wanted me to clear it at a special machine so I had to go downstairs (AT SAN) and clear it in the machine. That machine couldn't scan it because my case is too long so the TSA guy made me lock it and he took it down a hall way to scan it on a bigger machine. He came back empty handed and told me it was good to go. Once I got to the airport in DC it didn't come with the regular baggage nor did it get carried in to the US Airway baggage claim area. I asked them about it and they told me to check the large item belt and there it was sitting there all by itself about 8 baggage claim carousels away. Tomorrow I will repeat all that but in reverse order.

Two pieces of advice. One: Get a little early to the airport, I almost missed my flight waiting for them to scan it (took them about 20 minutes) because then after that I had to wait in the TSA security check point so it was a close one. Two: Put on some sort of address tag that is hard to remove. I put on the paper one provided and that disappeared by the time I got it in DC. As for the locks my case has 6 latches and 4 lock rings so I used some spare US Goverment locks. I think it went smooth because they all thought I was military even though I had a full beard and a good chunk of hair on my head. I had a Spec Ops bag that was tan and they kept telling me thanks for my service. lol. Whatever it got through and maybe my military contractor ID that says USMC on it helped too. Either way they don't really care about the laws or even know them, they just want it cleared and scaned.

slick_711
05-31-2009, 9:15 PM
I don't understand why your dust cover says "Surprise C*** F**" on it. That does not appeal to me in any way and I don't even see the point.

pMcW
05-31-2009, 9:28 PM
I don't understand why your dust cover says "Surprise C*** F**" on it. That does not appeal to me in any way and I don't even see the point.

IIRC that is reference to that "Team America" movie. :rolleyes:

slick_711
05-31-2009, 10:48 PM
IIRC that is reference to that "Team America" movie. :rolleyes:

Ahh, ok. Still doesn't appeal to me, but now it does make a little sense.

Eroland7
05-31-2009, 11:03 PM
I would just ship it to your pops house a few days before you go. Then you dont have to stress over it at all... No worries.

k3nnex
05-31-2009, 11:30 PM
maybe you could just carry the lower, while you ship the upper?

tonelar
05-31-2009, 11:32 PM
Id worry about shipping anything before worrying about flying with it.
Then again, Ive only lost stuff that's been shipped.
Your firearm will pass through more hands being shipped. Accountability for luggage since 9-11 has really improved.
I've flown a bunch of times with handguns and twice with long guns. Never had issue 1.

Vtec44
05-31-2009, 11:43 PM
The OP hasn't replied since. So either he's having fun shooting his rifle or he's in Federal prison getting an early prostate exam. j/k :D

ke6guj
06-01-2009, 12:46 AM
The OP hasn't replied since. So either he's having fun shooting his rifle or he's in Federal prison getting an early prostate exam. j/k :D

I guess you missed this,


As for the travel. So far so good. Went to the airport, declared it. They asked me to show clear and I told the lady it's a scary rifle and she said that is fine I have to show her so I pulled that beat out and she jusy stared at it in fear plus everyone around was like "holy crap". So the TSA dude came up and checked it and gave me the little red paper that I sign stating it is not a loaded weapon. BUT the only problem I had was they wanted me to clear it at a special machine so I had to go downstairs (AT SAN) and clear it in the machine. That machine couldn't scan it because my case is too long so the TSA guy made me lock it and he took it down a hall way to scan it on a bigger machine. He came back empty handed and told me it was good to go. Once I got to the airport in DC it didn't come with the regular baggage nor did it get carried in to the US Airway baggage claim area. I asked them about it and they told me to check the large item belt and there it was sitting there all by itself about 8 baggage claim carousels away. Tomorrow I will repeat all that but in reverse order. .

Vtec44
06-01-2009, 12:53 AM
I guess you missed this,

Yeah I left this thread open and didn't hit refresh when I got back. DOH!

Quiet
06-01-2009, 2:16 AM
Good website regarding flying with firearms. (http://deviating.net/firearms/packing/)

reidnez
06-01-2009, 8:57 AM
It's not a big deal at all. Contact your airline beforehand and find out their exact policies so that you can avoid any hiccups. In general if it's unloaded, in a hard-sided case, with a lock on it, and you declare it to the airline agent, you will be good. There are also special rules regarding ammo, if you want to carry that as well (I chose not to.) I flew with a handgun for the first time, about a month ago through San Diego Airport and had no problems at all. The ticketing agent asked me to carry my bag (with the gun case inside) over to a TSA screening point, so I made sure to declare again to the TSA screener.

As a side note, make sure your case actually locks! I used the hard box that came with my revolver, and passed the CA-mandated cable lock through the hole at the top of the handle. Then I realized that because of the length of the cable, you could still easily open the case and pull the gun out even with it "locked"--oops. I put a padlock on instead. I doubt it would have been an issue, but you never know...some agents or TSA people might decide to be anal about it.

slaaw
06-01-2009, 9:01 AM
I flew on Southwest Airlines recently out of John Wayne in OC. I declared 2 pistols upon checking in, an FS92 and a 1911, along with about 8 lbs ammo. Being that there's a 9 lb. ammo limit per person, my wife checked in 8 more lbs of reloads in her bag, which we notified the agent about. While the agent looked at the guns, she wasn't interested in looking at the ammo. Just before boarding, we get paged to the counter and a deputy sheriff wanted to speak to us, not about the guns but about the ammo in her bag. Apparently, you're not allowed to transport ammo loose in a baggie, but it has to be in an ammo container, either factory or the plastic ones with slots. They ended up holding on to the ammo but allowed me to have someone pick it up while we were on our trip. BTW, I did pack ammo w/the guns and there weren't any issues with that.

rumble phish
06-01-2009, 9:45 AM
Like a couple of others have said, and IMHO the best advice thus far, just pack it up and ship it to your fahter's place via UPS about a week before you go. Insure it and pack it tightly. No worries at the airport. You have a tracking # to follow it and then just return it to your self the same way. Why risk all the drama? Shipping it would be well worth the cost.

krushem2000
06-01-2009, 10:22 AM
1)call airlines "declare firearms" wherever you are flying out of and mention your flight number and they will send you appropriate paperwork and when you show up they'll direct you to area where you declare firearm (usually in area before you get to TSA checkpoint).
2)Do not under any circumstances start opening case or do anything that makes them nervous. They are really strict and they will ask you for key and they'll unlock it themselves.
3)When asked questions, simple direct answer is best otherwise gun aint going on the plane. They know their guns so dont tell them what n what it kinda annoys them.
4) Most important thing Write down names (badge#)/phone number of people who you speak to regarding declaration of firearm. So when SHTF you can have whoever you spoke to (happened to me once).
5) Mail your ammo ahead of time.
Good luck and enjoy your flight in friendly skies.

sb_pete
06-01-2009, 10:38 AM
Since this is a CA AR, what interests me is the reaction to having the magazine in. Most folks associate a mag in the gun with the gun being ready to go, that the gun could be loaded. I realize it serves another purpose here but still, alot of folks figure "magazine in gun = loaded". I'd be kind of curious to learn if anyone at TSA or airport security/airline wanted the mag out.

Umm, Garand? ;)

I have never lost a firearm and if it is lost, a lot of people are in big trouble AFAIK.

If you are nervous about firearm transport via airplane, ship it from yourself to yourself via regular parcel post through FedEx or UPS. If they ask what it is, just say "pneumatic tackdriver" :)

Don't you mean "powder actuated ventilator"? :D

Yeah, I would be more worried about shipping a firearm than taking it on a plane. Lost in shipping can take weeks. Lost firearm in airlines is a bigger prob and would get resolved VERY quickly I imagine.

j1133s
06-01-2009, 11:13 AM
Well tommorow I have a flight to MD to visit the folks. My pops wants to have a shoot off with me ( you know how it is, Navy VS Marine) so with that said I know the MD laws with my AR. My question is if any of you have any tips for me when I transport my Evil, black rifle. I have a Storm Case, Chamber Cable Lock, and 4 locks on the case. I think that would be sufficent lol. Any one have any experience with traveling through SAN with an AR? I just hope when I declare it and show clear they don't all freak out and I got National Guardsmen with M16A1's chasing me down the baggage claim lol. Any tips would be appreciated. Thanks!

You'll have no problems, just follow the airline's rules. Here's some advise:

1. Tell the check-in agent that you have firewarms to declare. They'll ask you to open your case and verify unloaded-ness (usually by just asking you if the guns are unloaded). Afterwards, they'll put a tag inside the case and ask you to lock it.

2. Separate your upper/lower and use an OU shotgun case; it'll pay for itself in just 1 trip (no oversize fees). It'll also "hide" the gun because to most people, a shotgun case looks like a normal baggage.

3. Get to the baggage claim quickly, because your gun is going to be on the conveyer belt just like all the normal baggage. It'll be irresponsible for you to lose your gun.

4. Pack your ammo separately; hint: ammo can be packed in magazines.

5. If you wan t to pack more guns than the max (usually 3 per case per airline rules). Disassemble them and the agent wouldn't care YMMV.

Of the many times I've flown w/ guns, it's been pretty simple and no more delay than using an agent to check-in.

geofgibson
06-01-2009, 1:11 PM
i wonder what happens if he has that SPikes Lower that says "Infadel" on the side

They would think he doesn't know how to spell "Infidel."

Timmay
06-02-2009, 12:16 AM
I don't understand why your dust cover says "Surprise C*** F**" on it. That does not appeal to me in any way and I don't even see the point.

I am sure there are a ton of things you own, are interested in, love, enjoy, etc, etc that do not appeal to me either.

1)call airlines "declare firearms" wherever you are flying out of and mention your flight number and they will send you appropriate paperwork and when you show up they'll direct you to area where you declare firearm (usually in area before you get to TSA checkpoint).
2)Do not under any circumstances start opening case or do anything that makes them nervous. They are really strict and they will ask you for key and they'll unlock it themselves.
3)When asked questions, simple direct answer is best otherwise gun aint going on the plane. They know their guns so dont tell them what n what it kinda annoys them.
4) Most important thing Write down names (badge#)/phone number of people who you speak to regarding declaration of firearm. So when SHTF you can have whoever you spoke to (happened to me once).
5) Mail your ammo ahead of time.
Good luck and enjoy your flight in friendly skies.

Negative.
I already posted on my first leg, now here comes my second leg back.

First off I had no idea how this would go, so I said ____ it and went with it. My father has done it before many times but not with anything so evil.
The TSA has there own guidelines...now here is the kicker...they are the bare minimum of regulations, and each airline adds to those. For US Airways I could bring ammo with the weapon, PACKED in the same case. I did that on my way back and had no issues. As long as they are completly covered and not loose.

You mentioned they know guns, well two of the TSA guys didn't know JACK CRAP. One thought it was a shotgun, or at least that is what he called it and the other thought it was a 50 cal rifle. It is the same as walking into a gun shop, I am sure some of you have had gun shop workers who were totally lost and didn't know cow crap. Here is how it went down on the way back:

I got there and declared the firearm. The TICKET COUNTER PERSON cleared it, not a TSA worker. So that means I had to open it right where you check you baggage in. So then they have me sign the little paper that says it is cleared and we put it in the case. I unlocked and locked it. Then we left the check in counter and went to a large item scanner. They asked me to open it, they scanned it and then asked me what caliber my ammo was. I then locked it up and the baggage dude took it away. When I got into San Diego they brought it up and had me show ID for it at the special baggage claim area for US Airways. Now think about that. If you read my last post I said they ran it up the large baggage carousel (not the regular ones you normally get your packages at) and that was it, it just sat there quite a few carousels away from me and the lady at the large item office had no idea where it was until my father mentioned that large baggage carousel and there it sat all by itself in the airport. So same airline, different airport, different procedures. The baggage guy WALKED it up to the US Airways baggage claim office and had my show ID for it. So this tells me that I am sure your item will get to you many different ways and different airports and different carriers. Oh and you do not need to call them up ahead of time. Each carrier has there firearm regulations posted on their respective webpages and the TSA has it's regulations as well on the internet. No where did it mention to call them and they would send you paper work, the only paper work you get is a little 3" by 2" paper that says you understand that you can't transport a firearm loaded and you sign it and pop in it the gun case. So to recap from my experience.

Bring you gun in a hard shelled case with real locks, not that garbage combo crap that you can rip off with your hand, check in and tell them you have a firearm and they will pretty much guide you the rest of the way and prior to getting there ensure you read the regulations on firearms for the particular airline your flying with and pack accordingly. Some may or may not allow ammo, etc, etc, etc.

Thanks for all of you who chimed in with real facts and not poop.

CnCFunFactory
06-02-2009, 12:24 AM
I don't understand why your dust cover says "Surprise C*** F**" on it. That does not appeal to me in any way and I don't even see the point.

:rofl2:

B Strong
06-02-2009, 6:23 AM
I think it has to be seperated into at least three parts. ie: upper, lower, mags. Each of the three sections need to be in three seperate bags. ie: a carry on bag, and 2 checked bags. If doing this they will require you to fill out paperwork stating these specifics. Dont have a link, just from what ive heard. You may want to go to your local airport and check with them in advance so you can get the paperwork and the specifics sorted out. Even with it all sorted out, i would go in a couple hours early to your flight. Good luck.

That's incorrect.

I've traveled with EBR's - locked case, empty chamber, no ammo. That's all you need to do.

I've got friends that travel with NFA weapons and devices and even they do not have to disassemble the piece into seperate pieces with seperate cases.

WeekendWarrior
06-02-2009, 10:17 AM
Anyone have any info about flying with evil black rifle and ammo? I saw someone posted you can do it if it's in the original package. Just curious to see if there is any merit to that.

Hitman
06-02-2009, 11:40 AM
thread tagged. good info here.

U2BassAce
06-02-2009, 11:47 AM
I think it has to be seperated into at least three parts. ie: upper, lower, mags. Each of the three sections need to be in three seperate bags. ie: a carry on bag, and 2 checked bags. If doing this they will require you to fill out paperwork stating these specifics. Dont have a link, just from what ive heard. You may want to go to your local airport and check with them in advance so you can get the paperwork and the specifics sorted out. Even with it all sorted out, i would go in a couple hours early to your flight. Good luck.


You must not like the OP very much. :eek:

The rifle can be fully assembled. Must be unloaded. I would put ammo in original packing box in a seperate suitcase. There is a limit to how much you can check.

I have never had them call over an officer to check my firearm. TSA yes LEO no.

DDRH
06-02-2009, 12:17 PM
Federal regulations say that "you" are the only one allowed to have the key (or combination) to the lock for a firearms case.

So if this were true, why did someone say in a previous post that, you'd hafta give them the combo? I'd never want to do that.

Can i stand there with TSA open the lock for them, and let them check out the firearm as needed....without having to give out any combo to anything they DON'T need????

rabagley
06-02-2009, 12:26 PM
So if this were true, why did someone say in a previous post that, you'd hafta give them the combo? I'd never want to do that.

Can i stand there with TSA open the lock for them, and let them check out the firearm as needed....without having to give out any combo to anything they DON'T need????

Yes. It should be a non-TSA accessible key lock and you should be the only person holding the key. Depending on the airport luggage inspection protocols, I've had to wait by the scanner or stick close to the departure gate to provide the key when asked.

As for disassembling the rifle into parts (mentioned above), that may be a good idea but is certainly not required. I think it's a good idea because it makes it painfully obvious to an often clueless ticket agent that the firearm is not loaded. It's not even a complete firearm and they seem to be much more relieved about the whole process when the firearm is partially disassembled.

The only time I had a clueful ticket agent was in San Antonio airport. The guy knew exactly what he was looking at, very politely asked me to verify empty chambers, discussed the ammo rules in some depth. Most of the rest are just trying to make it through the day.

ke6guj
06-02-2009, 12:31 PM
So if this were true, why did someone say in a previous post that, you'd hafta give them the combo? I'd never want to do that.that is because federal law and TSA regulations don't always sync.

Can i stand there with TSA open the lock for them, and let them check out the firearm as needed....without having to give out any combo to anything they DON'T need????If TSA at the airport will allow for it. TSA procedures do seem to vary from airport to airport. Some of it is based on the airport's layout, mainly how the check-in counter and the TSA baggage area is laid out.

ivorykid
06-02-2009, 12:32 PM
Why don't you check out TSA's regulations directly from their website:
http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/assistant/editorial_1666.shtm

Seems a little more reliable than a bunch of "i heard this and that..."

As others have mentioned, each airline has their own regulations regarding traveling with firearms... and the regulations are all posted on respective airline's website.

stag6.8
06-02-2009, 12:32 PM
I worked for the TSA for 3 years......The best way to transport your AR is to

1. make sure that the hard case that that you`re using to transport has TSA locks in case the tsa has to search your hard case.

2. make sure the ammo is separate from your rifle, pistol, shotgun in a locked suitcase with a TSA lock and watch the weight of how much youre traveling with. southwest airlines for example only allows up to 11 pounds max. of ammo to carry. let the counter people know where the ammo is and that Its locked and its packed securely so the ammo wont get damaged (loading and unloading of aircraft and during flight). weight varies for airline to airline. call ahead if possible

3. when you go to your airline counter declare your weapon or weapons and location of ammo.

4. when youve reached your destination go immediatley to baggage claim area to get your firearms. youre done

DDRH
06-02-2009, 12:41 PM
Why don't you check out TSA's regulations directly from their website:
http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/assistant/editorial_1666.shtm

Seems a little more reliable than a bunch of "i heard this and that..."

As others have mentioned, each airline has their own regulations regarding traveling with firearms... and the regulations are all posted on respective airline's website.

because if i wanted to read more, i'd click on that link, otherwise, i'm just gonna ask what i need to know...LoL...;) j/p givin' u a hard time...ahahah

I have 3-4 digit wheel combo locks, like the TSA locks (i think) minus the TSA keyhole. I'd feel more comfortable if TSA agents "fondled" my firearms in front of me instead of taking it to a back room where i can't see what they're doin' to my poor baby.

but i guess like someone said, policy is diff depending on the airport?

good to know though...thanks

Nullzero
06-02-2009, 12:49 PM
I would just UPS or Fedex to your fathers place to skip the hassle.

Timmay
06-02-2009, 3:04 PM
I am noticing a common trend here...Some people are not reading my posts and some other informative posts. If you read my last post, there should not be any questions. First of all those TSA agents are hit or miss on what knowledge they have on firearms, so more than likely a broke down AR is NOT going to make a difference if they don't know what a broken down AR looks like. Now you may think it's common sense, but some of those agents aren't AR pros like you think you are, some may never have even shot a gun before.

Here is the quoted regs from US Airways:

Firearms
US Airways will allow passengers to transport firearms in accordance with Federal Law.

Items of shooting equipment will be accepted as checked baggage only.
A passenger who presents baggage containing a firearm must declare and demonstrate that the weapon is unloaded.
Firearms must be packed in a manufacturer’s hard–sided container specifically designed for the firearm, a locked hard–sided gun case, or a locked hard–sided piece of luggage. Handguns may be packed in a locked hard–sided gun case, and then packed inside an unlocked soft–sided piece of luggage. However, a Conditional Acceptance Tag must be used in this case.
Baggage containing firearms must be locked at all times and the key or lock combination retained by the passenger.
A Firearm Unloaded Declaration form (available only at the airport) must be signed and placed inside the bag or gun case.
Checked ammunition may not exceed 11 lbs/5 kg per person. Ammunition must be packed in the original manufacturing package or constructed of wood, fiber, plastic, or metal and provide separation for cartridges. Ammunition may be checked in the same piece of luggage as a firearm. No additional documentation is required.
There is no limit to the number of items contained in rifle, shotgun or pistol case, up to 50 lbs/23 kg, 62 in/157 cm in maximum.
A passenger who presents a firearm to be checked to an international destination must be in possession of all required import documentation for their international destination city and any international transit points. It is the responsibility of the passenger to acquire the required documentation from the applicable government entity prior to travel (usually a consulate or embassy). Firearms will not be accepted for transport if international import requirements have not been met.

Now here is the TSA regs QUOTED:

You may only transport firearms, ammunition and firearm parts in your checked baggage. Firearms, ammunition and firearm parts are prohibited from carry-on baggage.

There are certain limited exceptions for law enforcement officers who may fly armed by meeting the requirements of Title 49 CFR 1544.219. Law enforcement officers should read our policies on traveling with guns.

The key regulatory requirements to transporting firearms, firearm parts or ammunition in checked baggage are:

You must declare all firearms to the airline during the ticket counter check-in process.
The firearm must be unloaded.
The firearm must be in a hard-sided container.
The container must be locked. A locked container is defined as one that completely secures the firearm from access by anyone other than you. Cases that can be pulled open with little effort do not meet this criterion. The pictures provided here illustrate the difference between a properly packaged and an improperly packaged firearm.
We recommend that you provide the key or combination to the security officer if he or she needs to open the container. You should remain present during screening to take the key back after the container is cleared. If you are not present and the security officer must open the container, we or the airline will make a reasonable attempt to contact you. If we can't contact you, the container will not be placed on the plane. Federal regulations prohibit unlocked gun cases (or cases with broken locks) on aircraft.
You must securely pack any ammunition in fiber (such as cardboard), wood or metal boxes or other packaging that is specifically designed to carry small amounts of ammunition.
You can't use firearm magazines/clips for packing ammunition unless they completely and securely enclose the ammunition (e.g., by securely covering the exposed portions of the magazine or by securely placing the magazine in a pouch, holder, holster or lanyard).
You may carry the ammunition in the same hard-sided case as the firearm, as long as you pack it as described above.
You can't bring black powder or percussion caps used with black-powder type firearms in either your carry-on or checked baggage.

Photo of a firearm properly packaged. We and other authorities strictly enforce these regulations. Violations can result in criminal prosecution and civil penalties of up to $10,000 per violation.



Now that pretty much CTRL-ALT-DEL half the crap being posted in this thread. You follow those rules and you will be golden.

YOU have the key, and I do not recommend TSA locks.
Why pack ammo in your regular baggage (unless you have a lot) put it in the case.
You will unload show clear for no reason to the ticket agent because you will have to show the TSA agent also, just play along.
No other paper work or anything like that is required, they don't enforce laws, they enforce the regulations of the TSA and your respective airlines your flying with.
I have lost packages with the UPS, so it's just as tricky and either way you can insure the items to recover the value of your weapon.
Ensure it is locked before they walk off with it.
DO NOT let any of them keep the key.
They will check it with you there (those little side scanners you notice in airports, that is where you will go) and then they will lock it in front of you and take it away to stow on the aircraft.

That is it.

Simple.

Keep in mind that they may or may not know there own regulations or anything at all about firearms so that is hit or miss. YOU should know the rules, follow them and you will be golden. They tried to tell me I couldn't bring ammo with me, guess what? I did, because I knew the regulations of both the TSA and Airline I was flying with.

On a side note a co worker of mine told me he took his 1911 back home when he was on leave and they made him load his mags with his ammo (which was boxed correctly) and then chuck the rest of the ammo in the trash. Your experiences will vary, from airline to airline and airport to airport. So know the regulations and follow them, and short of you falling out of the sky to your death all will be well.


Trip is over with and everything went well.

Thanks to all those you actually read the thread, and chimed in with decent advice.

SMGLee
06-02-2009, 4:06 PM
I would just UPS or Fedex to your fathers place to skip the hassle.

I agree, ship it, that is what i did several times when I attended classes outside of California.

UPS is the only ground carrier to able ship ammo which are consider haz mat...ned to get a sticker on the package, that is all...

bahamablue72
06-02-2009, 9:06 PM
Here is a video from the website posted yesterday, lots of information.

http://www.vimeo.com/3923535

sb_pete
06-03-2009, 12:30 AM
i wonder what happens if he has that SPikes Lower that says "Infadel" on the side
They would think he doesn't know how to spell "Infidel."

http://i381.photobucket.com/albums/oo251/sb_pete/flowchart-ohsnap.jpg

sb_pete
06-03-2009, 12:31 AM
I worked for the TSA for 3 years......The best way to transport your AR is to

1. make sure that the hard case that that you`re using to transport has TSA locks in case the tsa has to search your hard case...

hmm, this sounds like great advice, except that it would technically violate federal law :eek:. I'm not trying to be insulting or doubt you in any way. I am sure what you say is pretty common perception and would never get you in trouble. Technically speaking though, federal law dictates that "The container must be locked. A locked container is defined as one that completely secures the firearm from access by anyone other than you"

When TSA screens your case, under federal law, you are supposed to be present to unlock the case and re-lock it. No one, including law enforcement, is allowed to access that bag again until it is back in your custody. It is very common for TSA agents to take the key, then bring it back to you later after examining the firearm outside of your view, but this is technically contrary to the law. When a bag contains firearms it should, by definition, NOT use TSA approved locks as those, by definition, do not "secure the firearm from access by anyone other than you." If you use a combination lock, you should be the only one who enters that combo.


Here is the TSA page on traveling with firearms (http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/assistant/editorial_1666.shtm)

The Flying with Firearms Site (http://deviating.net/firearms/packing/) someone posted earlier is full of good info.

Here is their page comparing firearms policies of different airlines (http://deviating.net/firearms/packing/report.html)

Timmay, glad your travels went well. Thanks for posting updates all the way through. That is great info for everyone who hasn't traveled by air with guns before.
-Pete

Timmay
06-03-2009, 3:04 PM
hmm, this sounds like great advice, except that it would technically violate federal law :eek:. I'm not trying to be insulting or doubt you in any way. I am sure what you say is pretty common perception and would never get you in trouble. Technically speaking though, federal law dictates that

When TSA screens your case, under federal law, you are supposed to be present to unlock the case and re-lock it. No one, including law enforcement, is allowed to access that bag again until it is back in your custody. It is very common for TSA agents to take the key, then bring it back to you later after examining the firearm outside of your view, but this is technically contrary to the law. When a bag contains firearms it should, by definition, NOT use TSA approved locks as those, by definition, do not "secure the firearm from access by anyone other than you." If you use a combination lock, you should be the only one who enters that combo.


Here is the TSA page on traveling with firearms (http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/assistant/editorial_1666.shtm)

The Flying with Firearms Site (http://deviating.net/firearms/packing/) someone posted earlier is full of good info.

Here is their page comparing firearms policies of different airlines (http://deviating.net/firearms/packing/report.html)

Timmay, glad your travels went well. Thanks for posting updates all the way through. That is great info for everyone who hasn't traveled by air with guns before.
-Pete


Thanks.
I started out not knowing, and tried to get the info here but after research and doing it myself I am now in the known. I suppose I picked the best airline to fly with because US Airways got the best grade from that comparison web page you posted. Coincidentally I travel US Airways more often than others and I have decided to make a point to travel with them, and also write a letter of thanks for making traveling with firearms a breeze.

joelogic
06-04-2009, 9:47 AM
Here is my experience. I just checked into virgin America. I told the ticket agent that I needed to declare a firearm. She handed me the declaration form, I signed then she made me attach it to the case and told me it must stay there. She asked me if it was disengaged, I said yes. Then she took me and the case to oversize item scanning. Tsa agent asked me to unlock case and hand it to him. He opened the case pushed on the foam then closed the case and relocked it with my locks. And on the conveyor belt it went. Let's see how picking it up when I land goes.

ke6guj
06-04-2009, 11:38 AM
Here is my experience. I just checked into virgin America. I told the ticket agent that I needed to declare a firearm. She handed me the declaration form, I signed then she made me attach it to the case and told me it must stay there. On the outside of the case, where it can be seen by anybody?

If so, nice felony she committed. They are not allowed to mark/label the outside of the shipping container showing that it contains a firearm. That label is supposed to be placed INSIDE the case.

Timmay
06-04-2009, 4:19 PM
On the outside of the case, where it can be seen by anybody?

If so, nice felony she committed. They are not allowed to mark/label the outside of the shipping container showing that it contains a firearm. That label is supposed to be placed INSIDE the case.

Yep. That is why I read all the rules and regulations prior to hitting the airport. I even had the person who dropped me off wait until I knew everything was good to go.

nickvig
06-04-2009, 5:16 PM
My father, traveling to CA from VA, did the whole deal with bringing an over/under so we could shoot some trap while he was here. He went through all the motions, had TSA check the gun, locked the case, taped the case and guess what....some baggage handler pulled the pins on the case and stole the gun in transit. The Burbank PD and airline did nothing. No reimbursement for the gun for being lost and absolutely no help whatsoever. So there are bad experiences. Make sure the hinge pins on your case can't be removed.

Timmay
06-04-2009, 5:26 PM
Well I suppose it is difficult to travel with a discreet case. I used a Storm case so it pretty much said "hey look at me, I'm a gun". I have read people getting guns lost in the airport but they were either reimbursed or a LEO got involved and it all of the sudden coughed up.

ysr_racer
06-29-2009, 9:35 PM
I've never seen one thread with so much wrong information.

I fly with a firearm all the time. No big deal. Get a hard case that locks, declare it at the gate. Sometimes they want to see it, sometimes they want TSA to look at it.

After you fill out the declaration, place it inside, lock it and YOU keep the key. It's really no big deal.

ysr_racer
06-29-2009, 9:39 PM
I worked for the TSA for 3 years......The best way to transport your AR is to

1. make sure that the hard case that that you're using to transport has TSA locks in case the tsa has to search your hard case.



Worst advice I've ever heard, and wrong. Per the TSA regs YOU are the only one that can have the key to your locked case.

Please don't make go thru this whole thread and list all the inaccuracies.

ysr_racer
06-29-2009, 9:42 PM
P.S. Disregard any post in this thread that includes the phrase "My dad..."

Compuham
06-29-2009, 11:06 PM
+1 to Slick_711.
Whoever was quoted as saying to put the mags in your carry on is asking you for trouble. TSA will freak when they hit the x-ray and you and your stuff will be in secondary inspection. Leave the mags at home or just ship them to your dad.

JPurp
06-29-2009, 11:40 PM
Just a quick run down of my recent experience traveling with firearms through LAX, John Wayne (SNA), Dallas (DFW) and Boston (BOS).

I travel with everything in a Pelican 1750. I use the first class line as it is usually at the end of the ticket counter and there are generally less people around. While waiting in the first class line I remove both of my locks. One note on the locks, they should be TSA approved.

I should note that I was never instructed to use the first class counter. My decision was a combination of the privacy noted above in addition to not wanting to lug around a Pelican 1750.

When I get to the first class counter I say that I am checking in and I am checking a firearm. You should have to fill out an unloaded firearms declaration card, it is typically orange. In some cases I have needed to "remind" the counter agent that I needed this card. I have no doubt that the agent would have remembered the card was needed but my asking for it while they try to remember the procedure helped establish that I was familiar with the process and makes the agent more comfortable. You will need to sign the card and it will be put inside your case. The counter agent may want to "see" the firearm is unloaded but generally it is nothing more than a quick glance.

After you get your boarding pass you will either be directed or escorted to a TSA manual inspection area. For some airports it is in the open in a roped of area and sometimes it is a separate room. A TSA agent will inspect the case, including the interior. Depending on the agent they may ever pull out some of the foam. It is almost guaranteed that they will make a number of swabs of the hinges and latches to run through the analyzer.

Once they are OK with it either you will install your locks or TSA will. I always make sure the case and locks are fully latched. Last thing I want is to loose $5k worth of hardware to a poorly installed lock.

Hope this helps.

ysr_racer
06-30-2009, 6:09 AM
Just a quick run down of my recent experience traveling with firearms through LAX, John Wayne (SNA), Dallas (DFW) and Boston (BOS).

I travel with everything in a Pelican 1750. I use the first class line as it is usually at the end of the ticket counter and there are generally less people around. While waiting in the first class line I remove both of my locks. One note on the locks, they should be TSA approved.

Eveything looks OK except the part about the locks.

DO NOT USE THE KIND OF LOCKS TSA CAN OPEN, USE ANY BRAND OF GOOD QUALITY LOCK THAT ONLY YOU CAN OPEN.

If TSA wants to open your case, they ask you or page you.

JPurp
06-30-2009, 6:26 AM
Eveything looks OK except the part about the locks.

DO NOT USE THE KIND OF LOCKS TSA CAN OPEN, USE ANY BRAND OF GOOD QUALITY LOCK THAT ONLY YOU CAN OPEN.

If TSA wants to open your case, they ask you or page you.

I guess the lock decision is individual preference. TSA's policy is if they want to get into your case and they don't have a key they can cut it.

http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/assistant/locks.shtm

I personally would rather TSA have the ability to open/inspect than risk them cutting the locks and sending my case along with no locks.

ke6guj
06-30-2009, 12:20 PM
TSA policy is that TSA locks are NOT ACCEPTABLE for firearms. And they will not cut a lock on a firearms case either. They will attempt to call you back to the TSA checkpoint if they need to get back into the case, or they will leave it behind.





The key regulatory requirements to transporting firearms, firearm parts or ammunition in checked baggage are:

You must declare all firearms to the airline during the ticket counter check-in process.
The firearm must be unloaded.
The firearm must be in a hard-sided container.
The container must be locked. A locked container is defined as one that completely secures the firearm from access by anyone other than you. Cases that can be pulled open with little effort do not meet this criterion. The pictures provided here illustrate the difference between a properly packaged and an improperly packaged firearm.
We recommend that you provide the key or combination to the security officer if he or she needs to open the container. You should remain present during screening to take the key back after the container is cleared. If you are not present and the security officer must open the container, we or the airline will make a reasonable attempt to contact you. If we can't contact you, the container will not be placed on the plane. Federal regulations prohibit unlocked gun cases (or cases with broken locks) on aircraft. TSA locks are not approved for securing firearms.
http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/assistant/editorial_1666.shtm

Timmay
06-30-2009, 4:45 PM
I've never seen one thread with so much wrong information.

I fly with a firearm all the time. No big deal. Get a hard case that locks, declare it at the gate. Sometimes they want to see it, sometimes they want TSA to look at it.

After you fill out the declaration, place it inside, lock it and YOU keep the key. It's really no big deal.

Not my information.

Yes it is a big deal to some. We have had people get perfectly legal ARs taken from them by LEOs so what makes you think that isn't possible at an AIRPORT!?

Now regular firearms I'm sure are no biggy but trust me, when I popped my case open EYES grew bigger than you can imagine. (And this thread is specific to AR's btw.) Not that the same doesn't apply for other firearms, but the public fear issue with ARs, and some uneducated LEOs makes it a different beast when traveling with one.

Just a quick run down of my recent experience traveling with firearms through LAX, John Wayne (SNA), Dallas (DFW) and Boston (BOS)......

......It is almost guaranteed that they will make a number of swabs of the hinges and latches to run through the analyzer.


Uh. I have traveled 4 times now with my AR and not once was a swab of anything taken off any part of my case, gun, foam, etc.

ysr_racer
06-30-2009, 5:42 PM
Not my information.

Yes it is a big deal to some. We have had people get perfectly legal ARs taken from them by LEOs so what makes you think that isn't possible at an AIRPORT!?



LEO's don't check the bags at the airport, the TSA monkeys do.

My dad said...

Timmay
06-30-2009, 10:34 PM
LEO's don't check the bags at the airport, the TSA monkeys do.

My dad said...

I never said they specifically check them, HOWEVER it could happen. And it did to me, when a TSA agent called a LEO over to check out my AR. When the TSA agent is looking over you weapon, you can't touch it and if he wants to call over a LEO to check it out because it's cool or because he personally thinks your jacked up he can. It's above an beyond the scope of his job, but why risk it.

The TSA isn't there to enforce city, county, state or federal laws. They only enforce their particular rules in transporting firearms. That doesn't mean they could be stupid and potentially f you over.

lowriderryda
06-30-2009, 11:26 PM
I currently work for TSA and all you need to do is Declare firearm, must be unloaded, we don't care what type of firearm it is, hard case, don't use TSA locks, once it has gone through the x ray it will be left alone and on its way to the plane. Mainly its the Airline that may become dramatic, but we don't really care as long as it meets the guidelines.