View Full Version : non resident rules to CA firearms ownership

08-06-2012, 5:02 PM
I live in NH but want to buy a vacation home in Southern CA and do not plan on claiming residency in CA but I would like to bring my GAP 10 (AR style .308) with me. I have been searching the web for a answer buy CA law is impossible for me to understand. I have been reading about AR registration and hand gun registration but nothing is mentioned for non residents of the state.

I want to have my rifle at my vacation spot and just go back and forth to the range.
What do I need to do to be legal?

08-06-2012, 5:16 PM
You need to make sure your make/model is not on the specific banned list (unlikely), and then configure the rifle for CA legalities.

Generally that means use only 10 round mags and install a bullet button magazine lock in place of the standard magazine release. The alternate method is to remove all "evil features" from the rifle and continue using the standard magazine release. We refer to those as either BB config or Featureless around here, so you can follow what other people are talking about.

Don't import any 11 or greater sized magazines into the state that you didn't already possess here prior to the year 2000.

Check the make/model banned list and make sure you understand the other legalities by going through the flowchart. It is linked toward the top of every page, but I'll also make it easy for you.


Reply again here if you have any questions.

Also, currently there is no need for registration when importing a rifle, but the registration laws in effect change in 2014.

Also you're required to have other calgunners over to shoot your rifle and go through all your ammo. Not sure where that is in the penal code, but.... :p

08-06-2012, 5:21 PM
On transportation there are no California specific transportation laws for rifles except they can't be loaded, but the federal gun free school zone law does apply here like every other state. Generally when complying with federal law you place your rifle in a fully enclosed and locking case while unloaded. You could also use a locking gun rack, but you usually don't see those around here so you'll attract unwanted attention.

Technically it is legal outside of a school zone to have your legally configured AR sitting on your passenger seat unloaded as you drive around town. Again though you're going to attract unwanted attention and may end up worst case getting pulled over with guns drawn so though legal it is highly not recommended. Unfortunately CA law enforcement aren't gun lawyers, and even though many LEO's here are pro-gun that doesn't mean they all are. So just use common sense is all.

08-06-2012, 6:01 PM
See also the wiki -- http://wiki.calgunsfoundation.org/Moving_to_California_with_firearms

08-06-2012, 6:09 PM
wow that flow chart is incredibly helpful . Thanks !
I think I might just buy a bolt rile for CA use.

08-06-2012, 7:10 PM
If I register my " assault rifle" can I use it without modification ?

08-06-2012, 7:13 PM
If I register my " assault rifle" can I use it without modification ?

Theoretically yes, but the DoJ will not issue AW permits to individuals. You Havel own a gun store that sells to LE, be a police officer or a movie armory.

08-06-2012, 7:22 PM
So sad :(

08-06-2012, 9:09 PM
So bolt rifles are fine?

08-06-2012, 10:35 PM
So bolt rifles are fine?

yes, our silly laws apply to semi auto weapons that have physical characteristics ("features") that our legislature believes are so evil that none of us can be trusted with them.

Its for the children and their safety -- you understand.

08-06-2012, 10:55 PM
Hey Trav I know it is a hassle and you have to pay more attention to the specific "evil features" listed on the flowchart, but don't discount Featureless configuration. You give up some ergos but get to keep mag release functionality. If that is your concern.

Um these might be some of my examples ;)

Otherwise swapping the mag release button for a bullet button really takes just a few minutes even if you're reading the instructions as you go, and you can have all the pistol grips, collapsible stocks, flash hiders, etc.

08-07-2012, 8:12 AM
Where can I get a U-15 Stock ?