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California 2nd Amend. Political Discussion & Activism Discuss gun rights activism and 2A related political topics here. All advice given is NOT legal counsel.

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  #1  
Old 02-05-2006, 7:40 PM
Pro2nd Pro2nd is offline
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Question Are laser sights legal on pistols in California?

I heard a rumor today that it is not legal to have a laser mounted on a gun in California. Anyone know if there is truth to this?
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  #2  
Old 02-05-2006, 7:45 PM
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My initial thought is that a pistol laser by itself is not illegal. But I do not know for a fact. Normally I wouldn't respond if I'm not sure, but I figure it's worth keeping this near the top, so I replied

IR lasers in conjunction with night vision scopes are another matter though.
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Old 02-05-2006, 7:48 PM
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Lasers are fine as long as you don't use them in a threatening manner (hmm, it's on a gun, lol).

Phased plasma rifles in the 40 watt range though...I'm not sure.
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Old 02-05-2006, 8:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blacklisted
Phased plasma rifles in the 40 watt range though...I'm not sure.

I checked the applicable laws, and it appears to me that so long as you do not have a backpack power unit, you are good to go. On the other hand, you CAN have a trolly mounted power unit. I currently have 40 and 100 watt rifles on backorder as we speak :/
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Old 02-05-2006, 9:07 PM
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L.A.S.E.R.s on guns are not regulated...

(however, as someone already mentioned, Infrared LASERs on weapons are prohibited...but to see them and use them, you would need an infrared weapon sight in conjunction with it, which is also prohibited)
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Old 02-05-2006, 9:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ohsmily
L.A.S.E.R.s on guns are not regulated...

(however, as someone already mentioned, Infrared LASERs on weapons are prohibited...but to see them and use them, you would need an infrared weapon sight in conjunction with it, which is also prohibited)
Actually, the Infrared light itself is not prohibited, it is the weapon sight that converts it to the visual spectrum that is illegal.
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  #7  
Old 02-05-2006, 9:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PanzerAce
Actually, the Infrared light itself is not prohibited, it is the weapon sight that converts it to the visual spectrum that is illegal.
I wonder if a seperate infrared light source and some sort of goggles that convert the light to a visible wavelength would be legal?

It wouldn't be a "sniper scope".
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  #8  
Old 02-05-2006, 9:19 PM
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laser sights on pistols are legal... for now.
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Old 02-05-2006, 9:41 PM
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pfft, who wants lasers or plasma rifles, they don't work that well in the atmosphere, and in the case of plasma have serious potential to give the shooter a sun burn. I prefer rail/gauss rifles. Done properly it can get a ten grain slug up to moderate percentage of c, plus your shooting a projectile, but it's not a centerfire, so I can have all the "evil" features I want.


Now where did I leave my super conducting magnets?
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Old 02-05-2006, 9:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blacklisted
I wonder if a seperate infrared light source and some sort of goggles that convert the light to a visible wavelength would be legal?

It wouldn't be a "sniper scope".
They don't sell infrared lasers (manufactured for weapons) to the public. I am not talking about laboratory lasers or other purpose ones, I am talking about infrared lasers made for mounting on weapons.
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Old 02-05-2006, 10:45 PM
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not legal to sell to civilains but legal for civilians to own IR, lol thats funny law
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  #12  
Old 02-05-2006, 10:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pulsar

Now where did I leave my super conducting magnets?
Wait, those were your magnets? Did you also leave your capacitors at my place? cause if you did, um.....to late to get them back. Lets just say that they work perfectly
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  #13  
Old 02-05-2006, 11:42 PM
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Me, I'm going for 39 watts, just under the hi capacitator limit.
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Old 02-05-2006, 11:45 PM
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I belive this stems from FCC regulation of LASERs, and not a unique phenomena to CA.

Visible lasers can be in the 5mw range and still be legal (classIII laser device) for over the counter sale.

IR lasers even 1mw are classIIIb devices, legal for sale but only with certin safety interlocks, etc that make them unuseable for weapons

Thus, no IR LAMs for civvies. (except the Insight which was granted a special exemption to FCC regs on the agreement that insight would sell to only military & leo. This is probally the source of your roumour)

If CA has any Penal Codes relating to weapons&lasers, I do not know about them.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Technical Ted
For health safety concerns it's against the law to sell them.

Flash a person in the eye with visible laser and they blink. Hit them in the eye with an IR laser and they won't react and their retina will be damaged.

It's perfectly legal to own an IR weapon mount laser--possession is not a criminal act.
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Old 02-05-2006, 11:52 PM
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Actually, a 1mw laser would be a Class 3a. 5mw and greater would be Class 3b It is also not illegal to own a Class 3b or even Class 4 laser. I know several places you can buy one, I own several 532nm (green) lasers, a couple pointers and a weapons mount all between 30-50mw. What you do with it and how you use it determines legality.

Using any laser greater than 5mw in a public place or outdoors is illegal unless you have a variance from the FDA or DHS, I forget. Most IR lasers would be greater than 5mw, and their public or outdoor use would also be illegal, but only infractions.

If you had a AN/PEQ-2 or a AN/PAQ-4 with a weapon mounted AN/PVS-7 it would be a felony. But if you had the PVS-7 mounted on headgear, or had a AN/PVS-14, the use of a IR laser (like the PEQ-2 or PAQ-4) MIGHT be illegal, depending if a DA wanted to prosecute or not. The law is a bit vague when it concerns using a weapon mounted IR device and a head mounted starlight scope.

Not that this helps you determine any legality... lol

Last edited by xenophobe; 02-05-2006 at 11:56 PM..
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  #16  
Old 02-06-2006, 12:58 PM
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IR scope mounted on weapon = illegal
IR laser mounted on weapon = legal, but hard to get
IR headgear = not regulated, at least yet.

Now technically, the language states "capable of being mounted on a weapon". Considering that there's an online retailer selling a Picatinny rail to camera adaptor, which allows you to mount a standard video camera on a rifle, Sony Nightshot cameras are now technically a means of going to jail, even if you don't own the mount or a rifle to put it on.

IR red dot scope, legal as far as I know. You'd have to use it in conjunction with IR headgear in order to see it though.
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  #17  
Old 02-06-2006, 1:29 PM
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"Officer, it's just a laser pointer!"

"Why can't I see the beam then?"

"The batteries are dead."

"Ok, have fun."
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  #18  
Old 02-06-2006, 1:31 PM
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On a related note...

I knew someone that did the old method of installing aCrimson trace laser on his Glock (either a 26 or a 30) when you sent the gun back to them and they installed it.

He got his ccw for contra costa county...brought the gun in for inspection and had it rejected because the laser was an alteration to the factory gun.
Apparently they will do the same for a match bbl, etc.

Coco county doesn't want you to be able to actually hit the bad guy or improve your chances in a gunfight, it seems.
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Old 02-06-2006, 1:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackrazor
"IR" (by which you actually mean night vision intensifier tubes, not TRUE IR, which is a different boat) scopes are only illegal when used in conjunction with an IR illuminator. The newer, better 3rd gen models do not have IR illuminators and are therefore legal (e.g. Raptor, D740, etc) to mount on your rifle.

BTW, TRULY IR scopes, such as the Elcan Specter IR are perfectally legal... and uber cool.
Geez. Considering the Sony nightshot cameras actually involve an illuminator, this does indeed mean that the ban can stretch onto the Sony cameras, but not [various actual night vision scopes]. Typical California stupidity.
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Old 02-06-2006, 3:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Technical Ted
The law was written in the 1950's when the M1 Sniperscope was the pinnacle of technology that allowed one to see in darkness (extreme low light).
Thought the prohibition was enacted a year or two ago, though, wasn't it?
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Old 02-06-2006, 11:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackrazor
BTW, TRULY IR scopes, such as the Elcan Specter IR are perfectally legal... and uber cool.
And don't forget super expensive, super expensive, super expensive!!!
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Old 02-07-2006, 12:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackrazor
Actually, most IR lasers (that I've used, anyway) are less than 5mW, otherwise the brightness of the beam blooms in the NV device.
Which devices are these that you've used? Please list models and specs.

AN/PEQ-2A >50Mw IR NVD pointer >100Mw target painting
AN/PAQ-4 >30Mw IR pointer

Both are Military Issue and are in current use. I've viewed both of these using various NVDs. They do not bloom.

A picture of my Colt CAR-A3 with Magpul PRS, LMT CQB upper and a AN/PAQ-4 for your entertainment. Notice no iron sights... gee I wonder why.


Last edited by xenophobe; 02-07-2006 at 12:48 AM..
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Old 02-07-2006, 10:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Technical Ted
I was chuckling when I saw that Mw. In scientific and technology circles capital M is used to denote mega- and lower case m to denote milli-.
Yes, I was clearly talking about my phased plasma rifle in the 40-Watt range... lol
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