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Old January 25, 2013, 07:46 PM   #1
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NYS sawed off shotgun laws?

I'm new to the forum. I now live in Florida and (unfortunately) will be moving to Tompkins County, NY this spring. NYS I know has tough gun laws.

My question is that I have a 6 shot (5+1) 12ga pump shotgun that has been sawed off to a 18.25" total barrel length with an overall length of 27". Will I have to register this shotgun in NYS and does the federal laws concerning sawed off shotguns apply to this state and or does any Tompkins County laws that would supersede the existing federal laws? The Federal law says this gun is LEADAL and does not fit into the SBS category.

I know this probably will require a lawyer to answer this but thought I would see if I might get someone who would know and be able to back it up with some legal statues references

Thanks for any info.

Johnny Rocket
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Old January 25, 2013, 08:00 PM   #2
Brian Pfleuger
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There is no special law for that gun unless it has a thumbhole or pistol grip stock.

The barrel is over 18" and the total length is over 26", it's just a plain old shotgun.
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Old January 25, 2013, 08:11 PM   #3
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I'm not sure about the new laws. But mossberg cruisers were legal before so I don't see why there'd be a problem.
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Old January 25, 2013, 09:18 PM   #4
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The barrel is over 18" and the total length is over 26", it's just a plain old shotgun
Brian, I know you're back there and can check, but my old memory tells me that 40 years ago, when I lived in NY, it was 20" for shotguns and 18.5" for rifles (unless factory made shorter) barrel length. That was the state law. Now it may be that it was the law for hunting, not just for owning, I can't recall, anymore.

But I do remember that NYS law was not the same as the Fed law (18" for shotguns, 16" for rifles). Supposedly the NY 18.5" barrel length for rifles was why Remington carbines had 18.5" barrels, to be legal for deer in NY. Of course, that might have just been a story, too...

johnnyrocket, your gun is Fed legal, but NY has its own rules, and I don't think your gun will pass muster with them. I'm sure some NY resident will be along soon with a check of the current law. The fact that your barrel was cut down might just be the deal breaker for NY.

I remember from when I grew up in NY that you could own a Winchester Trapper (factory 16"barrel) and be legal, but if you had a rifle barrel shortened, the legal limit was 18.5" and I believe for shotguns, it was 20". No, it didn't make any sense 40 years ago, and if it is still the way it is in NY today, it still doesn't make sense, but its their law.
(and btw, if somebody has proof I am remembering this wrong, just ignore what I said, )
because I might be mistaken, its been a long day,and it was long ago....
in a galaxy far, far away....
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Old January 25, 2013, 09:41 PM   #5
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16" for rifle.
18" for shotgun.
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Old January 27, 2013, 08:49 AM   #6
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Thanks for all the information my new friends. This is what is so frustrating about NYS—no one there really seems to know what the law is. The Federal law is fairly simple to understand on this subject, but state law and even county law in NYS is so problematic and confusing no one can make an assessment—one way or another. Even lawyers don't agree on anything, and the frustrating part is no one knows the law until your arrested and then (?)...well I won't even go there. I just wish there was somewhere a person could go to find out what the law really is without paying a lawyer 1M per hour do find the NYS gun (ever changing) laws. I just wish I could leave that state for good and stay in Florida. The taxes are lower, the weather is better and that song "Dixie" is sounding better everyday to me.

Johnny R.

Last edited by johnnyrocket; January 27, 2013 at 08:56 AM.
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Old January 27, 2013, 01:26 PM   #7
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18 for shotgun...
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