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Old 02-01-2014, 13:30   #1
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Hiding Guns on Board

It is not my intentions to restart the question of having guns on board. There will no doubt be fokes who wish to give their two cents on the issue. I'm going to ignore them when they do and hope everyone does the same.

This thread is meant to address the issue of how to live aboard with a gun when the legality is ambiguous in large parts of the world. Two strategies that come to mind, are to stay out of States that don't allow guns by foreigners. The second is to hide them.

I'd like to hear from people who do have guns on board. Is it even possible to hide a gun in a sailboat. I've yet to sail internationally and don't know how stupid it would be to dismantle a rifle in the hopes immigration won't find a piece of it and figure out what it's for. It would be easy to hide a handgun but if they're close enough to be shot with a handgun then one might as well throw your hands up and try the Stockholm strategy. The goal for me would be to make it obvious to them before they're within range of even a rifle that I will be putting up a fight to persuade against belligerence.

Again, please don't respond with your opinion of if guns should be on boats. There's plenty of threads on that already.
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Old 02-01-2014, 13:38   #2
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Hello. Good thread. I too will be very interested in responses!
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Old 02-01-2014, 13:48   #3
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Re: Hiding Guns on Board

This is Simple. If you have firearms aboard like we do, don't go where you cant have them legally. Declare them always and comply with whatever country' or states rules that you happen to be in. If you want to go somewhere you cant have them store them shoreside before you leave. I know thats not what you want to hear but thats the world we live in. It simply is not worth the risk to try and hide weapons for that extremely small chance you might have to defend yourself. If you decide not to go to a country due to their rules regarding your self defense rights let their tourism board know why you wont be spending money in their country. Note I don't think they will care that you don't visit, but if enough of us did this maybe someday there will be an international agreement allowing self defense weapons on private boats. Im not holding my breath though.
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Old 02-01-2014, 13:50   #4
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Re: Hiding Guns on Board

Many decades ago, I asked a Pennsylvania gunsmith about the legality of transporting my guns to California when I moved.

He just looked at me, and asked if I had ever had trouble the police or involving the law. I told him "no".

He said he didn't know all the states' laws, but that people did the same things over and over. If I had no problems with the law in the past, I would probably have none in the future. His advice has answered many questions, over many years for me.

While his advise doesn't answer your question directly, it still answers your question.
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Old 02-01-2014, 13:50   #5
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Re: Hiding Guns on Board

By the way. Just search guns on this site and prepare to read for a long long time. Pros and cons. Ok mostly cons and allot of USA bashers who consider us cowboys.
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Old 02-01-2014, 14:03   #6
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Re: Hiding Guns on Board

e-
Anyplace you can figure to hide something, some narc has figured out how to find and search. And to make things worse, back in the 80's (sorry, pre-internet, can't give you a citation) the USCG issued a blunt warning that any custom built "concealed" compartments would be considered proof of smuggling and ill intent, unless they were advised in writing of where the compartment(s) on the vessel were.

So, take a friendly warning that if you found with an illegal gun in a concealed compartment, the folks who find it will bring down a special extra layer of hell on you. Would I share any special ideas for stash places in a public forum? Hell no, that would kinda defeat the purpose, wouldn't it?

If you can't carry it "legal for sure" you're better off not carrying it these days, because you're really playing with fire these days. There is precedent, all the way up to the USSC, for travelers being allowed to "travel through" with their weapons, but that's been overruled long ago.

Hide it under the mattress, sure. Build a stash? Doesn't matter what's in the stash, the nice man is going to start making your day much much longer. Guns or not.
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Old 02-01-2014, 14:24   #7
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Re: Hiding Guns on Board

Quote:
Originally Posted by erobert View Post
Is it even possible to hide a gun in a sailboat
Yes. I hide mine beside my heroin stash and my DVD of kiddie pr0n.

Happy New Year!
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Old 02-01-2014, 14:33   #8
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Re: Hiding Guns on Board

Let's get ready to rumble.....sorry couldn't resist.

To me it is really quite simple, either follow the law and only go to places that will allow guns on board after you jump through all of their political hoops. Or break the law, pray to God you don't get caught and when you do get caught remember that most foreign countries judiciary systems are quite strict and may not allow you the basic freedoms that you expect in America.

I vote for only go to places that allow it, but be prepared that if you have to make an emergency stop in say Mexico get ready to dump all of them overboard without hesitation. Definitely one country you do NOT want to bring a gun into.
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Old 02-01-2014, 14:35   #9
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pirate Re: Hiding Guns on Board

Don't consider you cowboys.. just never felt a need to carry except when hunting.. and I've lived in some dangerous and gun happy places.. hell my father got shot and killed driving to get some videos.. carrying does not save you from a stray bullet..
Maybe its a psychological need to feel in control.. but WTF..
I'm no expert..
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Old 02-01-2014, 14:37   #10
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Re: Hiding Guns on Board

Don't do it brother! Respect the laws wherever you travel....even if they are stupid ones!

I can't think of anything worse than being locked up in a turd-world hellhole...
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Old 02-01-2014, 14:39   #11
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Re: Hiding Guns on Board

This may be a stupid question but here it goes:

Why would you want to cruise to a place where you felt you actually need a gun to feel safe?

Than as a equally stupid follow-up question:

In this place where you feel you need a gun to be safe, do you really think a small hidden gun will do you much good anyway?

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Old 02-01-2014, 14:40   #12
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Re: Hiding Guns on Board

Quote:
Originally Posted by erobert View Post
It is not my intentions to restart the question of having guns on board. There will no doubt be fokes who wish to give their two cents on the issue. I'm going to ignore them when they do and hope everyone does the same.

This thread is meant to address the issue of how to live aboard with a gun when the legality is ambiguous in large parts of the world. Two strategies that come to mind, are to stay out of States that don't allow guns by foreigners. The second is to hide them.

I'd like to hear from people who do have guns on board. Is it even possible to hide a gun in a sailboat. I've yet to sail internationally and don't know how stupid it would be to dismantle a rifle in the hopes immigration won't find a piece of it and figure out what it's for. It would be easy to hide a handgun but if they're close enough to be shot with a handgun then one might as well throw your hands up and try the Stockholm strategy. The goal for me would be to make it obvious to them before they're within range of even a rifle that I will be putting up a fight to persuade against belligerence.

Again, please don't respond with your opinion of if guns should be on boats. There's plenty of threads on that already.
Don't bother! They'll just get rusty anyway b/c they're always stashed in a place that's humid.
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Old 02-01-2014, 14:40   #13
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Re: Hiding Guns on Board

Ex-Marine jailed in Mexico on gun charge is back in U.S. - Washington Times

This didn't originate from a boat but is a good example of miscommunication / how bad things can get. Ultimately he got released but not after a hellish battle and very poor living conditions.
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Old 02-01-2014, 14:47   #14
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Re: Hiding Guns on Board

You could most likely hide it and get away with it. But what if you needed it? And what if you used it? You would then have to deal with very upset authorities; the end result could be loosing both your freedom and your boat!
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Old 02-01-2014, 14:47   #15
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I'll preface this with this. I own guns. I have a concealed weapons permit. I've been using guns since my teens and I'm 67 now. I enjoy going to the range now and then and busting a few clays or trying out different loads for my handgun.

I don't carry guns on my boat. I am not prepared to kill someone because they are trying to steal my dinghy. I am also not about to lose my boat or spend time in a foreign jail over getting caught with a gun on my boat. There is no such thing as 'self defense' outside of the U.S. If you shoot someone in a foreign country you will spend a lot of time in jail with no recourse and your boat will be impounded forever. Your crew and companions will be lucky if they avoid jail time. If you like, you can compound the issue by not declaring your firearms.

What good are they to you? More trouble? Oh yeah, protection from pirates. Right, how about staying away from Port Royal or Tortuga?

If you must, keep a machete handy. It can also serve to clean up a trail to the beach. Or take a large dog with you. Leave the guns home.
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