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Bald Headed Squirrel Hunter
Picture of Angus the Kid
posted
I live in Houston Texas. Several months ago I bought an old H&R starter pistol that shoots black powder 32's.

I just cleaned it up and wanted to try it out. Is it legal for me to shoot a starter pistol in my backyard?



"Meet the new boss, same as the old boss"
 
Posts: 6042 | Location: In the tent, in Houston, in Texas | Registered: October 23, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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You would have to check your local ordinances but I would go with no. Most areas around here your not even allowed to shoot paintball or airsoft guns.


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Posts: 4718 | Location: Pittsburgh, PA, USA | Registered: February 27, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of Rinehart
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"Explosive device", blah-blah-lawyerly-detailed words = bad/generally prohibited.
When we lived in Western NY in a small village even slingshots and BB/pellet guns were illegal.
 
Posts: 1426 | Location: PA | Registered: March 15, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Cogito Ergo Sum
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In our town anything that launches a projectile is illegal to operate in city limits. I guess that would include spitballs.
 
Posts: 5362 | Registered: August 01, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of Orive 8
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quote:
Originally posted by Angus the Kid:
I just cleaned it up and wanted to try it out. Is it legal for me to shoot a starter pistol in my backyard?


Maybe you can go to a running track with it, take a starting stance, fire it off and do a lap around the track? Wink Wink Wink

Like others said, check your local ordinances.


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Tomorrow's battle is won during today's practice.
 
Posts: 1649 | Location: Collier Twp, PA | Registered: June 08, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
The Unmanned Writer
Picture of LS1 GTO
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My answer is, "yes."

However, to be legal, (Big Grin); load each cylinder and just before the first trigger pull you must scream, "no, no, no, don't do it." Then pull the starter gun trigger three times .

Then; scream, "don't, not again, please" and expend the remaining two blanks.

Pop a beer, light a seeegar and enjoy the next couple hours.









Only in an insane world are the sane considered insane.


The memories of a man in his old age
Are the deeds of a man in his prime


 
Posts: 12846 | Location: It was Lat: 33.xxxx Lon: 44.xxxx now it's CA :( | Registered: March 22, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Angus the Kid:
I live in Houston Texas. ?


This is certainly about your location - “in” being key. There may be local ordnances about discharging a firearm within the city limits. I believe them to be common in many small towns, more so I expect in cities.

A safe place to ask might be a local gun shop. Ironic as is may be, they might suggest taking it to a local gun range.
 
Posts: 1904 | Location: south central Pennsylvania | Registered: November 05, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Little ray
of sunshine
Picture of jhe888
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I genuinely don't know. I can look it up if you want to pay me my hourly rate. The city ordinances are on-line. It might violate noise ordinances, too. And there are state criminal laws about how much land you need to shoot guns. The key will be the definition of "gun" or "firearm." It may take reference to case law if the statute is not perfectly clear. Generally, a firearm is a device designed to discharge a projectile, generally by burning powder or the like, but I have never looked up Texas' definition.

But, I'd advise against it, no matter. Some neighbor may think it is a gun and call the police. Then, at best, you get to spend half an hour convincing a cop it isn't a gun. Or, you get to go downtown and deal with it in more detail, even if if does not turn out to be illegal. And, if it is illegal, then you committed a crime.

Seems like a no-win to me.




The fish is mute, expressionless. The fish doesn't think because the fish knows everything.
 
Posts: 50149 | Location: Texas | Registered: February 10, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Doin' what I can
with what I got
Picture of Rob Decker
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One might file this under "if you have to ask, you can't afford it."

One of your neighbors probably learned about guns from NBC Prime Time and won't know the difference. Are there statutes about Inciting Panic on the books in your jurisdiction?


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Death smiles at us all. Be sure you smile back.
 
Posts: 5461 | Location: Greater KCMO | Registered: May 11, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of sigcrazy7
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It would be legal in my city, albeit unadvisable. Our city prohibits discharging a device that is capable or launching a projectile, so firing blanks in a real rifle is still illegal. Since a starter pistol isn’t capable of firing a projectile, it would technically be legal. As others have stated, that’s a legal difference that you may not win with responding officers.



Demand not that events should happen as you wish; but wish them to happen as they do happen, and you will go on well. -Epictetus
 
Posts: 7011 | Location: Utah | Registered: December 18, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
I Deal In Lead
Picture of Flash-LB
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If you only fire one shot, people will generally ignore it. They won't be sure if it's a gunshot, a backfire, a firecracker or what.

If you fire more than one, they'll go out and investigate.
 
Posts: 6862 | Location: Gilbert Arizona | Registered: March 21, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I have an apartment complex in my backyard with a large retention pond nearest me. Kids living there often train their dogs for retrieving when it is holding water. Last year a girl had a lab and was simulating a shot with a starter pistol and blanks. I happened to be in my back pasture when she started and I advised her she was likely to get run in to the cops if she kept after it. She was nice and took my suggestion with a smile; I assured her I wouldn't be the one who made the call. She said her dad said it would be ok and she did it all the time out in West Texas. I just smiled.

A few days later she yelled at me and said she should have listened. Someone did call and she got a hefty fine and was told she was lucky she didn't get arrested for discharging a weapon in the city limits.
 
Posts: 359 | Location: East Texas | Registered: June 06, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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