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Discussion Starter #1
I thank everyone for all of the great advice about hunting equipment but I have another question. When you buy a long gun (shotgun or rifle) for the first time, what are the licensing requirements? We are in Philadelphia, so I understand they might be a little different. I've tried reading through the regulations and I'm getting confused about what we need and how long the process takes. Scenario is we go to a Dick's or Cabela's type place (or local shop) and we want to buy a rifle just to be used for hunting. What do we need to have with us, and what can we expect? We would just be keeping it locked up and only transporting it in the car when going hunting.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Is there a wait for the license to have it, though? I read 45 days? I'm understanding there is the Sportsman's License and then the License to Carry a Firearm. Are they different processes? I'm reading 45 day wait for a license - is that for rifles, too, or just handguns? The reason I'm trying to figure it out is I'd like to sign my husband up for an Appleseed class (marksmanship)and the rifle is required.
 

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Sportsman permit and license to carry a firearm (LTCF) apply only to carrying and not "purchasing", and only for a handgun.

For purchase you need photo id, fill out paperwork attesting to your eligibility to own a weapon in Pa (mental illness, drug use, domestic violence, felony, etc), and then a Pa instant check (PICS) is run to confirm. If all is well you pay and walk out with the gun.
 

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There can be a wait and it can be long. I went into our local sportsman store to buy a 22 long rifle and that was 2 weeks ago. Still no word from the government about approval. The store was told that there's a backlog right now. I guess a lot of people are buying rifles now because of the upcoming deer rifle season. We were hoping to go in and buy the 22 so we can take our boys out for youth squirrel and rabbit season. Well, that's past and today starts the regular season, still no gun. They originally told us it would take 20 mins. Then they said that the government does have 15 days to get back. And this is my first purchase of a gun, that may be part of the hold up. Maybe you will be lucky, but don't be surprised if you have to wait a while.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Oh, I wondered what happened with yours, that stinks. We ended up at French Creek outfitters today "to look" and we ended up buying a used .22 rifle for hubby and a used shotgun for me - the check took about ten minutes and they were SO helpful. Mine was very quick, the salesman said, since I still lived in the place I was born (PA) and my husband's took a little longer (like, a minute longer) because he was born in Massachusetts. Anyway, we now have our squirrel guns - so excited! Now we need to start practicing! I hope they figure yours out. Maybe it's dependent on how many other people in your area are applying?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I bet it's for that reason. Our legal residence as adults has always been PA since my husband went to college here. I lived overseas for five years, but I don't think that would show up?
 

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West Philly, just a quick recomendation on squirrel ammo for that shotgun. Squirrels have thick skins so go no smaller than #5 shot. Growing up I used a 16 ga. single shot full choke, and #4 shot with great results.

Hope your hunts are successful!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I got #6 based on what the salesman recommended. There's a picture of a squirrel on the package. That means something, right?
It's all just in my head right now, though. I still have a long ways to go. I've only done one 3 hour shotgun course, so lots of practicing needs to happen. I am a rank beginner and so is hubby who has even less experience than I do, seeing as how he's only shot a gun once back when he was in Sea Scouts. We're real city folks who don't even know any hunters. I don't think we'll be ready for this year if we want to be safe and competent. We're talking about going out to scout a bit over Christmas break which coincides with squirrel season. We want to train the dog a bit for treeing squirrels, too.
 

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I find this to be really cool. If I was closer I'd take you both out. You should have no problem hunting squirrels, plenty around.
Did you take the hunter safety course yet?

WestPhillyFam said:
We're real city folks who don't even know any hunters. I don't think we'll be ready for this year if we want to be safe and competent.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
BOOTOXEN said:
I find this to be really cool. If I was closer I'd take you both out. You should have no problem hunting squirrels, plenty around.
Did you take the hunter safety course yet?
Yup! Just passed the test yesterday and promptly went out and got our licenses! Yeah, we are very unlikely hunters. It's been a gradual process. We like being outdoors and have taken the girls camping a lot and then found that the kids would get antsy not having any structure to being outside. Hunting kind of introduced itself as an activity that would give us a reason and a purpose as we enjoy the outdoors. It was actually the kids' idea but we were easy to convince.
 

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Pappy84 said:
Janie said:
I killed my squirrels with a 20 gauge n #7 shot. Just saying...
I think you also said you missed 2 more. Maybe you did'ent miss?
I know I missed the first one because it ran up the tree and the second one I hit but ran. Honeydoe came over both times and helped me look and we didn't find either of them but I know I saw the first one run up the tree.
 

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Congrats on your rifle and shotgun. The french creek guys have always been nice to me and I find them a great bunch of guys. There is an outdoor range on the State Game Lands not that far from the store if you are interested in shooting there. They used to have a shotgun range but took it out when the redid the ranges.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Is it a public range? I did notice on the map I bought that there were state game lands near there which surprised me - it's so built up around there. The French Creek guys were really great. I think when we buy bows we'll buy them there.
 
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