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Online private party firearm sale?


Atomic Test Lab Rat
May 21, 2020
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I've been looking for a SCR lower. Found one out of state on Armslist. I know it can be full of scams. I have previously purchased FTF or direct from a FFL. Anyone have any tips for getting this sale done without losing my money? Have a local FFL to the seller hold the gun pending payment then ship it to my FFL? Not sure on how best to go about this. Or if it's just not worth it.
I’d call the seller and talk on the phone, you can usually figure things out quicker that way. If your FFL has an actual storefront and website (meaning it’s easily verifiable as a legitimate business), I’d see if he’s willing to ship it there with a note not to release it to you until he’s confirmed that you’ve paid. As soon as he sends you the tracking #, put a check in the mail to him. Sure, there are still ways to screw each other, but that should give both people enough security if they are decent humans.

Otherwise, he can list it on gunbroker, send you the link as soon as it’s up, and you can do a buy it now. Gives their protection but there will be a fee of course.
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I recently bought a McKay UZI receiver and a bunch of parts from a fella, 2K miles away. Found it on Armslist, he didn't offer shipping in the ad, but I asked, and he was amenable. We worked out a deal, and while he could legally ship to my local FFL, I asked my local FFL, just to be sure, and they weren't willing to accept a firearm from a non FFL holder for their own liability reasons. I informed the seller, so he shipped through his local FFL to mine. I offered to look for another FFL on my end, willing to accept a firearm direct from him, but he decided to just ship through his local FFL to save me the hassle.

Finances were handled via Paypal, while they're not firearm friendly, we kept things vague, I wrote "machine parts," in the notes about what I was buying, though I think you can leave everything blank. Additionally, you can pay via a credit card instead of your bank account through Payapal, so you have another layer of protection if something goes sideways.

Everything worked out, but there was a decent amount of communication, at first via email, and eventually text between the seller and myself, so I was 95% sure he was legit, before committing funds to the transaction.
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