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Im sure we have some close to experts out there on this topic.  So how are the co2 cartridge airsoft pistols legal in nj to just buy over the counter?   My neighbors kid. 13 years old just got one shipped to him and his mom and dad are worried about the legality of it.  I cant see in the statues how it isnt considered a firearm in nj?  Thoughts? 

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Welcome to the "gray area" of 2C:39 and 2C:58

Airsoft is not specifically called out in the statutes as illegal, but the bill(s) to specifically call them "not a firearm" have never even had a hearing in a Law & Public Safety Committee.

If someone were to be seriously injured by an airsoft discharge, a prosecutor could pursue firearm charges against the shooter under the current definition of a "firearm" under 2C:39-1f as follows:

f.   "Firearm" means any handgun, rifle, shotgun, machine gun, automatic or semi-automatic rifle, or any gun, device or instrument in the nature of a weapon from which may be fired or ejected any solid projectable ball, slug, pellet, missile or bullet, or any gas, vapor or other noxious thing, by means of a cartridge or shell or by the action of an explosive or the igniting of flammable or explosive substances.  It shall also include, without limitation, any firearm which is in the nature of an air gun, spring gun or pistol or other weapon of a similar nature in which the propelling force is a spring, elastic band, carbon dioxide, compressed or other gas or vapor, air or compressed air, or is ignited by compressed air, and ejecting a bullet or missile smaller than three-eighths of an inch in diameter, with sufficient force to injure a person.

A 6mm airsoft ball is 0.236" in diameter, which is less than the statutory 3/8", making Airsoft a firearm if a prosecutor chose to pursue the matter.

IMHO he'd be a fool to, as that would open a whole new can of worms here in the Glorious Peoples Republik of New Jerseystan.

IANAL but I did spend the night with one a long time ago at a Holiday Inn Express. YMMV.

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SO with the new imitation firearm law. 

Things got real bad for airsoft

You either need to paint it some crazy color, follow the new law some how..

 

If it falls under the category as firearm then treat it like one, your right very grey area that makes no sense. Even with the new Ghost gun law that bans the sale of non serialized firearms

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14 minutes ago, JackDaWack said:

SO with the new imitation firearm law...

You're right. I forgot about that new POS law.

Here it is from the Bill section of the NJ Leg site.  The Chapter law has not been published yet.

https://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2018/Bills/A4500/4260_I1.HTM

An Act concerning the sale of certain imitation firearms and supplementing Title 56 of the Revised Statutes.

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey: 

1.    a.  As used in this section:

     “Toy gun” means a facsimile or reproduction of a firearm that is marketed as a product intended for children or is substantially similar in appearance, size, and shape to a genuine firearm.

     b.    A person shall not sell, transfer, or assign a toy gun or imitation firearm as defined in subsection v. of N.J.S.2C:39-1 unless it is:

     (1)   a color other than black, blue, silver, or aluminum;

     (2)   marked with a non-removable orange stripe that is at least one inch in width and runs the entire length of the barrel on each side of the barrel; and

     (3)   equipped with a barrel at least one inch in diameter that is closed at a distance of at least one-half inch from the front end of the barrel with the same material from which the toy gun or imitation firearm is made; or

     (4) is regulated under and conforms with the provisions of 15 CFR 272.1 et seq. 

     c.     The provisions of this section shall not apply to the sale of theatrical firearms for which a permit is issued by the Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police.  The provisions of paragraph (3) of subsection b. of this section shall not apply to water guns. 

     d.    A person who violates this act shall be subject to a penalty of not more than $500 for the first offense and not more than $1,000 for each subsequent offense, to be collected in a civil action by a summary proceeding under the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999,” P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).

 

     2.    The Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety shall adopt rules and regulations pursuant to the “Administrative Procedure Act,” P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.) to effectuate the provisions of this act. 

     3.    This act shall take effect immediately. 

STATEMENT

      This bill prohibits the sale of toy guns and imitation firearms that appear to be genuine firearms.  An “imitation firearm” is defined in New Jersey’s firearm statutes as an object or device that is reasonably capable of being mistaken for a firearm.  The bill defines “toy gun” as a facsimile or reproduction of a firearm that is marketed as a product intended for children or is substantially similar in appearance, size, and shape to a genuine firearm.

      The bill prohibits the sale of a toy gun or imitation firearm unless it meets certain specifications.  Under the bill, a toy gun or imitation firearm is required to: 1) be a color other than black, blue, silver, or aluminum; 2) be marked with a non-removable orange stripe that is at least one inch in width and runs the entire length of each side of the gun’s barrel; and 3) have a barrel that is at least one inch in diameter and closed at a distance of at least one-half inch from the barrel’s front end with the same material of which the toy gun or imitation firearm is made.

      The bill provides that a toy gun or imitation firearm that does not meet these standards is required to meet the federal standards for the appearance and configuration of toy guns and imitation firearms established pursuant to 15 CFR 272.1 et seq.  Under federal law, it is unlawful to manufacture, enter into commerce, ship, transport, or receive a toy gun or imitation firearm unless it has one of the following characteristics:

      a)   a blaze orange or orange color permanently affixed to the muzzle end of the barrel as an integral part of the entire device and recessed no more than six millimeters from the muzzle end of the barrel;

      b)   a blaze orange or orange color permanently affixed to the exterior surface of the barrel, covering the circumference of the barrel from the muzzle end for a depth of at least six millimeters;

      c)   is entirely constructed of transparent or translucent materials which permits unmistakable observation of the device’s complete contents; or

      d)   the entire exterior surface of the device is colored in white, bright red, bright orange, bright yellow, bright green, bright blue, bright pink, or bright purple, either singly or as the predominant color in combination with other colors in any pattern.

      The bill exempts theatrical firearms which are used in movie and film productions.

      The bill establishes penalties for violations at a maximum of $500 for the first offense and $1,000 for each subsequent offense.

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Airsoft is still legal.  The new law that got signed is regarding the SALE of toy guns, not the ownership/use of them.

Airsoft guns are not considered firearms, as they do not shoot a "solid" projectile - the bbs are plastic/starch and are not fully solid.  

That being said, treat 'em as if they were real firearms - don't go running around with 'em in public.  Keep 'em unloaded, etc. 

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I believe air soft is legal because it is not designed to injure. There was a court case in NJ when paint ball guns first came out in the 80's. NJ originally defined them as firearms, someone sued the state claiming they are not designed to injure and won. Thereafter they were no longer defined as firearms and could be bought and sold without regulation.

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Not being a paintball user, I did a search online and found a dimension listed on Wiki (yeah, yeah, I know!):

"Paintballs come in a variety of sizes, including of 13mm (0.50 in) and 17mm (0.68in)"

That would put them outside the realm of the "smaller than three-eighths of an inch in diameter" definition for firearm projectiles I quoted in the 2C:39-1 statute in a previous post. Maybe that's why Trenton included that dimension in the statute, specifically to exclude paintball from the definition of a firearm. IDK for sure, but it seems logical.

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1 hour ago, Golf battery said:

His pistol takes .25.  Hmm.  Explain that.   This really baffles me on legalities.  I was at an nra class today and yesterday.  Leo and civilians were there.  No one had an answer to legality. Baffled i say. 

.25g is the weight of the airsoft bb.  they're made of starch so they just use a denser material.

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From the Wiki article on "Airsoft Pellets"

"6 mm airsoft pellets[edit]

6 mm is the industrial standard size used in almost all spring, electric and gas airsoft guns. A wide variety of pellet masses are also available for different usages.

  • 0.11 g — Manufactured by HFC, same use as .12 gram. Extremely Uncommon.
  • 0.12 g — Extremely common, standard weight for all low-grade AEG's and spring guns. Not to be used in any small arms beyond low-cost, low quality replicas firing under 250 fps. These pellets are notorious for breaking inside high-powered guns because they are not hollow inside. The low weight of this pellet also causes it to be extremely inaccurate because they are easily affected by the slightest of breezes.[7]
  • 0.135 g — Same uses as 0.12 g. Extremely Uncommon. MFI standard. Not to be used in most guns.
  • 0.15 g — Same uses as 0.12 g. Uncommon. Made only by Air Venturi and Black Ops USA.
  • 0.16 g — Essentially the same as the 0.15 g pellets. Made only by Air Venturi.
  • 0.20 g — Second-most common weight. Standard for all chronograph tests in regions, where gun power output is measured in feet per second (FPS). AEGs are able to use these, however, most players will use heavier masses due to the increased accuracy and range. Biodegradable versions made by Green Devil or G&G being one of the most popular makes in the Scandinavian countries and many other parts of Europe & UK.
  • 0.21 g — Homemade by covering .20 g with pencil lead. Great for "paintball" but leaves residue in barrel.
  • 0.22 g — Available from Pyramyd Air. [8]
  • 0.23 g — Heavier pellets for AEGs. Blends speed of 0.20 g with range and accuracy of 0.25 g. Made popular by Tsunami Airsoft. Used less now in favor of .20 g & .25 g
  • 0.24 g — Only known manufacturers are Airstrike (a subsidiary of Daisy) and Crosman
  • 0.25 g — Third-most common weight, especially popular for the higher-powered AEGs used in America. This is the heaviest mass for lower-powered AEGs, blowback and spring guns. Tokyo Marui standard AEGs, gas and spring guns are set at the factory for 0.25 gram pellets, and they usually include a package of 200 of these with the gun. These are available in bio- and non-biodegradable versions from many sellers including Valken, EliteForce, 6mmProShop and Matrix. Biodegradable versions made by Green Devil or G&G being one of the most popular makes in the Scandinavian countries and many other parts of Europe & UK.
  • 0.26 g — Made by TSD in biodegradable form.
  • 0.27 g — Made by Bioval BBBMAX. They are (ostensibly) considered to be of the same grade, if not higher than the Maruzen SGM, while being significantly less expensive.
  • 0.28 g — Most used weight in Northern Europe. Suitable for modern standard AEGs. Typically cheaper than 0.30 g but yields similar performance. Biodegradable versions are made by most manufacturers.
  • 0.29 g — Maruzen Super Grandmaster pellets, designed for their Air Precision Shooting series of airsoft guns. O
  • 0.30 g — Standard mass for most sniper rifles. Also recommended weight for tuned AEGs. Have become more common in recent times with some of the top brands like Bioval and Bioshot, Biodegradable versions made by various manufacturers including G&G and Tokyo Marui.
  • 0.32 g — Also standard for sniper rifles. Offers excellent balance of velocity and stability for most spring and gas sniper rifles. A well-known brand is Goldenball.
  • 0.36 g — Heavier pellets for sniper rifles. Slower, but have high stability. Produced by Madbull Airsoft, among others. BB Bastard manufactures a ceramic pellet in this mass class.
  • 0.40 g — Heavy pellets for airsoft sniper rifles. Mad Bull is a known producer. Even slower than 0.36 g but even more stable and maintains its velocity better.
  • 0.43 g — For the highest level of upgrades in spring and gas sniper rifles. Usually graphite-coated.
  • 0.66 g — For extreme long-range shooting, not used against human targets. This is a CNC-machined ceramic pellet made by BB Bastard.
  • 0.90 g — Nickel-plated steel BBs sold by UK's Abacus Claysports. Air gun grade, not used against human targets."

Given the higher mass pellets available for airsoft "guns" it would seem to me that it is only by the discretion of prosecutors that airsoft is NOT considered a "firearm" as defined in 2C:39-1, as quoted in an earlier post by me in this thread.

As with "real" firearms, one should proceed with all caution in the use of airsoft, as one may find oneself in a world of legal trouble under the PRNJ's firearms laws. IANAL, YMMV.

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On 2/1/2020 at 9:23 PM, JackDaWack said:

SO with the new imitation firearm law. 

Things got real bad for airsoft

You either need to paint it some crazy color, follow the new law some how..

 

If it falls under the category as firearm then treat it like one, your right very grey area that makes no sense. Even with the new Ghost gun law that bans the sale of non serialized firearms

so theoretically, one could paint thair ar the same, and police would assume it's airsoft?

that's my monday morning dumbassery :D

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There are legal Airsoft fields/facilities as well as stores here in NJ - including at Range 14.  I haven't seen any of them get shutdown by the gestapo..  With the new law, there may be some changes in the stores - but we'll need to see how it works out.  I've been following the NJ Airsoft community for almost 20 years.  Just because something is not mentioned as legal, does not mean that it is illegal, by law.  Many of NJ's gun laws are like that, remember?

I caution about treating them as firearms, because they look so similar that you could get jammed up as if you had a real firearm.

Just use some common sense.

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From the short description of the circumstances on the above complaint, the wrong statute was used by the patrolman and was never corrected by his supervisor. It probably should have been the imitation firearm statute. 

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13 hours ago, Krdshrk said:

.25g is the weight of the airsoft bb.  they're made of starch so they just use a denser material.

I know they switched to materials that would degrade in the environment,  but I have broken open plenty of them to see they are solid projectiles... 

 

At the end of the day, they fall under the NJ definition as firearms... the only thing I've seen argued is their ability to create serious bodily injury.. 

 

The fact the state is inconsistent in applying the law doesnt mean you cant get nabbed by a cop and rung through the system. 

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1 hour ago, JackDaWack said:

I know they switched to materials that would degrade in the environment,  but I have broken open plenty of them to see they are solid projectiles... 

At the end of the day, they fall under the NJ definition as firearms... the only thing I've seen argued is their ability to create serious bodily injury.. 

The fact the state is inconsistent in applying the law doesnt mean you cant get nabbed by a cop and rung through the system. 

I'm sure the various airsoft fields have checked regarding the legality already.  There is pending legislation to try to get airsoft guns classified as firearms and therefore banned - so to me, that means that they are allowed - in the legal "grey area" we already exist in as firearms owners.

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22 hours ago, PK90 said:

From the short description of the circumstances on the above complaint, the wrong statute was used by the patrolman and was never corrected by his supervisor. It probably should have been the imitation firearm statute. 

Somehow the "wrong statute" mistake continued past the patrolman, past his supervisor, past the prosecutor and past the judge:

http://newjersey.news12.com/story/34865267/actor-carlo-bellario-takes-plea-deal-over-prop-pellet-gun-used-in-film
 

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4 minutes ago, DirtyDigz said:

Somehow the "wrong statute" mistake continued past the patrolman, past his supervisor, past the prosecutor and past the judge:

http://newjersey.news12.com/story/34865267/actor-carlo-bellario-takes-plea-deal-over-prop-pellet-gun-used-in-film
 

Any court documents on this? Something is missing. 

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17 hours ago, Krdshrk said:

I'm sure the various airsoft fields have checked regarding the legality already.  There is pending legislation to try to get airsoft guns classified as firearms and therefore banned - so to me, that means that they are allowed - in the legal "grey area" we already exist in as firearms owners.

The powers that be in this state usually just make up shit as they go along. How would they check? Reading the law would imply you're in a serious grey area, ask the state and you would get an answer that may be highly inconsistent. 

 

I think you can argue it one way or another, and for the time being the state has mostly ignored the issue... 

 

Pending legislation is also another useless fact here... there is a lot of redundancy in pending Bill's and already established law... we see it all the time where they make something illegal, more illegal.

 

Perhaps with airsoft fields they could argue their rules dont allow for serious bodily injury, and that the airsoftguns are not firearms in that respect... I dunno? I would be weary to invest in a business like that... 

Just look at all the empty stores in NJ that have big Vape signs out front... your like one bad statement away from going bankrupt. 

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1 hour ago, CMJeepster said:

It was a real story.  101.5 did hours on it.

Okay. Found it.

He was not found to be guilty of a handgun possession without a permit. He pled to "creating a false public alarm", which should have been the original charge.

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I know its a bit late but, all Airsoft stuff is sold/shipped with a blaze orange tip as required by federal law.
It is permanently attached or painted on.

On 2/1/2020 at 9:41 PM, njJoniGuy said:

You're right. I forgot about that new POS law.

Here it is from the Bill section of the NJ Leg site.  The Chapter law has not been published yet.

https://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2018/Bills/A4500/4260_I1.HTM

An Act concerning the sale of certain imitation firearms and supplementing Title 56 of the Revised Statutes.

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey: 

1.    a.  As used in this section:

     “Toy gun” means a facsimile or reproduction of a firearm that is marketed as a product intended for children or is substantially similar in appearance, size, and shape to a genuine firearm.

     b.    A person shall not sell, transfer, or assign a toy gun or imitation firearm as defined in subsection v. of N.J.S.2C:39-1 unless it is:

     (1)   a color other than black, blue, silver, or aluminum;

     (2)   marked with a non-removable orange stripe that is at least one inch in width and runs the entire length of the barrel on each side of the barrel; and

     (3)   equipped with a barrel at least one inch in diameter that is closed at a distance of at least one-half inch from the front end of the barrel with the same material from which the toy gun or imitation firearm is made; or

     (4) is regulated under and conforms with the provisions of 15 CFR 272.1 et seq. 

     c.     The provisions of this section shall not apply to the sale of theatrical firearms for which a permit is issued by the Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police.  The provisions of paragraph (3) of subsection b. of this section shall not apply to water guns. 

     d.    A person who violates this act shall be subject to a penalty of not more than $500 for the first offense and not more than $1,000 for each subsequent offense, to be collected in a civil action by a summary proceeding under the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999,” P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).

 

     2.    The Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety shall adopt rules and regulations pursuant to the “Administrative Procedure Act,” P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.) to effectuate the provisions of this act. 

     3.    This act shall take effect immediately. 

STATEMENT

      This bill prohibits the sale of toy guns and imitation firearms that appear to be genuine firearms.  An “imitation firearm” is defined in New Jersey’s firearm statutes as an object or device that is reasonably capable of being mistaken for a firearm.  The bill defines “toy gun” as a facsimile or reproduction of a firearm that is marketed as a product intended for children or is substantially similar in appearance, size, and shape to a genuine firearm.

      The bill prohibits the sale of a toy gun or imitation firearm unless it meets certain specifications.  Under the bill, a toy gun or imitation firearm is required to: 1) be a color other than black, blue, silver, or aluminum; 2) be marked with a non-removable orange stripe that is at least one inch in width and runs the entire length of each side of the gun’s barrel; and 3) have a barrel that is at least one inch in diameter and closed at a distance of at least one-half inch from the barrel’s front end with the same material of which the toy gun or imitation firearm is made.

      The bill provides that a toy gun or imitation firearm that does not meet these standards is required to meet the federal standards for the appearance and configuration of toy guns and imitation firearms established pursuant to 15 CFR 272.1 et seq.  Under federal law, it is unlawful to manufacture, enter into commerce, ship, transport, or receive a toy gun or imitation firearm unless it has one of the following characteristics:

      a)   a blaze orange or orange color permanently affixed to the muzzle end of the barrel as an integral part of the entire device and recessed no more than six millimeters from the muzzle end of the barrel;

      b)   a blaze orange or orange color permanently affixed to the exterior surface of the barrel, covering the circumference of the barrel from the muzzle end for a depth of at least six millimeters;

      c)   is entirely constructed of transparent or translucent materials which permits unmistakable observation of the device’s complete contents; or

      d)   the entire exterior surface of the device is colored in white, bright red, bright orange, bright yellow, bright green, bright blue, bright pink, or bright purple, either singly or as the predominant color in combination with other colors in any pattern.

      The bill exempts theatrical firearms which are used in movie and film productions.

      The bill establishes penalties for violations at a maximum of $500 for the first offense and $1,000 for each subsequent offense.

https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/15/272.3

No real danger to Airsoft, still a toy- just not allowed to remove the orange tip you already weren't supposed to remove.

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