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  1. #1
    Shooter15 is offline Junior Member
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    Baby browning serial defaced

    The family had a relative that past away he had a couple guns. When I went through them I found a baby browning, unfortunately the serial was defaced pretty good on the frame. This is the Nickle plated with the pearl grips and gold plated trigger. Upon breaking it down I found the serial on the slide(missing the leading digit 1) and the barrel(full serial). What to do what to do... I know the ramifications of possessing the frame as is. I have a friend that is a
    State trooper who will take possession if needed. With the barrel and slide being stamped not sure about those parts.

  2. #2
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
    Steve M1911A1 is online now Senior Member
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    There is a way to get the serial number "put back." Gunsmiths and engravers do it all the time.
    The simplest thing to do, since the serial number does exist on the gun, is to have a gunsmith re-stamp it on the frame.

    I strongly suggest that you contact the nearest office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. Write a letter detailing the entire story, including where you got the pistol, and ask for guidance. Explain that you are already in contact with the State Police about the matter. BATFE will be very helpful.
    Meanwhile, ask your State Police contact to check whether the gun was stolen or crime-related. If it is stolen or otherwise related to a crime, be prepared to lose it without regrets.

  3. #3
    pic
    pic is online now Senior Member HGF Gold Member
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    I had just the frame added to my pistol permit. It is a 1946 beretta 25. I disassembled it, brought it down to the property clerks office. they wrote me up a piece of paper.I then went to the town clerk and added the pistol to my license.
    if the barrel has the full serial, you might be able to register the number and then like SteveM1911A1 above mentions,, have it fixed.
    .
    A lot of times they just want registration of an unregistered gun or gun part. Just a thought. Do you have a property clerks office?
    IF you know the gun is not stolen piece of cake.
    BUT then again , do not ANNOY the property clerk .SERIOUSLY,, They are easily ANNOYED.

  4. #4
    mike9905 is offline Junior Member
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    Shooter, for God's sake don't go to law enforcement and ask what to do about a defaced serial number. Do research about recovery of defaced stamped numbers. If you can determine the correct number it can be legally re-stamped in the receiver. If you tell LE you have a defaced serial number they may be forced to confiscate your pistol. On the other hand, why did the original owner deface the serial number?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by pic View Post
    I had just the frame added to my pistol permit. It is a 1946 beretta 25. I disassembled it, brought it down to the property clerks office. they wrote me up a piece of paper.I then went to the town clerk and added the pistol to my license.
    if the barrel has the full serial, you might be able to register the number and then like SteveM1911A1 above mentions,, have it fixed.
    .
    A lot of times they just want registration of an unregistered gun or gun part. Just a thought. Do you have a property clerks office?
    IF you know the gun is not stolen piece of cake.
    BUT then again , do not ANNOY the property clerk .SERIOUSLY,, They are easily ANNOYED.
    REGISTER YOUR GUN???????????????????

    What kind of communist country do you live in?

    Oh, I see, you live in NY.

    To the OP, I encourage you to go with Steve's suggestion. If properly approached, BATFE can be very helpful; as long as you are dealing local and not with Washington.

  6. #6
    pic
    pic is online now Senior Member HGF Gold Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by high pockets View Post
    REGISTER YOUR GUN???????????????????

    What kind of communist country do you live in?

    Oh, I see, you live in NY.

    To the OP, I encourage you to go with Steve's suggestion. If properly approached, BATFE can be very helpful; as long as you are dealing local and not with Washington.
    I did register the gun, it was an old non functioning gun. But felt the need to register the gun as mentioned.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by pic View Post
    I did register the gun, it was an old non functioning gun. But felt the need to register the gun as mentioned.
    Sorry, I have lived in AL, MO, IN, & GA, and I have never heard of having to register any of my guns. Your post took me by surprise.

    I almost moved to NJ, from what I have read, I am very glad I declined that opportunity.

  8. #8
    pic
    pic is online now Senior Member HGF Gold Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by high pockets View Post
    Sorry, I have lived in AL, MO, IN, & GA, and I have never heard of having to register any of my guns. Your post took me by surprise.

    I almost moved to NJ, from what I have read, I am very glad I declined that opportunity.
    Here in NYS , all handguns are required to be added to your carry permit.

  9. #9
    mike9905 is offline Junior Member
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    I just field stripped my Baby Browning. The serial number is also stamped on the barrel.

  10. #10
    DJ Niner's Avatar
    DJ Niner is offline HGF Forum Moderator
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    Okay folks, here is the deal as I understand it...

    Mere possession of a pistol with an "altered" serial number is a felony. Here are two different references; I believe the second one is for imported guns:

    478.34 Removed, obliterated, or altered serial number.
    No person shall knowingly transport, ship, or receive in interstate or foreign commerce any firearm which has had the importer's or manufacturer's serial number removed, obliterated, or altered, or possess or receive any firearm which has had the importer's or manufacturer's serial number removed, obliterated, or altered and has, at any time, been shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce.


    Title 18 USC 922. Unlawful acts
    (k) It shall be unlawful for any person knowingly to transport, ship, or receive, in interstate or foreign commerce, any firearm which has had the importer’s or manufacturer’s serial number removed, obliterated, or altered or to possess or receive any firearm which has had the importer’s or manufacturer’s serial number removed, obliterated, or altered and has, at any time, been shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce.


    Steve mentioned that gunsmiths can move or restamp serial numbers, but it is my understanding that this would only be allowed in connection with a required modification that would remove/destroy/alter all or part of the original serial number, and that to do so legally, a formal "variation" must be approved in advance, by ATF. An example of this would be the old Seecamp DA conversions of the 1911, which required milling the frame at the location of the original serial number. They applied for and received a variance to allow them to relocate the serial number to the dust cover on any pistol that had the DA conversion installed.

    I have never heard of ANY gunsmith being allowed to modify/relocate/re-stamp a serial number "just because" at the request of any person who walks in off the street. For the above reasons (I know it is illegal in many circumstances, and the only exceptions I am aware of do not apply to this case) I am going to close this thread, as discussion of illegal acts is not allowed here under the rules/TOS. As there didn't seem to be any intent to deliberately break or work-around the law, no sanctions will be issued, and if info that supports the "serial number can be relocated/re-stamped for anyone at any time by a gunsmith" is sent to me via Private Message, I will evaluate the info, and, if the info is valid, I'll reopen this thread and post the info for all to see.
    "Placement is power" -- seen in an article by Stephen A. Camp
    (RIP, Mr. Camp; you will be remembered, and missed)

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