The shipment of weapons (privately owned firearms) as personal property differs from state to state. The state concerned will implement and govern the rules specific to that state regarding entry of weapons. The shipping of ammunition in a personal property shipment (to include storage) is strictly PROHIBITED. The shipment of firearms is prohibited for persons convicted of a felony, has been discharged by the Armed Forces under dishonorable conditions, or has been adjudged by a Federal or State court to be mentally incompetent.
When it comes to weapons you are solely responsible for ensuring the weapons are incompliance. All members may import into the US, at anytime, any reasonable amount of weapons, provided they are for sporting purposes, registered war trophies and are not prohibited firearms. The same rules that govern personal property shipments apply to the shipment of weapons. The weapons must be intended solely for the personal use of the member on the effective date of the orders.
Normally, a weapon will not be personally shipped through the United States postal system. Before you ship a weapon through the military postal facilities, consult you local military postal representative. However, a weapon may be shipped through the postal system by the ITO/TMO as official mail. If you require detailed information regarding firearms, registration, forms, and import permits you should visit the Alcohol Tobacco, and Firearm (ATF) website at http://www.atf.gov/pub/fire-explo_pub/statelaws.htm for answers to your questions.
Please be aware that the rules for transporting weapons and entry within the United States differ. If you plan to ship a weapon within the United States it's in your best interest to visit the ATF website at http://www.atf.gov/pub/fire-explo_pub/statelaws.htm and review the ATF pamphlet 5300.5 (State Laws and Published Ordinances Firearms). The ATF pamphlet 5300.5 will provide you with the state laws and rules governing that state. You can acquire information on weapon definitions, unlawful possession of firearms by felons, prohibited weapons, unlawful transfer of certain weapons, and making a firearm accessible to a child to name a few.
You may want to review the information contained in the DTR, Volume IV (Defense Transportation Regulation Personal Property) to gain insight on the shipment of weapons both stateside and overseas. All DoD members are authorized to ship a conventional firearm, antique firearm, war trophies, and surplus military firearms provided the owner is in possession of appropriate licenses and permits or documentation required by law. The state laws governing firearms vary from state to state. If in doubt, contact the state or ATF for clarification.
The firearms must be described on the carrier inventory. You must provide the carrier a complete description of each firearm to include the MAKE, MODEL, SERIAL NUMBER, and CALIBER or GAUGE. It is recommended that you disassemble the firearm by removing the BOLT or FIRING PIN. As a result of the Brady Bill, the carrier is not allowed to write the word "FIREARM" on the outside of the carton. The weapon or weapons must be packed separately from the other personal property in the shipment. The weapon(s) are to be placed in the number one container, and readily accessible for examination by government officials, if required.
You may ship weapons in an unaccompanied baggage shipment. However, weapons included in unaccompanied baggage are easily pilfered. You’re advised that you not select this mode for shipping purposes.
If there are questions or further concern solicit your local ITO/TMO for clarification and guidance. The information provided is meant to enlighten you on the rules, requirements, and laws governing weapon shipments.