Port Bouvard Pistol & Small Bore Rifle Club Inc.

Country Club Drive, Dawesville, WA 6211



The process of purchasing a handgun can seem a little daunting at first but the rewards of participating in club matches and enjoying fellowship with other like minded enthusiasts will quickly make it all thoroughly worthwhile.

Unless you have special dispensation as an agricultural worker, pest eradicator or security guard then the only other permitted reason for owning a handgun is for club competition use. Under the WA Firearms Act this requires the club to agree to support your handgun ownership and monitor that you are meeting the minimum safety and participation requirements.

If you fail to meet these requirements then the law requires the club to withdraw your support. You will then need to quickly sell your firearms or risk having the police take them from you.

Prior to purchasing your first handgun you must have successfully completed the club ‘Handgun Safety Induction Course’. You must also have been a financial member of both the club and either the West Australia Pistol Association (WAPA) or the Sporting Shooters Association of Australia (SSAA) for at least 6 months.

WAPA and SSAA are responsible for the state wide running of various target shooting matches (commonly referred to as ‘disciplines’). The various disciplines as run by each association at the club can be studied on the disciplines page. As a new member you will need to consider which association you wish to join based on the disciplines you wish to compete in (you can join both associations should you choose to do so).

When you purchase a handgun, it must be supported under a specific discipline or discipline category, of which you will have minimum participation requirements. Therefore, you are encouraged to purchase a handgun which will be competitive in those disciplines.

It is not uncommon to find new members keen to purchase military or police style handguns. Very few handguns of this style are made with a competition level of accuracy as a primary requirement. Most are designed with the prerequisites of being safe, reliable and affordable with only a reasonable standard of accuracy. Very few are normally capable of grouping competitively in the  ’10’ ring at 25 metres, and many will struggle to hit the target at all at 50 metres. If the handgun you purchase is not competitively accurate, then chances are you will quickly become disillusioned.

A quality match grade .22LR rimfire handgun will cost a little more initially, but should prove capable of out shooting your abilities for several years while you develop good competitive shooting skills. It should be noted that competition grade .22 handguns are the Olympic standard.

Regardless of which association you join, as a member of the club you can compete in all matches run at the club . However, you will only be able to compete in open matches (i.e. matches open to all clubs) of the association you are a member of.

While waiting out the 6 month probationary period you will be able to hire club handguns enabling you to continue to compete in club organised matches. Prior to purchasing your first handgun, you must have participated in at least six club calendared matches shot under club Range Officer supervision. Your level of participation and standard of safety will be monitored, after which the club committee will either approve or disapprove to support your first handgun purchase.

A maximum of 2 handguns can be applied for after 6 months, being either:

  • 1x Air pistol and/or
  • 1x .22LR Rimfire semi-auto or revolver.

After 12 months of membership you may apply to the committee for support to purchase a centre-fire handgun should you wish to do so.


Applying For Your First Handgun

The following assumes you have been both a club and shooting association member for at least 6 months, have participated in at least 6 club run matches, and have no reason to believe you may be denied club support.

  1. Step 1:
    If you do not already hold a WA Firearms Licence (rifle) you must first complete a West Australian Police (WAPOL) Firearms Awareness Test. This test can be administered by a licensed firearm’s dealer for a small fee, or by the club president or secretary free of charge upon request. Once completed, a Firearms Awareness Certificate will be issued to you.
  2. Step 2:
    Purchase a handgun and obtain a Serviceability Certificate from the firearm’s dealer. If you are making a private purchase, then the seller must obtain a Serviceability Certificate for you from either a licensed firearms dealer or a club authorised person. In the case of co-ownership, complete the Co-Owner Permission Form (available on the WAPOL website).
  3. Step 3:
    Get approval from the club committee and a support letter from your chosen shooting association.

    • If you have chosen to join WAPA:
      See the club secretary in regard to completing the required WAPA support documentation. Once completed, the secretary will present your first gun application to the club committee at the next monthly meeting.  Once approved, the secretary will provide you with a club support letter.
    • If you have chosen to join SSAA:
      See the club secretary, who will help you complete the required SSAA documentation. Once completed, the secretary will present your first gun application to the club committee at the next monthly meeting.  Once approved, you then forward the relevant support forms to the West Australian SSAA Firearms Support Officer (along with a $15 fee per firearm) who will then return a completed SSAA Support Letter to you.
  4. Step 4:
    Complete the online WAPOL Firearm Licence Application Form which will include the need to state your genuine reason to own a firearm, i.e. that you intend to use it only for club competition purposes. You then need to submit the completed form which is a two-step process. The completed form is first submitted online, and then you must lodge a printed copy with the required fee at a participating Australian Post outlet.
    Ensure you take the following support documentation with you:

    • 100 points proof of ID as described in the WAPOL application form.
    • Your firearm Serviceability Certificate,
    • Your WAPA or SSAA support letter,
    • Your Firearms Awareness Certificate,
    • Your Co-owner Permission Form (if required),
  5. Step 5:
    Wait patiently.
    A 28 day “cooling off” period applies to first time applicants, after which you will be contacted by WAPOL to confirm your intention to proceed with your application.
    Note: Failure to advise Police Licensing Services within the next 28 days of your intention to continue with your application will result in your application lapsing and being terminated. After confirming your wish to proceed, you will then be required to submit a Statutory Declaration with photographs of your compliant storage facilities for your firearms. You will also be required to attend an Australia Post office which has a “Photo Point” to have your photograph taken for an Extract of Licence card.
    Once your licence is issued (consisting of a photo extract of licence card and a separate paper licence) you can pick up your firearm/s. You must carry both parts of your licence whenever you are in possession of your firearm/s or purchasing ammunition. See West Australian Police website for further details.
Storage & Security

Under the firearms regulations, your firearms when not in use or transit must be stored in a compliant firearms cabinet. Your cabinet must be securely anchored at two points on at least two immovable structural surfaces, i.e. wall & floor. These cabinets can be purchased new from firearm dealers or second-hand, but it remains your responsibility to ensure that it complies with the WA Police Firearms Regulations. An overview of the specifications for storage cabinets appears on the WAPOL website or in Schedule 4 of the Firearms Regulations.

Please note:

  • Firearms and ammunition must not be kept together in the same cabinet unless the ammunition is stored in a seperate compliant locked compartment.
  • Magazines must not be stored loaded.