There are some specific rules for the type of ammunition used in Action Pistol (.22 rimfire is the exception) competition. The lower limit of caliber shall be 9mm (with the exception of .22rimfire); all ammunition fired in a tournament must meet or exceed the power floor as described when checked by chronograph using the formula:

  • bullet weight x muzzle velocity = not less than 120,000

(Example: using a 158gr bullet, the muzzle velocity must be at least 760fps to achieve the power floor of 120,000); any ammunition used must be loaded within safe limitations for the handgun to be used; all ammunition fired by a competitor in a tournament must maintain identical bullet design, weight and velocity. Rule 3.17 further defines procedures for testing ammunition at a tournament.

Handloads may be used, provided they meet the specifications of the rule. Many competitors load their own ammunition, as this is not only cost effective, but allows for loads to be “customized” for a particular gun.

In many cases, hand-loaded ammunition is more accurate than commercially-produced match grade ammunition. If you chose factory ammunition, be sure it meets the power floor. If you reload, be sure to follow all safety procedures.

For additional information please contact the CFI at