Distinguished Revolver

Distinguished Pistol

  3/23/14- Jr. Newsletter

Local Match Results

Match Calendar

Where are the Matches?

Where are the LEAGUES?


Camp Perry
 revised for 2024- FAQ for newbies

and Services

2023- Sponsors

Guns etc. for Sale
- updated 8/16/23

State Champions

NJ Outdoor Champ


Here are some of the most common inquiries:

Q: What is the course of fire in a Bullseye match?

new - Q: What is a "Sectional" match?

Q: What is my NRA Classification (and what's this money in my results envelope??)

Q: What do I need to know about scoring in a match? (Well, this is one I wish everyone would ask!)

Q: How can I bring my guns to a match in NJ if I'm coming from out-of-state?

new - Q: Can I bring HOLLOW POINT ammo to a match in NJ?

Q: How do I purchase a handgun in NJ? (updated June 2018!)

Q: Where can I go to shoot in NJ?   (here's a great list!)

Q: Where can I BUY what I need for Bullseye?  

 Q: What do I need to know about LEAD exposure?

(If your question is not included here, please email Mary@NJPistol.com!)

Q: What is the course of fire in a Bullseye match?

A: All Bullseye shooting is done with one hand!  Iron sights or optics ("red dot" sights or scopes with magnification) are allowed for most matches.  The most common course of fire is a "900" (meaning 90 rounds fired, with each shot's best possible score value being 10 points!)  This "900" match consists four stages: slow fire (20 rounds), NMC or "gallery course" (30 rounds), timed fire (20 rounds), rapid fire (20 rounds):

Slow fire match- 2 strings of 10 rounds each, with 10 minutes per string (for Outdoor matches, this is done at 50 yards, for (most) indoor matches this is done at 25 yards on "reduced" targets.)

National Match Course (with slow fire at 50 yards) or NRA Gallery or "short course" (with slow fire at 25 yards) - 1 string of slow fire with 10 minutes per string, 2 strings of Timed fire (5 rounds each with 20 seconds per string), 2 strings of Rapid fire (5 rounds each with 10 seconds per string)

Timed fire match- 4 strings of 5 rounds each, with 20 seconds per string

Rapid fire match- 4 strings of 5 rounds each, with 10 seconds per string (some are know to say "Rapid fire is the BEST!")

Scoring is done after each 10 rounds.

(This course of fire takes about 1.5 hours to complete)

A full "2700" match consists of a "900" with each .22 caliber, centerfire and .45 caliber!

Some special matches (CMP "Leg" match, with service pistol, or "Distinguished Revolver match") consist of just the 30 round NMC.

There is also a .22 caliber only "Sectional" match, which is fired at 50 feet instead of 25 yards!

other links:

Getting Started, from the Bullseye Encyclopedia


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Q: What is a "Sectional" match?

A: The Open Conventional (Precision) Pistol Sectional is a 90 round .22 caliber ONLY match fired at 50 feet on B2 and B3 targets.

Starting each January many clubs in our area hold "Sectional" matches - these actually allow you to participate in the NRA INDOOR National Championships!  For the OUTDOOR National Championships, shooters from across the country gather in one location (as of 2021, Camp Atterbury in Indiana, in July -Camp Perry National Championships are now run by CMP!) but to name Indoor National Champions in various Indoor disciplines, scores fired at many locations across the country are submitted and then combined for ranking - i.e., it is a "postal" match!

The NRA issues a match bulletin for local match directors to follow.  There are Sectionals for Air Pistol, Free Pistol, Women's Sport Pistol, etc. in addition to Conventional Pistol.  There are Junior events and Collegiate events in addition to "Open" events.  See NRA Competitive Shooting Programs|NRA National Indoor Rifle & Pistol Championships Results for some lists and scores since 2019.

A competitor may only fire a particular Sectional ONCE (for record) per calendar year.

A competitor is eligible for "local" awards (based on class standing among other competitors firing at one particular location) as well as National awards (which will be announced once all Sectionals are finished, usually published in May or June.)  Local awards include gold, silver and bronze medallions to the top three shooters at that location (if there were at least 30 competitors at that location.)

There is also a fired team match, consisting of an additional 30 round "gallery course" (10 rounds each of slow, timed and rapid fire) - teams also compete for awards (based on a team classification computed from the classifications of its firing members) - all members of a team need not fire at the same relay, but they do need to all fire at the same location!

The order in the course of fire is slightly different than "usual" - 20 rounds slow fire, 20 rounds timed fire, 20 rounds rapid fire and THEN 30 round "gallery course" (slow, timed, rapid) - i.e., the gallery course is at the END, instead of having 3 strings of slow fire all together in the beginning of the "900" match!

There is no X-ring on the B2 slow fire target!

All fired targets must be removed after each 10 rounds, signed or initialed by competitor, and all fired targets must be TURNED IN with the scorecard at the end of the match!

For National standings, no "Tyro" class is provided for - unclassified shooters fire in Master class!  NOTE: If you have fired in any NRA pistol match, you have a "temporary" or "assigned" classification!

The Open Conventional Pistol Sectional is a great match for new shooters!  You only need a .22 to fully participate, and you (should) get a commemorative pin as a souvenir (NRA recently resumed sending pins...sometimes)!  There are often many other new shooters, so it is a friendly venue for a first match experience!

See SCFGPA Sectional 2022 for an example of scores and photos (those B2 and B3 targets can look small - scores are often lower!)

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Q: What is my NRA Classification?


Average per target (of 100)

900 aggregate*

2700 aggregate*


97 and up




95.00 to 96.99




90.00 to 94.99




85.00 to 98.99




Below 85

Below 765

Below 2295

*minimum score to achieve for this class

A:  When firing in an NRA Registered or Approved match, shooters compete only within a group at their own skill level or class (except that anyone is eligible for an "open" award, meaning the highest score in that particular match).  Generally, there are five classes:  High Masters (HM), Masters (MA), Experts (EX), Sharpshooters (SS), and Marksmen (MK).  However, it is up to the match director's discretion to make a "Tyro" Class, meaning brand new (to match competition) shooters, if there are enough "newbies" to justify that.  If there are only one or two, they would shoot in the Master Class, as "Master Unclassified" (MU).

A shooter becomes officially classified for pistol competition after firing at least 360 shots in NRA Registered (or Approved) matches.  Scores are submitted as total shots fired and total score - there is no distinction between what is fired with .22 or centerfire or .45 caliber!  As of 2014, a NEW DIVISION was created for .22-ONLY 2700!

There are separate classifications for INDOOR Conventional Pistol and OUTDOOR Conventional Pistol!

There are also separate classifications for .22-ONLY and Metallic (for both Indoors and Outdoors)!!

If a shooter has fired less than 360 shots in competition, he holds a "temporary" classification based on his performance(s) to date.  Scores from Sanctioned Leagues or current classification in other types of pistol disciplines (Air Pistol, International Pistol, etc.) or grant "assigned" classification that may also be used to place a competitor appropriately until he earns his official classification.

A shooter will be classified or reclassified (upwards!) as warranted automatically by the NRA!  This review takes place for each subsequent 360 (or more) shots and scores submitted for you by your match directors.

Classifications (except HM) expire after 3 years of inactivity.  (MA expires after 5 years!)

Shooters can look up their current classifications by entering their NRA number at NRA Competitive Shooting Programs|Shooter Classification Lookup

NOTE: As of 2021 CMP added Match Pistol competition, using the same classifications as above!

Currently there is only one kind of Match Pistol classification, regardless of whether the match is fired Indoors or Outdoors or with .22 or 3-gun, and classifications are continuously updated!

other links:

NRA Rulebook

CMP Rules for Match Pistol

Q: What is my NRA Category?

A:  Awards may also be given for shooters by Category: Civilian, Service or Police.  There are also age-related categories:  Grand Senior, Senior and Junior.  And a Special Category: Women.

For NRA matches, age-related categories are determined by year of birth:  A shooter is considered Junior until the calendar year in which he turns 21; Senior status starts the calendar year in which the shooter turns 60, and Grand Senior starts the year the shooter has his 70th birthday.

As of 2022, CMP bases age-related categories for Match Pistol on the specific date of birth relative to the match start!


Q...and what's this money in my results envelope?

A: Some portion of your match entry fee goes to the NRA, some covers expenses like targets (and doughnuts!).  For Square Circle and Cherry Ridge matches, for instance, half of the net (after expenses) goes to the shooters for awards and the other half goes to the host club, as announced in our match bulletin.  The larger the total turnout for a match, and the larger the number of competitors within each class, the more awards are given out!

A shooter may win "place awards" in his class in each stage of each match (for example, one may win a 1st place in centerfire timed fire in MK class.)  Awards are also given for each match aggregate, and for grand aggregate!  The number of place awards in any given class depends on the number of competitors in that class.  For example see page 1 in results for SCFGPA Parent-Junior 900

So, if you find a few dollars in the envelope along with your match results, that's our way of commending you for some good shooting!

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Q: What do I need to know about scoring in a match? (Well, this is one I wish everyone would ask!)

A: It is the responsibility of every competitor in a match to score his fellow competitor's target as best he can,
and with the same attention and courtesy as he'd like his own target to be scored!

The first thing to do is count the shots to see if you can find 10
(or in the case of a refire, make sure you know how many should be there!)

Overlays and "eagle-eyes" can be used to judge close shots.  Bullets (especially jacketed ones) will leave holes that are actually smaller than their diameter!   If you have any doubt, ask the shooter what kind of ammo he is using (or the dreaded question "How many shots did you get off?")  Don't stick pencils or fingers in, or otherwise alter holes on a target.  Ask the Line Officer for a plug (shooters are not allowed to use their own plugs in a match!)

Match "etiquette" asks that the scorer write the target total on the target (so the shooter can more quickly determine if he agrees.)

  The most important thing to remember is that the 10 SHOT VALUES for each target need to be recorded accurately on the scorecard (as legibly as possible!)  The SUM (i.e., target score addition of those shot values) is NOT the part both shooter and scorer must agree on - it is those individual shot values that are "legally binding!"  If you need to make a change on the scorecard, please treat it the same way you'd treat a check - that is, cross out the original entry, re-write the correct value above, and initial the change!

If any of the shots were in the X ring, you must write "X" as one of the shot values (not "10" !!)  Even if you indicate the total X count next to the target score, if you record the shot as "10" it will not be counted as an "X" !)

Any disagreement between scorer and shooter must be resolved BEFORE the particular target is removed or repaired.  (Please don't bring targets to your Range Officer or Referee at the end of the match to dispute a score!)

It helps the Statistical Officer (who is going to check all the addition anyway) if you write the 10 shot values in descending order (in case there is any ambiguity in the interpretation of handwriting!)

Remember also that when you, as competitor, SIGN your scorecard, you are agreeing to the accuracy of the SHOT VALUES recorded there!


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Q: How can I bring my guns to a match in NJ if I'm coming from out-of-state?

A: Many shooters routinely come to matches in NJ from all across the country with no problem!  Some bring a copy of the match bulletin with them (and I have sometimes sent a letter, or handwritten note on the match bulletin, that a particular shooter is indeed registered for one of our particular match relays on a given date!)

  Guns must be unloaded and in a closed container (like your gun box!) and out of your immediate reach (in the trunk, if your vehicle has one!)

 Ammunition must be separate (don't leave boxes of ammo or loaded magazines in the bottom of your gun box!)  In NJ a loaded magazine is considered as a loaded gun (!!)

other links on NJ firearms laws:

NJ State Police website

NRA ILA summary about NJ

Please note that the foregoing are for reference only and should not be solely relied upon as legal advice.

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Q: Can I bring hollow point ammo to a match in NJ?

A: YES!!!  (As with all NJ firearms law, everything is forbidden, but there are EXEMPTIONS!)

N.J.S.A 2C:39-3f(1) exempts from the prohibited possession of hollow nose ammunition "persons engaged in activities pursuant to N.J.S.A 2C:39-6f. . . ."

    Activities contained in N.J.S.A 26:39-6f. can be broken down as follows:

1.A member of a rifle or pistol club organized under rules of the National Board for the Promotion of Rifle Practice and which filed its charter with the State Police;
2.A person engaged in hunting or target practice with a firearm legal for hunting in this State;
3.A person going directly to a target range, and;
4.A person going directly to an authorized place for "practice, match, target, trap or skeet shooting exhibitions."

Here's the link:

NJ State Police website page SPECIFICALLY detailing this exemption (see question 13)

Maybe it would be a good idea to print the above page from the NJSP website to carry with your reloads?!

Please note that the foregoing are for reference only and should not be solely relied upon as legal advice.

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Q: How do I purchase a handgun in NJ?

 A: Between individual NJ residents, exchange of permit paperwork (see link below)  is all that is required. - NOT ANY MORE!!!

See https://www.state.nj.us/njsp/firearms/forms.shtml

If you are buying a handgun from out-of-state, an FFL dealer must receive it for you.  He will inform you of any additional requirements.

NOTE: in NJ, an air pistol is considered a handgun!

other links:


http://www.njsp.org/firearms/firearms-faqs.shtml (be careful - this is not necessarily updated!!)

Please note that the foregoing are for reference only and should not be solely relied upon as legal advice.

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Q: What do I need to know about LEAD exposure?

 A: You are exposed to lead at shooting ranges primarily by breathing in lead dust and vapor and secondarily by ingesting lead particles which accumulate on surfaces, as well as directly on your face, hands, hair and clothing.  (Handling lead bullets while reloading  is not the main problem, as this form of lead is poorly absorbed through the skin.)  INHALED lead is the most easily absorbed into your bloodstream - most adults absorb <15% of ingested lead, and <5% of that stays in the body, but as much as 50% of inhaled lead is absorbed!

 The amount of lead that is excreted depends on many factors, including your age, general health and individual metabolism Lead that is not excreted is stored in soft tissue and bone.  Lead stored in bone can be released into the bloodstream later in life, long after exposure!  Children not only absorb lead at much higher rates, they are also much LESS ABLE to excrete lead than adults - therefore children are at much higher risk than adults!!

If you have a high blood lead level
(which is NOT included in a routine blood test - you need to ask for it specifically!)


 if you have young children (< age 6) or pregnant family members in your household,



 please take the following precautions:

-DO NOT SWEEP THE RANGE, or even be in the range while anyone is sweeping with a broom!

-DO NOT EAT, drink or chew gum in the range! 

Use D-Lead products to wash your hands, arms and face, including around your mouth and nose (especially anyone with facial hair) before eating or drinking after shooting!


Change your shoes and outer clothes after shooting before getting into your car to go home!  Keep a dedicated set of range shoes/clothes that you store in a sealed bag.  Wash your range clothes separately from family laundry.  Take a shower and wash your hair when you get home.

Other suggestions may include:

Wear a respirator that is rated for lead when shooting indoors (for example: 3M Respirator for lead)

Take a multi-vitamin to insure you are not deficient in calcium or iron - avoid extra vitamin D.

Use jacketed ammo, if possible.

Ask your club about their range maintenance schedule - avoid indoor ranges with poor ventilation!

Please note that the foregoing are for reference only and should not be solely relied upon as medical advice.

May 2016 - SCFGPA Lead Info brochure

other links and references:




OSHA 1910.1025



OHSNY - summary flyer

Controlling Lead Levels - ESP Summer 2011


Lead info package - a good Canadian summary

Dietary factors

Lead safety for Rifle teams

Lead exposure from Indoor Firing Ranges Among Students on Shooting Teams (Alaksa 2002-4)


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This website was originally inspired and instituted by Kathy Chatterton

Please send comments or suggestions to:  Mary@njpistol.net