Muzzle loading Shotgun Rules

Two muzzle loading diciplines are shot in Original and replica:
Lorenzoni – (percussion shotguns) and Manton (Flintlock Shotguns)

These are the same rules used by the MLAIC. Only the rules applicable to muzzle loading shotguns are published here. To see the complete constitution and rules of the MLAIC, click here.


402 No 21 Manton Free flintlock guns of any calibre. Total of 50 clay targets shot in two separate rounds (one in the morning and one in the afternoon of the same day) of 25 clay targets over five stands within 60 minute detail.

403 No 22 Lorenzoni Free percussion guns of any calibre. Total of 50 clay targets shot in two separate rounds (one in the morning and one in the afternoon of the same day) of 25 clay targets over five stands within 60 minute detail. (O & R).

404 No 34 Hawker Teams of three shooters from No 21.(O &/or R Open)

405 No 35 Batesville Teams of three shooters from No. 22 (O &/or R Open)

410 Regulations

411 Shooting stands:

a) Stands should be at the same level as the top of the trap house.

b) Stands should be marked by a 70 cm (approximately) square or circle.

c) For the flintlock (No 21) and percussion (No 22) layouts there shall be five stands at 8 meters behind the point where the flight of the clay target intersects the level of the stands. Stands should be located: 70 degrees left, 35 degrees left, central, 35 degrees right, 70 degrees right.

d) Individual loading tables shall be provided within a few meters behind each stand. An additional table will be prepared on a side of the stand aligned with the posts 1 and 5 with a minimum space of 3 meters. Those shooters who have had a failure and the gun remains loaded must go to this table to repair their guns under supervision of the arbitrator. If referred to this table, shooters will not be allowed to return to their loading posts with the gun until the gun is unloaded. Shooters may return to the loading table to collect tools and other items in order to make the gun safe.

e) Whenever possible, an acoustic release clay target launcher will be used.

f) (In effect only when using ATA trap ranges.) All shooting stands for flint and percussion must be at the same elevation as the ATA station number 3. (Note: This rule will place the trap shooter standing with his feet at the same height as the trap machine throwing arm.)

412 Clay Launcher:

a) The point where the clay target leaves the traphouse and the approximate point where it lands should be clearly marked so as to be visible from all stands.

b) The clay launcher should be set to throw centrally with the clay target landing at 60 metres (plus or minus 5 metres) from the point at which the flight of the clay target intersects the level of the stands. The height of the clay target should be 2 metres above stand level at 10 metres forward of this point of intersection.

c) A malfunction of the clay launcher should be reported to the Range Officer who should decide whether to change the launcher, to continue, or to stop the event.

413 Clay Target - The clay target shall be of the standard type used for Olympic Trap shooting.

414 Spectators:

a) must be at least three metres behind the loading tables and maintain quiet.

b) may not speak to the shooters or assist them in any way.

415 Range Officer and Arbitrators:

a) The Range Officer controls the shooting, with the assistance of three arbitrators for scoring An additional Firearms Safety Officer will be appointed to supervise the unloading and repair of firearms at the appropriate table. These officials are the only people allowed to intervene if a shooter has difficulties.

b) The Arbitrators signal each missed clay target by each raising an arm.

c) The Range Officer observes the Arbitrators’ signals and, from the majority (if there is a disagreement), clearly calls out the result for all to hear.

416 Shooting rules:

a) Each round to be 25 clay targets in 60 minutes.

b) Only one shot may be taken at each clay target.

c) Double barrelled guns may be used but with only one barrel loaded at a time.

d) The following misfires will be allowed, without penalty:
Three misfires per round for flintlock guns
One misfire per round for percussion guns
One misfire in each additional Tie shoot-off round (for both flintlock and percussion)

e) For each misfire allowed an extra clay target will be launched at the same stand.

f) If a misfire is due to the mechanical failure of the gun (other than due to ignition problems), an ‘allowed extra misfire’ will be granted.

g) If a shooters fires before the command ‘Pull’, it will be scored as a miss.

h) Prior to the start of each round, one trial clay target will be launched in full view of all the shooters in that round.

i) If the launcher is repaired or replaced, a further trial bird will be launched.

j) If a clay target is not launched immediately on the command ‘Pull’, the shooter may refuse to shoot without incurring a penalty, but must make his or her actions clear by raising the gun.

k) The allocation of stands for each round will be made by the shooters drawing lots. Each shooter shall fire his or her first shot in the sequence determined by the draw, but may subsequently fire in any order as soon as ready. At that time, he/she must go to the waiting post for his/her turn to go. This point should be placed at least 3 meters offset from post number 3.”

l) After each shot, shooters will proceed to the next stand in an anticlockwise direction.
m) Shooters must have the authorisation of the Range Officer before calling ‘Pull’.

n) Shooting will proceed without interruption unless disrupted by technical difficulties. The Range Officer may stop the shooting due to inclement weather and resume the round later at the point where it was stopped.

o) If a shooter is not present when his or her name is called prior to the commencement of a round, the Range fficer will call out the shooter’s name three times within a minute. If there is no response the round will commence regardless and the missing shooter will only be allowed to shoot later if space permits.

p) In the case of a severe mechanical breakdown of a gun which cannot be repaired quickly, the shooter must leave his or her round and may only be allowed to complete the remaining round if space is available on a later round. If the gun can be repaired before the end of the round, the competitor may resume shooting with the permission of the Range Officer, but will forfeit any shot not fired within the time limit of that round.

q) After a misfire, a gun may be unloaded or fired away subject to the authorisation of the Range Officer.

r) The normal maximum number of shooters to be squadded on a round is six for No 21 (Manton) and No 22 (Lorenzoni). Should it be absolutely essential, this may be increased to a maximum of eight in No 21 and No 22, but the time for the round is to be increased by ten minutes for each additional shooter above six.

417 Ties

a) Any ties within the top six individual places will be determined by shoot-off with the first five birds. (Place certificates will be assigned, beginning with the last place shooter of the top six.)

Flintlock and percussion: One clay target from each of the five stands

b) Ties for team scores will be determined by count-back. The winning team is that which has the longest unbroken string of hits from the end, counting back.

418 Guns:

a) Guns may be percussion or flintlock, military or civilian, single or double barrelled, smooth-bore, and of any calibre. Replicas with choked bores are forbidden.

b) Slip-on butt pads made of leather or other contemporary material (but not rubber) are permitted. Any other addition to the butt is forbidden.

c) An ‘Original’ is defined as any original muzzle loading gun in unaltered condition. A ‘Replica’ is a newly made reproduction of an antique original.

419 Loads:

a) Only factory made black powder is permitted.

b) b) Lead (or non-toxic lead substitutes of single metals only) shot size must maximum 2.55 mm diameter.

c) Loads must not exceed normal Proof Table Service Loads for the calibre of gun up to a maximum of 6.2 grams (3.5 drams) of black powder and 35 grams (1.25 oz).

d) Loading of powder must be from pre-measured single charge containers.

e) No priming flask containing more than 16.2 grams (250 US grains) of powder may be used.

f) Loading of lead shot (or non-toxic lead substitutes of single metals only) must be from prepacked single charge containers.

g) Loading must be in accordance with contemporary methods and materials. Plastic wads are prohibited.

420 Shooting Rules:

a) Loading may only be carried out at the loading tables.

b) When walking from the loading table to the stands and back, shooters must carry their guns with the muzzles pointed upwards.

c) Capping or priming may only be done at the shooting stand, with the barrel pointed down range.

d) Cap dispensers are encouraged for percussion guns.

e) Guns shall only be fully cocked when at the shooting stand and ready to fire.

f) The use of slings is forbidden.

g) The utmost care in handling guns is to be observed at all time.

h) When not in use guns should be kept in the racks and must not be touched without the owner’s permission.

i) The shooter may only shoot when it is his or her turn to do so, and after the clay target has been released.

j) Aiming or shooting at other shooters’ clays is forbidden.

k) The shooter may mount the gun in the shoulder or start from the gun down position as preferred before calling ‘Pull’.

l) When firing, shooters must stand within the area marked for the stand.

m) Safety spectacles and hearing protection must be used when shooting.

n) When the shooter is ready to fire he or she may, with the permission of the Range Officer, give the order ‘Pull’. The shooter may also ask ‘Ready?’ but nothing else.

o) A clay target will be deemed broken when, after being correctly launched and shot according to the rules, at least one visible part flies away.

p) A clay target will be deemed missed and scored zero, if:
it is not broken during flight;
the shooter does not fire because he or she has: the gun in the safety or half cock position; forgotten to load, prime, cap or fully cock the gun; lost the priming or cap; not seen the clay target; had a misfire in excess of the permitted number; or
the shooter touches the lock of the gun before it is checked by the Range Officer following a misfire or technical fault.

q) A clay target will be deemed a ‘No bird’ and another clay will be granted to the shooter, whether he or she fired or not if:
the clay breaks on launching;
the flight is not straight, is irregular or is too slow;
two or more birds are launched together;
the clay is of a different colour to that of preceding clays;
the clay is launched before the order ‘Pull’;
the clay is not launched immediately on the order ‘Pull’, providing the shooter
indicates an intention not to shoot by raising the gun;
if a misfire or default is due to the mechanical breakdown of the gun, the lock or the cock; or
if the shooter has obviously been hindered by a third party.

421 Claims:

a) If the shooter or Team Captain does not agree with the Range Officer over a miss, one of them should immediately lodge a claim by raising one arm and shouting ‘Protest!’ The Range Officer will then suspend shooting, consult with the Arbitrators and give a final decision. The Protest will be entered into the Range Report.

b) It shall not be permissible to recover a clay target to check whether or not it is broken.

c) If the shooter or Team Captain does not agree with the shooter’s score, one of them should immediately lodge a complaint with the Range Officer who will consult with the Arbitrators and then give a final decision.

d) An appeal against a Range Officer’s decision can be lodged in writing with the Arbitration Committee but no appeal can be made over whether a clay was broken or not, as the Range Officer’s decision in this matter is final.

e) If a shooter, Team Captain or Championship Official observes something that is contrary to the rules he or she should point the matter out immediately to the Range Officer who should take immediate steps to stop the violation of the rules. If this is not possible a protest may be lodged as above.

422 Penalties:

a) All shooters shall be deemed to know the rules, and must accept beforehand all penalties that may result from violations thereof, or from disobeying the Range Officer’s instructions.

b) If a shooter uses a gun or ammunition which does not comply with the rules, any target hit with that gun or ammunition will be scored as a miss.

c) If a violation of the rules is deliberate, the shooter may be disqualified.

d) If a shooter hinders another by his or her attitude, conduct or words, the shooter will be warned by the Range Officer. If the offence is repeated the shooter will be penalised by the deduction of one or two points from his or her score, as decided appropriate between the Range Officer and the Arbitration Committee.

e) A shooter firing a gun before reaching the shooting stand will be committing a severe breach of the safety rules and will be disqualified.

423 For safety reasons, flintlock and percussion guns should not be shot on the same relay.