The Constitution And Rules Of
THE TRANSVAAL MUZZLE LOADERS
- The club shall be called “THE TRANSVAAL MUZZLE- LOADERS”. The objects of the club are to encourage an interest in muzzle- loading firearms, early black powder breech- loading firearms and the restoration and firing thereof.
- Subscriptions shall be fixed by the members in General Meeting.
- The officers of the club shall comprise the Chairman, Vise- Chairman, Hon. Secretary, and Hon. Treasurer (who are the trustees of the club).
The club shall be governed by an Executive Committee comprising the Officers together with up to five elected members. A quorum for the Executive Committee shall consist of Five persons.
- The committee shall have the power to co- Opt additional members as they think fit.
- The Committee shall meet monthly or as the committee may direct.
- The general meeting shall be held annually in March at such day, time and place as the committee arrange. The Secretary is to publish notice of this meeting.
- The officers and members of the committee shall be elected annually at the General Meeting. Any vacancy on the committee occurring during a current year may be filled by the committee.
- Any Member proposing any alteration to the Rules of the Club must give notice in writing to the Secretary with the name of Seconder. Any alteration to the rules must be carried by no less that the votes of two thirds of the members present at the Annual General Meeting.
- Applicants for admission to the Club must complete an application form which when signed by a proposer and seconder, who shall be a member of the Club, shall be sent together with the appropriate entrance fee and subscription to the Secretary. An accepted applicant shall be considered to be a probationary member only for a period of six months and committee has the right to reject any applicant or to fail to ratify the election of any probationary member. Applicants under the age of 18 years must furnish written approval from parent or guardian.
- Applicants may be made for Junior membership and all the rules of the club shall apply to such applications with the following variations:
a. Subscription of a Junior Member shall be half that of a full member with half entry fee.
b. Junior Members shall be under 17 Years of age, or under 21 years if still attending school or college.
c. Junior members shall be entitled to all privileges and be subject to all obligations of the club except that they may not vote at the General meeting, and may take part in Shooting Meetings only under the personal supervision of an adult member.
- Family Membership. A member’s wife will automatically become a member but will have no voting rights. She may however, apply for full membership and pay the usual entrance fee and annual subscription.
- All subscriptions become due on the first day of January each year.
- No Member who is in arrears with his subscription shall be entitled to enter or compete or shoot at any meeting arranged by the Club.
- The Committee shall have the right to remove any person from the list of members at any time; but notice of the intention to propose such a removal shall in every case be given in writing to each member of the committee meeting at which the proposal is to be made. The member concerned shall receive similar notice and shall be admitted to state his case before the committee.
In the event of an of an accident at a Transvaal Muzzle Loader shoot, the principal parties involved shall be suspended from membership forthwith, pending investigation by, and decision of, the Executive Committee or persons designated thereby.
- The Treasurer shall receive and pay all monies on account of the club and shall present proper audited accounts at the annual general meeting each year and whenever required to do so by the committee. A copy of these accounts shall be sent to each member at least one month before the annual general meeting.
- The committee is authorised to suspend, modify or cancel any of these rules for a period not longer than three months.
- In the event of the club being dissolved a general meeting of members shall decide the disposal of the assets. If a general meeting is not practicable the committee shall do so without personal liability attaching to any or all of them.
- There shall be a class of Honorary Membership which shall be granted automatically to members of foreign shooting teams and their dependants.
- All shooting meetings of the Transvaal Muzzle- Loaders shall be run in accordance with the appropriate regulations for the weapon used as state our Appendices A, B, and C to these rules, and all shooters will comply with them.
- Honorary Life Membership may be granted in special circumstances to a member if agreed to by at least two thirds of the members present at the annual general meeting.
Appendix A - The Transvaal Muzzle- Loaders : Rifle Range Regulations.
- The use of any firearm other than a Muzzle- Loader, capping breech loader or black powder loader is absolutely forbidden at any function organized by the Transvaal Muzzle- Loaders, hereafter referred to as the Club. All weapons will be submitted to the Range Officer prior to use.
- The use of any propellant other than factory- made black powder is prohibited at any function organized at the Club.
- The Executive Committee is authorised to arrange for any firearm to be inspected by a competent person prior to its use at any function sponsored by the club, and to prohibit the use of any firearm which is considered to be unfit for use.
- All members of the Club are required to comply with the Firearms Act 1969 or Substituted legislation in respect of firearms to be used at any function organized by the club.
- No pistol or Revolver of any type whatsoever shall be allowed at any rifle meeting organized by the Club.
- Once a rifle has been loaded it must not be left unattended by its owner or used until it has been discharged; or in the event of a chocked barrel, until it has been unloaded by a competent person.
- Rifles shall be loaded on firing point only.
- A Range Officer shall be appointed for each function organized by the Club. His lawful instructions must be obeyed; he may order any member to leave the firing point for misbehavior, and he may forbid the use of any weapon or ammunition at the shoot under his control.
- Any two officers or Executive Committee members may suspend, on the spot, any member whose conduct is, in their opinion, likely to bring discredit upon the Club, subject to subsequent by the Executive Committee.
- Members using rifle ranges may not openly display, handle demonstrate, or carry any pistols or revolvers except on the firing point of the pistol ranges.
- Members using rifle and pistol ranges will wear clothing of contemporary design and neutral colors. Gun belts, Knives etc. and costume clothing are prohibited.
- Members of the Club are responsible for their family members and guests. Children and dogs are not allowed on the firing point or at the targets (other than in the butts) during organized shoots.
- During an official interval in shooting i.e. an interval for lunch or tea, all firearms must be uploaded and no shooting whatsoever will be allowed during those intervals.
Appendix B - The Transvaal Muzzle- Loaders : Pistol Range Regulations.
- Handguns may be loaded but must not be either primed or capped until the shooter steps to the firing point to commence firing.
- The use of any breech- loading or self- contained cartridge handgun, or of any propellant other than commercially manufactured black powder, or of any other that commercially manufactured percussion caps, is expressly forbidden.
- Trigger pull may not be less pounds except on pistols fitted with set triggers, which triggers (in Competitions) may only be used when so specified.
- Sight radius not to exceed ten inches except as found on genuine antique arms.
- Minimum caliber .30- inch or 175 bore.
- Until further notice, scoring to be by old system of touching the next highest scoring ring to receive the higher score.
- Overloading will not be allowed; the object is to obtain maximum accuracy under target conditions.
- No pistol may be handled during a target change or when anyone is forward of the firing point; no one may go forward of the firing point until the Range Officer or his assistant must be on the firing line at all times.
- NO SMOKING on the firing point.
- Powder flasks or containers must be removed from the area of muzzle and breech flashes before commencing fire.
- Pistols must be pointed down range at all times.
- The Range Officer may request any shooter to leave the range or to cease firing for the day if he feels that the individual is behaving in an unsafe or careless manner, or is handling or loading his weapon in such a manner as to risk the safety of other shooters.
- It will be the duty of the Range Officer to forbid the firing of any weapons, which he considers unsafe due to construction or condition.
- Revolvers will be kept in such a condition that they cannot be fired accidentally.
- Cleaning will be allowed between competitions, and otherwise only as stated in the rules of each individual competition.
- Clearing of nipples and flashing of pans will be carried out only under the supervision of the Range Officer.
- In the event of a miss- fire due to mechanical failure (worn flint, stale or wet caps, breakage of a part) during the competition, the shooter will withdraw and he will be allowed to re- enter if he desires without the payment of additional fees. In the event of breakage of a part, the weapon must be decapped or unprimed before it is removed from the firing point, and before repairs are commenced.
- Range etiquette and discipline will be rigorously enforced owing to the nature of the weapons being used and the greatly increased possibility of accidents through even slight carelessness.
- A reproduction firearm is defined as one of modern manufacture such as those made by the Navy Arms Company, Replica Arms, etc., and any other arm having been constructed in recent years from old parts. These arms are specifically restricted to competitions allowing reproduction arms. Handguns which have had their barrels lined with rifle tubes of a pattern consistent with original rifling in use at the approximate period the pistol was originally manufactured will be allowed in “original” competitions, as will those flintlock pistols which have been converted to percussion and then correctly re- converted to flint ignition. Barrels lined with tubes having later forms, will be restricted to “reproduction” matches.
Handguns having newly fitted sights will be judged upon whether the new sights give a decided advantage over the original pattern of sights, and pistols originally made without sights which have now been fitted with sights may be subject to a handicap. Where newly fitted sights are judged to give a decided advantage over an original pattern, the pistol may not be used with these sights in an “original” competition.
- Holsters if used must not be in evidence, and no fancy dress will be permitted except upon special occasions clearly and previously arranged by the committee.
- The Pistol Shooting Secretary and/ Or Range Officer reserve the right to alter, modify or amend these regulations, as experience may prove necessary or desirable, subject to confirmation by the committee.
Appendix C - The Transvaal Muzzle- Loaders : Pigeon Shoot Regulations.
- No weapon other than muzzle-loading smooth- bore longarms will be allowed at any clay pigeon shoot organized by or held under the supervision of the Club.
- The use of any propellant other than commercially manufactured black powder is prohibited.
- A Range Officer shall be appointed for each shoot; his lawful instructions must be obeyed. He may order any shooter to leave the firing point for misbehavior, and he may forbid the use of any weapon or ammunition which he considers unsafe or unfair to the majority of competitors.
- All disputes on the firing line shall be decided by the Range Officer or his appointed assistant. If the situation warrants it in the opinion of the Range Officer or his assistant, a third party may be nominated to decide an issue. It is to be hoped however that all members will agree to abide by the Range Officer’s or his assistant’s decision.
- A Safety Officer will be appointed for each Clay Pigeon shoot, who will act in support of the Range Officer, and who will be responsible for the detection and correction of any breach of regulations and safe gun- handling practices. The particular responsibilities of this official will be the condition of guns as to safely with the loads being used, and the discouragement or prohibition of heavy loads in guns which both he and the Range Officer do not consider sufficiently sound to stand such heavy loads.
- The maximum load to be used in competitive Clay Pigeon Shoots other than those specifically intended for large bore guns e.g. The Big Bore Bowl, shall be 3 ¼ drms. Of powder and 1¼ oz. of shot. In guns of less than 12 bore this load would be unsafe and a more suitable load should be used. In competitions intended for heavy weight wild fowling guns a suitable load should be selected by reference to the service loads in the 1887 Rules of Proof and approved by the Safety Officer in Charge of the competition.
- Should any conditions change during the course of a Clay Pigeon Shoot which tend to put in jeopardy the adjoining property to the shooting ground, or the personal safety of the shooters, it shall be the responsibility of the Range Officer, seconded by the Safety Officer, to post- pone or cancel shooting for that day. This applies particularly to changes in wind and weather conditions, or to the presence of persons or livestock in possibly dangerous positions on adjoining property.
- Guns may be loaded only when the individual is at his firing position or preparing to step to the line to fire. In no instance should a gun be primed or capped UNTIL immediately prior to the actual firing. Should conditions be such that only one barrel of a double gun is fired and the second barrel remains loaded, the loaded barrel must be immediately un- capped or the priming removed thoroughly, until immediately prior to firing the next shot.
- Where one barrel only of a double gun is to be reloaded with the second barrel remaining loaded, the loaded barrel shall be in all instances un- capped or the priming thoroughly removed prior to the reloading being carried out.
- No loaded gun shall be taken behind a line adjacent to the firing point which line shall be determined and clearly marked before any Shoot shall commence, the Range Officer and Safety Officer being responsible for carrying out this operation.
- Should any gun prove faulty through breakage of parts or excessive fouling, said gun shall be taken down forward of the line referred to in Regulation10 and rendered incapable of firing by separation of barrel from stock an/ or removal of nipple, before being removed from the area of the firing line. The Range Officer may ban such faulty gun from further Shoots until he is completely satisfied that the gun has been made safe.
PASSED AT THE INAUGURAL MEETING : MARCH 1969