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Thanksfor the great stories and tips. Even old dogs can learn new tricks. This is great for keeping the CMP active.
Tim H., AZ
I just read the article on slings. Very good! Please include other "how to" items in the future.
David S.
Moxee, WA
The story of the M1 rifle that was presented to Shifty of the 101 airborne makes me proud to be part of the shooting community. Thank you for adding it to the TFS.
Mike S.
What a great article: “A Rifle for Shifty” … that has to be one of the best stories I’ve read in quite some time. Thanks for publishing it.
Alex N.
Thank You again Christine, very good articles.
Ms. Elder, just a note to say that there are few things I look forward to receiving by email, and the Shooting News publication is one of them!
It is always a high quality publication with a nice mix of text and image, about interesting things and folks.
Keep up the good work!
Phil B., Ph.D. Annapolis, MD
That was a great story! Thanks for publishing it.
Regards from Dakota,
Jim S.
PS: I forwarded it to all my shooter friends.
This story about the "Gift for Shifty" is one of the best stories I have read so far....An example of selfless appreciation for the WW2 vets that helped make this such a wonderful country...God bless our past and present troops.
Ron W.
The story "A Rifle For Shifty" really hit me. What a wonderful tribute to one of this countries nearly forgotten heroes.
Kudos to all who were involved with finding and presenting him with "his" rifle. Thanks to those of you who shared the story.
John S.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading A Rifle for Shifty. We owe our WW2 veterans a debt we can never repay. I wish I could provide all of them with a similar token of appreciation.
Jeff C.
Love the newsletter. Looks good and to the point. In the Navy we have a signal that signifies an excellent job. Bravo Zulu to the staff. Keep up the good work from an old retired Command Master Chief USN
I enjoy reading The First Shot... keep up the good work. Ron
Just a note to tell you that I really appreciate the CMP Shooter's News. Thanks for all your efforts in putting it out to everyone.
Best regards,
Dan S.
After thirty three years in Law Enforcement most of that in firearms and tactical training. I have retired and have the opportunity to enjoy some of the publications, that in the past I was too busy to do. Your "First Shot" magazine that I receive each month is excellent. I can see what the youth programs are doing and follow the National Matches with ease. Thank you so much for this publication, keep up the good work.
P.C. Pickett Sr.

Printable Version

Three-Position Air Rifle Rule Changes

By Gary Anderson, DCM

The National Three-Position Air Rifle Council will soon release the 2006-2008 National Standard Three-Position Air Rifle Rules that govern position air rifle shooting in the United States. The new rulebook will be available both on the CMP web site and in printed form before the end of September. The new rules incorporate several rule changes that were approved by the Council during its annual meeting last July. This article summarizes those changes.


The 2006-2008 National Standard Three-Position Air Rifle Rules includes updated safety rules and procedures that reflect the now mandatory use of CBIs (Clear Barrel Indicators) and the grounding of rifles on the firing line before preparation and after firing is completed.

One of the most significant changes in the new rules involves updated safety rules and procedures that reflect the now mandatory use of CBIs (Clear Barrel Indicators) and the grounding of rifles on the firing line before preparation and after firing is completed. Now all air rifles brought to a range or removed from a gun case must have their actions opened and CBIs inserted. CBIs may only be taken out of rifles during preparation and firing periods and must be replaced on the firing line immediately after any stage of fire is complete.

A grounded rifle is defined as a rifle with its action open, a CBI inserted in its barrel and lying on the floor or bench without anyone touching it. The new rules specifically require that rifles be grounded on the shooters’ firing points immediately after the Range Officer instructs shooters to bring them to the firing line. Shooters cannot pick up their rifles again until the Range Officer begins the preparation period. When a shooter finishes that stage of fire, actions must be opened, CBIs inserted and rifles grounded again. The rifle must remain grounded on the firing point until the Range Officer starts the change-over period for the next position or gives shooters instructions to remove their rifles and equipment from the firing line.

After competitors finish firing a stage of fire and as long as the command STOP has not been given, they may make sight, butt-plate or cheek-piece adjustments on their grounded rifles, but rifles may not be removed from the firing line. When the commands STOP-UNLOAD are given, all handling of rifles must cease.

Rules concerning the transport of rifles to the range and firing point using gun cases were modified to permit the Range Officer to decide whether to permit shooters to remove air rifles from gun cases behind the firing line or to require that this be done only after taking the cased gun to the firing point. In either case, the air rifle action must be opened and a CBI inserted as soon as the case is opened, if a CBI is not already in the rifle bore.


The Daisy 853CM Pneumatic air rifle that was originally produced for MCJROTC use was officially approved as a sporter class air rifle.

The rule requiring all sporter class air rifles to be specifically approved by the National Three-Position Air Rifle Council by make and model number remains unchanged, but the Council has now approved three additional sporter rifles. Two of the new sporters are produced by Daisy and one is an imported air rifle sold by Champions Choice.

The Daisy Model 853CM was introduced one year ago as a special variation of the Daisy M853 pneumatic air rifle that was ordered for Marine Corps JROTC units. The “CM” version features a black synthetic stock that was originally designed for the Daisy M953, an upgraded El Gamo-type sight set, an extra barrel weight and a sling attachment with a lever release that facilitates adjusting the sling swivel.  Daisy Special Marketing will sell this rifle to CMP affiliated junior programs, 4-H clubs and JROTC units for $190.00.

The Daisy M887 CO2 air rifle is now approved for sporter class competition.

Two new sporter air rifles were approved at the July 2006 Council meeting. The first was the Daisy M887 CO2 air rifle. This is an upgraded version of the popular M888 that features a laminated stock with a higher cheek-piece and pistol grip with a more pronounced curvature. The stock configuration on this rifle closely resembles the Daisy M753 stock. The M887 also has El Gamo-type sights. Daisy Special Marketing will sell this rifle to CMP affiliated junior programs, 4-H clubs and JROTC units for $295.00.

Champions Choice Air Arms T200. Only T200 air rifles with a standard butt-stock with no adjustable cheek-piece or vertically-adjustable butt-plate may be used in the sporter class.

The other air rifle now approved as a sporter air rifle is a special version of the Air Arms T200 that is imported and sold by Champions Choice. The action, trigger, compressed air gas system and sights are the same as those found on the now-discontinued Daisy XSV-40 air rifles. The new sporter, however, complies more closely with sporter guidelines by having a standard stock without an adjustable cheek-piece and vertically-adjustable butt-plate. Champions Choice is selling these air rifles for $445.00 each.


The Avanti XSV-40 air rifles that were sold by Daisy until 2005 continue to be grandfathered as legal sporters, but the new rules also place one additional limitation on what can be done with XSV-40 rifles that have vertically-adjustable butt-plates. Starting this year, those butt-plates must remain fixed in the center or neutral position during all sporter class events.

A Daisy M853 pneumatic air rifle with a Gun Snot sling attached. Note the Top Grip lining in the arm loop of the sling. This type of sling is now permitted in the sporter class.

When weights are added to sporter air rifles, those weights must from now on either be added to the barrel (barrel weights must be within a radius of 30mm/1.2 in.) or they must be internal. External weights cannot be added to sporter air rifles at any location other than on the barrel.

There is a change to the sporter sling rule that will permit the use of slings with non-slip rubber or similar lining (padding is still not allowed) in the part of the sling that fits around the arm. This rule change was adopted after the Council examined a Gun Snot sling that was submitted for rule change consideration. These slings were previously not allowed in sporter competition because the “Top Grip” lining in the sling’s arm loop was considered a prohibited lining. The Council decided that adding a non-slip lining was no different than using safety pins or buttons attached to the shirt sleeve as a means of preventing sling slippage.

Where to Purchase New Products Reported in this Article

Coaches, parents or shooters who are interested in obtaining more information or prices regarding the purchase of newly legal air rifle products should contact these sources:

  • Daisy Model 853CM sporter air rifle: Daisy Special Marketing, contact Denise Johnson at 479-621-4317 or

  • Daisy M887 sporter air rifle: Contact Daisy Special Marketing.

  • Air Arms T200 or TS200 sporter air rifle: Champions Choice,, (615) 793-4066 or

  • Gun Snot sporter slings: Contact Champions Choice.

The new rules affirmed that the detachable fore-end risers that are standard with new aluminum stocked precision air rifles are not considered prohibited palm rests and may be used in one, two or three positions.

A number of rules issues that came up during the last two years were clarified. For example, a competitor in a 20-shot position stage who fires sighters in error on both competition targets before going for record may notify the range officer and receive a warning only. However, if the range officer is not notified before the shooter goes for record, sighting shots appearing on target number two will each receive two penalty points.

The posting of the new National Standard Three-Position Air Rifle Rules will be announced as soon as they are available. Any coaches, parents or junior shooters who have questions about the new rules are urged to contact the Council Hotline at or 419-635-2141 ext. 1112.

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