Rimfire vs Centerfire Ammunition

Centerfire vs Rimfire

The ammunition is classified as rimfire or centerfire based on where the primer is located.


Centerfire primer projectiles
  • Primer is located in the center of the base.
  • Centerfire - used for rifles, shotguns, and handguns.


Rimfire primer projectiles
  • Primer is contained in the rim of the ammunition
  • Limited to low pressure
  • .22 caliber loads are most common
  • Casings cannot be reloaded

Magnum loads

Magnum loads have more powder and/or shot than target or field loads. The same ammunition can be filled with several power charges. The boxes may be marked target, field or magnum load.

Magnum cartridge


Magnum shotshell