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 cartridge

Magnum shotshell

Magnum gauge shotshells