Shooting Sports Organizations

Sport Shooting

Lots More Coming… The Ruger .22, A Very Viable Tool For Many Reasons.



International Defensive Pistol Association

This is the second fastest growing segment of action shooting. The men that started IDPA are all previously top notch IPSC shooters. Many of the IDPA competitors and the founding members were disenchanted with the direction IPSC had gone since its humble beginning with stock guns to the current Star Wars Blasters that dominate the unlimited segment of IPSC. IDPA has a gun classification to fit almost any defensive handgun a shooter owns. This sport has also neutralized the high capacity ammo race, by limiting magazines to 10 rounds per the 1994 Crime Bill. You can actually compete with the same equipment you carry in real life. The shooting scenarios in IDPA are usually shorter and do not normally require the movement that IPSC matches do.

Then you need a costume . Their costume is then developed accordingly. Many event participants gain more enjoyment from the costuming aspect of our sport than from the shooting competition, itself. Regardless of a SASS member’s individual area of interest, SASS events provide regular opportunities for fellowship and fun with like-minded folks and families. And they have some authentic outfits and one complete major source is:

Every SASS member is required to select a shooting alias representative of a character or profession from the Old West or the western film genre. Your alias may not in anyway duplicate or easily be confused with any other member's alias. The following guideline should help you in choosing an alias:


Your alias must be printable before a wide audience. No duplications are permitted. If it sounds the same, it is the same. Adding "too," "II," etc., is not acceptable. "Ranger" could become "Texas Ranger" but not "The Ranger." "John Henry Chisum" could be modified to "Jack Chisum" but not "John H. Chisum" or "Jon Henry Chisum." Historical names may not be modified to make them different. "Wyatt Earp" and "Marshal Wyatt Earp" are considered the same. You will need, two single action revolvers, list price on Rugers web page for the SASS is about 1669.00 for the pair with consecutive numbers. A lever action rifle in either the .357 or .45 colt round. And a side by side shotgun or Winchester 97 style shotgun. The rules on what type of firearms and MODIFICATIONS are very specific. The modifications we perform at Accurate are currently legal based on the "S.A.S.S. Rules Book". Be sure to get your checkbook or credit card case done in engraved leather matching in color with your gunslinger rig.

There are the specific rules via the SASS Official Handbook and this is a strict organization and events are planned and organized totally within the regulations. Failure to follow the regulations will get the Sheriff on you and you will find you have no friends at your hanging.

They Quote: As the game of Cowboy Action Shooting™ has evolved, our members have developed and adopted an attitude towards their participation called “The Spirit of the Game.” It is a code by which we live.

Competing in "The Spirit of the Game" means you fully participate in what the competition asks. You try your best to dress the part, use the appropriate competition tools, and respect the traditions of the Old West. Some folks would call it nothing more than good sportsmanship. We call it "Spirit of the Game."


So, Bob and I both emphatically recommend you read the entire SASS rule book and investigate what it COSTS and do you have the attitude to play this game as it can get expensive and consuming. Authentic costuming and outfits both for the competitive scenarios and social events are not cheap, the leather gun-belts and holsters are not cheap, traveling to events is not cheap, owning the four of five weapons is not cheap and if you don’t load ammunition, practice is not cheap because you are shooting in the magnum or 40+caliber ranges. Possibly you might be using two calibers.

We are not being negative, we are being factual, friends we have in the game tell us they love it, meet great people to have fun with and are in “the Spirit of the Game”.

Specific Firearms Needed


All firearms must adhere to these regulations, the booklet contains almost six pages of regulations they have determined for safety reasons. If your weapon does not meet this criteria, you will be DQ-ed or disqualified and might get hung from the nearest tree, pardner! We have done many firearms for the SASS shooters.

There are many baby boomers running around today who grew up with the likes of Roy Rogers, Gene Autry, the Lone Ranger, Hopalong Cassidy, and the notorious Black Bart. They fought long and arduous wars with the Cap Pistol and when you ran out of caps there were long periods of "Bang, Bang, Bang", with a Hi-Ho Silver or giddy-up and some soft ballads about lonesome doggies...

Well if you want reality and reliving old good times, it's here for you. Cowboy Action Shooting is a great sport and really epitomizes scenario shooting and just like on a movie set you better stick to the rules. Again, they are serious about it. Remember, they tarred and feathered and had lynch mobs in those days......and expect a little physical action when running the course. Better cut back on the "vittles". This is the organization making the rules:



215 Cowboy Way 
Edgewood, New Mexico 87015

Phone: (505) 843-1320 • Fax: (505) 843-1333


To get started in this game check out your closet for what would fit in with the scenario and persona.

  • Drag out those old dungarees, if they look too new, tie them on a rope long enough to your bumper and drive all over town especially on dusty roads.

  • You’ll need Cowboy boots, start wearing them as soon as you can to break them in as you will be running and groveling in the dirt and so forth. I suggest not buying the 1800 dollar snakeskin, leather carved, embroidered, genuine Cobra skin. No one will be impressed. Cowboy boots as in comfort and mobility are more important. Save the fancy stuff for the players who own the bordellos.

  • You’l need plaid shirts and a scarf. You just might want to check with the little woman about the scarf part, floral scenes and soft pastels are not in this year, red, black and white seem to work….

  • The Base price for Two RUGER Vaqueros, a Marlin Lever Action Rifle and an EAA Double barrel Shotgun is about $2400.00+. Not that bad compared to most other shooting sports.

In addition to the guns you will need Leather Holsters and other leather gear for the shot shells. The cost of basic leather and clothing will vary just as there are K-Mart's and Nordstrom's.

May we suggest  Bob has several of his rigs. Here are two samples, the "Big Jake", aka John Wayne and the "Silver King", the style used by the Lone Ranger. They have a great website and top quality photography. Bring your credit card properly insured by LLOYDS of LONDON. More on Cowboy Action guns.


ACCURATE'S participation in this sport is significant. We can make blued guns silver, silver parts black and take soft parts and industrial chrome them for longevity. We offer all these services and custom work like engraving on rifles, and shotguns too.

Since we plate many of the internal parts in guns we work on, the hard chrome adds a slickness, call it smoothness if you wish, and increased durability to the action. We are not aware of any custom shop that does this extra to make things right.

Many of the S.A.S.S. shooters are also collectors and use original era firearms. Because of the fact we plate, weld, solder, can rebuild, certain areas we can bring new life to some antique arms. Under no circumstance will we rebuild something deemed unsafe nor in violation of the SASS rules.

Now transfer to the weapons page for Cowboy Action



International Defensive Pistol Association

This is the second fastest growing segment of action shooting. The men that started IDPA are all previously top notch IPSC shooters. Many of the IDPA competitors and the founding members were disenchanted with the direction IPSC had gone since its humble beginning with stock guns to the current Star Wars Blasters that dominate the unlimited segment of IPSC.

IDPA has a gun classification to fit almost any defensive handgun a shooter owns. This sport has also neutralized the high capacity ammo race, by limiting magazines to 10 rounds per the 1994 Crime Bill. You can actually compete with the same equipment you carry in real life. The shooting scenarios in IDPA are usually shorter and do not normally require the movement that IPSC matches do.

The International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA) is the governing body of a shooting sport that simulates self-defense scenarios and real life encounters. It was founded in 1996 as a response to the desires of shooters worldwide. The organization now boasts membership of more than 17,008, including members in 50 foreign countries.

One of the unique facets of this sport is that it is geared toward the new or average shooter, yet is fun, challenging and rewarding for the experienced shooter. The founders developed the sport so that practical gear and practical guns may be used competitively. An interested person can spend a minimal amount on equipment and still be competitive. The main goal is to test the skill and ability of the individual, not equipment or gamesmanship.

“Competition only” equipment is not permitted in this sport.

The firearms are grouped into five (5) divisions:

1) Custom Defensive Pistol (.45ACP semi-automatics only)

2) Enhanced Service Pistol (9 mm (9x19) or larger caliber semi-automatics)

3) Stock Service Pistol (9 mm (9x19) or larger caliber double action, double action only, or safe action semi-automatics)

4) Enhanced Service Revolver in .38 caliber or larger double action revolvers)

5) Stock Service Revolver in .38 caliber or larger double action revolvers).

Shooters are then classed by like-skill levels with progression from Novice (NV); to Marksman (MM); to Sharpshooter (SS); to Expert (EX); and, finally, to Master (MA).

Yes, you can compete with your stock out of the box handgun and that is a great idea to see if you like the sport both for the competition and the defensive shooting skill that you will develop.

Want to know more about IDPA

However, the competition end of the equation and human nature usually cause shooters to look for equipment enhancements that allow them to compete more successfully than their stock gun will allow. Simply put, "upmanship". This usually manifests itself when your buddy who shoots at about the same level as you do normally whips your pants off because of some modifications he has made to his firearm. The next thing you know, you're doing the same thing and maybe a little more for an edge on him.

Fortunately, IDPA rules only allow you to be so far with modification within different class of firearms.

The Colt 1911 style auto loaders are main area where bigger bucks are spent. If you check the rules you will find that you can move from the simplest firearms classification to the highest by continually upgrading a 1911 Colt style pistol. Due to the variety of firearms AP&W and Our Cogan Custom division deals with in our Finishing Department, there are very few firearms we if any we haven’t worked on.

If you look at the Concealed Carry Section of the Web Site you will get an idea of what I am talking about. Also, refer to the section on customizing firearms and the finishes we offer. Action work and top notch sight systems are the best place to invest your hard earned dollars. Hard Chrome enhances performance and wear on moving parts. Remember my staff and I are here to please you. This is your gun not mine. We will be glad to consult with you on any project and offer our advice. If the modification you desire is legal for competition and doesn’t adversely affect the safe function of the firearm, we will be glad to handle it for your, even if we don’t like it.


International Practical Shooting Confederation

Information from their website

So, you saw an article in the paper or on TV about action shooting. Just what is action shooting? It is the fastest growing segment of the shooting industry. Action shooting emulates reality by setting up a shooting scenario that changes from stage to stage and match to match.

Your scores are adjusted by the time it takes you to successfully complete each course of fire. Think of it as a bunch of little action scenes you participate in and you are tested for your ability to hit the target and the speed at which you can accomplish the mission.

Each shooter navigates the same course, points are deducted for faults and misses and the scores added up. Action shooting includes IPSC, IDPA, L10, and COWBOY ACTION SHOOTING.

Someone had to organize this chaos and along came Lt. Col. Jeff Cooper. He created the sport of "Practical Shooting" which grew to become IPSC...pronounced "IP-SIC". For that's what Jeff Cooper is to the action shooting sports. He is the beginning of the "shooting sports". If you wish to know more about this unique individual, just google "Jeff Cooper"

IPSC: World Wide

This is one of the more established and exciting style of action shooting and had its origins in California in the early '50s. It quickly spread over the next few years to other continents including Europe, Australia, Central and South America, and Africa.

The International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) was officially founded at the International Pistol Conference held in Columbia, Missouri, in May 1976. Forty people from around the world were invited to attend this conference in order to determine the nature and future of practical marksmanship. Colonel Jeff Cooper was acting Chairman and acclaimed as the first IPSC World President.

Life emulating scenarios, with pistol and shotguns, moving targets, real life props, add a certain amount of realism and elevated blood pressure (it's called EXCITEMENT) to the shooting arena. It has branched into specialty sections like the Bianchi Cup, Steel Challenge and Second Chance. Competition shooting suddenly became interesting and alive and grew at a very fast pace. So did the firearms. So did the cost and exoticness of the weapons, holsters and scenarios. This led a few players to another direction.

Twenty five years ago, it was the only game in town. Even before compensators were invented most shooters used tricked out 1911 Colts or S&W revolvers. There was no high capacity pistols available that could make the major power factor so you basically were shooting what today is IDPA.


But, IPSC had virtually no limits on firearms modification. Before any of us knew what was happening the equipment race was on. First it was compensators, then it was smaller calibers, then high capacity frames for 1911 pistols and almost simultaneously electronic dot scoped optics became the rage.

Each of these advancements brought more new people into the custom gunsmithing, parts manufacturing and optics business. The basic laws of economics eventually eliminated many of these operations. Due to poorly made products, or poor workmanship, and sometimes poor business practices. Overall, though, the people involved in all these companies drove research and development and firearms manufacturers to produce better firearms with custom modifications right from the factory.

So when other shooting sports participants comment IPSC as being too equipment or competition oriented, they should also consider the contributions this great sport has made to firearms development and Action Style Shooting. Some of those other participants have quite a bundle in their costumes and other ancillary gear too. They are all fun and thats what counts.

IPSC is still the most dynamic of the action shooting sports and it is expensive from an equipment standpoint and highly competitive on the talent end. Some of the worlds best shooters congregate here.

The two classes basically are Unlimited and Limited with internal rankings A, B, C, D etc. from neophyte to world class PRO's. There is a new classification "Production Minor" that is geared more toward real life semi-auto pistols. But still these handguns are not the small concealable ones. Glock 22, Beretta 92, and full-size SIGs are this pistols of choice. IPSC has lowered the power factor to 165. There is a lot more on this organization just Google "IPSC".


USPSA - U.S. Division (Information From Their Website)

The USPSA Championship Matches are the premiere practical shooting events in the world. 3-Gun competition in particular has experienced explosive growth in recent years, evolving into "multi-gun" competitions where shooters use two or three firearm types within a single stage.

USPSA remains committed to the continued growth of the Nationals as quality, fun, safe events that define excellence for all shooting sports. Join in the fun. Work for a slot (invitation) and experience the best shooting event in the world.

Practical Shooting IS competition. Competition necessarily requires that there be more than one person taking part, so the first step is to locate someone near you with whom to compete. Fortunately, USPSA has nearly 400 affiliated clubs located in or near most communities in the United States so it shouldn't be difficult. Click on the "Match Schedule & Results" button on the left to find a club near you, then contact the local people and make arrangements to visit the club during a match or practice session.

The local club leaders will be excited to see you and eager to answer your questions, but here are a few pointers to make that first visit a pleasant experience for all concerned. 

* Do take and wear eye and ear protection. Your normal corrective lens or sunglasses will serve for your first visit. Inexpensive foam earplugs available at most sporting goods or hardware stores will suffice for hearing protection. Most clubs will have such items available for visitors, but having your own will simplify the process and ensure that you will be able to watch the match.

* Don't assume you know more than you do. Use your first visit to concentrate on watching, listening, and learning.

* Don't assume that you will be allowed to shoot the first time you go to the club. Many USPSA affiliated clubs require that new competitors complete a "safety check" before shooting an actual match. Some clubs will be willing to administer the check on the day you visit while others will require a stand-alone session at another time.

Firearms & Holsters

It may be that the firearm you already own will be just what you need to get started in practical shooting, but you may learn of other competitive opportunities that will give you that excuse you've been looking for to buy a new toy! USPSA has five competitive divisions, delineated by equipment rules. Unless you are blessed with more money than you need, we recommend that you don't rush out and spend until you've had the opportunity to learn enough about the sport to make an informed decision.

Holsters must retain the firearm during any required movement, must cover the trigger of a holstered gun, must point to the ground when the firearm is holstered, and must be carried at belt level; shoulder holsters, fanny packs, et al, are not permissible at USPSA events. Further, Production Division has additional holster restrictions. Go to our Rulebook, page 91, for more information about the equipment requirements of each division.

Other Equipment

Other necessary equipment includes spare magazines or speed loaders and belt mounted carriers. In most cases at least one magazine will be included with the firearm when you bought it, but having at least five magazines is desirable to be sure to get you through the various stages in a match. Magazines should be available from the gun manufacturer or from a variety of after market sources.

We recommend three to four belt mounted magazine/speed loader carriers, depending on the divisions in which you choose to compete.


Most USPSA members reload their own ammunition, although some use factory loads. Reloading is common for reasons of both economy and performance. The desirability of reloading depends on the divisions in which you choose to compete and the caliber you select. The division choice frequently influences the caliber choice. The issues involved in caliber choice include magazine capacity, recoil, and the division rules.

For example, most Open Division competitors use .38 Super or one of its variants. Most firearms built to compete in Open Division require specific bullet weights and velocities to reach full potential so most Open competitors choose to reload.

Limited Division is dominated by the .40S&W cartridge fired in highly tuned firearms similar those found in Open Division, although they are less complex. Most Limited competitors also opt to reload.

Many who compete in Limited 10 (L10) Division use the same guns they use in Limited Division, but the division rules allow no more than 10 rounds in the magazine. However, a growing number of people compete in L10 with single stack 1911-pattern firearms in 40S&W or .45ACP. While most L10 competitors reload, it is more feasible to use factory ammunition here than in either Open or Limited.

Production Division provides a competitive venue for the box-stock firearms people typically purchase for self-defense. Most Production competitors use 9MM or 40S&W calibers. Because the power requirements in Production are less than those in the other divisions, factory ammunition is common.

The most commonly used calibers in Revolver Division are .45ACP and .357 Magnum. The recoil dished up by factory ammunition can be significant in a revolver, and most competitors find that there are combinations of bullet and powder that can be hand loaded to provide the necessary accuracy and velocities without the recoil (and cost!) of most factory ammunition.

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