Letter Z Firearms Glossary

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Zero

A firearm is said to be "zeroed in" when its sights have been adjusted so that the bullet will hit the center of the target when the sights are properly aligned upon the center of the target. The farthest distance from a firearm at which the bullet's path and the point of aim coincide. This term is also used to mean the process of insuring that the sights of a firearm are properly aligned so that where they indicate the bullet will strike is in fact where it strikes.

Zeroing

The act of setting up a telescopic or other sighting system so that the point of impact of a bullet matches the sights at a specified distance.


18 Other Firearms Definitions You Need To Know


Pull Distance

The distance the trigger must travel before it reaches the break point and fires the gun.

Speed Loader

A device used to load magazines or revolver cylinders quicker than by hand.

Trigger Pull

The entire process of moving the trigger from its forward-most position to its rearward-most position, causing the hammer to fall and the shot to fire.

Striker

In a handgun that does not have a hammer, the striker is a linear driven, spring loaded cylindrical part which strikes the primer of a chambered cartridge. The striker replaces both the hammer and firing pin found in hammer driven pistols.

Integral Lock

A built in lock that may prevent the firearm from being fired.

Primer Pocket

The counter bore in the center of the base of a centerfire cartridge casing in which the primer assembly is seated.

Rail

A feature on some guns which allows various aftermarket accessories to be attached the firearm such as flashlights or lasers. On pistols, if equipped, the rail is on the underside of the frame below the barrel. On rifles, a rain can be found above or below the barrel, with AR type rifles, the forestock can be made of rails allowing all kinds of attachments in various positions.

Breechloader

A firearm loaded through the breech.

Quad Barrelled

A gun, typically artillery, with four barrels, such as the ZPU

Backstop

Anything that will safely stop a bullet and prevent it from hitting anything else after the target is struck.

Magna

Smith & Wesson term for a revolver grip design introduced in the 1930s where the top of the grip extends higher than it had in earlier configurations, to provide a more comfortable hold.

Bullet Trap

A type of backstop that catches the fired bullet and prevents it from exiting the area. Bullet traps are most commonly used on indoor ranges.

Plinking

Informal shooting at any of a variety of inanimate targets.

Loaded

A firearm is loaded when a cartridge is in its firing chamber. However, for safety reasons all firearms are always treated as loaded at all times.

Scope Blocks

A pair of small dovetailed steel bases, screwed usually one to the barrel and one to the front receiver ring of a rifle, to accept mounts for target scopes such as the Unertl where the scope is allowed to move forward in the rings under the recoil of the rifle and which typically carry the windage and elevation adjustments in the mount.

Pistol Grip

The handle on a pistol. Can also refer to a vertical grip behind the trigger on a rifle.

Floor Plate

The detachable plate at the bottom of the cartridge magazine.

Tangent Sight

A style of rear sight, typically used on rifles for either slow-moving bullets or for long ranges, whereby a ladder may be raised from flush with the barrel to a vertical position, and which incorporates a sliding crossbar which may be moved vertically in order to achieve significant elevation.

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