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


Sporterizing

The practice of modifying military-type firearms either to make them suitable for civilian sporting use. Common sporterizing includes changing the stock or sights.

Frontstrap

Front, metal, part of a handgun's grip, which together with the backstrap, provides a mounting frame for the grip panels.

Howdah Pistol

Normally, a break-open, double-barrel, side-by-side pistol of large calibre, used by a maharaja when hunting tiger on the back of his elephant (in the howdah, the basket compartment in which he sits). The howdah pistol is the weapon of last resort in case the tiger tries to join him in the howdah.

Chamber

The rear portion of the barrel or firing cylinder in which the cartridge is inserted prior to being fired. Rifles and pistols generally have a single chamber in their barrels, while revolvers have multiple chambers in their cylinders and no chamber in their barrel.

EDC

Abbreviation for Every Day Carry

Metallic Cartridge

A cartridge with a metallic case. (Early cartridge cases were made of linen, paper, etc.)

Underwater Firearm

A firearm specially designed for use underwater.

Berm

On an outdoor shooting range, a large pile of dirt that functions as a backstop.

Every Day Carry

Term used for a firearm that a person uses as their usual daily carry gun. It is also used to describe a gun that is good for carrying concealed on a regular basis. Factors for determining an EDC may include caliber, physical size, number of rounds, accuracy and/or other factors.

Machine Pistol

A handgun-style fully automatic or burst-mode firearm.
A machine pistol is not the same thing as a Submachine Gun

Cocked

A state of readiness of a firearm. The hammer (or similar mechanism if there is no hammer) only needs to be released by the trigger to cause the gun to fire.

Crane

A swing-out arm on a revolver, to which the cylinder is mounted when opened facilitates loading and cleaning.

High Kneeling

A shooting position in which one or both knees are touching the ground, but the shooter is otherwise erect.

Lock

The firing mechanism of a a muzzle-loading weapon. In breech-loading firearms, the lock is the firing mechanism and breech-sealing assembly.

Front Sight

The front sight is placed at the muzzle end of the barrel. It is often (but not always) in the form of a dot or a blade. To attain a proper sight picture and shoot with the greatest degree of accuracy, the shooter's eye should be focused sharply upon the front sight while shooting, allowing both the rear sight and the target to blur somewhat.

Back Action

A sidelock action where the mainspring is mounted rearward towards the butt. The back action is often used in double rifles where the need for strength requires as little steel as possible be removed from the bar of the action.

Racking the Slide

Pulling the slide back to its rearmost position, and then letting it go forward under its own spring tension. Racking the slide loads the chamber and prepares the gun to fire in a semi-automatic handgun.

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