Letter G

The Definition of Gunpowder

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Gunpowder

Also called black powder, gunpowder is a mixture of sulfur, charcoal, and potassium nitrate. It burns rapidly, producing a volume of hot gas made up of carbon dioxide, water, and nitrogen, and a solid residue of potassium sulfide. Because of its burning properties and the amount of heat and gas volume that it generates, gunpowder has been widely used as a propellant in firearms and as a pyrotechnic composition in fireworks. The term gunpowder also refers broadly to any propellant powder. Modern firearms do not use the traditional gunpowder (black powder) described here, but instead use smokeless powder.


19 Other Firearms Definitions You Need To Know


Varmint Gun

Usually a rifle, but not always. A small-caliber firearm or high-powered air gun primarily used for hunting non-native or non-game animals such as rats, squirrels, gophers, jackrabbits, marmots, groundhogs, porcupine, opossum, coyote, skunks, weasels, and other animals considered to be nuisance vermin destructive to native or domestic plants and animals.

Delayed Blowback

A self-loading firearm whose breechblock and barrel are not positively locked together, but which incorporates a mechanism which initially restricts the breechblock from moving when fired, delaying its opening.

Patch

A small piece of leather or cloth. A patch can refer to the wadding used in loading a muzzle loading firearms or the piece of cloth used to clean a firearm bore.

Night Sights

A type of iron sights that glow or shine in the dark, intended for use in low light conditions. Some night sights consist of tiny tubes of tritium, while others use a phosphorus paint.

Six O'Clock Hold

A sight picture of when the center of the target rests on top of the front sight when the sights are properly aligned. Also see center hold and cover hold.

Eyes

Slang for eye protection. Referes to either goggles or safety glasses

Stock

The back part of a rifle or shotgun, excluding the receiver.

Shooting Range

A specialized facility designed for firearms practice.

Rifle Bedding

A process of filling gaps between the action and the stock of a rifle with an epoxy based material.

Pre-Travel

Some triggers can be pulled slightly backwards before the shooter can feel any tension and before the hammer or striker begins to retract. Pre-travel is any movement of the trigger that begins before the trigger starts to engage.

Breechblock

The part in the breech mechanism that locks the action against the firing of the cartridge.

Musketoon

A musket shortened for cavalry use.

Percussion Cap

A small metal explosive-filled cup which is placed over the nipple of a percussion firearm. As the cap is struck by the hammer, it explodes and sends a flame through the flashhole in the nipple to the main powder charge.

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.

Second Amendment

The second article in the United States Bill of Rights which states, "A well regulated militia being necessary for a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

Ambi

Short for the word Ambidextrous. Meaning that a feature of a firearms can be used by either hand, for example ambi-safety, ambi slide catch or ambi mag release.

Marksman

A person who can shoot up to the mechanical capability of their weapon.

Minute Of Angle

A 1/60th part of a degree, the unit of measure used in adjusting rifle sights. As it turns out conveniently, a minute of angle translates almost exactly to one inch at 100 yards (actually 1.047 inches), to two inches at 200 yards and three inches at 300 yards

Open Tip Match

A rifle projectile made with the tip of the bullet open as a means of increasing accuracy as compared to standard military bullets that are made with a closed tip and an open base. The are not designed to expand like a hollow point bullet but may fragment.

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