Letter H

The Definition of Hardball

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Hardball

Slang for a full metal jacket bullet with a round nose. The term is most commonly used in referring to .45 ACP caliber ammunition, but may be used for other calibers as well.


19 Other Firearms Definitions You Need To Know


Crosshairs

The cross-shaped object seen in the center of a firearm scope. Its more-proper name is reticle.

Thumb Safety

An external, manual safety which is typically disengaged with the firing-hand thumb.

Rifling

Spiral grooves formed into the bore of a gun barrel, which cause the bullet to spin upon firing, thus stabilizing it much like a thrown football. Rifling may be cut, swaged, or forged into the barrel.

Flashbang (holster)

A flashbang holster is a type of holster for women that allows the firearm to sit horizontally tucked under the bra band. As the gun is pulled straight down, the clamshell opens up and permits the wearer to draw. It is named a flashbang because the wearer hash to pull up their shirt (flash) to draw the gun out of the holster, then shoot (bang). These holsters have become very popular with women that conceal carry since the firearms is neatly hidden under the breast line in clothing and does not require the wearer to stay latched onto a purse or have to deal with the inconviences that come with inside the waist band carry

Comb

The top of a gun's stock, where a shooter rests his cheek when mounting a gun. As it is the top of the stock that determines the position of one's eye, and one's eye is the rear sight on a shotgun, the position of the comb is very important in determining the proper fit of a shotgun.

Trigger Group

The entire collection of moving parts which work together to fire the gun when the trigger is pulled. It may include trigger springs, return springs, the trigger itself, the sear, disconnectors, and other parts.

Fouling

The accumulation of unwanted material on solid surfaces. The fouling material can consist of either powder, lubrication residue, or bullet material such as lead or copper.

Captive Ramrod

A rod, for loading and/or cleaning a muzzle-loading firearm (usually a pistol) that is permanently connected to the gun by some sort of swivel, so as to be easily utilized, but never lost.

Passive Safety

Any safety, internal or external, which functions apart from the shooter's conscious control. Grip safeties are one example of a passive external safety.

Federal Firearms License

A Federal Firearms License (FFL) is a license in the United States that enables an individual or a company to engage in a business pertaining to the manufacture of firearms and ammunition or the interstate and intrastate sale of firearms. Holding an FFL to engage in certain such activities has been a legal requirement within the United States since the enactment of the Gun Control Act of 1968.

Headspace Gauge

Plugs of hardened steel, precisely machined in relation to the standard dimensional specifications of a given cartridge, normally in sets of three: "GO", "No-Go" and "Field". By loading these plug-gauges into the chamber in succession, one can check that the action should close on the "Go" gauge. It should not close on the "No-Go" gauge, but might were enough force to be used. And, it absolutely should not close on the "Field" gauge.

Line Of Sight

An imaginary straight line from the eye through the sights of a firearm to the target.

Long Recoil

A semi-automatic pistol in which the barrel and breechblock are locked together for the full distance of rearward recoil travel, after which the barrel returns forward, while the breechblock is held back. After the barrel has fully returned, the breechblock is released to fly forward, chambering a fresh round in the process.

Small Arms

Firearms designed to be carried and used by an individual or individuals.

Submachine Gun

A machine gun that fires pistol caliber rounds such as .45 acp or 9mm Luger (Parabellum)

Extended Top Tang

A display of gunmaking skill with a possible benefit of strengthening the wrist of a heavily-recoiling rifle, whereby the top tang of the action is made extra long, shaped and inletted into the top of the buttstock, extending along the top of the wrist and up over the comb. Popularized by Holland & Holland and adopted by several of the finest contemporary riflemakers in the USA.

Magazine Pouch

Commonly shortened to mag pouch, this is a device to hold extra magazines which fastens to the shooter's belt.

Eye Dominance

Although we have two eyes for depth perception and for spare parts, there is a natural tendency for one eye (the master eye) to take precedence over the other, regardless of the relative visual acuity of each eye. It is a fortunate condition when the eye on the side of the shoulder where one is comfortable mounting a gun is also the dominant eye.
To test for eye dominance:

Pick out a small object several feet away. With both eyes open, center your right index finger vertically over the object. Close your right eye. If your finger appears to jump to the right, you are right eye dominant. Then open your right eye and close your left eye. If your finger remains in position in front of the object, you have confirmed your right eye dominance. Alternatively, if in the above test, upon closing your right eye your finger remains in position covering the object, you are left eye dominant. If you close your left eye instead and your finger appears to jump to the left you have confirmed your left eye dominance.
Eye dominance problems can be treated with
1. A severely-cast, crossover stock to bring the dominant eye in line with the gun's line of sight, 2. A patch over the dominant eye, or just a small piece of frosty Scotch tape on shooting glasses intercepting the dominant eye's line of sight, 3. Fully or partially closing the dominant eye, or 4. Learning to shoot from the dominant-eye shoulder.
While less convenient, methods that retain the use of both eyes better preserve the ability to perceive depth in three-dimensional space, a great benefit in wingshooting.

Kurtz

German for "short." Seen as part of a cartridge designation. On some German manufactured guns that use .380 ACP, the designated caliber is 9mm Kurtz (9mm Short), which is also the same as the Italian 9mm Corto