Letter I

The Definition of Iron Sights

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Iron Sights

The mechanical sighting system which usually comes with the firearm made of metal with no optics.


19 Other Firearms Definitions You Need To Know


Misfeed

Is a failure of the next round to completely enter the chamber. Misfeeds and failures to feed are very similar, a failure to feed is a round that never even leaves the top of the magazine, while a misfeed is a round that leaves the magazine but does not enter the chamber.

Tap, Rack, Bang

The slang term for the procedure to clear a misfeed. To clear a misfeed, tap the base of the magazine firmly to be sure it is properly seated, rack the slide to eject an empty case or feed a new round, and assess to be sure your target still needs shooting. If it does, pull the trigger to create the bang.

Handgun

Synonymous with pistol. A small, short-barreled firearm designed to be fired while held in one or both hands, possibly small enough to be concealed on the person, rather than while braced against the shoulder. The term includes antique dueling pistols, modern single-shot, semi-automatic pistols and revolvers.

Charger

A device typically made from stamped metal which holds a group of cartridges for easy and virtually simultaneous loading into the fixed magazine of a firearm.

Wheel Gun

Slang term for a revolver.

Muffs

Slang for Ear Muffs.

Follower

A smooth, sometimes contoured plate, within a magazine, at the top of a spring, across which cartridges slide when being loaded into a chamber.

Smooth Bore

A barrel without rifling. Smooth bore barrels are commonly used in shotguns and in large bore artillery that fire fin stabilized projectiles.

Capper

A hand tool used in the field for inserting live and removing spent primers from cartridges.

Silencer

Improper term for a device that cuts down on the noise a firearm makes when it is shot. The correct term is suppressor. Silencers only exist in the movies.

Projectile

A bullet or shot in flight after discharge from a firearm.

CFP

Abbreviation for Concealed Firearms Permit.

Rear Sight

The rear sight is placed at the end of the barrel nearest the shooter. It may be in the shape of a square notch, a U, a V, a ring, or simply two dots designed to be visually placed on either side of the front sight while shooting.

Trigger Jerk

Yanking the trigger back abruptly, thus pulling the muzzle of the gun downward at the moment the shot fires.

Birdshot

A type of shotgun ammunition which uses very small pellets with individual projectiles of less than .24" in diameter designed to be discharged in quantity from the shotgun. The size of the shot is given as a number or letter-- with the larger number the smaller the shot size. It is so named because it is most often used for hunting birds. The finest size generally used is #9 which is approximately .08" in diameter and the largest common size is #2 which is approximately .15"

Eyes

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

Shoulder

To bring the butt of a long gun's stock to the shooter's shoulder, preparatory to firing the gun.

Stutzen

German for a short rifle or carbine.

Frangible

A bullet that is designed to disintegrate into tiny particles upon impact to minimize their penetration for reasons of range safety, to limit environmental impact, or to limit the danger behind the intended target. Examples are the Glaser Safety Slug and the breaching round.

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