Letter L

The Definition of Lock

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Lock

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


19 Other Firearms Definitions You Need To Know


Inertia Firing Pin

A firing pin which moves freely forward and backward in the breechblock.

Biathlon

A shooting sport that combines both skiing and rifle shooting. It is the only shooting activity in the Winter Olympics. There is also a summer biathlon which involves running and shooting but it is not yet an Olympic event.

Side-By-Side

A shotgun with two barrels which are situated next to each other. Somtimes also abreviated as SxS.

Collimator Sight

Also known as collimating sight or occluded eye gunsight, a Collimator Sight is a type of optical "blind" sight that allows the user looking into it to see an illuminated aiming point aligned with the device the sight is attached to regardless of eye position (parallax free). The user can not see through the sight so it is used with both eyes open while one looks into the sight, with one eye open and moving the head to alternately see the sight and then at the target, or using one eye to partially see the sight and target at the same time.

Primer Ring

Refers to a visible dark ring created by the primers in centerfire ammunition around the firing pin hole in the frame after much use.

Line Of Sight

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

Over Travel

If the trigger is able to continue moving to the rear after the shot has fired, the trigger is said to over-travel.

Riot Gun

A popular term for a short barreled repeating shotgun as frequently used in law enforcement and personal protection.

Prime

To prepare or charge a muzzle loader for firing.

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.

Weaver Stance

In the Weaver stance, the body is bladed partly sideways in relation to the target rather than squared towards it (think boxing or martial arts fighter stance). The elbows are flexed and pointed downward. The strong-side arm is slightly straighter than the weak-side arm. Even though the legs are not square to tharget, the hips should be square to the target. The feet should be pointed at the target. The shooter pushes out with the gun hand, while the weak hand pulls back. This produces a push-pull tension which is the chief defining characteristic of the Weaver stance.

Ricochet

A rebound, bounce or skip off a surface, particularly in the case of a projectile.

Gape

The degree to which the barrel(s) of a break-open gun drop down; the size of the opening space, which should be sufficient to allow for ease of loading, unloading and properly-functioning ejection. A good gape is easier to achieve on a side-by-side than an over & under where the bottom barrel is well-enclosed by the action body.

Under Barrel

The bottom barrel on an Over/Under shotgun.

POA

Abbreviation for Point of Aim

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.

Iron Sights

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

Straddle Floorplate

A hinged plate covering the bottom of a rifle magazine and extending rearward on either side of the triggerguard. This design allows it to be more securely fastened for one more imperceptible step towards total reliability.

Burst Mode

A firing mode enabling the shooter to fire a predetermined number of rounds with a single pull of the trigger.