Letter M

The Definition of Muzzleloader

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Muzzleloader

The earliest type of gun, now also popular as modern-made replicas, in which blackpowder and projectile(s) are separately loaded in through the muzzle. The term is often applied to cap-and-ball revolvers where the loading is done not actually through the muzzle but through the open ends of the cylinder's chambers.


19 Other Firearms Definitions You Need To Know


Boresight (Bore Sight)

Crude adjustments made to an optical firearm sight, or iron sights, to align the firearm barrel and sights. This method is usually used to pre-align the sights, which makes zeroing (zero drop at XX distance) much faster.

Four Rules

The four rules of firearms safety,were originally introduced in the early 1900's by various shooting education sources (with varying phrasing, but same implications), they apply every single time a firearm is handled in any way or for any reason. The NRA teaches the Three Rules of Safe Gun Handling.

Rule One: All guns are always loaded. (Treat all guns as if they are loaded, no matter what!)
Rule Two: Never point your firearm at anything you are not willing to destroy.
Rule Three: Never put your finger on the trigger unless your sights are on target (and you have made the decision to fire).
Rule Four: Be sure of your target and what is behind it.

LC

Abbreviation for Long Colt

Underhammer

A type of lock in which the hammer pivots in a vertical arc, striking the nipple on the underside of the barrel. Since the nipple's flash channel goes straight into the powder at the breech end of the barrel, ignition time is very fast. For this reason, and because it gets the hammer out of the way, underhammer locks are commonly used on muzzleloading benchrest rifles which are used for target shooting, and where accuracy is the goal.

LCI

Abbreviation for Loaded Chamber Indicator

Cock

The term referring to the action of manually drawing the hammer back against its spring until it becomes latched against the sear, or sometimes the trigger itself, arming the hammer to be released by a subsequent pull of the trigger. Some external hammers, and all internal hammers, may be cocked simply by pulling the trigger

Touchmark

A craftsman's signature stamp, discretely placed to identify his work.

Frontstrap

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

FPS

Abbreviation for feet per second. A term used in expressing the velocity of a bullet.

WSM

Abbreviation for Winchester Short Magnum.

Heel

The top of the butt-end of a gun stock.

Mainspring

A strong spring which activates the striker or hammer of a firearm.

Knuckle

The curved, forward end of the bar of a break-open firearm's action, about which the mounted forend iron revolves downward. This area should be kept lightly greased to avoid galling the bearing surfaces.

Machine Pistol

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

Match Grade

A higher quality item used to increase accuracy, generally used for competition in a match. Match grade ammo and barrels are the most common improvements made to a firearm to improve accuracy for competition.

Musketoon

A musket shortened for cavalry use.

Pepperbox

An early form of muzzle-loading revolver wherein, instead of the current practice of having one barrel mated to a multi-chambered rotating cylinder, multiple joined barrels revolve together around a central axis.

Wadcutter

A bullet designed with a full diameter flat point. It is primarily used in target competition because it cuts a clean round hole in paper targets that aids in scoring the target.

Receiver

The housing for a firearm's breech (portion of the barrel with chamber into which a cartridge or projectile is loaded) and firing mechanism. In semi-automatic handguns and revolvers, this part is typically called the frame.

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