Letter P

The Definition of Pinfire

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Pinfire

An early form of complete, self-contained cartridge. It included bullet, powder and ignition primer, all in one package. The primer was located towards the base of the cartridge, but completely internally. The pin, shaped like a little finishing nail, pointed on the inside end and resting on the internal primer, projected radially about a quarter-inch to the outside of the base of the cartridge. When loaded, a pinfire gun showed the tips of the pins exposed through small slots in the tops of the breech faces of the barrels. To fire, hammers fell on the pins, driving them (through the wall of the cartridge) into the internal primer.


19 Other Firearms Definitions You Need To Know


Naked Bullet

A bullet not covered by a metal jacket or patch.

CCL

Abbreviation for Concealed Carry License.

Repeater

A type of firearm capable of discharging multiple individual shots in sequence, fed from a magazine, via the operation a lever, bolt, slide or some other form of manual operation.

Safety Lug

An extra flange behind the bolt handle, at the rear of a bolt action receiver (notably the Mauser Model 1898), which uses the bolt handle as an extra locking surface in the extremely unlikely event of forward bolt lug failure.

Combination Gun

A shoulder-held firearm that has two barrels; one rifle barrel and one shotgun barrel. Most combination guns are of an over/under design (abbreviated as O/U), in which the two barrels are stacked vertically on top of each other, but some combination guns are of a side-by-side design (abbreviated as SxS), in which the two barrels sit beside each other.

Cover

Anything a person can hide behind that will probably stopp a bullet.

Youth Stock

A short stock, often ideally sized for teenagers, average-sized adult women, and small-statured adult males.

Muzzle Control

Being aware of and responsible of which direction your firearm is pointed at all times, and always keeping it pointed in a safe direction.

Twist

The length, within a rifled barrel, required to accomplish one full rotation. 1:12 Twist, means a bullet passing down the bore would complete one revolution in twelve inches. 1:7 Twist, means a bullet passing down the bore would complete one revolution in seven inches, which makes it a tighter twist than 1:12. Different weights of bullet require appropriate rates of twist.

Out of Battery

A semi-automatic is said to be out of battery when the slide fails to come all the way forward again after the gun has fired. This condition can be created by a misfeed, a dirty gun, weak springs, the shooter's thumbs brushing against the slide, riding the slide, or any of several other causes.

Autoloader

A firearm that automatically loads the next cartridge to be fired into the chamber either upon the pull of the trigger in an open bolt design or upon the firing of the previous round in a close bolt design.
Autoloader should not be confused with Automatic or Semi-Automatic since the term Autoloader only applies to how the next round is chambered not how many rounds can be fired per trigger pull. All Automatic and Semi-Automatic firearms are autoloaders. Revolvers, bolt action, lever action and pump action firearms are not autoloaders.

Parkerizing

A chemical phosphate process developed during the second world war to provide an economical, durable and non-reflective surface finish to military firearms.

Slug Gun

Slang for a shotgun which is set up specifically to fire a slug (a large, single projectile) rather than shot (multiple projectiles contained within a single shell).

Collateral Damage

Damage that is unintended or incidental to the intended outcome.

Single Action

An action type that when the trigger is pulled, the only thing the trigger does is drop the hammer (or striker). This applies to both revolvers, semi-automatic and automatic guns. On a single action revolver, the gun must be manually cocked before it can be fired. With semi-automatic and automatic guns that are single action, the only thing the trigger does is drop the hammer, striker or firing pin onto the cartridge. Then the firearm is cocked again when from the recoil of the fired round. A firearm that the gun is cocked and the hammer drops when the trigger is pulled is a double action gun.

Nipple

A small metal tube extending through the breech of a percussion firearm through which the flame passes from the percussion cap to fire the powder charge.

Casehardening

A heat-treating process that incorporates carbon into the surface molecular structure of the steel, providing a hard-wearing surface without making the entire receiver brittle. The parts to be casehardened are packed in a crucible with carbon-rich media such as bone meal and charcoal, heated to bright orange, about 1800F, then quenched in bubbling oil. Also called Carbonizing.

Frontstrap

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

Youth Rifle

A short, lightweight rifle. Some are small enough for a young child to easily handle, while others are large enough to perfectly suit teenagers, average-sized adult women, and small-statured adult males.