Letter S

The Definition of Semi-Automatic

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Semi-Automatic

A firearm designed to fire a single cartridge, eject the empty case and reload the chamber each time the trigger is pulled. It uses the energy from the fired shot to eject the empty case and feed the next round into the chamber.


19 Other Firearms Definitions You Need To Know


Expanding Bullet

An expanding bullet is a bullet designed to expand on impact, increasing in diameter to limit penetration and/or produce a larger diameter wound. The two typical designs are the hollow point bullet and the soft point bullet. See also Dum-Dum Bullet

Bandolier

A pocketed belt for holding ammunition and cartridges. It was usually slung over the chest. Bandoliers are now rare because most military arms use magazines which are not well-suited to being stored in such a manner. They are, however, still commonly used with shotguns, as individual 12 gauge shells can easily be stored in traditionally designed bandoliers.

Cover Garment

Any piece of clothing that covers the holstered gun. When the gun is worn on the belt, the most common types of cover garments are vests, sweaters, and jackets.

Sporterizing

The practice of modifying military-type firearms either to make them suitable for civilian sporting use. Common sporterizing includes changing the stock or sights.

Luger

American name for the German "Parabellum" semiautomatic pistol introduced in 1900. The Parabellum was designed by Georg Luger, and based on the earlier Borchardt pistol. The official German military nomenclature was "Pistole '08" or "Po8." At first, it was chambered for the 7.65mm Parabellum round. Soon, it was modified to use the 9mm Parabellum cartridge, which is what most people refer to today when talking about a 9mm cartridge. "Luger" is now a trademark owned by the Stoeger Arms Co.

Pistol Whip

To hit someone with the grip of a pistol.

Prime

To prepare or charge a muzzle loader for firing.

Thumbhole Stock

A rifle stock, with a sculptured throughole at the wrist for the thumb, said to be more ergonometric to hold than a traditional stock. Apart from being slower to mount, totally useless for a counter-dexterous person, it is so unmitigatedly graceless as to be beneath consideration.

COF

Abbreviation for Course of Fire.

Igniting Charge

The charge used to ignite the propelling charge.

Suppressor

Incorrectoly sometimes referred to as a silencer, it is used to reduce the sound of a firearm's discharge. They do not actually silence most firearms but rather lower the intensity of the muzzle blast and change the sound characteristics (works similarly to an automotive muffler by disrupting and spreading out the sound waves). The possession, use, and transportation of silencers have been tightly controlled under federal law since 1934. Any device which reduces the sound of discharge by more than 2 dB is considered by the BATF to be a suppressor.

Elevation

The setting on the sights of a firearm that controls the vertical placement and the altitude above mean sea level. This is important for long range precision shooting because the air density changes with elevation and affects the path of the bullet.

Ear Muffs

Hearing protection that completely covers both ears and is usually attached to a headband.

Buttplate (Butt Plate)

A plate which covers the butt. Some steel buttplates have trap doors covering a recess for storage of cleaning equipment.

Cape Gun

A two-barreled, side-by-side, shoulder-fired gun having one smoothbore shotgun barrel and one rifled barrel.

Off Hand

To shoot while standing and without bracing against anything. Sometimes it can also mean to shoot with your non-dominant hand.

Riding the Slide

Racking the slide incorrectly by allowing your hand to rest upon the slide as it moves forward during the loading procedure. Riding the slide is a common cause of misfeeds and other malfunctions.

Propellant

The substance which imparts movement to the projectile in a firearm. In a firearm, usually powder. In an airgun the propellant is air or Co2

Fouling Shot

A fouling shot is a shot fired through a clean bore, intended to leave some residue of firing and prepare the bore for more consistent performance in subsequent shots. The first shot through a clean bore will behave differently from subsequent shots through a bore with traces of powder residue, resulting in a different point of impact.