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15 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
what is the "action" in a gun?
The working mechanism of the handgun. This determines the process by which the handgun is cocked, fired, and reloaded
what is the "barrel" of a gun?
A tube of varying length through which the bullet is discharged. Discharging the bullet through the barrel determines the bullet's initial direction and trajectory. The seal created between the bullet and the surface of the barrel keeps the gas produced by the burning gunpowder trapped behind the bullet once it leaves the cartridge case. As a result, the bullet continues to accelerate until it exits the handgun at the muzzle. Thus, the longer the barrel, the higher the velocity (speed) achieved by the bullet. Additionally, modern handgun barrels are rifled, which causes the bullet to spin, giving it more stability in flight.
what is the "bore" of a gun?
The interior diameter of the handgun's barrel.
what is the "breech" of a gun?
The area of the handgun that contains the mechanical action, the chamber and the attachment of the barrel to the frame.
what is the 'butt" on a gun?
The rear portion of the frame onto which the grip is attached.
what is the "chamber" in a gun?
The portion of the handgun that holds the cartridge during discharge. The chamber is located directly behind the rifled portion of the barrel. Pistols have a single chamber (an integral portion of the barrel), and the empty casing must be removed and replaced with a new cartridge before another shot can be fired. Depending on the mechanism of action, this process is done either automatically (in the case of semi-automatic pistols) or manually (in the case of Derringers and some single shot competition-style pistols). In contrast, revolvers contain multiple chambers (that are not an integral part of the barrel), each holding a single cartridge, which rotate into the firing position behind a single barrel.
what is the "cylinder" on a gun?
The rotating drum, found on revolvers, which contains multiple chambers. Most commonly, a cylinder will contain six chambers, but some are made with as many as ten. When a revolver is discharged, the cylinder can be manually rotated to bring the next chamber in line with the barrel.
what is the firing pin?
Firing Pin
A pin that transfers the energy generated by the hammer to the primer. The firing pin lies behind the cartridge. The impact of the firing pin on the cartridge ignites the primer and causes the powder to burn rapidly, thus discharging the bullet.
what is the "hammer?"
The mechanism that generates the energy needed to ignite the primer and fire the bullet. When the hammer is pulled back into the cocked position, it compresses the mainspring, thus generating potential energy. When the trigger is pulled, the potential energy stored in the mainspring is released, forcing the hammer down onto the firing pin. The kinetic energy generated as the hammer falls is transferred through the firing pin to the cartridge.
what is the "mainspring?"
The initial source of the energy needed to fire the gun. Cocking the hammer compresses the mainspring, generating potential energy.
what is the magizine?
A container that holds cartridges and feeds them automatically into the chamber of semi-automatic pistols. Often the magazine is a removable component which inserts into the grip of the pistol. The capacity of the magazine can vary greatly. The Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, however, limited the magazine capacity of handguns to a maximum of 10 cartridges (part of the so-called "assault weapon ban").
what is the muzzle?
The end of the barrel from which the bullet exits
what is "rifling" in the bore?
A set of parallel spiraling grooves that run the length of the interior of the barrel. The grooves cause the bullet to spin as it passes, thus giving it additional stability and accuracy in flight.
what is the "slide?"
A device that surrounds the barrel on semi-automatic handguns. As its name implies, the slide moves backwards, opening the breech area of the handgun. Also, on many semi-automatic pistols, the backward movement of the slide cocks the hammer. When the gun is fired, some of the energy from the discharge of the bullet is used to push the slide backwards, thus opening the breech to expel the empty cartridge case and recocking the hammer for the next shot.
what is a "derringer?"
A Derringer is a small handgun with no magazine and no cylinder. It contains one chamber for each barrel, and each chamber must be manually reloaded after discharge. These guns, however, often contain multiple barrels, allowing for more than one shot to be fired before reloading. Typically, Derringers are small handguns, often lacking trigger guards. Most Derringer models are single action. A few are double action, but none are double action-only.