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The Anatomy of a Firearm: Getting to Know the Parts of a Gun

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April 26, 2020

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If you are planning on using a firearm for any purpose, be in hunting, practice shooting, or law enforcement, then it is critical to have a solid understanding of its components.

Having a better understanding of the makings and inner workings of a firearm will allow you to be able to fix problems if they arise when you are using your gun. Knowing how a gun works will also give you a better appreciation for how to safely handle it. Firearms can be dangerous and the more details you know about how they work, the better off everyone will be.

Let’s look at the fundamental components that make up a firearm to improve your gun knowledge and vocabulary.

Chokes

Chokes are the constricted part of a gun barrel found in several different types of firearms. Most typically, however, chokes are found in shotguns. Their purpose is to affect the spread of your shot to influence its range and accuracy. In some cases, chokes are built into a firearm and in other cases, they can be attached or removed as needed.

Especially for the purpose of clay pigeon shooting, having a wide range of shot is beneficial. This makes chokes a useful addition to your firearm accessory collection.

Actions

Actions are where most of the… action… takes place in your firearm. This is a general term for all of the moving parts that make up your gun’s interior. This is in contrast to the stock, which is the “handle” of the firearm, and the barrel, which is the usually long metal tube from which the bullet is projected.

Trigger

Most firearms users will know what a trigger is, as this is the component that is actually used to initiate the firing sequence. Triggers will often be housed in a trigger guard for safety reasons. In fact, many firearms have built-in safety devices that will prevent the trigger from moving while they are activated.

Magazine

The magazine is the container in which cartridges are held for loading into your firearm. In some cases, a magazine may be permanently attached to a firearm, though many are detachable. These work on the basis of a spring to move cartridges to the firing action. With handguns, magazines are often slid into the grip of the firearm. These can be released by clicking a magazine release button.

Sight

Many pistols and rifles have small built-in rear and front sights that can be used to line up a shot. These small additions help firearms users to keep their accuracy consistent. However, enhanced sights can also be added as accessories to most firearms to further improve accuracy. Basic telescopic sights are useful for firing at long distances, while laser sights can provide improved accuracy in low light conditions.

Muzzle

The muzzle of a firearm is the exit port through which a bullet is fired. In many cases, muzzles are smooth and simply facilitate the firing of the gun. However, in other cases, they may have threads that can be used to affix a suppressor to the barrel of the gun.

Put Your Knowledge Into Practice

Having a basic understanding of the components of a firearm is essential for becoming proficient with their use. However, the six components discussed here are only some of the fundamental parts and accessories that make up a firearm. If you are keen on achieving expertise in the understanding and use of your firearm, then continue to learn more about the many pieces that go into it.


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