The portion of a firing mechanism that holds a hammer or striker cocked. The catch in a gunlock that keeps the hammer halfcocked or fully cocked. A part which retains the hammer or striker in the cocked position. When released, it permits firing.

Trigger Sear
Trigger Sear (3)
Semi Wadcutter

Semi-Wadcutter (SWC)

A semiwadcutter or SWC is a type of all-purpose bullet commonly used in revolvers. The SWC combines features of the wadcutter target bullet and traditional round nosed revolver bullets, and is used in both revolver and pistol cartridges for hunting, target shooting, and plinking. A bullet with a flat-ended nose section and a full-caliber cutting shelf.

The designs of Elmer Keith are famous examples of semi-wadcutter bullets.  SWC rounds are often used for heavy loads intended either for hunting or for self-defense. Some SWC bullet designs have a smaller diameter rear end, making these bullets suitable for use with gas checks. Properly lubricated SWC bullets with gas checks are suitable for use at velocities exceeding 1700 ft/s (518 m/s), the gas check preventing leading of rifling.

Keith Style 45 SWC
Keith Style SWC with one crimping groove and one filled lubrication groove.

Silhouette Shooting

(sĭl′o͞o-ĕt′)   [ˈʃuːtɪŋ]

The competitive sport of knocking over metallic silhouettes of animals with a rifle or handgun, usually at relatively long ranges. Metallic silhouette shooting is a group of target shooting disciplines that involves shooting at steel targets representing game animals at varying distances. Metallic silhouette shooting can be done with airguns, black-powder firearms, modern handguns, or modern rifles.

Metallic silhouette shooting
Metallic Silhouette Shooting

Single Action

[′siŋ·gəl ′ak·shən]

A method of fire in some revolvers and shoulder arms in which the hammer must be cocked by hand, in contrast to double action inwhich a single pull of the trigger both cocks and fires the weapon. In revolvers, any gun whose hammer must be manually cocked for each shot. In semi-automatic pistols, any pistol where the hammer or striker must be manually cocked before the first shot can be fired.

Single Action Revolver, Ruger Single Action Revolver, Ruger

1873 single action Rifle and Revolver 1873 single action Rifle and Revolver


( sŏft′-)

A target shooter's term for light, target loads for the .45 ACP. (Cf. HARDBALL)

.45 ACP Softball Ammo .45 ACP Softball Ammo

Specialty Pistol

A large, long-barreled pistol, nearly always a single-shot, capable of chambering cartridges hitherto appropriate only for rifles. Usually intended for hangun hunting or metallic silhouette shooting.

Specialty Pistols Specialty Pistols 



An axially mounted, spring-propelled firing pin. Any part in a mechanical device that strikes something, such as the firing pin of a gun. A firing pin or a projection on the hammer of a firearm, which strikes the primer to initiate a propelling charge explosive train or a fuse explosive train.

Striker style Firing Pin Striker style Firing Pin