Thursday, February 9, 2012

Just the Basics – the Single Action Revolver

The Single Action revolver is a great place to begin learning about handguns. The individual parts you see labeled in the photo of this Cimarron Model “P” – Evil Roy signature .45 Long Colt cowboy action pistol are shared by many different types of handguns. Let’s take a walk through the different parts first, and then we will discuss what makes this handgun a “single action” revolver.

The chassis, the primary component that holds all the parts together is the Frame.

The Barrel is the component that allows the bullet to exit the handgun after it is fired and adds a spin to the bullet to increase its accuracy.

The Muzzle is the region immediately at the end of the Barrel where the bullet exits.

The Front Sight, used in conjunction with the Rear Sight Groove is used to acquire an accurate sight picture prior to engaging a threat.

The Hammer is manually thumbed back to prepare it to strike the primer in the .45 Long Colt cartridge.

The Cylinder contains the cartridges to be fired and rotates a new cartridge into position each time the Hammer is thumbed back.

The Grip is the portion of the revolver that is actually “gripped” by the shooter. The Back Strap fits into the shooter’s palm and the Front Strap provides a purchase for the shooter’s fingers.

The Trigger is the component that is pressed to the rear releasing the Hammer and firing the cartridge.

The Trigger Guard provides protection against an accidental discharge from rubbing the Trigger against clothing or a holster.

The revolver is loaded by opening the Loading Gate, pulling the hammer back a single “click” to free the cylinder and inserting a fresh cartridge, rotating the Cylinder and repeating this step until the Cylinder is fully loaded.

Unloading can be done by holding the Barrel vertical, opening the Loading Gate, pulling the hammer back a single “click” and slowly rotating the Cylinder allowing each expended round’s case to drop out. In the event the case does not drop out, an Ejector Rod is provided to assist in this process.

The name “Single Action” comes from the fact that the trigger performs a “single” function, to release a cocked Hammer to fire the cartridge. Hence, this is a “Single Action” revolver.
This particular weapon is a lot of fun to shoot. I plan to dedicate some time this summer to work on a cowboy quick draw (using wax bullets). I’ll post some photos of my progress.

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