Gun Parts: A Beginners Guide To Identifying Different Components

Gun Parts: A Beginners Guide To Identifying Different Components

Every part of a gun has a specific purpose and function. Gun owners must be able to identify different gun components before operating a gun. Information about different parts of a gun can help you understand how it works. This article provides a rundown of the parts of handguns and their functions.

The Grip

The grip of a handgun provides more than just an easier hold of the weapon. It is hollow from the inside and accommodates the ammunition in a magazine. The hollow bottom of the grip is open and is known as the magazine port. The grip also contains a magazine release button inside it.

The Magazine

The magazine is a removable component where ammunition is stored. It can be removed when empty and loaded back with a full magazine. Handgun magazines are faster to reload and fire more rounds than revolvers. Several states regulate the number of rounds a magazine can legally hold.

The Magazine Release

It is located behind the trigger guard in front of the grip. It produces an audible click when a loaded magazine is inserted into the handgun. The magazine release mechanism locks the magazine in place. The shooter must depress the button to replace the magazine. Most magazines drop from the gun on pushing the button. Thus, making it easier to reload the gun.

The Slide

It is located on the upper part of a gun and slides back and forth when a gun is fired. The slide is pulled back and released to load a cartridge into the chamber. When a bullet is fired, the slide is forced to the rear due to the recoil. Next, the extractor attached to the slide ejects the used cartridge. This action of the slide re-cocks the hammer to make it ready for the next round. The next cartridge is pushed out of the magazine into the chamber as the slide moves forward.

Decocking Lever

Most semiautomatic handguns have a de-cocking lever. It is also known as safety and is located beneath the rear sight. When the de-cocking lever is down, the gun will not fire. It must be moved up for the gun to function. This way, the safety or decocking lever prevents the accidental firing of the handgun.

The Frame

The frame is the single part of the handgun onto which the slide rides. Therefore, it must be made of a plastic polymer or metal. GLOCK handguns are known for this innovation.

The Takedown Lever

Depending on the manufacturer, the takedown levers for each gun will be different. However, in a semiautomatic handgun, the takedown levers are located above the trigger but below the slide. The lever's purpose is to release the slide barrel for field stripping the weapon. 

The Slide Stop

The slide stop is also referred to as a slide release. It is present behind the takedown lever. Once the last round in the magazine is fired, the slide stop locks the slide in the rear open position. However, the slide is again released by pushing down the slide stop. This allows it to snap forward.

The Recoil Spring and Guide

They are present inside a handgun just below the barrel. The recoil forces the slide back when a semiautomatic handgun is fired. The recoil also causes the recoil spring to compress. The recoil spring returns the slide forward for the next chambered round. The recoil spring and guide are connected in many handgun models.

Having a working knowledge of your handgun and its components is essential. Before operating a handgun, the shooter must understand the different parts of the handgun and their function. This will allow shooters to operate accurately.