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Single VS Double Action Revolvers; Internal Parts of a Revolver, Part Functions & More

The very first revolver was invented back in the 1820’s and has been around ever since with little alterations. Revolvers are simply a reliable firearm that many still carry today. Even though the revolvers over all design changed very little you will find revolvers come in two major types: they are the single action and double action. As the general function of the revolver doesn’t change much, there are some major differences between the two types of revolvers. Shooting Range Industries will share the difference between a single and double action revolver and their more practical uses.

Basic Revolver Parts & Functions

A revolver is fairly basic. It’s components consist of a frame, cylinder, extractor, crane, barrel, trigger, hammer, and sights. Revolver cylinders rotate on the crane assembly. In a double action revolver the crane assembly turns the cylinder. The ejector rod runs through the cylinder which removes the empty casing. On a double action revolver, the cylinder swings outward when extracting the empty cases. A single action cylinder doesn’t move however, as a single casing is injected one at a time.

Single Action Revolver

The major difference between a single action and a double action is that a single action revolver must be cocked manually each time it is fired. This is done by drawing back the revolver’s hammer. You may recall seeing old cowboy movies where they would fan the revolver hammer. However, proper methods use the thumb to draw back the hammer. Each time the hammer is cocked, the cylinder rotates which puts the new round in line with the barrel. Single action revolvers were the first original design and is still used today. Single action revolvers are best used for self defense, or for practice shooting. However, many officers will use them for duty. As you must draw back the hammer in order to make ready the firearm, a single action revolver is considered to be safer and make for better home defense weapons as well.

Double Action Revolver

As the revolver design took off in popularity, more attention went into making the revolver even better. By 1877 the double action revolver was designed, where each shot didn’t require manual cocking. Essentially, a simple pull of the trigger pulled back the hammer while rotating the cylinder. Additionally, double action revolvers were designed to be reloaded much faster, making it more efficient. Some modern double action revolvers have completely removed the hammer. Hammerless revolvers are ideal for duty weapons or for conceal carry. Often the revolver’s hammer would get caught or get in the way during a draw from the holster. The hammerless revolver made it easier to draw out and also make a revolver easier to conceal. Double action revolvers are faster to load and reload and takes less time to fire. During times of emergency a double action revolver is superior.

Custom Shooting Ranges Designed, Manufactured & Built in the USA

Regardless if the revolver is double action or single action, they are both a reliable firearm that has held true for centuries. If you are on the market for a firearm, consider a revolver and see if a single action or double action is right for you. For design and manufacture of quality shooting ranges, contact Shooting Range Industries today.