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A thumb break or retaining strap is a safety device installed on many holsters and sheaths to prevent a weapon from being unintentionally drawn.
The thumb break helps to prevent an unauthorized person from drawing a pistol or knife from another person's body. It also secures the weapon in the holster or sheath when its owner is engaged in vigorous activities such as parachuting, rappelling, or fighting.
The thumb break is made of the same material as the holster or sheath (i.e., leather or nylon), and may either be permanently attached or removable. The thumb break is held in place by a simple snap mechanism, usually metal, which may be disengaged by pushing the thumb upward against it.
The metal snap can scratch the finish of the weapon, or even snag it, which could interfere with the user's ability to draw the weapon cleanly and safely.
Some self-defence experts have advised removing thumb breaks, except for people employed in enforcement (who are at greater risk of encountering someone who may try to grab their weapon). If a thumb break is designed to be non-removable, it may be snipped off with a pair of shears.
Regarding a concealed carry where the gun is covered so no one knows you are carrying it, the thumb break is not as necessary compared to the ‘open carry’ used by many policemen. General misunderstanding is that with an open top, the gun is more likely to fall out. A quality holster is molded to the particular gun and is so tight that from the beginning you will have to break in. In a daily situation, a thumb break is not essential for a concealment holster. However, there are some circumstances, as a motorbike ride, jogging, horseback riding etc., where you need a thumb break for a gun to stay safely in.
Modern form-fitting holsters and sheaths have greatly reduced the necessity of a thumb break retaining device.
A firearm is a gun designed to be readily carried and used by a single individual. It inflicts damage on targets by launching one or more projectiles driven by rapidly expanding high-pressure gas produced by exothermic combustion (deflagration) of chemical propellant. If gas pressurization is achieved through mechanical gas compression rather than through chemical propellant combustion, then the gun is technically an air gun, not a firearm. Some legal definitions of "firearm" are more broad, and may cover any and all projectile devices, or even other destructive devices.
Gun safety rules and practice recommendations are intended to avoid accidental discharge or negligent discharge, or the consequences of firearm malfunctions. Their purpose is to eliminate or minimize the risks of unintentional death, injury or property damage caused by improper possession, storage or handling of firearms. There were 47,000 unintentional firearm deaths worldwide in 2013.
A revolver is a repeating handgun that has a revolving cylinder containing multiple chambers and at least one barrel for firing. The revolver allows the user to fire multiple rounds without reloading after every shot, unlike older single-shot firearms. After a round is fired the hammer is cocked and the next chamber in the cylinder is aligned with the barrel by the shooter either manually pulling the hammer back or by rearward movement of the trigger.
A pocketknife is a foldable knife with one or more blades that fit inside the handle that can still fit in a pocket. It is also known as a jackknife (jack-knife) or a penknife, though a penknife may also be a specific kind of pocketknife. A typical blade length is 5 to 15 centimetres. Pocketknives are versatile tools, and may be used for anything from opening an envelope, to cutting twine, slicing a piece of fruit or even as a means of self-defense.
A handle is a part of, or attachment to, an object that can be moved or used by hand. The design of each type of handle involves substantial ergonomic issues, even where these are dealt with intuitively or by following tradition. Handles for tools are an important part of their function, enabling the user to exploit the tools to maximum effect. Package handles allow for convenient carrying of packages.
A handgun holster is a device used to hold or restrict the undesired movement of a handgun, most commonly in a location where it can be easily withdrawn for immediate use. Holsters are often attached to a belt or waistband, but they may be attached to other locations of the body. Holsters vary in the degree to which they secure or protect the firearm. Some holsters for law enforcement officers have a strap over the top of the holster to make the handgun less likely to fall out of the holster or harder for another person to grab the gun. Some holsters have a flap over the top to protect the gun from the elements.
A latch or catch is a type of mechanical fastener that joins two objects or surfaces while allowing for their regular separation. A latch typically engages another piece of hardware on the other mounting surface. Depending upon the type and design of the latch, this engaged bit of hardware may be known as a keeper or strike.
A trigger is a mechanism that actuates the firing sequence of a firearm, airgun, crossbow or speargun. A trigger may also start other non-shooting mechanisms such as a trap, a switch or a quick release. A small amount of energy applied to the trigger causes the release of much more energy.
Paris Theodore was an American inventor of gun holsters and firearms and shooting techniques used by government agents and police departments in the U.S. and abroad, as well as by the fictional James Bond.
A police duty belt is a belt, typically constructed of nylon or leather used by police and security officers to carry equipment easily in a series of pouches attached to the belt, in a readily-accessible manner, while leaving the hands free to interact. This belt can carry any number of useful items, ranging from handcuffs to guns.
A baton or truncheon is a roughly cylindrical club made of wood, rubber, plastic or metal. It is carried as a compliance tool and defensive weapon by law-enforcement officers, correctional staff, security guards and military personnel.
A gun safe is a safe for one or more firearms and/or ammunition for those guns. Gun safes are primarily used to prevent access to unauthorized or unqualified persons, for burglary protection, and, in more capable safes, to protect the contents from damage during a flood, fire, or natural disaster. Access prevention is required by law in many places, necessitating a gun lock, metal gun cabinet, or gun safe. Gun safes have largely replaced the gun cabinets made of fine stained wood with etched glass fronts used for display that were commonly used decades ago, although some gun safes are made to resemble such gun cabinets.
The following are terms related to firearms and ammunition topics.
The U.S. Marine Raider stiletto was a stiletto and combat knife issued to the Marine Raiders and 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion during World War II.
A paddle holster is a holster for a handgun whose method of securing the holster to the wearer utilizes a flat, concave shaped piece of plastic or stiffened leather designed to be worn against the body inside of the pants. The broad surface area of the "paddle" and the material from which it is made use friction to prevent the holster from being pulled up and away when the handgun is drawn.
Criminal possession of a weapon is the unlawful possession of a weapon by an individual.
Gun laws in Florida regulate the sale, possession, and use of firearms and ammunition in the state of Florida in the United States.
In firearms, a safety or safety catch is a mechanism used to help prevent the accidental discharge of a firearm, helping to ensure safer handling.
Unintentional discharge is the event of a firearm discharging (firing) at a time not intended by the user. An unintended discharge may be produced by an incompatibility between firearm design and usage, such as the phenomenon of cooking off a round in a closed bolt machine gun, a mechanical malfunction as in the case of slamfire in an automatic weapon, user induced due to training issues or negligence, or a simple accident. The phenomenon has also been defined in the scientific literature as an activation of the trigger mechanism that results in an unplanned discharge that is outside of the firearm’s prescribed use. Where prescribed use refers to departmental policies and laws related to the operation of firearms.
A bolt snap is a type of snap hook with a manually operated bolt action slide gate of medium security used to clip a light load to a ring, eye, loop or bight to temporarily secure or suspend an object. They are used for a wide variety of applications including dog leads and for clipping scuba equipment to the diving harness. A similar but more secure device used to attach sails to a stay is known as a piston hank. It differs from a snap shackle in that the load is not carried by the gate. The bolt snap must be actively operated by the user to clip or unclip, and is not easily snagged or unintentionally clipped or unclipped by pressing or bumping against the surroundings. The most common type has a single snap hook at one end and a swivel ring at the other, but double ended bolt snaps and single ended snaps with a swivel shackle are also available. There are a few variations on the style of the hook, gate opening and swivel style. The characteristic element of the bolt snap is the bolt action gate. This is a spring loaded rod which slides longitudinally inside the body of the clip against a compression spring to open the gate of the hook, and returns to rest against the tip of the hook by the action of the spring when released. Bolt snaps are not generally load rated, and are not used to suspend heavy loads. Most applications are in the load range where the user can lift the object to be clipped, or can hold the load manually.
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