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This is apropos nothing, other than general curiosity -- but I've often wondered about this. What is the technical definition of a "gun" as opposed to a "firearm?" I've always thought of a "gun" as something like a Howitzer, something on a battleship or cruiser, or the 105mm we have in our foyer. Everything from a .17cal. up to .50cal, I'd call a "firearm." There must be an actual technical definition, and maybe a cutoff based on size or something, but I haven't been able to figure it out. Does anyone here know -- or have a logical rationale for an opinion? I don't think it has a basis totally on rifling or the lack of it, (smoothbore) but that might be partially the answer. But then that'd mean a smoothbore flintlock is a "gun" and then when they grooved the inside of the barrel it became a "firearm," (of course, it WOULD then become a "rifle.") Is that all there is to it? Then, how about those big boogers the Navy has, are some of them big "guns" and others big "firearms," or even big "rifles?" To some people, "guns," "rifles," and "firearms" are all one and the same thing, just EEEEVIL! To me, they're just tools.
 

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And of course there is the old "This is your weapon , this is your gun" thing. Hope I was able to muddy the waters a little bit.............
 

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I always thought that the term firearm denoted a personal hand held weapon. I guess gun would just be a general term????? :p
 

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A "gun" is a high trajectory weapon, or at least the corp believes that.

(You may call it a rifle, a piece an M-16A1. It is not a gun. A gun is a high trajectory weapon).
 

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hagar said:
A "gun" is a high trajectory weapon, or at least the corp believes that.

(You may call it a rifle, a piece an M-16A1. It is not a gun. A gun is a high trajectory weapon).

Not to brag nor nothing but my gun has acheved trajectorys that amazed even me.
 

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gun, firearm, in civilian terms means anything that goes boom and sends a round out of a barrel, regardless if it has rifling or not. In the military the term "gun" usually refers to either a artillery piece, or large caliber like the M168 20mm gun, M242 25mm gun, M1 tank 120mm main gun....which incidently all of them are also refered to as cannons.
 

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hagar said:
A "gun" is a high trajectory weapon, or at least the corp believes that.

(You may call it a rifle, a piece an M-16A1. It is not a gun. A gun is a high trajectory weapon).
A mortar is a high trajectory weapon. A gun is a flat trajectory weapon. Of course the military calls a mortar a gun. It just goes to show there is more than one class of gun.
So is it Machine Gun or Machine Firearm?
 

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HottAK47 said:
And of course there is the old "This is your weapon , this is your gun" thing. Hope I was able to muddy the waters a little bit.............
one is for killing, one is for fun,,,, kind of redundant huh? :)
 

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Webster defines a firearm as "any weapon from which a shot is fired by the force of an explosion; such a weapon small enough to be carried, as a rifle or pistol."
 

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gun;
A weapon consisting of a metal tube from which a projectile is fired at high velocity into a relatively flat trajectory.
A cannon with a long barrel and a relatively low angle of fire.
A portable firearm, such as a rifle or revolver.
A device resembling a firearm or cannon, as in its ability to project something, such as grease, under pressure or at great speed.
A discharge of a firearm or cannon as a signal or salute.
One, such as a hunter, who carries or uses a gun.

A person skilled in the use of a gun.
A professional killer: a hired gun.
 

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I looked up a few too - clear as mud :)


Firearm Definitions found in dictionaries….

A weapon, especially a pistol or rifle, capable of firing a projectile and using an explosive charge as a propellant.


A portable gun; "he wore his firearm in a shoulder holster"; SYN: piece, small-arm.

A gun, pistol, or any weapon from which a shot is discharged by the force of an explosive substance, as gunpowder

A personal weapon that uses explosive powder to propel a metal (usually lead) projectile.


Guns definitions found in dictionaries…


1. weapon that fires bullets: any weapon, from a small handheld pistol to a large piece of artillery, that has a metal tube through which bullets or missiles are fired by an explosive charge

2. device that fires something: any tool or instrument that forces something out under pressure

3. shot from gun: a shot fired from a gun, e.g. as a military salute or a signal for a race to begin, or the sound of the shot
Wait for the gun.
a paint gun

4. somebody with gun: somebody who is armed with a gun ( informal )
the fastest gun in the West

5. gas pedal: a vehicle's gas pedal ( informal )
Give it the gun.

6. hunter: a member of a party of hunters armed with shotguns



a : a piece of ordnance usually with high muzzle velocity and comparatively flat trajectory

b : a portable firearm (as a rifle or handgun)

c : a device that throws a projectile
 

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I'm going with the gun is a firearm.
The rivet gun is not a firearm neither is a staple gun a firearm neither is a nail gun a firearm-although i have a nail gun that uses .22rf cartridges(blanks of various strength) to drive the nail into concrete so it would be a firearm! right? no! no waiting to buy one,no drivers license or background check required they even come in semi auto and mine is even made by Remington...:confused: :confused: :confused:
 

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boss429
brings new meaning to "nail em Dano" ROTFLMAO
the only definition you should worry about is BATFE`s :eek:

and remember your shoe laces are machine guns :eek: :eek: :eek:
 

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I don't know what you call it, but if it goes "bang" and launches something out of a tube, sounds like fun to me! :D
 

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terminal99 said:
gun;
A device resembling a firearm or cannon, as in its ability to project something, such as grease, under pressure or at great speed.

How about Gunnite concrete? It is shot out of a hose and nozzle, so a fire hose and brass nozzle might be considered a form of gun also.
 

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Colorado1919 said:
A mortar is a high trajectory weapon. A gun is a flat trajectory weapon. Of course the military calls a mortar a gun. It just goes to show there is more than one class of gun.
So is it Machine Gun or Machine Firearm?
All I know is what the DI said. At that time I was in no position (nor inclined) to argue as his attention was directed elsewhere.
 

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hagar said:
All I know is what the DI said. At that time I was in no position (nor inclined) to argue as his attention was directed elsewhere.
I've have been told these things.
 
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