The term semi-automatic revolver is often misunderstood. The term describes how the mechanism of the gun works although technically the use of the term when discussing handguns is not completely accurate.
Is a Revolver a Semi-Auto?
Even though a semi-automatic pistol’s simplest description is that it fires one round for every trigger pull, technically a revolver is not a semi-auto.
This is mostly because part of the definition of a semi-auto is that the action cycles rounds in from a magazine which requires additional functions. A semi-auto will eject the spent casing, chamber the fresh one, and draw back the firing pin. The trigger pull only releases the firing pin; all other actions are done using the recoil.
A revolver can also fire a round with every pull of the trigger, but this is known as a double action. A double action means that the trigger performs two actions. On the first half of the pull, the cylinder is cycled, so a fresh round is aligned with the barrel, and the firing pin is drawn back. The second half of the trigger pull releases the pin to strike the primer, leading to a longer trigger pull than other handguns.
So as you can see, while each has the same end result of pull the trigger, fire a bullet, the steps to get there are vastly different.
Benefits of a Revolver
A revolver is an excellent home defense weapon as it’s simple to operate, a fast check can tell you if it’s loaded, and has no real controls to worry about. The strong, steel frames are reassuring in your hand, and you have more choice concerning the type of cartridge used.
It’s always important to take classes and practice with any firearm, and this includes a revolver, and to always follow safety protocols.