firearm, the sear is the part of the trigger mechanism which holds the hammer or striker back until the correct amount of pressure has been applied to the trigger; at which point the hammer or striker is released to discharge the weapon. The sear may be a separate part or can be a surface incorporated into the trigger.
The term 'sear' is sometimes (incorrectly) used to describe a complete trigger group.
Within a trigger group any number of sears may exist. For example, a Ruger Blackhawk single action revolver contains one for releasing the hammer. A Ruger Redhawk double action revolver contains two, one for single action release, and the other for double action release. A Browning BLR contains three sears all used simultaneously for hammer release.
Trigger sears are a key component for the trigger pull characteristics. Larger sears create creep while shorter ones produce a crisp pull. After market triggers companies such as Bold, Timney, and Jewel produce products in which sear contact is adjustable for personal preference.
* [http://www.m1911.org/1911desc.htm Animation of a M1911 firing sequence]
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