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You are looking at a preview of what’s in the timed National Handgun Safety Course. Feel free to look around, but you’ll need to register to begin progress toward getting your Course Completion Certificate.

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All types of handguns have sights and actions, and they may have safeties or magazines.

In repeating handguns, the magazine is the place where the cartridges are stored. When you work the action, a cartridge is picked up from the magazine and placed in the chamber ready to be fired.

Magazines are designed with a spring and follower that push against the cartridges to move them into the action. When checking a magazine to make sure it's empty, you must be able to see and feel the follower; if you cannot see or feel the follower, there may be a cartridge jammed in the magazine, which can be dangerous.

Handgun and magazine