Firearms: Types and Technology

Firearms vary hugely in technology, handling, firepower and availability. If you truly want to understand firearms, this essential course gives you confident grounding in the identification and classification of firearms types and in the core principles of how they work.

Course description (2 days):

Outcome: By the end of this course you will be able to identify, describe and classify firearms in an informed way.

This two-day workshop provides a detailed insight into the various types of firearms in use around the world today, and the operating mechanisms that define their capabilities.

Small arms are generally classified according to the following categories:

  • Handguns (revolvers and semi-automatic pistols)

  • Manually operated rifles (bolt-action, lever-action etc.)

  • Battle rifles

  • Assault rifles

  • Submachine guns

  • Personal Defence Weapons (PDWs)

  • Machine guns

  • Shotguns

In addition, there are several other weapon types in common civilian ownership, such as airguns, Airsoft guns, deactivated firearms and antique guns. This workshop unpacks all of these categories with clarity and definition, providing delegates with clear guidelines for differentiating between the types. In addition to explaining the technologies that underpin firearms, the workshop also explains the critical components, operating systems and nomenclature, everything from gas-operated mechanisms to breech-blocks and muzzle brakes. By the end of the workshop, the delegates will feel confident to talk about firearms in an informed way.

Note: This course is intended for those unfamiliar with firearms or who have a basic understanding of their principles. No previous technical knowledge is required.

Workshop outline:
The workshop is divided into eight parts over the two days. The first two parts lay the groundwork by explaining ammunition and the basic components of firearms, before proceeding to a thorough explanation of the firearm type – its technology, core operating systems, tactical function, and significant examples. All the delegates will have the opportunities during the training to handle legal deactivated and obsolete weapons, to gain a hands-on insight into the technology described.

Course parts:

Part 1: Ammunition – The Critical Factor

Part 2: Firearms Components

Part 3: Handguns

Part 4: Submachine Guns and Personal Defence Weapons

Part 5: Rifles (manual and automatic)

Part 6: Machine Guns

Part 7: Shotguns and Civilian Types

Part 8: Sights, Furniture and Accessories

Pricing/practical information:


Course location: Training is typically conducted at the client’s own premises, subject to security approval, but external training venues can be arranged.
Safety: The training makes extensive use of legally deactivated firearms (deactivation certificates provided prior to training) and antique firearms in obsolete calibres. Note: no 'live' firearms nor live ammunition will be present during the training.
Course adaptation: The course can be readily adapted to suit client needs. Options include extending the training by aditional days (to cover additional topics) or arranging for live-fire workshops at ranges/shooting grounds through our associated organizations.



NB: Prices can be adjusted for multiple course bookings and special requirements. Please call Chris on 01792 324049 to discuss.