Definition of snap-action in English:

snap-action

Syllabification: snap-ac·tion

adjective

[attributive]
  • 1Denoting a switch or relay that makes and breaks contact rapidly, whatever the speed of the activating mechanism.
    More example sentences
    • When the gate switches between its two states, it does so abruptly, like a snap-action light switch.
    • The snap-action switching element is operated via plungers which act on the outer limbs of the spring.
    • With multiple options available for contact configurations, terminals and actuators, you can configure a Cherry miniature snap-action switch to fit nearly any size and electrical requirements.
  • 2Denoting a gun whose hinged barrel is secured by a spring catch.
    More example sentences
    • The ejector is operated by the rotation of the joint-check, and allows the shells to be pressed clean home, if preferred. These guns, I understand, will be on the market in a short time, and I believe today no stronger fastening can be made on any snap-action gun.

noun

(snap action) Back to top  
  • The operation of a snap-action switch, relay, or gun.
    More example sentences
    • When the preset differential limit is reached, the valve closes with a ‘snap action’ for a tight seal.
    • The snap action of the bimetal disc provides high-speed contact separation resulting in excellent life cycle characteristics at electrical loads up to 15 amps at 120VAC and 10 amps at 250VAC.
    • This "safe" condition allows for a couple of tooling iterations of the latch, until the snap action is considered acceptable.

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