A semi-automatic weapon is one that shoots just one shot every pressing of the trigger. A single cartridge is inserted into the firing chamber, the round is shot as soon as the trigger is pressed, and another round is automatically loaded into the chamber through an internal or external magazine.
An automatic (also sometimes called fully automatic) weapon repetitively shoots round after round as soon as you pull and hold down the trigger. Holding down the trigger activates an automated cycling mechanism, which feeds new rounds into the chamber until the magazine is empty or the trigger is released.
The only distinction between the two types of guns is how the trigger keeps the firing cycle going. As soon as a bullet exits the barrel, both semi-automatic and automatic guns load a fresh round into the chamber.
Are all automatic weapons considered machine guns? Yes, in a technical sense. A machine gun is any handgun that is completely automatic. Fully automatic guns, on the other hand, are extremely difficult to come by. Only military troops and law enforcement authorities have access to them.
Firearms that were previously registered between 1934 and 1986 are the sole exceptions to this requirement. In addition to going through a slew of additional background and identification checks, you'll have to pay a $200 federal transfer fee to get your hands on these guns.
Unless you're a cop or a member of the military, don't expect to buy a fully automatic rifle anytime soon! As a result, most hunting rifles are semi-automatic.
Overall, the distinctions between semi-automatic and fully automatic rifles are rather simple to grasp once you strip things down to their essentials and clear up any misunderstandings. Keep all you've learnt in mind in case someone tells you something you don't know and you have to correct them. Best of luck and happy hunting!