a mechanism that temporarily keeps one part in a certain position relative to that of another, and can be released by applying force to one of the parts.
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How to use detent in a sentence
This want undoubtedly led to the invention of the detent escapement.Watch and Clock Escapements | Anonymous
This arm striking against the ratchet detent releases the balance weight, and the belt is at once brought on to the loose pulley.
The arm, I, has a notched disk which is engaged by a spring detent which holds the frame at any desired inclination.
Some very good judges esteem the economical importance of the steam-detent as equal to that of the condenser.
Each pin as it passes raises an impulse arm CD which is hooked upon a detent K.
British Dictionary definitions for detent
the locking piece of a mechanism, often spring-loaded to check the movement of a wheel in one direction only: See also pawl
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012