from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A bolt, wedge, key, or pin inserted through a slot in order to hold parts together.
- n. A cotter pin.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A pin or wedge inserted through a slot to hold machine parts together.
- n. Erroneously, sometimes used of a cotter pin.
- v. To fasten with a cotter.
- n. A peasant who performed labour in exchange for the right to live in a cottage.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A cottager; a cottier.
- n. A piece of wood or metal, commonly wedge-shaped, used for fastening together parts of a machine or structure. It is driven into an opening through one or all of the parts. [See Illust.] In the United States a cotter is commonly called a key.
- n. A toggle.
- transitive v. To fasten with a cotter.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A cottager; in Scotland, one who dwells in a cot or cottage dependent upon a farm. Sometimes a piece of land is attached to the cottage.
- n. In mech., a wedge-shaped piece of wood or iron used as a wedge for fastening or tightening.
- n. Cotters were used in place of the nut and thread on a bolt before the cutting of threads was easy and cheap, and are still useful where the thread would be liable to injury. A wedge-shaped or tapered flat pin (cotter) is driven into a slot cut near the end of the bolt or stud, drawing up the bolt. A similar device is used to secure nuts on bolts from being shaken off. A hole is drilled through the bolt, at right angles to its axis, beyond the nut, and through this hole a taper pin is driven. The cotter in this case is often split at its smaller end, and if the two parts are spread it cannot of itself work out. In small work the cotter is made of half-round wire, bent double on itself, with an eye at the bend, so that when it is in place and the ends are spread, it cannot slip out either way. The hole can therefore be straight or cylindrical and not tapering, and the cotter has no wedging action in this form. Cotters are much used in motorcar construction.
- To fasten by means of a cotter.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. fastener consisting of a wedge or pin inserted through a slot to hold two other pieces together
- n. a peasant farmer in the Scottish Highlands
- n. a medieval English villein
Origin unknown.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)