[1] A bar, pin, or stud that can be moved, pivoted, or slid into engagement with teeth cut on another part, such as the parking pawl on the automatic transmission that can be slid into contact with teeth on another part to lock the rear wheels.
[2] A catch at the bottom of a lever which connects with a toothed rack to hold the lever in position (e.g., with a handbrake lever or in ratchets).
[3] An arm pivoted so that its free end can fit into a notch, slot, or groove at certain times in order to hold a part stationary

Dictionary of automotive terms. 2015.

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  • Pawl — Pawl, n. [W. pawl a pole, a stake. Cf. {Pole} a stake.] (Mach.) A pivoted tongue, or sliding bolt, on one part of a machine, adapted to fall into notches, or interdental spaces, on another part, as a ratchet wheel, in such a manner as to permit… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Pawl — Pawl, v. t. To stop with a pawl; to drop the pawls off. [1913 Webster] {To pawl the capstan}. See under {Capstan}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Pawl — may refer to: * A common component of a ratchet * A part of the adjustable height locking mechanism of an extension ladder * Pawl (constructor), a former racing car constructor * A part of a table saw splitter, a safety mechanism designed to… …   Wikipedia

  • pawl — /pawl/, n. 1. a pivoted bar adapted to engage with the teeth of a ratchet wheel or the like so as to prevent movement or to impart motion. v.t. 2. to check or hold with a pawl. [1620 30; < D pal ratchet] * * * …   Universalium

  • pawl — [pôl] n. [akin ? to Du pal, pawl, stake, pole] a mechanical device allowing rotation in only one direction: one type consists of a hinged tongue, the tip of which engages the notches of a ratchet wheel, preventing backward motion: see RATCHET …   English World dictionary

  • pawl — 1620s, of unknown origin …   Etymology dictionary

  • pawl — ► NOUN 1) a pivoted bar or lever whose free end engages with the teeth of a cogwheel or ratchet, allowing it to move or turn in one direction only. 2) each of a set of short stout bars used to prevent a capstan, windlass, or winch from recoiling …   English terms dictionary

  • pawl — 1. noun /pɔːl/ A pivoted catch designed to fall into a notch on a ratchet wheel so as to allow movement in only one direction (e.g. on a windlass or in a clock mechanism), or alternatively to move the wheel in one direction. The nails in the rim… …   Wiktionary

  • pawl — noun Etymology: perhaps modification of Dutch pal pawl Date: 1626 a pivoted tongue or sliding bolt on one part of a machine that is adapted to fall into notches or interdental spaces on another part so as to permit motion in only one direction …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • pawl — /pɔl / (say pawl) noun a pivoted bar adapted to engage with the teeth of a ratchet wheel or the like so as to prevent movement or to impart motion. {? from Dutch pal} …  

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