ratchet(redirected from ratchets)
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1. A mechanism consisting of a pawl that engages the sloping teeth of a wheel or bar, permitting motion in one direction only.
2. The pawl, wheel, or bar of this mechanism.
v. ratch·et·ed, ratch·et·ing, ratch·ets
To cause to increase or decrease by increments: tried to ratchet up interest in the program.
To increase or decrease by increments.
[French rochet, from Old French rocquet, head of a lance (from the shape of the teeth), of Germanic origin.]
A dance featuring ratcheting movements of the arms bent at the elbows.
Lacking in class, refinement, or good taste.
[From ratchet (the dance being introduced in the recording "Do the Ratchet" (1999) by American rapper Anthony Mark "Mr. Mandigo" Mandigo (born 1975) ).]
1. (Mechanical Engineering) a device in which a toothed rack or wheel is engaged by a pawl to permit motion in one direction only
2. (Mechanical Engineering) the toothed rack or wheel forming part of such a device
3. (Mechanical Engineering) to operate using a ratchet
4. (usually foll by: up or down) to increase or decrease, esp irreversibly: electricity prices will ratchet up this year; Hitchcock ratchets up the tension once again.
[C17: from French rochet, from Old French rocquet blunt head of a lance, of Germanic origin: compare Old High German rocko distaff]
a. a toothed bar or wheel with which a pawl engages.
b. a pawl or the like used with a ratchet.
c. a mechanism consisting of such a bar or wheel with the pawl.
2. to move by degrees (often fol. by up or down).
[1650–60; alter. of French rochet; Middle French rocquet a blunt lance-head < Germanic]
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|Noun||1.||ratchet - mechanical device consisting of a toothed wheel or rack engaged with a pawl that permits it to move in only one direction|
mechanical device - mechanism consisting of a device that works on mechanical principles
detent, pawl, click, dog - a hinged catch that fits into a notch of a ratchet to move a wheel forward or prevent it from moving backward
ratchet wheel - toothed wheel held in place by a pawl or detent and turned by a lever
|Verb||1.||ratchet - move by degrees in one direction only; "a ratcheting lopping tool"|