Guns & Ammo Suppressor Magazine

Current Issue

Current Issue

While the major gun initiative likely to come from the incoming Trump administration is national concealed carry reciprocity (“like a driver’s license,” according to the President-Elect himself), and restoration of the self-defense rights stripped from soldiers and dependents by executive-branch action (these are likely to be restored the same way), industry watchers consider a delisting of suppressors from the National Firearms Act a third possibility. After all, suppressors have gone from known mainly for their use by Hollywood miscreants, to legalfor civilian ownership in 42 States, and in 40 of those states legal to use for hunting, also.

The American Suppressor Association (which finally gave up calling itself the Silencer Association) keeps track of these things, and the current map shows how suppressors are legal just about everywhere except highly urbanized states where criminals and their families are an important constituency, such as California, Illinois, New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts. Those states, where gun bans of all kinds remain popular, are unlikely to waive their restrictions.

asa_edu_map_0616161

Despite the holdout states, suppressors have become increasingly common as safety and comfort equipment, and the biggest single drag on the market is the ATF’s sluggish 1930s approval process.

Last Year's Issue. Note that this year's has more suppressors.

Last Year’s Issue. Note that this year’s has more suppressors — and they’re legal in one more state (and several more, for hunting)..

That makes this magazine special from Guns & Ammo extremely timely. It’s not their first one — they published an edition in 2015 (visible right), also — but this year’s, the yellow covered one seen at the top of this post, is a more complete and interesting one. We picked it up, of all places, at Walmart. If you can’t find it in Walmart, you can try ordering it direct from the publisher’s website for $8.99 (free shipping, presumably to the USA).

Here’s the editorial blurb from that website:

The second issue of Suppressor magazine is filled with reviews and roundups of the latest in suppressor trends. Josh Watson puts a roundup of .22 suppressors to the test, Kimberly Marie discusses why you don’t have to be an experienced shooter to use a suppressor and Sean Utley reviews several new offerings from SIG Sauer, Bell Precision, Thunder Beast Arms, SureFire, SilencerCo and more. You’ll also find a bolt vs. gas case study, an update from the American Suppressor Association and much more. Pick up your copy of 2016 Suppressor today!

The magazine has all the pros and cons of glossy gun magazines, with the pros including excellent, clear photography and punchy prose. The cons? Well, they’ll never say anything that might offend an advertiser. For example, an excellent technical article on the products of SIG’s “silencer division” is completely devoid of the interesting human story of how SIG developed the division by hiring Kevin Brittingham and his AAC team away from AAC after the company’s acquisition by Cerberus Capital’s Freedom Group (now Remington Outdoor). Is that because they don’t want to offend SIG’s Ron Cohen, Cerberus’s Stephen Feinberg, or burn any bridges with Brittingham’s quiet (pun intended) new firm, Q, LLC? We don’t know, but all the mentioned individuals (and the team members who have traipsed around following Kevin) are extremely interesting human stories that tie into the suppressor industry. (We hear from guys “in the community” that Feinberg in particular is “a great guy,” although the actual quotes tended toward more earthy soldiers’ and Marines’ language).

How is SIG going to keep innovating in suppressor design, when it’s in-house innovators checked out? You can bet that Cohen has a plan for that, but he hasn’t shared it with us, and there’s no sign that Sean Utley of G&A asked him.

On the other hand, Utley did get a lot of technical information about the SIG SRD-9 suppressor, and he understands the importance of some of the things that come in the box (like two boosters for tipping-barrel pistols, one with standard imperial threads and one with standard metric) and things that don’t (an adapter for fixed-barrel firearms, available as an option).

Utley also wrote an excellent article comparing four suppressors for the .338 Lapua Magnum, a round that can be fatiguing to shoot unsuppressed. (In our subjective opinion, it’s not as bad as the .300 Winchester Magnum in blast or recoil).

As always with magazine tests, the tests are brief and round counts low. That’s just the nature of the beast.

One suggestion that is made in a couple of the articles is that it’s probably best to try several suppressors before choosing one. This is, of course, impractical, given that it takes most of a year to transfer one, and is subject to punitive taxation under the NFA.

Suppressor delisting would not be a trivial undertaking, requiring Congress to amend a very old law. But as the existence of this magazine on a WalMart magazine rack illustrates, suppressors are increasingly part of the gun culture, and gun culture is increasingly part of the culture at large. Ergo, delisting is an inevitability; activism can simply fiddle with the timeline.

One article that novices should welcome is a very brief suppressor overview article for beginners by Kimberley Marie, that addresses why you should use suppressors, and why not, or, some of the pros and cons of these devices. Something like that belongs in every issue, but also an overview of how they work would allow authors of technical articles (like Utley) to assume a greater level of baseline knowledge.

And one article we’d like to see is a historical article per each issue. Probably not practical, given the limited editorial pages in a short publication. Fortunately, most of the ads are for other interesting suppressors, adding to the value of the magazine.

All i all, for $9, it’s a decent if incomplete survey of some of the most interesting (and most widely available) suppressors on the market today.

22 thoughts on “Guns & Ammo Suppressor Magazine

  1. Hillbilly

    Pretty cool seeing Thunder Beast suppressors getting noticed more and more. They make some good stuff and are really good dudes too.
    They shoot in and sponsor a lot of matches in this part of the country.

  2. vorkosigan

    I wonder if any effort to delist (legalize) suppressors will include owner made suppressors? It’s not that hard to make your own, especially for low pressure rounds like 22lr. Possibly they’ll keep those illegal so as to please the mfg’s of the 500 to 1000 dollar “cans” we have now.

      1. Aesop

        The gun bans in the Seven Sisters’ states are based on the curious notion that 43 other states can’t have gotten it right.
        Unlike, say, their opinion on abortion or gay marriage.

        Like banning most smoking, the issue needs to be addressed as one of noise pollution, and insurance liability. The needle must be threaded carefully, but it’s do-able. (Start suing law enforcement agencies in those states for collateral hearing damage whenever they fire their weapons. EVERY time. There’s only 1M members of the ABA up for that fight, at last look.) Failing that, a federal law, a sufficient SCOTUS majority for a decision, or appropriate executive orders for non-enforcement, would be a handy second/third/fourth choice.

      2. Aesop

        You could try the Internet.
        Perhaps you’ve heard of it. :)

        Amazon lists them as
        1/2-28 to 13/16-16 Threaded Adapter Fitting Aluminum – Automotive

        Just familiarize yourself with the BATFE’s rather liberal interpretations of “constructive possession”.

        1. John M.

          Oh, I’m well aware they exist. I just want the ATF up my bunghole like I want…well, I actually can’t think of anything comparable to having the ATF up my bunghole. Those guys who want to tell ATF that it’s a “solvent trap” are playing with fire. (Waco reference not intended.)

          So I know they exist, and I said I’d love one. And I would. I’d love to have one without having to pay a $200 tax stamp for every oil filter, and without having to raise my hand and tell the ATF, “hey, guys, you know all that stuff you regulate super-closely? I have some of it, so I really should be lots higher on your radar screen.” No thanks. I’ll make do with non-NFA stuff.

          -John M.

  3. LSWCHP

    My biggest gun is a 6.5×55 Swede, and my favourite gun is a .22 Hornet Browning Micro-Hunter which is a joy to shoot. I used to like noisy hard-kicking guns as a dumbass young man, but I’m older and wiser now.

    I go to the range and there’s dudes there with rifles in .338 Lapua and .300 Win Mag and they’ve all taught themselves to flinch, and the groups from their super expensive and accurate pieces look like shotgun patterns at 100m. Jeez, I develop a flinch just shooting next to them. Unfortunately, we have no common sense about guns in Australia, so cans to help ease shooting these beasts are hugely illegal.

    And I honestly don’t get why these guys do it. If you’re a long range military sniper and it’s your job then Ok. But what’s the pleasure in going to the range with a huge cannon so that you get beat to hell, deafened, piss off the other shooters and shoot poorly because you flinch like you’re being electrocuted on each shot? It just doesn’t seem that much fun to me.

    1. DSM

      We had a fellow at our local club carry on about how we couldn’t shoot with suppressors; against the rules of the club and other nonsense. When asked if the guns weren’t loud enough he got even more angry. The next time someone hassles me out there I’m thinking of dropping coin on a 16″ barreled 300 WM complete with muzzle brake. I’ll keep it in the truck so when they do I’ll have an answer for them.

      1. jim h

        I developed a flinch just thinking about a 16″ winny. that’s also just probably the only thing that would create a greater fireball than an M44 MN.

  4. Gray

    Hognose (and any other cognoscenti),

    Is there a best (brand, model) for .22LR pistols?

    Or comparative bests?

    Thank you

    1. DSM

      I got a YHM Mite many years back. My dealer had a few in stock and let one go for less than what the stamp cost. It’s a user serviceable can, quiet enough for me and the price was great of course.

      My recommendation for a .22 can is mainly to make sure you can strip it down to knock out all gunk in it.

    2. LSWCHP

      It depends on what tyle of shooting you want to do. For plinking, a Beretta 87, or Browning Buckmark are good choices. For serious competition the Feinwerkbau AW93 or a Pardini are good choices. The Hammerli 208 is old but great technology. I shot an AW93 for 10 years but I sold it and my Hammerli because I don’t have time to shoot .22 competitions any more.

        1. W. Fleetwood

          Not entirely. I’d never heard of the FWB AW93. Looked it up and learned something new. A bit out of my price range but very interesting. Thanks.

          Wafa Wafa, Wasara Wasara.

    3. whomever

      I make no claim to being an expert, but FWIW:

      As mentioned, cleaning is important for rimfire suppressors. The ‘Silencerco Sparrow’ is a popular one because it has a two piece inner sleeve that makes it easier to take apart when cruddy. It’s a monocore design, and some people complain of something called ‘first round pop’ with monocore designs on pistols (I haven’t noticed it, but I’m prolly just not listening hard enough). It’s stainless, so on the heavier side of things for a rimfire can (but, stainless lets you be more aggressive in the cleaning department than with aluminum ones).

      Non-monocore designs can be harder to disassemble, especially if they have baffles that leave the inside of the outer tube exposed to the gunk from firing. For example, an AAC Element 2 has that kind of baffle. Gemtech’s Alpine (now discontinued) has the same kind of segmented baffle, but each section has a part that keeps the gunk off the outer tube.

      This will all be clearer if you hunt down pictures of the disassembled suppressors.

      Again, just my limited experience. My hunch is that it’s hard to go wrong with a rimfire can.

      1. DSM

        A separate inner sleeve would be great on a .22 can. The excessive celebratory shooting of that Mite on the first trip after getting my stamp had me going to the store for a small strap wrench to give me leverage in twisting off the end cap. Now I make sure to put some grease on the outside of the core and on the threads. I don’t shoot it as much before cleaning either.

  5. Tom Stone

    I borrowed a ladder so I could peer over the wall from here in California.
    A bolt gun good for pigs and deer out to 200 yards would be sweet!

    1. Bert

      If you are carrying that 200 yard hog/deer rifle… 6.5×55, in a surplus M38 Swede carbine if you’re feeling old school/slightly broke, or in a CZ 550 if you have a few more nickels and want all steel and walnut.

      The Swede may come with a threaded barrel from a military blank fire adapter, no clue if it can mate with any common can thread.

  6. staghounds

    Would “delisting” mean that suppressors were not GCA ’68 firearms either?

    Or would there be a 4473 requirement to keep the industry and ban states happy?.

    1. Hognose Post author

      So far, I’ve seen nothing that would take them all the way down to “parts” status. The Hearing Protection Act filed this year and sentenced to Death By Committee made them Title 1 firearms like pistols and rifles, so they’d remain subject to GCA requireents including licensed dealers, 4473s, manufacturer markings IAW ATF policy, all that jive.

Comments are closed.