suppress my AR?


November 17, 2012, 06:07 AM

I have developed a sudden interest in suppressors specifically for my recently purchased 6920. I understand there will be paperwork, a waiting period, Uncle Sam always get's his share and then mods to the carbine to accept one.

Frankly my total suppressor exposure is that I've done a bit of web surfing, and watched a few Youtube videos.

What should I be looking for? Pros and cons? Quality manufacturers? What is going to happen to my carbine in order to have one installed? Is the flash hider removed? Do suppressors wear out? Is velocity or accuracy affected?

Thanks for any advice.

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November 17, 2012, 10:00 AM
Velocity generally goes up a little. Accuracy tends to go up a little. POI/POA will shift between suppressed and unsuppressed simply because you're adding 8-20oz of weight on the end of the barrel which causes it to droop and change harmonics.

You'll need to replace the muzzle device with one compatible with the suppressor. This can either be a flash hider-style device or a muzzle brake-style device so you can comfortably fire your weapon if the suppressor is not being used. Most suppressor companies will offer compatible attachment devices. A muzzle brake's chamber will tend to serve as the primary baffle in a suppressor and takes the brunt of the wear from the combustion gases. The suppressor will wear out in theory but I haven't seen it unless you're shooting full auto and hundreds of thousands of rounds. A suppressor made of quality materials won't wear out in your lifetime.

You should research the company's customer service rating (in the event of a baffle strike), the weight of the suppressors, the build materials, and possibly the sound signature and reduction. The last aspect is very subjective and most suppressors perform "close enough" compared to one another as they will all make the report close to, if not hearing safe (with exception to the micro-suppressors that mainly take the edge off the report).

Lastly, if you decide to do it, I suggest paying an attorney a couple hundred bones (a one time fee as you can add more goodies to it in the future) to form an NFA trust so any of these suppressors you decide to purchase can be legally used by anyone you put in the trust. It also makes transport and distribution much easier as doing a Form 4 under your name technically makes you the sole person legally authorized to own and move the item about. A trust is also useful for dealing with these assets in the event of death...don't want to make family members accidental felons and it avoids the probate process.

Bartholomew Roberts
November 17, 2012, 11:25 AM
Cesiumsponge covered it well. Suppressors do have a finite life depending on how they are constructed. Accuracy from a STABLE position is increased; but it can be a lot more difficult to assume a stable position with an extra 20oz of weight hanging off the end of your barrel and magnifying every tiny wobble.

You are also going to see a major increase in heat since a suppressor basically converts sound energy to heat - and at the end of the day, the rifle still sounds about like an unsuppressed .22.

Also expect to spend $100-200 on having a muzzle attachment device professionally installed. You can't just screw a suppressor on to the existing threads usually because most mass produced barrels tend to be a bit lacking in the close production tolerances necessary to mount a suppressor.

An NFA trust is very useful; but the NFA provides a way for your estate to transfer NFA items even if you lack a trust.

November 17, 2012, 11:41 AM
First my apologies to the mods for having to move this thread. I was thinking about my Colt and posted it in the rifle board. Without enough coffee yet this being an NFA topic completely went over my head this morning.

That said, thanks for the replies. My LGS deals suppressors, I have heard nothing at all about their gunsmithing capability even though they advertise those services.

Thanks again!

November 17, 2012, 01:06 PM
Ask those guys at the LGS if they will let you shoot one of their demo's or one they personally own. From my experience, a lot of the folks that sell them also have some in their personal collection. While you will not be able to borrow it and return it later, maybe they will go to the range with you or demo it right there depending on their set up.

You will also find that a suppressor will reduce recoil of the rifle. Not that there is much on an AR but it makes them more pleasant for women to shoot.

+100 on the trust idea. My SO is on mine and takes some of my cans to a "ladies only" monthly shoot from time to time. If I had used the traditional method of LEO sign off I would have to be there with her. As a trustee, she has possession rights same as I do. (Plus it's a piece of cake to take her off it and add someone else if I decide to kick her to the curb,:p)

November 17, 2012, 09:56 PM
If you get a Gemtech Halo, you won't have to purchase a mounting device. It mounts to your A2 flash hider.

November 17, 2012, 10:42 PM
I had one.

Novelty wore off real fast.

Still need to wear ear protection.
Every bit as loud as a .22 magnum.

Suppressor gets amazingly hot after only a few rounds.

I guess if I were part of an "entry team," the utility would justify it.

Really disliked the gas-in-the-face issue at the range.
...and no, the "gasbuster" charging handle DOES NOT help.

November 17, 2012, 11:13 PM
Really disliked the gas-in-the-face issue at the range.
...and no, the "gasbuster" charging handle DOES NOT help

I've got 7.5" 5.56 and 11.5 7.62x39 and I get no such gas in the face.

"Normal" AR eject at 1-2 o'clock position, Increase the dwell by using a heavier buffer and maybe an m16 bolt carrier so the ejection is 4-5 o'clock and shooting suppressed will be much more pleasant than unsuppressed. Maybe your gas port is oversized, there are supposed to be "restrictor" tubes available to compensate. My 7.62x39 had a way undersized port, so I looked into such in case I went too far in opening up the port.

I agree the supersonic crack is more than you want a lot of without earpro but I find it a lot less than an unsuppressed .22 LR noise wise.

My wife really likes shooting suppressed, even guns she'd never go near if faced with the muzzle-blast -- like my 11.5" 7.63x39 AR.

She is on-board big time to get more cans! Too bad the wait is so painfully long :(

November 18, 2012, 12:11 AM
The environment you shoot in will pay a role in how loud your suppressor it also. If you shoot on a hill over a river bottom or hay field where there are no trees it will be really quiet and when the sound wave bounces off something and comes back it will sound like the shot came from the tree line or house whatever is closest to you.

The suppressor you choose will also play a huge role, I had a customer who complained about how loud his suppressor was he brought in a 5" Surefire Mini suppressor, it will take some of the bite off a gun but it does not do anywhere near as good of a job as the full size .223 suppressor.

Bartholomew Roberts
November 18, 2012, 08:32 AM
The whole way a suppressor works is by delaying the exit of gas from the muzzle until it has cooled/slowed to subsonic velocity. Obviously if you delay gas exiting from the muzzle, it creates a lot of opportunities to get a faceful of gas out of tge ejection port - this is true of just about any suppressor. I can remember shooting an MP5 indoors with tears rolling down my cheeks my eyes stung so bad.

Shooting outdoors with some wind and open space, the effect is less noticeable; but it is going to be there whether you use a gas piston, roller lock, DI, Gasbuster, RTI sealant, etc.

There are a lot of neat things about suppressors but those are frequently discussed. The downsides aren't discussed anywhere near as much.

November 18, 2012, 09:02 AM
Maybe your gas port is oversized, there are supposed to be "restrictor" tubes available to compensate.

I'm sure there is some "magic elixir" that would make that overweight, finicky and unpleasant rifle less unpleasant.

There always is.

Until you use different ammo, or the weather changes, or whatever.
Now things aren't "just right," and it starts doing more weird stuff that makes you start asking yourself, "Why did I make this so complicated (and expensive?)"

Its kind of like building a "hot rod."
If you love turning wrenches, and you don't really need it to work every day, and under every condition, you can have a lot of "fun" with it. Maybe I'm just getting old, and this business of always having to fix something on something that should be simple and reliable is getting tiresome.

But by all means, please don't let my exasperation spoil anybody's fun.

November 18, 2012, 09:16 AM
Ok folks, after reading the above posts I probably should mention I am devoutly left-handed.

November 18, 2012, 09:22 AM
You can install a brass deflector easily enough.

Won't deflect the gas cloud, but will at least keep you from developing a face full of scallop-shaped scars.

Or just get a Stag lefty upper receiver and bolt carrier assembly.

Taurus 617 CCW
November 18, 2012, 09:26 AM
I found this resource helpful, hopefully you will too.

November 18, 2012, 09:55 AM
Taurus, thanks for the link. I bookmarked it.

the carbine has a deflector on it, no issues there but if there is a high increase in gas at ejection that could be a deal breaker for me.

Your suggestion above to see if I can try one out first is a great idea. I have not availed myself of it yet but I know the LGS holds weekend shoots where you can even try out the .50 and some full auto stuff. I am close enough I can hear those events from my house. Unfortunately I think they shut that down for the winter though.

thanks for the help, after doing a lot of reading I still would like to try a suppressor but it is kinda moving down on the list of priorities... for now.

Taurus 617 CCW
November 18, 2012, 11:09 AM
One area where the piston guns shine is with suppressor use. It keeps the gas blowback at the front of the gun, rather than in the receiver. You may want to do some research on piston vs. direct gas for suppressor use.

Bartholomew Roberts
November 18, 2012, 10:39 PM
The gas is coming out of the ejection port. A gas piston may reduce the amount of gas coming out of the port, depending on where it vents; but you are still going to get gas coming out of the ejection port.

November 18, 2012, 11:32 PM
I have alway heard a piston gun is a much noiser host than a DI firearm. I have no personal experience (1 22lr suppressor) so please enlighten me.

Zak Smith
November 19, 2012, 01:42 AM
I recently tried a "for suppressed use only" (referring to gas system) 10" upper on our M16 (with our F/A suppressor on it). It was markedly more mild shooting that a regular 10" and had much less gas in the face.

Taurus 617 CCW
November 19, 2012, 09:55 AM
The other product that I have used in the past with success is the Noveske switchblock. It has three settings you can choose from. Normal shooting, suppressor, and off. The off position will give you a single shot without the bolt cycling.

November 19, 2012, 11:30 AM
Another thing you're going to see is increased parts wear. Specifically the recoil spring, and disconnectors can get beat up as well. You may also see the buffer wear out faster (usually as a result of the recoil spring wearing out prematurely & the owner not realizing it.) The gas rings (DI gun) can wear out sooner as well due to increased pressure & heat in that part of the gun. Also remember that the more efficient the suppressor the harder it is on the gun.

November 19, 2012, 01:25 PM
What about getting a Stag lefty upper? Puts your ejection port on left side of the rifle.

November 19, 2012, 02:58 PM
Suppressors are illegal in Iowa for non-FFLs.

November 19, 2012, 03:54 PM
I have a YHM 5.56 and mounts for a number of 5.56 guns. They are all fun to shoot however much of the joy is lost when used at a gun range. Cans are much more fun if you have a private place to use them as its hard to notice how quiet your gun is when some dude is blasting away with an AR pistol beside you.

November 19, 2012, 06:12 PM
What about getting a Stag lefty upper? Puts your ejection port on left side of the rifle.

That is always an option but I tend to avoid buying "lefty only" stuff. I have gotten thru nearly 53 years without giving in and calling it a handicap and dang it! I ain't a gonna start now. :D

I have no problem shooting the 6920 left handed, even without muffs but yeah I try not to that. My concern was about the extra gas, if any, at the ejection port.

I could buy a 22lr bolt and some mags and just pretend she's suppressed but there's no fun in that.

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