I was at Cabela's the other day, and they had some Winchester .22LR hollowpoint ammo in 222 round boxes for sale.
A young guy was asking the clerk about buying the ammo to go with his suppressed Browning Buckmark carbine. The clerk told the young man that he should not buy that ammo because it has a hollow point bullet which would result in excessive fouling of the suppressor.
It sounds like a load of garbage to me, and I can't figure out any reason in the world why the shape of the bullet would matter to fouling at all. Obviously the type of powder, wet/dry suppressor, etc.. would matter. But bullet shape?
I know everyone has their "stupid stuff people say in gun shops" stories, and I feel like this is mine.
The only reason I'm asking is because I am 100% ignorant about suppressors, and thought I'd check on the off chance there is actually some method to the madness.
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August 13, 2014, 01:52 PM
I can't think of one logical reason why that would be true. I pretty much exclusively shoot hollow points through my can and haven't noticed any problems.
August 13, 2014, 01:55 PM
I say no. I shoot HP's primarily through my can as well.
August 13, 2014, 01:58 PM
He just didn't know what he was talking about. It happens.
August 14, 2014, 12:02 PM
Thanks guys. That's kinda what I had figured.
I'll add it to my list of "dumb stuff i've heard in gun shops" for next time that thread comes around (and you just KNOW it will!)
August 14, 2014, 12:40 PM
Perhaps he was thinking of jacketed hollowpoint in suppressors with wipes? I know that's not the case with 22 but that may be what he was thinking of.
August 14, 2014, 01:11 PM
Even though the clerk was wrong, there is a small amount of truth to what he said.
Some manufacturers tell you not to shoot JHPs out of their silencers, and there are a few reasons for this. First, on a silencer that use wipes, the JHP will damage the wipes much faster. Some people even claim the wipes can cause expansion of a JHP bullet, though I've never seen this or heard a first-hand account of this happening. Second, a JHP is a little more likely to have in-flight jacket separation, which might damage the silencer's baffles. Also, a JHP will be a little longer for any given bullet weight, so it's a little more likely to have stabilization issues with an inadequate rifling twist, which could cause baffle strikes.
The first reason makes sense to me, so I'd recommend not using JHPs on a silencer with wipes. But the vast majority of silencers today don't use wipes, and I think the second two reasons aren't really something to worry about. I've never had in-flight jacket separation with hollow-point rimfire or pistol ammo, and most pistols are adequately rifled for all standard bullet weights, JHP or FMJ. I shoot JHPs in my silencers all the time, and every silencer owner I know does the same (I don't know anyone who has a silencer that uses wipes).
August 14, 2014, 01:22 PM
The ammunition in question is plated, not standard cup and core so a jacket/core separation is unlikely. The only reason not to use that 36gr Winchester Cu plated ammunition with a .22 suppressor is that the MV is 1,280 fps from a 6" barrel. The Cu plated would reduce fouling so I'd use it if I weren't looking for the quietest load to shoot.
August 14, 2014, 01:35 PM
The ammunition in question is plated, not standard cup and core so a jacket/core separation is unlikely.
Good point, but either way he was still wrong; shooting JHPs out of a non-wipe silencer is really not something to worry about, even with normally-jacketed ammo. My point was that some companies recommend not shooting JHPs in their silencers, and my guess is that this Cabela's clerk heard that somewhere and ran with it, and that resulted in the misinformation he gave his customer.
August 14, 2014, 02:13 PM
The only reason I could think of to not shoot hollow points out of a can is because they will probably lack sufficient velocity for expansion, of course this can also be said for most pistols. If the price of HP's is the same or less than solids, I'd shoot them.
August 14, 2014, 02:26 PM
The only reason I could think of to not shoot hollow points out of a can is because they will probably lack sufficient velocity for expansion, of course this can also be said for most pistols.
Most modern hollow points have enough velocity to expand out of a pistol barrel, and a silencer won't slow the bullet down any (unless it uses wipes, and very few do). In fact, a silencer can sometimes even increase the bullet velocity a tiny bit.
Carl N. Brown
August 14, 2014, 03:36 PM
Standard velocity .22 (just at or below speed of sound) and .22 ammo labelled specifically subsonic are recommended for use with silencers.
Most hollowpoint ammo is also high velocity (above the speed of sound). High velocity ammo is not recommended beause I suppose the gases are hotter and more vaporized lead condenses in the can.
The fact the bullets were hollowpoint had nothing to do with what they would do/not do in a silencer.
August 14, 2014, 04:24 PM
High velocity ammo is not recommended beause I suppose the gases are hotter and more vaporized lead condenses in the can.
People recommend against high-velocity .22 ammo with a silencer because it will be supersonic (with a long enough barrel), and therefore it will be a lot louder. There's already so much lead fouling with .22 ammo that the difference in fouling between standard and high-velocity ammo won't be very noticeable. I've never noticed it.
Out of a rifle, most standard- and high-velocity .22 ammo will be supersonic, so you need to use subsonic ammo if you want to avoid the loud supersonic crack when shooting suppressed. But most standard- and high-velocity ammo is subsonic out of most pistols; even .22 Mini Mag is still subsonic in most pistols. Out of a pistol, subsonic ammo will be a little quieter because there's less of a powder charge, but the difference is small enough that it's not worth the extra cost of subsonic ammo in my opinion. I once loaded up a mag alternating between CCI subsonics and CCI Mini Mags and shot it through a silenced MK III pistol, and I could barely tell the difference between the supers and the subs.
August 14, 2014, 09:45 PM
I'm a bit surprised the clerk didn't tell the customer that a suppressor is illegal and call the cops.
August 15, 2014, 11:52 AM
Sounds like a case of "If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bull (stuff)."
Or Like Lincoln said, "Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt."
August 15, 2014, 12:19 PM
He heard something true, took it out of context, and then turned it around. He probably meant well.
For nearly all non-rimfire ammo, jackets are swaged from one end. FMJ has lead at the base exposed to combustion gases, JHP has copper jacket at the back and exposed lead at the tip. JHP results in less lead fouling of suppressors.
When it comes to rimfire, the thin jacket is usually plated not swaged.