Should silencers be illegal?

actually, they ARE legal to possess in 30 odd states, IF you pay a $200 fed tax and get fingerprinted, background check run, wait 6 months on this process, etc.

Very few people misuse silencers and many hundreds of thosuands of them are legally held, on top of the many thousands of them used by law enforcement and the military. That animal control vehicle that you see? It’s got a silenced .22 (at the least) in it, for shooting stray dogs at night, when nobody is looking. They shoot deer that are on airplane runways, put down animals hit by cars. They sometimes shoot out lights and cameras prior to a big dope raid, too.

Why make the neighbors listen to all those blasts as we practice our hunting and combat skills?

Funny enough, they are much, much less restricted in places like Britain.

But if your shooting is already loud enough to bother the neighbors, you might be too close.

Maybe if the gun community can force a change to calling them “suppressors” some progress will actually be made. Silencer implies some James-Bond style assassin device, while real suppressors make a gunshot quieter and more distorted, but still audible.

We can’t get them in California. You can’t buy the guns that will accept them, w/ threaded barrel, since they’re not on the CA DOJ list. But I would love to have one. Yes, that is interesting that they’re not as restricted in the UK.

that the FEW of the ‘elite" who are allowed guns are going to misuse them, so why not have them be as quiet as possible? Contrary to bs put out about the subject, a .22 can be so quiet that you’d swear that you only dryfired it. You can hear the bullet “thump” as it hits a rabbit at 50 yds of distance, and on a really quiet day, you can hear it "click’ as it passes thru a paper target at that range. This is IF the bolt/slide are not allowed to cycle on an autoloader and if the bullet is not supersonic. Normal .22lr ammo DOES (barely) break the sound barrier when fired thru a rifle, but it will not do so when fired from a pistol barrel. The shorter barrel lets more of the powder gases vent into the air, without accelerating the bullet as well as happens in a rifle’s additional 12" or more “extra” barrel, as compared to say, a 4" pistol barrel

Why not just use a crossbow?

Sigh. The lowest db figures I’ve ever seen for a suppressed firearm are for things like the Welrod pistol and High Standard .22LR, which are cited here at 73 and 71 dB, respectively. I’ve read of the DeLisle .45ACP carbine from that period having a noise rating of 85 dB.

Those numbers weren’t achieved with the current testing regime for suppressors/silencers, so expect those numbers to climb. A lot. They do mention at that site that an unsuppressed .32ACP pistol (not necessarily an unsuppressed Welrod) had a sound level of 105 dB, so that gives us a starting point to guess that their can and modifications dropped the sound about 32 dB. Which is nice, but hardly “dry-firing it.”

Current .22LR manufacturers talk about sound levels in the 114-120 db range. Which is still “rock band” and “vehicle siren” loud. You aren’t passing off a gunshot as a fart with one of those, ‘Wild Bill’ Donovan anecdotes about FDR speeches aside, But quieter than “balloon popping” (125 dB) or, dear God’s, as loud as the 150-160 dB firearms’ muzzle discharges are normally.

Really, suppressors/silencers should be made available to purchase OTC, w/o all of this NFA paperwork rigamarole. It makes it safer for hunters and shooters to shoot, it can improve accuracy, it makes it titanically safer for everyone’s hearing should a firearm have to be discharged indoors (at an intruder, for instance): there’s really no good reason why they’re still restricted in the US, and not in other countries with much stricter firearms laws.

I would simply like to try a side by side test, with and without silencer, just to see for myself. I haven’t searched but I’d imagine there are ranges near Vegas where you could rent them.

If I tried to explain it to you, you wouldn’t get it.

Hah, no, I “get” it, I’ve been a military reservist for 25 years and firearms don’t hold any particular mystique for me, positive or negative. It was the detailed description of plugging a rabbit at fairly close range that prompted my somewhat sarcastic question - if low-noise is a concern and the target is that close… use a crossbow.

I don’t actually see why suppressors need be regulated (or at least not more so than handguns themselves). Anything that makes concealment more difficult is likely to discourage criminal use, and since they’re not nearly as kitten-burp silent as movies make them out to be, some potential hitmen will probably get caught using them out of the misplaced confidence in their clandestitude.

Yoink. Mine now !

Not disparaging your service to Canada, but so what? Are you in a combat MOS where a weapon is central to what you do? Post-basic training do you even touch a weapon other than at annual (or however often Canada does it) qualification? Being in the military, or police, in and of itself denotes little more than a very basic level of training on one particular weapon.

In the UK a guns and license to legally possess them are very difficult to obtain and the penalty for illegal possession is 5 years. You have to produce a lot of supporting evidence to prove you are a responsible person with good reason to possess a firearm. Personal protection does not count as a reason. People get spooked when they see the police with firearms in public, which only happens when there is some kind of alert. Most people have never seen a gun up close, so the nuances of gun culture in the US and discussion of the of laws covering the subject have no equivalent.

In that context, the possession of a silencer by a properly licensed owner is not a big deal. I guess they are assumed to be helpful in protecting hearing during sports shooting.

There is some discussion about the rules in different countries about this on this forum. Looks like it is the similar in other countries where there are strong, centrally controlled licensing laws.

Not to disparage your question, but… so what? The impression I got from Bullitt’s response was that he was assuming I was someone who had never touched or fired a gun and had any number of misconceptions about them. I have, and I don’t.

For some, perhaps that’s true. But that’s a broad categorization, unless you know specifics of Bryan’s service.

Fair enough, and thank you for your service, sir.

Other than hearing protection and killing people/animals quietly (their utility for which seems to be overblown), what is a supressor good for? Serious question.

I can appreciate the engineering challenge of :

  • hitting a rabbit-size target accurately at 50 yards;
  • with sufficient force to kill a rabbit-size animal; and
  • while minimizing sound.

If we weren’t constrained to firearms, I guess I would recommend a crossbow (or on reflection, an air rifle), and during casual research I found this interesting article about a Russian semiautomatic that can fire at a relatively quiet (but well beyond kitten-burped) 125 dB, though the key seems to be specialty ammo.

While I can picture a suppressor for light game/vermin elimination and possibly home defense, it’s kind of hard to picture a prevailing personal-defense aspect justifying carrying one around in public.

Police officer: Okay, your carry permit checks out but why do you need a silencer?

Citizen: Hostile mimes.

That should be illegal, because, you know, a mime is a terrible thing to waste.

I’ve actually seen a guy at the range firing a suppressed Ruger Mk II. There were only 4 of us there on the pistol range, and we all stopped firing and lifted our earmuffs to see how loud it really was - all you could hear was the bolt clicking as he fired.

Of course, I suspect anything larger would be more suppressed, than silenced.