What Makes a Suppressor Full-Auto Rated? Key Factors Explained


Suppressors

A suppressor, also known as a silencer, is a valuable accessory for firearms enthusiasts, making shooting experiences quieter and more enjoyable.

When it comes to high-powered firearms, particularly those capable of fully-automatic fire, a full-auto rated suppressor plays a crucial role.

Designed to handle the extreme heat and stress generated by rapid fire, full-auto rated suppressors are built with materials and construction techniques that withstand these harsh conditions.

What sets full-auto rated suppressors apart from others is their ability to tolerate the high temperatures associated with continuous, rapid fire.

These suppressors are constructed from materials like Inconel and high-strength steel, which retain their strength even at temperatures of 1100-1200┬░F.

Additionally, their construction is engineered to provide enhanced durability, ensuring the suppressor maintains its effectiveness during intense shooting sessions.

The Basics of Suppressors

Suppressors, commonly known as silencers, are devices designed to reduce the noise and muzzle flash generated when a firearm is discharged.

In this section, we’ll delve into how suppressors work and the different types of suppressors available on the market.

How Suppressors Work

Suppressors work by trapping and dissipating the expanding gases that are released when a firearm is fired.

These gases are typically responsible for generating the noise and muzzle flash associated with gunfire.

A suppressor uses a series of baffles or chambers to slow down, redirect, and cool these gases, thereby reducing the sound emitted.

It’s important to note that suppressors do not entirely eliminate the noise of a firearm; instead, they reduce it to a level that is less harmful to the ears and less disruptive to the environment.

The degree of noise reduction varies depending on the suppressor design, caliber, firearm type, and ammunition used.

Types of Suppressors

There are several different types of suppressors available, each designed for specific calibers, firearm types, or applications:

  • Integral Suppressors: These suppressors are built directly into the firearm’s barrel, making them a permanent part of the weapon. They are often used in specialized rifles and pistols designed for stealth or accuracy.
  • Threaded Suppressors: These are the most common type of suppressor, designed to be easily attached to or removed from a firearm’s barrel. They usually use a threaded connection and are available for a wide range of calibers and firearm types.
  • Quick Detach Suppressors: As the name suggests, these suppressors can be quickly attached or detached from a firearm, often using proprietary mounting systems. They provide added convenience and ease of use, especially for those who frequently switch between using a suppressor and shooting without one.

Understanding the basics of how suppressors work and the different types available is essential when considering a suppressor’s suitability for full-auto fire.

In the following sections, we’ll explore the factors that make a suppressor full-auto rated in more detail.

Full-Auto Rated Suppressors

Full-auto rated suppressors are designed to handle the increased heat and wear caused by fully automatic rates of fire.

These suppressors are built to withstand the extreme conditions that come with rapid, continuous firing.

Defining Full-Auto Rating

A suppressor’s full-auto rating is determined by its ability to handle the heat and stress generated by fully automatic firing. Factors that contribute to a suppressor being considered full-auto rated include:

  • Strong, durable materials: Full-auto rated suppressors are often made from materials like stainless steel, cobalt, and titanium, which can withstand high temperatures and pressure. It is estimated that 95% of titanium cans are full-auto rated.
  • Robust construction: Suppressors with a solid, tubeless design, such as SilencerCo’s Omega 9K and Omega 45K, can better withstand the stress of fully automatic fire.

Importance of Full-Auto Rating

Even though most suppressor users in the U.S. may not fire at fully automatic rates, a full-auto rated suppressor does offer certain advantages:

  • High-volume shooting: Full-auto rated suppressors are better suited for high-volume shooting, as they can handle the heat and wear associated with rapid, prolonged firing.
  • Increased durability: Suppressors with full-auto ratings are generally more durable and dependable, making them suitable for use with a variety of firearms, including pistols, rifles, and submachine guns.
  • Better long-term performance: A suppressor that can handle full-auto fire will generally have a longer service life and maintain its performance better under normal use.

Components and Materials

Specialized Materials

High-performance materials are crucial in the construction of full-auto rated suppressors.

Commonly used materials in suppressor baffles include aluminum, stainless steel, titanium, cobalt-6, inconel, and satellite.

Each material has its own strengths and weaknesses, but all contribute to the durability and performance of a full-auto rated suppressor.

For instance, aluminum baffles are lightweight and ideal for rimfire suppressors, while stainless steel and cobalt-6 are commonly used for their robustness in pistol suppressors.

Enhanced Durability

Full-auto rated suppressors must be able to withstand the intense heat and pressure generated during rapid fire. One way to ensure this is through enhanced durability.

Suppressors like the SilencerCo Omega K Series are designed with a tubeless construction, which not only reduces weight but also increases overall strength.

In summary, the use of specialized materials and enhanced durability play significant roles in making a suppressor full-auto rated.

As manufacturers continue to innovate and perfect their designs, suppressors are becoming better equipped to handle the demands of full-auto shooting.

Section 5: Heat Dissipation

Managing Heat Buildup

Full-auto rated suppressors must effectively manage heat buildup due to the rapid firing of successive rounds.

One way to achieve this is by using heavy-duty materials that can withstand extreme temperatures, such as 17-4 stainless steel deflectors and internal Grade 5 Titanium coils.

Another method of managing heat is through innovative design, such as the OSS Flow-Through® technology, which redirects expanding gases forward.

This technology helps reduce the temperature inside the suppressor, making it more suitable for full-auto use.

Effects on Suppressor Performance

The ability to dissipate heat is crucial for a suppressor’s performance, especially when used in fully automatic firing.

Excess heat can cause suppressors to lose their effectiveness in reducing noise and blast.

Therefore, it is important to choose a full-auto rated suppressor that has been designed to handle the high temperatures associated with such a firing mode.

Additionally, suppressors that can handle full-auto use are also built with thicker baffles, tubes, and spacers made of strong materials.

This ensures that they can withstand the increased stresses and pressures that occur during rapid firing.

Maintenance Considerations

Cleaning and Care

Regular cleaning and maintenance of a suppressor are essential to ensure its optimum performance, especially if it is used in a full-auto setting.

It is important to remove any built-up carbon and other residues that can accumulate during firing, as these can potentially damage the suppressor or negatively affect its sound reduction capabilities.

Full-auto rated suppressors generally require more frequent cleaning due to the higher round count and the increased heat generated during firing.

To clean a suppressor, first disassemble it according to the manufacturer’s instructions, taking care to note the order and orientation of the individual parts.

Use a solvent appropriate for the materials used in the suppressor to remove grime and residue, and use brushes, picks, or other tools as needed to remove stubborn deposits.

Be sure to fully dry the suppressor and apply a thin layer of lubricant where necessary before reassembling it.

Impact on Weapon Function

When using a suppressor with a full-auto weapon, it is important to consider the impact of the suppressor on weapon function.

A suppressor can affect the cyclic rate, recoil, and reliability of the weapon, as it adds additional weight to the barrel and potentially alters the gas flow dynamics.

Some full-auto rated suppressors are designed with features that help mitigate these effects, such as specialized baffles and gas flow management systems.

However, it is essential to thoroughly test your suppressor and weapon combination to ensure reliable, safe operation in a full-auto setting.

If necessary, consult a professional gunsmith or the suppressor manufacturer for guidance on optimizing your setup for full-auto use.

Additionally, it is crucial to consider that can be quite expensive, so it is important to weigh the cost versus the benefits of using a suppressor on a full-auto weapon.

Conclusion

In conclusion, full-auto rated suppressors are a valuable addition for firearms enthusiasts who engage in high-volume shooting and require enhanced durability and heat dissipation capabilities.

These suppressors are built with specialized materials and construction techniques that can withstand the extreme temperatures and pressures generated during rapid, continuous firing.

However, it is important to consider the impact of a suppressor on weapon function and to thoroughly test and optimize your setup for full-auto use.

With proper maintenance and care, a full-auto rated suppressor can provide significant benefits in terms of noise reduction and shooting comfort, making it a worthwhile investment for serious firearms enthusiasts.

Cody Martin

With over 18 years of federal law enforcement, training, and physical security experience, Cody focuses his time nowadays on both consulting and training. He regularly advises individuals, groups, multinational corporations, schools, houses of worship, and NGOs on security threats while conducting customized training as needed.

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