Mike Pappas and Gary Hughes Silenced an AK

During Media Day at the 2016 SHOT Show I made a mandatory stop at the Dead Air booth. As your intrepid scribe, I had a duty to report on Dead Air’s new Ghost-M. As a lover of all things gun, I had to swing by to see Mike Pappas and his brand new head of sales, Gary Hughes. Given that Mike makes cans and Gary loves making AKs, it shouldn’t have surprised me that they had a can-equipped AK at the range . . .

Given my love for accurate guns that fit me well, I’ve never been much of an AK fan. They’ve always been hard for me to shoot, never seems to feel right, the trigger generally sucks, the sights are poor, and they’re usually brutally loud. With the exception of the sights, Gary and Mike fixed most of my gripes by converting an AK pistol to an ergonomic little SBR with a great trigger and a Sandman S on the end. It has now become apparent that Nick’s reverence for Pappas is based on more than just his tank. Seems he makes really cool cans too.


  1. avatar pwrserge says:

    I’ve been looking for a source for a Krink style 7.62×39 factory SBR for years. Any ideas?

    1. avatar Rambeast says:

      Jim Fuller at Rifle Dynamics. Best US assembled AKs, hands down.

    2. avatar GWHNick says:

      Why not just buy an M92, file your form 1 and when it clears have a reputable smith install a sidefolding stock on it?

      1. avatar Mickey R. says:

        If you have a gunsmith build the thing for you, that would require a Form 4 transfer. Form 1 is an application to make and register an NFA item. Make as in make it yourself…

        1. avatar Pwrserge says:

          I’d say you can’t get away with a gunsmith installing the adapter so long as you’re the one to do the final stock install.

      2. avatar Pwrserge says:

        Mostly because if I’m going to register a rifle and spend months waiting, I want it done right. Ideally, I also want a new US made barrel threaded for a suppressor. When you’re talking about NFA firearms DIY only really works with AR platforms.

  2. avatar James69 says:

    If that is a full power loading it’s impressive. Love to try one on my 7 inch AR pistol. Something that bothers me is the use of earplugs when shooting a supposed “super quiet” weapon? On the video it appears that the action? is louder than the bark. I find it hard to believe full power steel cased ammo could be this quiet. If so it would justify the $1200 price tag for one of these.

    1. avatar Tyler Kee says:

      We were on the line with a bunch of other guns that weren’t wearing cans. Its not subsonic .22 quiet, but its pretty tame compared to a pistol length AK. And yes, the ammo is steel cased. Wolf I think? They handed me a loaded mag and I shot it.

      1. avatar Jeremy S. says:

        It would be really great if Range Day could sequester all of the silencer manufacturers into their own area.

        1. avatar Andrew Lias says:

          Maybe one day they will split it out into an extra “quiet day” event.

    2. avatar Mickey R. says:

      My Sandman-S is still in ATF Jail (should be approved soon, though), but I’ve gone to the range with my dealer and used it on my M92 SBR. It does a great job of quieting down full-power steel case 7.62×39. I’ve heard that installing a Wolff extra power recoil spring can help quiet it down a bit more.

    3. avatar Mike Pappas says:

      Full power 7.62×39

  3. avatar Theo Braunohler says:

    Lots of people suppress AK’s. You generally need to have it rethreaded, though. As far as the trigger goes, the Tapco G2 is pretty much a required upgrade. No offense, but this doesn’t seem particularly noteworthy, at least not as the article is written.

    1. avatar Dave says:

      You just need to check the barrel thread concentricity with a drill rod. Like most internet rumors, the AK rumors about inaccuracy, difficulty to suppress and even reliability are blown way out of proportion.

      A good mount to the barrel should yield a can that is very close to true to the bore. A drill rod will confirm it or disprove it before you launch your suppressor downrange. I like the ALG defense trigger more though.

      This marriage parts will bring the AK further along in development. The AR is generations ahead in aftermarket support and it’s not for a lack of following. This is a good development for AK enthusiasts.

  4. avatar Defens says:

    Was that a standard .30 caliber can? How much clearance is there for a .311 bullet (from a 7.62×39) passing through the baffles and end cap for a silencer built for a .308″ bullet?

    I’ve considered trying my AAC 7.62 can on one of my AKs or SKS, but haven’t yet checked those tolerances.

    1. avatar Rambeast says:

      From my reading on this for a short minute, it appears that there is a ~.3346 bore in most 30 cal suppressors, so any of the 7.62 flavors should work with a 30 caliber can. It varies from manufacturer to manufacturer, so don’t hesitate to call and ask them.

    2. avatar Mickey R. says:

      I can’t speak for any of AAC’s products, but I can assure you from personal experience that the Sandman-S is perfectly safe to use on 7.62×39 weapons.

  5. avatar lowell says:

    A big name company needs to make an adjustable gas block for AKs.

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