When Ruger launched the Ruger-57 a year ago (TTAG review HERE), we were taken quite by surprise. Nobody foresaw this FN Five-seveN competitor coming, but it was a great news for fans of the 5.7x28mm cartridge who are interested in a more affordable, more approachable way to fire the little hot rod round.

The only issue with the Ruger-57…mo threaded barrel option. And I do love me some suppressed pistols. So, it was off to Morgan of Class 3 Machining just outside Dallas . . .

From prototyping and barrel modification for Black Collar Arms projects to various personal jobs like this Ruger-57, I’ve sent a decent amount of work to Class 3 Machining over the past couple of years.

Whether chopping down a barrel to a shorter length and then threading it for suppressed use, extending and threading it, or making other physical changes, the parts have always come back with gorgeous machining and finish, meeting and exceeding expectations and requirements.

Class 3 Machining specializes in turning whatever firearm or barrel you may have into a suppressor-ready model, and they do great work.

In the case of the Ruger-57, the barrel is too small in diameter to thread in the standard 1/2×28 thread size required for typical 5.7×28 suppressors. Morgan’s solution was to treat this barrel in the same way as many .22 LR pistols are designed from the factory: thread it to a smaller size and use an adapter to bump it up to 1/2×28 from there as well as to lengthen the barrel so the threaded section extends in front of the slide. In this case, he simply used a Walther P22 thread adapter.

The adapter mates up securely to the crisp, square shoulder that Class 3 Machining cut into the factory barrel and is placed in just the right position in front of the muzzle.

The thread adapter provides a nice shoulder of its own for securely mounting a suppressor. In this case, I ran a SilencerCo Switchback from Silencer Shop (TTAG review HERE).

Overall a pretty clean look that precisely matches both the form and function seen from the factory on nearly all .22 LR pistols that are sold with a threaded barrel.

But how did it work? . . .

With 5.7x28mm ammo incredibly scare right now I was stingy on my range outing, but in the video above I think the results speak for themselves. The Ruger-57 ran confidently and with complete reliability. And it sounded great!

Backpressure from the silencer resulted in high slide speed, as witnessed by ejecting brass cases entering low earth orbit as they whizzed and whistled off into the distance. While the Ruger-57 does have some delay built into its action — it isn’t a totally straight blowback system, but it’s close — it isn’t enough to keep the slide speed within normal range and there was a noticeable, though not terrible, amount of gas blowback happening.

I’ll be on the lookout for a stiffer slide spring, which should put a very appreciable dent into both of these side effects of slapping a suppressor onto the gun. No regrets, though, as there isn’t a day where I’d choose the noise of shooting the Ruger-57 unsuppressed over feeling a little puff of gas on each shot.

For my next trick — ammo depending — I’ll see how she sounds with the short module of the Switchback removed (which will reduce backpressure some) and then, perhaps, will see if she’ll run with a lightweight 5.56 suppressor installed (additional internal volume may decrease backpressure, and the added weight may or may not slow down the action…if it still cycles).

Whether you have a pistol, lever gun, SMG, hunting rifle, or something else entirely and it doesn’t have a threaded barrel (and likely there also isn’t one commercially available), but you really want to shoot the dang thing suppressed, you’ll want to hit up Class 3 Machining. From “simple” threading jobs to shortening a barrel before re-crowning and threading, they can do it and they do it extremely well.

 

28 COMMENTS

  1. I’ve been seeing the Ruger57 around. Priced at about $750. I just haven’t seen any 5.7 ammo since before COVID and very little at that. I’m curious as to how well it works suppressed. This is the first pictures I’ve seen of a as nothing internal. Those barrels remind me of the Ruger Mark barrels.

    • Local gun shop to Northern MI had a NIB model in October for $619. I would have bought it if he (or any usual suppliers) had any ammo. I haven’t seen any 5.7 ammo at non scalper prices since 2019. The Five-seveN is one of my favorite pistols to shoot.

    • My lgs has had one for a while at $654.99 but I haven’t bought it precisely because I can’t get ammo…the same reason I suspect no one else has bought it either

      • Same reason I didn’t buy. Cool gun with no ammo = expensive paperweight. Got a couple thousand rounds of 6.5 Creedmoor instead.

  2. Why doesn’t someone come out with a single stack 5.7 carry gun? I might not ever hear again if I had to use it, but a little shield size 5.7 sounds like fun.

    • I don’t mean to be rude, but why? 9mm double-stacks very compactly in a P365 grip, and 5.7 is <4/5 the base diameter of 9mm.

      Also, 5.7 energy is all about velocity. I doubt its long, bottlenecked powder column would burn very completely in a Shield-length barrel.

    • My guess is practicality: the limiting width of a 5.7×28 handgun is the slide, which needs to accommodate the barrel, recoil assembly, etc.

      The grip and frame on a R57 are about identical in width to the slide. The one exception is the manual safety. Slimming the grip by going single-stack wouldn’t save any width on the slide. And the R57 is a very thin pistol as is.

      Also, one of the advantages of 5.7×28 is that the case diameter is tiny, allowing 20rds in a double-stack flush mag with a grip length about the same as many full-size handguns (G17, M&P, XD, etc.), but holding 2-3 more rds. With such a tiny 27-40gr bullet (albeit moving pretty fast) and negligible recoil, sending 2-3rds can happen very quickly…and may be necessary to have the same effect as a more traditional caliber.

  3. Have the 5-7 and their suppressor….too bad it takes so much work to use them together. Lol
    A threaded barrel would be a nice addition.
    When can we expect to see them Ruger?

  4. “With 5.7x28mm ammo incredibly scare right now…”

    Yeah, several multiples of MSRP is kinda scary.

    (pretty much true for all calibers these days, unfortunately… 😉 )

    Is the supersonic ‘crack’ of the projectile considered ‘hearing safe’?

    • While the crack is probably above the hearing safe threshold, it’s happening some distance in front of you, lowering the noise at the ear.

      • I can vouch for that. Firing supersonic ammo in the open, through a suppressor, is not much problem for the shooter, the sonic crack begins at the muzzle and moves forward, little reaches the ears of the shooter. Depending on your surroundings it gets more and more problematic, if surrounded by vertical concrete walls for example, it would be deafening. If shooting straight up all you can hear is the action cycling. I guarantee if you think supersonic ammo will be silent through a suppressor you will eventually be VERY disappointed! Inside an indoor range it is difficult to detect that it is suppressed. Also, I have heard the supersonic crack of the bullet passing overhead while in the pits 1000 yards from the gun, definitely NOT hearing safe although you couldn’t hear the rifle at all.

    • Well, there’s not really much to learn from how an unsuppressed gunshot sounds through a camera on video. Otherwise you’d have to wear ear protection to watch it…not that the mic can capture noises that loud or any speakers can play them. Suffice it to say, it sounds like shooting a magnum pistol. Here’s my video from when I originally reviewed the Ruger-57: https://youtu.be/iaivrBwDDXA

    • Just unscrew the thread adapter from the front of the barrel (see photo #3). The front of the thread adapter is even cut for a hex key on the inside, which makes it really easy to snug down and remove in a more secure fashion then just using the knurled exterior gripped by hand.

  5. I wonder how the 5.7 would wonk in an AR platform? And while I am dreaming, I would love to see the 350 Legend in a Ruger Super Blackhawk

  6. Easy enough, just do like I did and make a new barrel in 4.6×30. Up until recently it was widely available since there are no civilian owned guns to shoot it (unless you imported the Anschutz bolt action). Even that seems to have dried up now though. When I bought all mine 5.7 was well over $1 per round and 4.6 was under 40 cents.

  7. I find comments about not buying a deeply discounted 57 because of the scarcity of ammo, to be counter-intuitive. If the gun is discounted because lack of demand due to ammo, this is the exact right time to buy. The ammo shortage won’t last forever and when it’s widely available again, you may have trouble fining the gun, let alone at >+20% discount.

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