A few weeks ago we checked out an auto-advancing target system from Lyman. Next up from TTAG’s First World Problems Desk is a solution from GEMTECH to avoid the finger-bleeding terror of having to screw a suppressor on and off a firearm. Often, this involves as many as a dozen full rotations! Thankfully, GEMTECH’s new QDA mount system allows near-instant mounting and dismounting of a rimfire suppressor with none of the dizziness or shortness of breath.
Okay, okay, I’m being an ass. The purpose of the QDA — or quick detach adapter — is greatly speeding up the suppressor mounting and dismounting process so the owner can move it rapidly between multiple firearms or quickly and easily break their setup down for transport, then get it right back into action when needed.
It’s also a nice way to avoid damaging the fairly fine threads on 1/2×28-threaded muzzles and suppressors. Cross-threading these things can be an expensive mistake. Especially if it isn’t noticed and it causes a baffle strike(s).
Installation is pretty simple. The larger, GEMTECH-branded half seen above is installed into the suppressor, threading right into its normal 1/2×28 mount end. On the firearm’s muzzle goes a 4-lug adapter.
To use the system across multiple guns, additional 4-lug mounts should be purchased. Via Silencer Shop, it’s $129 for the initial system — one suppressor-side mount and one gun-side mount — and $32 for additional gun-side mounts.
Success! A minute or two later and we’re ready to go shooting.
The QDA system adds 1.508 ounces of weight and 1.15 inches of length to your sans-QDA setup. Neither of these figures is substantial in the big picture, but with most rimfire suppressors weighing from about 4 to 5 ounces it means the QDA adds around 35% to that (and 22% to the length of my AAC Element 2).
On the range, the QDA works as advertised. The fit is snug and precise, with the suppressor locking in place just like any of the popular-since-forever 3-lug QD mounts seen on, in particular, all sorts of 9mm sub guns. There’s no wobble, and I suffered no baffle strikes during slow and rapid fire after mounting and dismounting the can a zillion times.
Unfortunately, the actual mounting process wasn’t as easy as I had hoped. The adapter is actually “keyed,” with one lug larger than the other three. Therefore, the suppressor must be timed in the correct rotational orientation for male and female halves to have a birds and bees moment.
While I can understand this for repeatability purposes such as ensuring consistent point of impact shift, it does slow down the process. Instead of fumbling around trial-and-error style, attempting to slam the suppressor on in one rotation after another until hitting the jackpot, I began looking at the female end and noting where the larger lug recess was. Knowing that it needs to be held in approximately the 9:00 position in the case of my CZ Kadet Adapter, putting it on each time became quick and easy without failed attempts.
However, the big appeal to this system for me is the ability to swap the can from gun to gun. And as the gun-side adapters are highly unlikely to end up timed the same way when installed on different guns, this whole memory trick goes out the door.
Brass tacks: GEMTECH’s QDA mount system works as advertised, but is an expensive solution for a niche “problem.” Actually, perhaps its biggest value isn’t even advertised: preventing cross-threading and normal thread wear-and-tear on your guns and suppressor. It does add a bit of length and weight, and it doesn’t actually mount as quickly as I had hoped due to the need to time it properly, but it’s otherwise of solid quality and proper function.
Specifications: GEMTECH QDA Quick Detach Rimfire Suppressor Adapter
Thread Pattern: 1/2×28
Rating: .22 WMR and smaller rimfire calibers
Weight: 1.51 ounces
Length: 1.15 inches
MSRP: $129.99 for both halves, $32.99 for additional 4-lug mounts
Ratings (out of five stars):
Function * * *
Mechanically it’s totally solid, but the keyed-rotation design slows down installation of a product designed specifically to facilitate rapid installation.
Utility * * *
It does what it’s supposed to, but the QDA seems like it’s geared towards a niche market. The buyer is someone willing to spend $129 to convert a direct-thread, rimfire suppressor to a QD suppressor that works on a single gun, or that plus another $32 each to make it work on other guns. It adds length and weight, and realistically only saves a few seconds of time.
Overall * * *
The GEMTECH QDA is cool and fun. It’s satisfying to press down against that spring tension and quick-install and -detach a rimfire suppressor. Unfortunately, it isn’t as fast as it could be and I think its biggest value is probably in protecting your threads.
Was hoping somebody would bring a quick attach setup to the market. Will have to go shake the money tree.
Why couldn’t GemTech added a raised or indented-(longitudinal)-knurl to show you where the “big” lug is indexed?
Could you put a bead of hot glue down the side of the can adapter. Maybe sprinkle in some luminescent ‘sprinkles’ (tacticool bedazzle-it?)?
I like the idea A LOT, but more for when the idea grows up to center-fire league.
And Ixnay on the SN-ay
And why does one lug need to be ‘indexed’, anyways?
That makes no sense to me…
Well, since you asked, there are 4 different sized lugs (or at least one larger one out of four [can’t fully tell from the pics]) a person could see the ‘larger-est’ lug on the end of the barrel (or know where abouts that it is from use) whereas it’s not so easy to discern where on the aft end of the suppressor you’d clock the larger lug in order to join the connectors (as was mentioned as a complaint in the OP).
If on the outer shell of the can-side connector you had some type of tactile marking indicating where that larger lug ‘clocked’ on the aft ‘face’ of the can side mount, then you wouldn’t have to look at it to make a quick-join. You’d just ‘feel’ where the larger lug placement was and more instinctively align it.
OR – If I read you wrong. . .
One lug is oversized so that the suppressor ALWAYS mounts the same way on the connector, so that you don’t have ~ 4 possible different point-of-impact (POI) shifts depending on how you managed to mount the can each time.
I think that part’s a good idea.
“…so that you don’t have ~ 4 possible different point-of-impact (POI) shifts depending on how you managed to mount the can each time.”
Why would there be a change in the POI?
The can isn’t designed concentric with the bore?
In a perfect world the can would be absolutely concentric to the bore, but, you’d get a slight differentiation in the path of the bullet leaving the can depending on the mounting, and that difference would likely follow the position it was clocked in.
The can-side part of the QDA is actually the easy one to see. The gun-side part is harder. Which is less than ideal, as its orientation will be different on different guns, so if you’re moving the suppressor from one to another the large recess on the can-side part might have to be at 9:00 on one gun but 2:30 on another and 4:00 on another, etc. Maybe the solution would be polishing the finish on the large lug to a mirror finish so it stands out, and then it would make sense to do a similar visual indicator on the can-side also. Like an SLR camera lens, line up the red dots kinda idea.
That is, yes, IF it really matters to have it timed the same way every time. While slight differences in mechanical fit can change POI, the internal design of a suppressor can as well. Usually the baffles aren’t symmetrical, so the gas flow isn’t either, and having the can clocked a certain way can affect POI. So it may have nothing at all to do with the mechanics of the QDA part at all, whatsoever, but just recognizing that many suppressor designs result in POI changes if their rotation changes.
“Usually the baffles aren’t symmetrical, so the gas flow isn’t either, and having the can clocked a certain way can affect POI.”
OK, *that* makes sense. The better designs break up the P-wave as much as possible, and that means non-symmetric…
Could you standardize the timing with shim washers?
Yes. As long as you trust them to be truly flat, you could do that.
He shows his SN on the still shot for the video.
no biggie maybe, just sayin.
I don’t see a reason to care.
How long til the MSM says that suppressors are not just wickedly silent, they are NOW TOO FAST TO ATTACH !!!
A dot of white paint on the top should help finding the right orientation. Maybe a gob of glue or some such for tactile orientation.
“Maybe a gob of glue or some such for tactile orientation.”
With a Dermel, cut a shallow notch for tactile orientation…
It’s the gun-side part that really poses the problem. The suppressor-side one is easy to see already.
If the 4 lug gets more popular perhaps it would be built into the can or separately as a replacement mount, at least on Gemtech models if nothing else. Then you could have dedicated 4 lug barrels…
Truthfully I don’t think I want to get mounts for all my 22s, direct thread works fine, I will stick with 3 lugs for 9mm and FH/MB for the rifle calibers.
I think this is a pretty rocking idea, and I’m going to be using it on my 22lr suppressors. My big critique of 22lr suppressors is no ability to run them QD, and this solves that problem quite nicely.