One of the first items attracting a significant amount of attention at the Shot Show Industry Day at the Range: SilencerCo’s integrally suppressed 9mm handgun. They’d brought out a similar prototype in September of 2015; this was the new, improved version. SilencerCo hopes to have them on the market some time in 2016. Of course, you’ll need a tax stamp from the ATF and it’s not going to be cheap. Rumors place the price at around $2k. Some excellent design features have been incorporated in the prototype . . .
The prototype uses Glock magazines, which are cheap, easily available, reliable and effective. Then can be shortened by an inch or two if subsonic loads are used, easily done by the owner in a few minutes. It reduces the loudest 9mm (124 grain +P+) to 139 db, below the level recommended for hearing protection. With subsonic 147 grain loads, it will be much quieter.
As I examined the grip, it occurred to me that the frame had been created using additive technology, commonly known as 3D printing. Confirmed; the frame had been prototyped with additive engineering.
In this image, you can clearly see the layering effect produced by 3D printers, where extremely tight tolerances are not necessary. 3D printing is becoming an industry standard. It’s much cheaper to produce a prototype this way to see if everything fits, to find tweaks the product may need to work better.
Chet Alvord, Vice President of TacSol, believes that 3D printing is the way forward. “High tech machining (such as they do at Tactical Solutions) will be ‘buggy whips’ in 10 to 15 years,” Avlord pronounced.
I handled the Silencerco pistol, but didn’t shoot it. It was acceptable. It had been designed to be easily holsterable. The designer said he expected to build in capacity for a light and optical sights which wouldn’t interfere with a holster. If you’re willing to haul around a steel 1911, the SilencerCo integrally-suppressed pistol wouldn’t be a burden.
The concept seems sound, an obvious integration that would have been perfected decades ago, if not for suppression of the gun muffler market by the obsolete National Firearms Act of 1934. The Chinese had a .32 integrally suppressed pistol based on the Browning 1900 design. A 9mm moves the concept into the very useful category.
With minimal muzzle flash and hearing protection (which maintains situational awareness), an integrally suppressed pistol would make a suitable home defense gun. It would also make a great firearm for open carry, and it’s not out of the realm for concealed carry.
©2016 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included. Link to Gun Watch