Dead Air Wolfman suppressor
Dead Air Wolfman suppressor
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When I first opened the shipping box I was surprised at the packaging for this can. It was heavily decorated with motifs of the classic Hollywood monster and had something of a 90’s vibe to it. I immediately liked what I saw. The Wolfman cometh.

Today we’re going to be talking about this shiny modular piece of kit and how it functions on both semi-auto center fire pistols and a bolt action .22LR.

The Dead Air Wolfman suppressor itself is finished in bright stainless steel and is quite catchy in its appearance. I like that, unlike so many other super tactical cans out there, it really looks like a piece of performance equipment on a hot rod. My initial observations were positive, and I set about reading the owners manual (I know, who does that?) and reviewing the manufacturer description of the product.

Dead Air describes the Wolfman this way . . .

“What started out as mild plastic surgery for some in-line improvements to the Wolf-9SD ended up turning into an entirely new beast. The Wolfman is the next generation of suppression. Like its predecessor, it’s a modular, multi-caliber suppressor. It specializes in subgun, light-duty rifle, and pistol use. It provides ultimate suppression in its full-length configuration while still providing exceptional performance when set up in the short configuration. The Wolfman also has an Ace up its sleeve, the front cap can contain a user-provided rubber wipe that can drop suppression levels even further.”

Maybe it’s just me, but I like to see what the company has to say about their product before I give it a go. Sometimes it is all true, other times it is…stretched a bit. Luckily, the Wolfman isn’t all marketing hype and my testing has shown it to be a real, hard-use performer.

Dead Air has a wide range of effective calibers listed for the Wolfman, and it is stated to be ideal for pistol calibers. The sub gun and light-duty rifle uses were unfortunately not on the table for this review, but I had a couple other guns ready to go that would be able to make good use of the Wolfman and see what it can do.

The full-length Wolfman configuration on a GLOCK G19 Gen5 looking pretty dope.

A minor difference I saw on the company site is that the current Wolfman is offered in a Cerakote finish. I have no complaints about the bright finish on mine, in fact as I stated earlier I like it for being stand-out. Dead Air apparently offers it this way as the ‘naked’ option.

That is, of course, a cosmetic situation, not a functional one. I suppose if you were using it hunting, (it’s rated for 350 Legend), that you may want a duller finish. However, I’ve been hunting large game for most of my life now and I’ve never seem it come into play where an animal notices the color or glare from your rig. Sitting out on the edge of a field at dawn makes everything wet and shiny with the dew and I doubt a deer is going to pick out your suppressor.

I know this is a minor point, but I’m sure that there will be some dudebro hunting experts who will fight me on that despite the fact they probably haven’t even touched a suppressor before.

The Wolfman’s short configuration on the GLOCK. It was a bit louder but far more manageable.

Moving on (so this doesn’t turn into an Ask Josh column about how so much of the hunting industry is a sham marketing scheme) let’s talk about the can itself and what it looks like to assemble and use it.

The main draw of the Wolfman is that it uses a two-part main body with a removable, replaceable main cap. Inside this cap can be placed a rubber wipe for the ultimate in noise reduction.

I shot the wipe that came with the Wolfman. It definitely drops the noise level considerably, but it also affects accuracy to a minor extent. The Glock 19 Gen 5 I have here is decently accurate and I used a SilencerCo threaded barrel for this review.

The gun was also equipped with new XS R3D sights. I got both regular and suppressor height versions, but in my infinite wisdom I installed the standard set on the gun before going to the range and subsequently forgot to swap them out.

The Wolfman on a CZ Scout .22LR

Nevertheless, it was an okay setup and I still managed good groups with it. Going back to the wipe, I noticed that it opened the groups, but to an extent I was comfortable with for 25 yard plates…about 3” at that distance.

I used the wipe primarily on the short configuration. With the wipe removed it was perceptibly louder, but not by much. After removing the wipe, accuracy tightened right up, and group size was cut in half. This pleased me very much and I spent a decent amount of precious 9mm ammo getting familiar with it. You’ll have to decide if the wipe’s accuracy/noise reduction tradeoff is right for you

Various attachment methods allow great flexibility.

9x19mm From Black Hills Ammunition

Accuracy and repeatability was tested at 25 yards from a bench rest. Velocity was measured with an Oehler 35P chronograph. Average is for five shots.

BHA 100gr HoneyBadger 1303fps (no discernible velocity change suppressed, no discernible impact change) 

Suppressed Long: 3.75” average
Suppressed Short: 1.5” average

BHA 125gr HoneyBadger Subsonic 958fps (no discernible velocity change suppressed, about 1” left POI shift)

Suppressed Long: 3.25” average
Suppressed Short: 2.5” average

BHA 124gr JHP +P 1222FPS (no discernible velocity change suppressed, no discernible impact change) 

Suppressed Long: 2.75” average
Suppressed Short: 1.75” average

My initial assessment of the Wolfman was completed as far as reliability and accuracy, so I set about some recreational testing to see how it would fare on a small game rifle with iron sights, a use that it would certainly see as it is a quick swap on 1/2-28 threads.

A note about my suppressor testing: I’m not a professional suppressor reviewer. I don’t own a $50,000 acoustic testing machine or am a university research fellow looking for minute variations in suppressor performance. My approach to testing suppressors is real-world and based on how you, a first-time buyer or general hearing enthusiast, may perceive those items.

Frankly, I don’t really know who is just standing there at 90 degrees to the muzzle saying “Wow this isn’t what the manufacturer listed at exactly two feet to the left of where this other guy is shooting.”

The noise I picked up with my own ears was completely tolerable and not once was I uncomfortable with the report, long or short. I found that, while it was not movie silent, there was no pain at all and it was more of a loud pop than a straight up gunshot.

The sound meters I brought with me ended up not having a high enough decibel rating for me to make an accurate assessment of the exact noise level, however I doubt that any buyer will have commercial grade microphones, either. What I can say is that I was completely comfortable and would be happy to shoot this can, long or short, without ears in all day. It was simply a joy to shoot with.

The longer length was noticeably quieter to the unprotected ear, especially in the 9mm. I didn’t notice too much difference shooting .22 between the longer or shorter lengths. One thing that didn’t make it into the data was my CB cap pest control .22 Short loads from CCI. I like this ammo for obvious reasons and putting a suppressor on it is out-of-this-world quiet. The firing pin dropping makes more noise than the shot!

I like that the CZ I have has iron sights that extend higher than the can itself. I wouldn’t hesitate for a minute to take the Wolfman out after rabbits or squirrels on the and of the CZ. The can is light enough that the rifle’s balance isn’t thrown off at all. There are, of course, other dedicated .22 LR can options that are objectively cheaper or better, but in the Wolfman to have a convertible, configurable model that can do 9mm and .22 (not to mention 300 BLK and 350 legend)…that covers the bases for most people.

Changing out the mounts and features is accomplished easily with just the supplied wrench. The can is available with a variety of mounting options and I used the 9mm booster and the supplied direct-thread 1/2-28 mount.

You can shoot the Dead Air Wolfman on a .22 with the booster installed, but that just adds weight when changing out the mount only takes a minute.

The can is narrow enough that it clears the iron sights on the 22LR

All in all, I really like the Dead Air Wolfman. The can is rated for full auto on pistol calibers and semi-auto on center fire rifle. This modular, multi-use can is suitable for 5.56mm, 300 BLK and 7.62x39mm as well as hard-to-find jobs like the 9x39mm.

This is a choice can for most guns, and unless you have a .45 caliber pistol or rifle, you’ll see that the Wolfman does most of what you want a suppressor to do.

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  1. Josh,

    Is it a sealed can or one that may be disassembled for cleaning? Shooting rimfire in a sealed can can [sic] be difficult to clean.

  2. I have a Dead Air Ghost 45m. It is a similar modular can with provision for a wipe in the front. However, the ATF, in their infinite wisdom, declared wipes as controlled suppressor parts a few years ago and they were no longer end user changeable. Dead Air had set up a program to send it back to them to replace (asinine I know, they wear out quickly, probably cost 20c, and can be swapped out in a few seconds). I had not heard of anything changing in this regard. Is that no longer the case?

    • Howdy! I run a home-based FFL/SOT and am familiar with the laws.
      Wipes are suppressor parts that quiet a firearm (like a baffle) and therefore subject to the restrictive laws too. Currently, end users can make and replace their own wipes in a one-to-one ratio – no stockpiling, sharing, or manufacturing allowed. If your wipe wears out, you can destroy it and replace it yourself at home.
      The wipe supplied with the Wolfman happens to be the exact size as a common rubber sink washer available at your local hardware store. As long as that’s still in the packaging, it’s a washer.
      Many other wiped suppressors use commonly available high-temp silicone that you can buy directly from suppliers like McMaster-Carr in bulk rolls. As long as you don’t cut out a bunch of circles ahead of time, you’re not a felon per ATF.

      • Interesting, I was under the impression that they were completely banned from end user servicing at the time. Ill have to look into it more

      • “Currently, end users can make and replace their own wipes in a one-to-one ratio – no stockpiling, sharing, or manufacturing allowed. If your wipe wears out, you can destroy it and replace it yourself at home.”

        I hope that’s correct.

        Before I cheer and buy one, I need to see signed paperwork from the BATF stating that is the case.

        Does that paperwork exist, for me, Joe Blow, who’s not an ATF SOT license holder?

        • Finally found where I’d read it: Energetic Arms Vox user manual

          “Wipes may be replaced by a dealer or users can repair their silencers; they just can’t manufacture and stockpile silencer parts. Making and replacing wipes 1:1 is acceptable. You cannot make them for other people or have more than one at a time. The old wipe should be destroyed before a new one is made.”
          “Per BATF regulations Energetic Armament does not sell replacement wipes. This guide DOES NOT constitute legal advice and firearms laws change regularly. Please consult your dealer or an attorney for guidance with all laws and regulations.”
          Couldn’t find anything from ATF tho – wouldn’t want the public knowing how to avoid felonious intent now.

      • Well, just DAMN! What a fine answer, could you stick around? It would be nice to occasionally have a comment from someone knows what he’s talking about!

    • “With the shortage of ammunition my gunms remain suppressed on their own.”

      For a marsupial, the Possum speaks the truth…

      *Sobbing pitifully* 😉

  3. If a shooter anticipates a can getting too hot to touch, then any coating with a higher thermal emissivity will enable the can to cool much more quickly than with a polished stainless steel exterior.

    Polished stainless has an emissivity of about 0.075 whereas at least one Cerakote coating (H-229 sniper green) has an emissivity of about 0.88. So it will radiate heat 11 times better than polished stainless.

    • The blacker the better, from what I’ve read on spacecraft thermal radiator systems. Also, increasing the surface area of the coating helps heat ’emit’ more quickly…

  4. If you have multiple materials between a heat source and a heat sink, you are limited by the material that has the worst heat conduction. Plus every interface, even between a metal and a coating, lowers the heat conduction to the surface. You are trapping heat, like with a suppressor cover. To get heat out more quickly, you really do want as shiny a surface as possible (better “black body” radiative emission of heat) with fins or pins to increase surface area, aiding conduction and convection heat transfer.

    • It don’t matter much, any suppressor gets WAY hot, better to getcha some serious insulating gloves and have a place to put the can for an hour or two to cool.

    • “To get heat out more quickly, you really do want as shiny a surface as possible“

      Not really.

      Geoff is correct:

      “The blacker the better“

      A true ‘black body’ would have full spectrum emission and absorption.

      “A black, rough body (matte finish) will radiate more energy at a given temprature compared to a polished, shiny surface. It will absorb more radiation as well. However, given a particular surface, the amount of heat radiated is strongly dependent on the temprature (fourth power of temprature, to be more precise.)”

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