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oldsmellhound 02-07-2008 02:24 PM

RE: Hunt with silencer/suppressor
I'm not sure why you would want to put a suppressor on a centerfire rifle for deer hunting, even if it is legal where you live. A lot of cost for really no advantage. I can see using a suppressor for varmit/predator hunting (i.e. calling in a pack of coyotes - being able to drop a few without spooking the rest), especially at night. But again - a lot of $$$....

johnshiredman 02-07-2008 04:47 PM

RE: Hunt with silencer/suppressor
I thought there would be one or two pessimist to chime in and ask why, but I was hoping for more factual replies. But perhaps I am wrong, maybe you just are curious because it is not the norm and people always have a tendency to question anything out of the norm.

For those who ask why? Here is a list of reasons that all add up to make the cost worth it to me…if the reasons indeed are true and suppressors are legal to hunt with.
1) No, a silencer does not take away 100% of the sound, but it does reduce the sound. A lot of individuals do not take the necessary precautions (i.e. earplugs/muffs) to protect their ears while hunting. A suppressor, which reduces the sound, may help prevent hearing loss (of course depending upon the gun, caliber and ammo choice). How much is your ability to hear, worth to you? Can you really put a price on it??? I own a $100 pair of electronic ear muffs to hunt with that don’t work very well because you get what you pay for. Now if I spent $300 to $400 I would have something better, but for that price why not just suppress the gun? (if the noise is reduced to a safe level)
2) People pay to put muzzle breaks on their weapons to tame recoil, which in many cases aids in better accuracy. I am no expert, but a suppressor acts in much the same way so accuracy can be a benefit; while most muzzle breaks increase sound.
3) I hunt with pistols, so the end of the barrel is closer to my ears and some would argue thus the potential for hearing loss is greater.
4) Simply practicing with the gun would be more enjoyable with a suppressor if there is less noise and increased accuracy (except of course for those of you who are shooting big guns just for the feel and sound), however, many guns will have a different point of impact when the silencer/suppressor is removed, and so it could be argued that hunting with the gun set up in the exact manor it is practiced with is crucial to success.
5) When I introduce my children to shooting, less recoil and less noise will provide a more enjoyable experience (maybe I could even get my wife to hunt with me!!!), of course I will start them practicing with a .22, but even if they cannot hunt with the suppressor, practice will be more enjoyable. (Yes, this statement does contradict with number 4, but I feel both statements are valid benefits of suppressors.
6) I shoot and handload for a 7mm-08 Encore pistol (among others). When my children are old enough to take hunters safety and hunt whitetails (12 in WI), I plan on starting them with an Encore rifle (compact barrel and stock) with reduced handloads. The brand of suppressor I am looking at screws on and off from attachments that remain on the barrel of each gun. So with the initial investment in one suppressor I would be able to utilize it on various guns.

Additional thought: I have heard that European countries utilize the use of suppressors simply to reduce noise pollution (perhaps due to smaller countries having smaller parcels of land to hunt on which are closer to populated areas).

Do I know for fact that I will gain the advantages of the above reasons? No, because I don’t have experience with the use of silencers/suppressors, but that is why I was inquiring. I was looking for more information to see what others who have and use silencers/suppressors would say, so that I could make a better informed decision as to whether I would benefit from the investment. Some people don’t hesitate to pay as much (or more) for a scope, than they did for their gun as an enhancement for their eyes and to increase potential accuracy. Is it really that different to pay as much for a piece of equipment that will help protect your ears and potentially increase accuracy?

I plan on passing my guns down to my son and daughter when I reach my final days; if it does not cost my son or daughter additional money to inherit, then look at it as a long term investment that pays off for anyone shooting with it.

Please note: My intentions in this post are not to argue for the use of silencers/suppressors, but merely to gather more information. I think it was valid for the previous posters to question why I was searching for information, but if after reading this post you have a pessimistic view and feel the need to reply or simply want to chime in that you don’t see the point, please consider starting a different thread, it is a free country and you can write what you want; but my hope is that this thread will provide factual information. That’s not to say that I don’t want to hear negative feedback, if you do have a factual experience with the use of suppressors in a caliber similar to 7mm-08, .260, .308, etc… please let me know.

bigbulls 02-07-2008 05:29 PM

RE: Hunt with silencer/suppressor
I use to have a customer that did inner-city hunts at night with a supressed Remington LTR in .308. He was very successful. He had his supressors custom made.

A supressor will not do much in the way of sound reduction so long as you continue touse normal super-sonic amunition. If one uses sub-sonic ammo a properly made supressor will make a sealed breach firearm (bolt action, break action)very very quiet. Quiet enough that you could literally hunt right behind a house and they would not hear the shot if they were inside.

Obviously recoil is incredibly light in a rifle shooting sub sonic ammo.

Some cartridges to think about for supressed shooting is the whisper line of cartridges. They are experts at supressed firearms and cartridges.

oldsmellhound 02-07-2008 07:39 PM

RE: Hunt with silencer/suppressor
Don't get me wrong, I'm not against using suppressors for hunting/shooting if they are legal - I'm just saying that you have to jump through some hoops and pay some $$$ to use them, and being a very practical person, I don't see that the advantages outweight the costs in most situations.

On the other hand, if money is not an object, using a suppressor (especially on a centerfire pistol, which has a very loud muzzle blast) might not be a bad idea, especially if you're looking at preventing hearing damage and making the gun easier to shoot. But any supersonic bullet is not going to be "silenced", only made quieter....

A11en 02-07-2008 07:58 PM

RE: Hunt with silencer/suppressor
During the paperwork process described earlier, you also sign a waiver giving law enforcement agencies the ability to search your person/ property without a warrant.

SwampCollie 02-07-2008 09:51 PM

RE: Hunt with silencer/suppressor
I do not own one. Though I have toyed at the idea several times. Much more appeal to me than anything full auto, which means less accuracy, and a higher price for the weapon (much higher) and more ammunition.

I have shot to date four different rifle systems with suppressors: a 10/22, where the barrel and supprssor were integral. It was built by the gunsmith at the gun shop I worked at for a few years, pretty neat stuff. Totally legal and liscensed. Also got to tinker with one of his ARs in a 300 whisper... same deal... self made. Just a .223 necked up to accept a 30 cal bullet. Reall really impressive.

Other two were a Rem 700 308 that is used by a member of our urban hunt team for just that... removing deer at night from golf courses, airports, neighborhoods, parks etc (I use a bow). He loads subsonic rounds and it is no louder than a .22 rifle with subsonic ammo. Just a muffled snap, not much louder than a firecracker set under an empty tuna can. 200gr bullets.... very very very effective. The gun is really deceptively powerful because you feel like you are shooting a .22, but get results like... well a .308.

The last was sort of a special circumstance. When I was living in SC, I got to do some culling down there as well (funny how I always get asked to do this sort of thing) on tomato farms on kill permits. One of the guys who asked me out to the farm was a good customer of mine at the shop. He has a custom built .50 cal with a suppressor. Same deal.... just loaded down with sub sonic ammo. Suppressor is as big as a 3 liter soda bottle. Suprisingly quiet. Shoots some huge 800 and something grain bullet. The really impressive part of his set up is the scope. I don't know where he got it or what it set him back-though I have heard rumors from some of his friends it was over $25K(he is a retired Marine lawyer.... never married, no kids... lots of money... lots of time.... likes his toys). All I can say is at 500 yards on a moonless night you can read a license plate with it. And it is very scary accurate.

All the suppressed rifles I have shot have hadthree things in common, they definately suppress the report and with the right ammo almost totally silence it (imagine shooting that .50 with no ear plugs.... and you can hear that bullet hit a deer too), they were all VERY accurate, and they are all very expensive compared to standard hunting rifles.

The least expensive of the lot was Terry's 10/22. Granted, the rifle is about a $200 gun... and he had to pay his $200 tax and wait 6 months for it to clear. But he did all the work himself. Most of the barrels that have suppressors built into them that I have seen for sale at various places are in the $800 range.... so you can figure that his rig is roughly $1000 plus a $200 tax stamp.

And so far as VA and SC go.... they absolutely legal to hunt with. Fully auto rifles, I don't know of aplace that they are legal to hunt with. But VA and SC look at a suppressed rifle just like they do a regular rifle, as long as you can legally possess it, and it is of suffiecent caliber (.23 or larger in VA, and not a rimfire in SC) then you are good to go.

johnshiredman 02-07-2008 10:13 PM

RE: Hunt with silencer/suppressor
Thank you to all those that have responded. Bigbulls, I have read about the whisper series before and don't know why didn't think about researching those calibers. I spent some time tonight searching for calibers of subsonic ammunition and handloads for subsonic ammunition and came across some forums I haven't seen before with some good information, so the replies have helped me to keep an open mind to all the possibilities. I plan to do more research before making a decision on which direction to go, so any experience/information(caliber, load data, accuracy distance, brand of silencer if one is used) with whisper calibers that could be used forwhitetails would be greatly appreciated! So far the most noteable information I found is that 100 yards would probably be the max range for consistent accuracy with subsonic ammo (after which the bullet starts to tumble due to low velocity. Which isn't too bad for the woods and marsh areas I hunt in central WI. (Which of course will vary by caliber and load data.) I plan on contacting the WI DNR to inquire about the use of a silencer/suppressor for hunting whitetails and small game within the week, which of course is the most important piece of this puzzle...

A11en, I didn't know about the required waver to sign your property to open search without a warrant when owning a silencer/suppressor; very interesting.

johnshiredman 02-07-2008 10:27 PM

RE: Hunt with silencer/suppressor
Thanks for the info. It's a post like yours that will keep me interested in this endeavor. Do you know whatthe effective range was on some of those whitetail rigs? The suppressor that I saw in a local shop is around $700, so I am expecting to pay $1000 min with $200 tax and if I switch to adifferent caliber it's going to be thecost of a customEncore barrel, scope, dies, cases, powder and bullets as well. But, I see it all as an investment and am willing to take the time to research all the possibilities.


A11en 02-08-2008 05:37 AM

RE: Hunt with silencer/suppressor

I have a Ruger 22/45 (.22 cal pistol with bull barrel) that I planned to put a seppressor on. I worked with a local gunsmith (when I lived in NH) to start the process. Whenhe told me about the waiver, I changed my mind. While I'm a law abidding citizen, I did not want to forfiet any rights

remington_girl 02-08-2008 05:50 AM

RE: Hunt with silencer/suppressor
We use silencers on all of our rifles and its perfectly legal in Scotland. I was shocked that you cant own one in the US why? I dont wanna go deaf.

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