Do you think there is any firearm accessory that brings about more fear than a suppressor aka silencer? Its purpose and benefits are vastly misunderstood by gun enthusiasts and gun opponents alike. If you have little knowledge about suppressors or are on the fence about owning one, this blog post is for you!

For the Newbs.

What is a suppressor? A suppressor is a muzzle device that attaches at the end of your firearm. It reduces the muzzle flash as well as muffles the sound intensity when the firearm is discharged.

A not so brief history.

In 1901, a man named Hiram Percy Maxim developed 2 important inventions simultaneously. Mr. Maxim and his company developed the first automobile muffler and firearm silencer. The two inventions use the same concept to make them both so effective. They both displace gases using a bunch of curved baffles that release the gases at a slower rate while reducing the severity of each sound wave emitted from them.  The muffler went on to be a government regulated and mandated piece of equipment for car manufacturers, while the suppressor was federally regulated under the National Firearms Act. 

It was an egregious overstep by the federal government to regulate certain firearm accessories because of the growing fears of gang violence brought on by prohibition. At the peak of organized crime, along with violent imagery in the newspapers, there was little to no protest during the 1934 congressional hearing regarding the regulation of these weapons. 

Many speculate that it was difficult for law enforcement personnel to get a hold of suppressors so their logic was to make them hard for the public to obtain. They were pretty much taken out of the marketplace and the information on the process to own was hard to find. Even if a citizen wanted to own one they had to pass a background check, register the suppressor and pay a $200 transfer fee! That's a $200 fee in 1934 dollars, which in today's money is around $3,600!

 In 2011, the NRA and ASA (American Silencer Association) started a campaign to increase the civilian use of these accessories. They wanted to break down some of the common misconceptions and stereotypes carried by most people. 

Why should you own one?

1. Home Defense - The chances of you wearing proper ear protection while protecting your home from an intruder is unlikely and could be dangerous. You need to be able to hear everything going on while not compromising your ear health.

2. Noise Pollution - As hunters shoot game close to residential areas, and outdoor shooting ranges are close to homes, the use of suppressors would lower the local noise pollution.

3. Tighter Groupings - With reduced recoil and quicker target acquisition, suppressors make it easier to keep those groupings tight.

4. Novelty - As firearm owners, we know sometimes having something that is taboo for common folks is fun to have. It feels so good to feel bad sometimes.

5. It's your right - Self-explanatory.

In closing, I believe the suppressor has an incredibly interesting history in this country and it doesn't get the respect it deserves. Just like with other things politicians used fear mongering to regulate it out of the market. Thankfully we have the NRA and ASA flighting the good fight while changing public perception one person at a time.

Should the goverment be able to regulate suppressors? Let me know in the comments below!