When looking at a rifle silencer, we need to look at several criteria. Let’s take a look at the Agent 556 rifle silencer.
Today, there are more materials than ever to make a quality rifle silencer out of. Things that dictate what is used come down to use case. The use case most of the time for a 556 silencer is high temperature capable with accuracy coming in second to that.
So the first thing that people do when they get their new 556 can is take it to the range and turn it into the forbidden popsicle, os so it seems… LOL
More times than not, people do not do this to their expensive and complicated purchase. But they will shoot it on short barrel rifles, machines gun and subject the silencer to heavy schedules of fire. A rifle silencer designed for heavy 556 use will have some sort of super alloy in the blast chamber, like 718 Inconel or the like. Our Agent has such a blast baffle in it. The next thing is that the baffle stack must be lightweight, rigid and durable. Here we also chose a specific material…titanium. Although titanium will spark initially when used due to ablative abrasion from gunpowder particles, once the sharp edges of the baffles near the bore line are smoothed out, this stops and the suppressor stops sparking. This phenomenon is experienced for different lengths of time based pretty much on barrel length. The longer the barrel, the less it sparks initially. But here is the magic of titanium. It melts at 1878 degrees and this is WAY past the point where it will do severe damage to the host weapon. So this is a super light material that has a high melting point and is capable of crazy strength numbers. The perfect combination for a light weight severe duty rifle silencer.
Rifle Silencer Baffle Design
So the next thing that really matters is the baffle design. With the Agent we designed the baffles strictly for 556 use and from the outset they have been optimized for this purpose. We wanted to make the absolute quietest silencer for a 556 rifle that we could while still making it as small as reasonably possible. This results in a rifle silencer that is small, light and quiet while still being very durable as well.
The main tactic used in the Agent suppressor baffle design is gas shear. This is where we cut the gas stream flowing through the suppressor into at least two separate streams and then force those two streams to interact in such a way that the gas flow is slowed and sort of recirculated inside the silencer.
This is a very effective design that is also a signature of Liberty Suppressors, where it also lowers the tone of the suppressor significantly. You see, tone makes as much of a difference as the level of the sound itself. Another thing we employ with the Agent is a special pressure lowering feature to reduce the amount of pressure pushed back into the rifle by letting it flow out of the front of the silencer. This is also effective in reducing the gassing that is experienced by the shooter of older silencer designs.
I hope this clears up a few things about the design factors going into a quality rifle silencer and that you are now better armed to make an informed decision. Until next time, keep your powder dry!