Welcome to part 2 of the “Doctor, it hurts when I do that” series of posts. You can read Part 1 here.
In the previous post, we looked at the effects of adding a compensator to a threaded barrel and the common issues that can cause. Today we’ll look at the second most common phone call generator for people with threaded barrels: suppressors.
Since we’ve already discussed how compensators can alter the gas pressure, affect recoil and the gun’s ability to cycle; we won’t need to go much deeper on that same topic here. Suffice it to say, that suppressors have a similar effect and occasionally you’ll find that guns won’t function well when you’ve added a can. Just like compensators, the most common culprit is simple: cheap, junky ammo. Please stop doing that. When you feed your guns junky ammo, especially your suppressed guns, you’re just causing yourself more heartache in the long run.
Imagine if you have a performance car that requires high octane fuel. You’re not going to put garbage in the gas tank, you’re going to put the high octane, good stuff in there. This is because you want your fast car to run well and look cool while doing it. The same is true of suppressed firearms, especially pistols! Cheap ammo produces more fouling, which makes the gun less reliable, gets the suppressor dirtier even quicker, and forces you to clean the gun more often. No one actually likes cleaning guns, because every minute spent cleaning a gun is time that could be spent shooting.
There can also be mechanical issues that cause your suppressed firearm to not work correctly. When you add a suppressor, you’re adding a huge weight out on the end of the barrel, and maybe that’s going to affect the gun’s function. Just maybe. However, most modern guns when using quality ammunition and quality suppressors, will run just fine.
But again, that gets us back to the ammo issue, which I am going to beat like a rented mule today. Riddle me this, Batman: you spend $400-$500 on a Glock 17, then you buy a Glock 17 threaded barrel for $159, spend $200 to get a tax stamp, pay $500-$800 for your suppressor, wait 6-9 months for the feds to approve your application, and then after all that you’re going to feed it the cheapest 9mm ammo on the planet?! How does that make any kind of sense…oh it doesn’t.
So the moral of today’s story is that if you’re going to build a performance firearm, it needs performance fuel. Buy good guns and gear, and make sure you feed them good ammo. It will improve your life considerably.