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Silencers make guns quieter, but did you know they also make them safer and more accurate?

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Posted June 3, 2019

Silencers do not completely remove the sound of the gun – these simple passive devices do not work as well as movies have taught us. However, they do make guns significantly quieter, which is useful in a variety of situations. But did you know that some people believe that silencers can make guns safer to use? Some say that silencers can even help shooting more accurately, but how?

Gun silceners are passive devices designed to suppress the bang. They are used by military, law enforcement as well as civilians. Image credit: Wikimedia

Silencers are actually quite simple. They are hollow tubes with several chambers, where hot gases from the gun can decelerate and lose most of their potential energy. This means that a gun with a silencer can shoot a little quieter, which is great for secret military operations, but also useful in other situations.

This is how gun silencers work:

So what about safety? Well, the bang of the shooting gun is really loud. In fact, so loud that it can easily damage one’s hearing. Gun enthusiasts, military personnel and law enforcement officers in shooting ranges have to use some kind of hearing protection to prevent damage. However, ear plugs and muffs and not 100 % effective. Over a longer time hearing impairment can still happen. Furthermore, hearing protection is not available in real life situations, which means that these loud noises are almost unavoidable.

But silencers bring other safety benefits too. For example, when there are multiple invaders, a person willing to defend his house may want to act a little more stealthy. This, of course, is a difficult argument to make. Some experts would suggest that in such situations people should announce that they are armed in order to deter the attackers. There are too many different opinions for us to analyze this point any further, but hunters like using silencers too.

Of course, noises of shooting scare animals away, which explains at least a part of the reason why hunters want to use silencer. However, another reason is safety. Hunters don’t like wearing hearing protection. They have to be aware of their surroundings – they have to know where animals are and where other hunters are. Being more aware during a hunting trip means being safer. Especially since there are many guns and everyone is focused on animals.

There are several reasons why hunters like using silencers on their guns and safety is one of them. Image credit: FieldsportsChannel.tv via Wikimedia (CC BY 2.0)

By the way, did you know that a silencer can help inexperienced shooters be a little more accurate? People often tense up in anticipation of the loud bang. This often causes an imperfect grip on the gun, which doesn’t allow firing a precise shot. Some people may even close their eyes in anticipation of the noise. Silencers allow getting used to the feel before being exposed to the noise.

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