Do gun silencers really sound like they do in the movies?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Dave Poehlman, Feb 3, 2004.

  1. Dave Poehlman

    Dave Poehlman Producer

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    It's something I've always wondered if it was more "Hollywood-ized" or if they really made that >THEEW< sound.

    Anyone ever actually hear one?
     
  2. David Brown Eyes

    David Brown Eyes Second Unit

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    I have no idea. I have never heard one. They were silenced.

    On a similar note, If you shoot a mime should you use a silencer?
     
  3. Bryan X

    Bryan X Producer

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    Or, if you mime a shooter do you even need a silencer?
     
  4. Will Pomeroy

    Will Pomeroy Stunt Coordinator

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    Yes


    I've seen some videos of people shooting real silenced guns, and they're still pretty loud. I don't think its really as quiet as they make it seem in the movies.
     
  5. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Lead Actor

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    You aren't going to find many people admitting to owning a silencer......

    The real problem is the speed of the bullet. The speed of sound is around 1,100 feet per second (fps) at sea level. Most rifle cartridges fire bullets at from 2,200 to 2,900 fps, so the bullet is coming out at Mach 2+. The shock wave from "breaking the sound barrier" as it were makes a big sound that really can't be silenced. Pistol bullets are much slower but still very much supersonic. Only a few specially-packed .22 cartridges are made that fire subsonic. See for example http://www.cheaperthandirt.com/ctd/p...0GN3B9HAUJ9DC7
     
  6. larry mac

    larry mac Stunt Coordinator

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    I have seen a silenced CO2 pellet rifle. It was more powerful than an ordinary air rifle, and very loud. Probably as loud as a 22. With the silencer (I think it was a homemade "moderator"), it was very quiet. It made a soft sound similar to the one in the movies.
     
  7. Eric Eash

    Eric Eash Second Unit

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    in some states you can own a silencer, but the silencer costs around $400+ depending on gun, you have to have a good enough reason or you can't get the permit, and you have to agree that the FBI can search your house without warning. while i was living in georgia, i got to shoot a silenced MP5 and a silenced ruger .22. the MP5 sound was probably cut in half, but was still loud while shooting. i think it would've been alot more quiet if i had been in front of the gun, but who wants to be there. the .22 was alot more quiet than the full auto MP5, but still didn't sound like it does in the movies. i'm sure that if you were a few hundred feet away from the gun, it would probably sound like in the movies, but up close, no.

    eric
     
  8. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    not some states, most states. The only one I can think of offhand is california that doesn't allow it. You don't need a "good enough reason" in fact, you don't need a reason at all. You simply need to pay a $200 tax stamp, get your police chief or sherif's signature, and shuffle the paperwork off to the BATF for an extensive backgorund check. It's the same process to purchase a fully automatic weapon. TO my knowledge the FBI isn't going to search anything. The BATF probably could if they wanted.
    It varies on caliber and type of silencer quite a bit.

    velocites can vary quite a lot based on bullet weight and caliber. The 9mm 115gr is probably going to be supersonic, while the 124 gr is probably going to be subsonic and won't crack for example. Rifle is a little harder, you probably won't see many silenced rifles. THe heavier one is quite populat in MP5's for that reason as I understand it.
     
  9. ChuckSolo

    ChuckSolo Screenwriter

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    I heard one on a .22 automatic back in the late 70's and it sounded like a muffled pop. One thing that always cracks me up is when you see someone in a movie put a silencer on a revolver. Because of the gap between the cylinder and the barrel, you CANNOT silence a revolver. [​IMG]
     
  10. Alex Spindler

    Alex Spindler Producer

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    Here is a good video. The first half of the magazine is loaded with supersonic (normal) ammunition and the second half has subsonic ammunition. The MP5 is fitted with a suppressor (silencer for the common folk). You can hear the difference in sound quite easily. Also note that, for suppressed weapons, the loudest sound it typically the bolt and little else.
     
  11. AjayM

    AjayM Screenwriter

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    The MP5 is probably a bad example to use for ordinary supressed weapons as there is a specific MP5 model (MP5-SD) with a supressor "built on", so it's not quite as noisy as a regular weapon with an add-on suppresor. They claim the regular MP5 fires off at around 135db, and the SD version is still at 114db (the bolt action itself is 90db).

    http://www.levelrating.com/weapons/thread67we.asp

    Needless to say it's still noisy to use a supressed weapon, however the sound of the weapon changes quite a bit, so to most people it won't sound like a gun firing.

    Andrew
     
  12. Garrett Lundy

    Garrett Lundy Producer

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    You CAN silence a revolver, but it requires the barrel to be specially machined to accept a threaded silencer. This is neither cheap nor easy, since both the barrel and the silencer would have to be specially created for each other.

    At any rate:

    No, they do not sound like they do in the movies.

    Casino comes pretty close with its "CLACK CLACK CLACK" parking-lot hit.

    Again, the noise depends alot on the type of bullet being used and the quality of the silencer.
     
  13. VinhT

    VinhT Second Unit

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    Suppressed firearms definitely do not sound like their movie counterparts. I suppose one way to describe the sound would be a very loud clap with one's hands. I would say that firing a suppressed firearm still warrants the use of ear protection.
     
  14. Eric Eash

    Eric Eash Second Unit

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    cool video alex! i can confirm that i used the louder ammo when i shot the MP5. i'm an excellent marksmen when it comes to the M-16 which i fire every two years for the military, and have always been good with guns, but i was no where near as steady with the MP5 in full-auto as that guy, very impressive. while the kick isn't that much more than a .22 rifle, while i was firing it in full-auto, it would kick up a little after each round which made the gun want to go straight up and i was having a hard time keeping it still, but it was real fun.

    eric
     
  15. Mark Philp

    Mark Philp Second Unit

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    Frankly, I hope I'm never in the position to find out.
     
  16. Robert Marc

    Robert Marc Stunt Coordinator

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    I have had the opportunity to fire both a suppressed colt ar-15(.223) and a suppressed ruger 10/22 (.22). Dennis is correct, unless you are using subsonic ammo, there is nothing you can do about the "crack" (especially the .223)of the bullet traveling at supersonic speeds. But, I will say, the .223 noise was greatly diminished. So much so that it could be fired without ear protection. It was nowhere near the soft pppffftt that you hear on the movies though. I'd say it was a little less loud than a normal .22.
    Now the silenced .22 on the other hand, was a completly different story. I used subsonic .22lr and the loudest part of the firing sequence was the bolt working back and forth as Garrett alluded to. It was real cool. Perfect for taking out those garden pests. Just kidding.:wink:
     
  17. Vincent_S

    Vincent_S Second Unit

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    On a similar note, how about when someone covers they're gun with a pillow? Is that the same as the movies?
     
  18. Matt Stryker

    Matt Stryker Screenwriter

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    I've seen silenced pistols shot, and the most noticable noise is the action cycling, not the shot. the one that I saw was homemade, and attached by threading onto the end of the barrel about a half and inch.

    From my understanding, all a silencer is is a bunch of smaller chambers inside a tube. So technically all you would need to make one is some simple machine tools and a bit of steel. I can't tell you if that would be legal or not, but it would be cheap. Evidently it is also possible to silence guns with all kinds of things, from baby bottle nipples to car mufflers.

    This patent paper has a more detailed view: http://www.delphion.com/details?pn=US05164535__
     
  19. ChuckSolo

    ChuckSolo Screenwriter

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    What does threading the barrel and silencer have to do with the blast that comes from the barrel/cylinder gap? I still maintain you CANNOT silence a revolver. Fire a revolver in the dark and see what kind of blast comes from between the barrel and cylinder. You will be surprised. That blast cannot be silenced....period, well maybe with a pillow!!!
     
  20. Alex Spindler

    Alex Spindler Producer

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    Doing a quick search, there are a very few revolvers that can support a suppressor. They seem to require some unique operation that avoid the issue Chuck is talking about.

    Nagant Revolver
     

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