Suppressors are becoming more and more popular – there are significant benefits: saving hearing, cutting muzzle blast, lowering recoil, tightening groups plus reducing directional location so you can get that follow up shot(s) off whilst the game is still trying to work out where the noise is coming from (before scarpering!)
For our test of the Waitaki can we choose a Bergara single shot stainless .308 and the Ruger American 7.62x39mm from Reloaders. Both great bush guns with short, handy threaded barrels. We went with a .30 cal muzzle can from Waitaki Engineering Ltd in Oamaru.
We were impressed with the can on these points:
- All stainless. What this means is two things: no metal to metal electrolysis (this may happen in Aluminium-Stainless suppressors) and more importantly, long life: units tested by the military with an accurate shot count have exceeded 8,000 rounds with no observable deterioration. The Waitaki rimfire version has passed 75,000 rounds in the hands of a rabbit culler in Otago, with only the wax build up needing cleaning.
- All welded construction with an internal muzzle brake and 7 diffusion chambers, Waitaki cans are sturdy. Size wise, with a length of 135mm and 38mm diameter, very compact and suit perfectly the 30 cal rifles in our trial.
The Waitaki Can is made for semi-autos as well as bolt guns, as they screw on forward of the muzzle so run cooler than an over barrel suppressor. This means that they are ideal for your AK’s, AR15’s, Vz 58’s, Mini 30, and SKS. For the AK/ SKS Waitaki make a suppressor with the correct left hand thread once you unscrew the flash hider.
An important consideration is the thread that fixes the can onto the muzzle of the rifle. The Waitaki test can was threaded 5/8 x 24. This is because smaller thread sizes are not ideal in .30 calibre.
How did it perform on the range?
I have no decibel meter but the noise and certainly the muzzle flash and blast was cut down significantly by the suppressor especially with the .308. Groups were tightened when I used it by about 5-6mm as compared with unsuppressed. I also noticed a distinct reduction in felt recoil, so the muzzle brake in the Waitaki Engineering can really does its job.
All told, If you want an excellent bush gun in .308 get the Bergara but you will need a can like the Waitaki can.
Our test suppressor was supplied by Waitaki Engineering ltd in Oamaru and sells for $280 freight free. For those who want to order direct or need something different phone and discuss your project with Mark at Waitaki.