Good afternoon everyone and welcome back to TFB’s Silencer Saturday brought to you by Yankee Hill Machine, manufacturers of the new YHM R45 Multi-Host Suppressor. Last week we revisited the point of impact effects when switching between suppressors. This week we take a look a twist on an old classic with the SilencerCo Sparrow-Ti rimfire suppressor. Are there any notable upgrades? Let’s find out.
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SILENCER SATURDAY #303: 15 Years – SilencerCo Sparrow-Ti
The introduction of the SilencerCo Sparrow to the market was a milestone in suppressor history. SilencerCo was the hot up-and-coming suppressor company alongside other new startups that were determined to move silencers into mainstream focus. At the time, if gun shops were analogous to video rental stores, suppressors and other NFA weapons were in the back room behind the beaded curtain with the weird lighting. I probably just dated myself and outed myself at the same time.
The Sparrow was a pivot point because it wasn’t just a cylinder with a stack of cone baffles stashed inside. This was a rimfire suppressor that had the end user in mind. With a monocore baffle stack and two ‘clamshell’ enclosures, the hefty debris that is all too common for rimfire shooting is contained in an easy to remove single unit. The mount end of the Sparrow was rounded and capable of being disassembled by hand. Built with stainless steel, the original Sparrow can handle rounds up to 5.7×28. And last but not least, it performed, as all self respecting rimfire suppressors must do to make the ‘must buy’ list.
If I am being honest, the SilencerCo Sparrow was never one of my favorite rimfire suppressors for two reasons. First, like most monocore suppressors, I remembered the Sparrow exhibiting first round pop (FRP) on some hosts with certain types of ammo. This is an air/fuel mix detonation that happens inside some suppressor blast chambers that creates a pop sound on the first shot. Second, at 6.5 ounces, the original Sparrow is over my arbitrary weight limit of five ounces for rimfire suppressors.
Arguing SilencerCo’s side, since I only ever intended to shoot .22LR, the Sparrow wasn’t actually designed for me and I broke one of my cardinal rules of buying a silencer – know your realistic requirements and buy something that does them very well. The Sparrow is overbuilt to handle higher pressure rounds, making it heavier than other market leaders. And FRP disappears on some host and ammo combinations. The SilencerCo Warlock fits my needs perfectly and is still one of my favorite rimfire silencers ten years later.
However, hindsight is 20/20. We are spoiled in today’s market and technological advances with at least 10 top-performing rimfire suppressors. At the time of the original Sparrow, there may have been a few other quiet cans, but the disassembly features were something new all together. The 6.5 ounces was also within expectations and the FRP was manageable. In short, 15 years later, guys like me sound like entitled pricks when criticizing the original Sparrow. It was certainly a leap forward.
Right off the bat, the Sparrow-Ti solves one of my two issues with the original Sparrow – the weight. At 3.8 ounces, this limited edition suppressor is very light while maintaining all of the caliber ratings of the original.
As for the FRP phenomenon, ammunition choices have grown in the last decade in a half, some of which are designed for suppressor use and can minimize FRP. But it also comes down to host choices. Where the original Sparrow excelled was on longer barreled rifles that allow for a full powder burn before reaching the blast chamber. And now that the Sparrow-Ti exists, weight on the end of the barrel is much less of a concern.
Let’s take a look at the numbers.
SilencerCo Sparrow-Ti – Specifications
SilencerCo is celebrating 15 years in business with the launch of a limited-edition Sparrow-Ti. This will commemorate 15 years of the original Sparrow – the suppressor that started it all. The Sparrow-Ti has all of the same iconic features that made the Sparrow 22 a classic, including user-serviceability, stellar sound performance and caliber versatility. But it has one more feature that makes it extra special — it’s completely constructed out of titanium.
This material change means that the Sparrow-Ti weighs only 3.8oz, around half the weight of the original Sparrow. It’s also finished in a proprietary two-tone gray and bronze anodized finish for a completely unique look.
The Sparrow-Ti is rated for .22 LR, .22 Mag, .17 HMR, .17 WSM and FN 5.7 × 28 calibers. It’s full-auto rated with 22LR. It’s compatible with Delta Adapters and ships with a Delta Threaded Rifle Spacer in 1/2 x 28.
This is a limited-edition suppressor, so don’t miss your chance to be one of the lucky owners.
- Unscrew the back cap.
- Slide the outer tube off.
- Peel half tubes away.
- Clean before reassembly. Buildup of carbon and fouling will result in improper fit of the parts.
- Ensure the three O-rings A, B, C are in the proper grooves. A large O-ring A, B should be placed on each end of the monolithic core in the existing grooves, and a small O-ring C should be in the groove where the muzzle threads engage the silencer body.
- Place the half tubes around the core so the ends are flush against the shoulder at the front of the monolithic core and the side edges seat against the spines.
- Slide the waved side of the outer tube over the half tubes and monolithic core until the tube rests against the waved shoulder of the front cap. Ensure that the waves of the tube and front cap interlock. D
- Screw back cap onto silencer body. As you are tightening, ensure that the waves of the tube and front cap remain interlocked. We recommend holding a thumb over the front cap as you install the back cap to aid in keeping the waved sections interfaced.
Shooting the Sparrow-Ti
Surprisingly, the FRP issue was not what I remembered it to be. In fact, I had zero FRP on either the pistol or rifle host when using the premium Lapua Midas+ .22LR ammunition. Rimfire ammo has gotten much better, and my memory may be tainted from years of lead exposure, but the Sparrow-Ti was quiet from start to finish. I don’t see any design change in the monocore baffle stack from the original version and I don’t think a material change from stainless steel to titanium would have an effect on FRP.
This is a quiet silencer. Whether it is the quietest or one of the top quietest rimfire silencers is a difficult question and one that would require side-by-side testing of the top modems available. I do know that anyone who buys the Sparrow-Ti for .22LR performance will not be disappointed.
But the real magic is in the weight reduction associated with the move to titanium. The Sparrow-Ti weighs nearly half as much as the original Sparrow, eliminating the top drawback. The price is on par with many of the best performing rimfire silencers as well.
The Sparrow was my first dedicated rimfire can, followed by at least 20 more rimfire silencers in the last 12 years. The Sparrow-Ti is an improvement upon the original classic with a dramatic weight reduction. Add the fact that I had zero FRP on a pistol and rifle host with quality ammo and it makes me think I have shortchanged and badmouthed the Sparrow all these years without cause. Time to move it back into the rotation.
Have a great week. Be safe, have fun, and we’ll see you back here next weekend for another Silencer Saturday.
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