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Dead Air Armament Sandman K

October 6, 2017 No comments

The ideal rifle silencer possesses the followings traits:

  • Weighs practically nothing
  • Adds very little length to the host firearm
  • Has no restrictions on barrel length
  • Full auto rated
  • Has no impact on point of impact
  • Reduces the report of a gunshot to Hollywood levels of silence
  • Costs less than $100

Try as they might, no silencer manufacturer has successfully created the ideal rifle silencer. In fact, every model in the Capitol Armory store satisfies some of these requirements while sacrificing others. In an effort to satisfy more requirements, Dead Air has introduced the fourth (and shortest) member of the Sandman family - The Sandman K.

The K model takes the mounting system and user swappable end caps used on the longer S and L models and lops an extra inch and a half off the end of the S model. This length reduction has the added benefit of dropping nearly five ounces off the S model's weight. The end result is a silencer with a very compact footprint that doesn't add too much weight to the muzzle. All in with a muzzle device, you're looking at just a shade over 16 oz of extra weight on the muzzle. The K model only extends an extra 3 inches beyond the end of the muzzle device.

The price you pay for that reduction in length and weight is, of course, an increase in volume. But before we dive into the actual numbers, it's important to discuss the best feature of the Sandman line - the KeyMount.

Any silencer that can be removed inevitably will be removed, either in a move to another host rifle or for cleaning. If that silencer doesn't repeatably change point of impact, it's going to create headaches in the long term as each remount will require a rezero. The KeyMount has proven to be one of the most consistent mounts that we've ever tested. One of our customers reports that his point of impact shift is so repeatable that he has complete confidence in removing the silencer, mounting it, and making a first round impact at 1000 yards - each time and every time.

Beyond that, the KeyMount allows true ratcheting lockup, and one handed installation and removal. Both are truly valuable features as they allow a completely solid, worry free mount that will prevent your silencer from launching downrange, and the ability to run the inch and a half diameter silencer under the hand guard of your favorite modern sporting rifle if you so choose.

As to the penalty for cutting an inch and a half off the S model, there's an appreciable difference, but not nearly as bad as you might be led to believe. Shooting 220 grain subsonics out of our 300 BLK bolt gun, the Sandman S metered at an average of 127.6 dB. On the same host, using the same ammo, the K model averaged 134.9 dB, a change of 7.3 dB. On a 16" AR 15 shooting XM 193, the S model metered at 136.6 dB while the K model just barely crossed over the "hearing safe" threshold with a five shot average of 141.1 dB, a change of 4.5 dB. On a 308 WIN bolt gun shooting M80 ball, the S model averaged at 139.7 dB while the K model metered at 146.5 dB, an increase of 6.8 dB. You can get a detailed breakdown on these numbers as well as listen to the K model at our YouTube video here.

We've found that most people can pick up the differential between two silencers at around 4 dB so the roughly 7 dB increase on the bolt guns was appreciable at the shooters ear. On the AR 15, the difference was there, but much harder to pick out. The K is undoubtedly louder to the human ear and on the meter, but from a purely subjective standpoint, it still sounds fine. We've had silencers meter much better and sound much louder to the shooter than the K model.

The question that ultimately needs to be answered is whether the K model is right for you. In our opinion, the ideal customer is someone who has some experience with silencers in the past, and is comfortable giving up some sound reduction for a reduction in overall length and added weight.

We see hunters and ranchers as an ideal customer for the K, followed closely by those in law enforcement who regularly carry a patrol rifle. Local ranchers controlling the feral hog population or invasive predators rarely have time to don hearing protection before taking an opportune shot. Similarly, members of the law enforcement community find that if they need their patrol rifle, time is of the essence.

The Sandman K is light enough and short enough that it doesn't radically alter the balance or feel of your favorite hunting or patrol rifle. It is engineered to be just enough silencer to bring most rifle rounds down to just above the generally accepted hearing safe threshold of 140 dB, and it uses one of the best mounting systems we've ever used. If you've already suppressed your rifle, but are looking for a bit less length and weight, give us a call, or stop by the store to discuss the Sandman K. You can snag the Sandman K for $569 while Dead Air's HPA price promotion lasts. Pair it up with our Show Your Cards Promotion for even more savings.