Life and Death > Weaponry

Pillows as gunshot suppressors

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How effective is a pillow or the foam cushion of couch at suppressing any sound, if any at all, when pressed against the muzzle end of a firearm?

What really happens when that is tried? 


Old Bill:

Haven't really ever tried this (my wife doesn't like me shooting up our pillows and cushions).

My unedjumacated guess would be that the way you described the situation, there would be minimal noise reduction due in part that the material in front of the muzzle would be blown away enough to allow the blast to make a sound.  Definitely, there would be charring of the material from the hot gasses.

Maybe if the pillow was wrapped totally around the gun to include material in front of the barrel, there might be some noise reduction.  Of course, a semi-auto in this case would jamb due to the shell casing not being ejected properly.

WORD OF CAUTION:  While these are interesting situations and some of us might be tempted to pull a MYTHBUSTER test.........DON"T EVEN THINK ABOUT IT.  Firearms are not to be abused.  Placing any object in front of a gun could result in obstructions in the barrel which could cause serious injury or death to the moron behind the, I mean shooter.

Good luck and be safe.

Old Bill

True, Don't try this at home.
A cheap silence I've heard of, and is a dangerous and a felony to do, is to tape a soda bottle in front of the barrel. filled with cotton or half filled with water. I wouldn't try it, but would use it in a book.

Thanks for replying here guys.

The scene in my book is that the BG is surprised in a robbery and panics.   He knocks out the victim and in his mindless flurry decides to eliminate the witness.

He grabs a cushion/pillow from the couch mainly to protect himself from blood and tissue spatter. I was simply curious as to what effect it would have on noise reduction and to add a little more detail to the scene.

But you got me to wondering if such a tactic would work in protecting the shooter from splatter in the first place.

I suppose I should have asked that, too. 

Thanks to you both.

Old Bill:

Yikes!  Bottle with water?  Any obstruction INSIDE a barrel would likely blow the barrel and I don't see how you could keep the water out.  A non-vented bottle filled with anything would just explode due to the expansion of gases from the blast and I seriously doubt there would be any effective noise reduction.

And yes, any attempt to make a silencer without a license is a Federal No-No.  Although several gunshops down here in Florida are starting to sell pistol/noise reduction devices (silencers by any other name) for about $450.  Only need to buy a $250 Federal Registration permit to get them.

Terry:  Prevent blood/skin/bone/brain/eyeball/teeth splatter? ...yes.  Pardon me...I'm starting to salivate.  >:D

Old Bill


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