Swift SPR Rimfire Sound Moderator
- 10 Comments
- Last updated: 14/12/2016
When I stopped by at the Swift Precision Rifles workshop (of Richard Pope) earlier in the year, Richard gave me a sneak preview of a new rimfire moderator he was developing. If I’m honest, I have to admit that at the time I wasn’t totally convinced: it just looked too simple to work. How could a line of flat baffles separated by spacers work better than the complex, multi-angled internals found in the latest designs by other manufacturers? But then again, this was the man responsible for Sandwell Field Sports’ famously-effective, carbon-fibre air-rifle silencers, and that had to count for something…
On my next visit I enquired how the moderator project was coming along. Richard showed me the finished item and asked if I would like to try it out. “Sure,” I said (who wouldn’t?), and he passed me the moderator with a look that spoke volumes about his confidence in his handiwork.
How Does It Compare?
The moderator is a muzzle can, 19.5cm long and 3cm in diameter, and weighs in at 175g. The rear end tapers to a diameter of 1.8cm and is threaded 1/2”UNF, whilst the front end has a chamfered circumference and a 7.35” diameter muzzle with a star-shaped hole that takes a T45 torque spanner. This means it can be stripped, but you’ll probably have to pop down to Halfords and buy the right ‘bit’ first. The moderator has a hard matte-black/slate-grey anodised finish that has proved highly scratch-resistant, is practical for hunting, and which looks good on any gun.
What’s more, the light weight of the SPR moderator entirely compensates for its extra length, and this, along with its slim lines, transformed the looks and handling of my 16” barrelled CZ452 HMR, which normally wears a chunky DM80 over-barrel unit (www.uttings.com). However, I had little hope that the SPR moderator would match the DM80 on performance, since the latter is calibre-specific and highly-effective.
I therefore began by testing the moderator on a softer option, my .22LR Anschütz, which is usually equipped with a capable, but not exceptional, Sako muzzle can.
Misfire?... No, Just Silent
The first shot with some Eley subsonic hollow-points was extraordinarily quiet, but I didn’t see the bullet strike. Wondering whether I’d had a misfire, I removed the bolt and checked the bore. This showed clear, but I did notice a slight occlusion in the moderator, even after it had been removed and replaced, so I went home to examine it more closely with a set of callipers. It transpired that the fault lay not with the moderator, which was perfectly concentric, but with the factory thread on the Anschütz, which was disappointingly out-of-true, a defect that had previously passed unnoticed only because the Sako’s bore is cut to looser tolerances than the SPR’s.
On my next outing, therefore, I took another .22, a V22 semi-auto, which is generally fitted with a Wildcat Growler. Designed for the .22 Magnum, the Growler’s not at its most efficient on the V22, but it looks good on the rifle and functions well enough with the smaller cartridge. This time, thankfully, there were no alignment problems - Richard himself had threaded the V22 - but yet again the moderator would have had me thinking I was shooting duds if the mech hadn’t been cycling and the rounds punching holes in the target. Now I can’t say I have used every .22 rimfire moderator on the market, but I’ve tried a fair few and I’d never heard anything as quiet as Richard’s. Quite simply, it’s the best .22LR moderator I’ve ever tested.
Now For The .17HMR
So how would it fare on the HMR? Well, my feelings of anticipation as I took up the pressure on the trigger can well be imagined, and were only outdone by my satisfaction at the rifle’s muted report. I wouldn’t say it is quieter than the DM80, but for a .22 moderator on a .17 barrel, it comes extraordinarily close, and to my mind at least, its looks and handling give it the edge.
My final test involved comparing the SPR moderator to the Wildcat Growler on my .22WMR. The Growler works well, and whilst its over-barrel design is chunky in appearance, it is both compact and quite light. Whether it’s the ultimate in .22WMR moderators is another story, however, and I’d like to try out a DM80 for comparison some time, but for now it was the turn of the SPR. The result? Well, perhaps surprisingly, given its remarkable performance on the HMR, it seems that the WMR is just too much for the otherwise-excellent SPR moderator to handle, and this, indeed is no disgrace.
Before closing, I’ll admit that the above in no way represents scientific testing, and it’s entirely possible that other ears would make different judgements. All I’ll say is that as soon as I had the SPR mod shooting on the V22 I got out my chequebook (and started thinking about having the Anschütz re-threaded), and when I take my HMR out, the SPR goes on that too.
The SPR rimfire moderator retails for £55, and a carbon-fibre version is also available to order, POA.
Where can the Stumpy be bought. What's the point in telling us how good it is if we can't get one.Help in locating appreciated.
John27 Feb 2015 at 08:15 PM
HI I have tried to find the Swift Precision Stumpy online and can not find a price please could you send details on how to buy one!
Adrian Rankin-Maclean09 Jan 2015 at 01:00 AM
who do i contact to get a swift .22 moderator
Roy Wayne Thomas06 Jul 2014 at 06:11 PM
I have searched for a website/point of contact for Swift - any help appreciated
Mike Dawson26 Feb 2013 at 09:58 PM
Why not contact Swift and get them to send one to your local gun shop?
pete moore23 Jan 2012 at 03:56 PM
dear sir or madam,
having just read the artical regarding the "Richard Popes Swift SPR mod". i know its a long shot but do you know of any dealers in the north east area who may stock them? the last comment was posted by a mr grosch back in may 2010. if possible could a link be e-mail to me so that i may contact the manufacturer. any help would be much appreciated.
steven price21 Jan 2012 at 02:53 PM
Can you please tell me where to buy the swift moderator?
Eoin03 Oct 2010 at 08:24 PM
Hi looking at the review of the swift sound moderator by Richard Pope I decided to purchase one from my local dealer, Id say they had a puzzled look on their faces when I requested a price from them as they had never heard of the make. Price was as stated in artical and arrived within 1 week. Packaged in a none wow cardboard tube and what looked like a photo copied instruction/saftey advice not to impressive until you actually see the moderator and WOW a very nicely machined moderator very light for the size and looks like it should cost more money then it does.
On the range very quiet using subsonics my CZ 452 22LR just sounded like a co2 air rifle (Bunnies beware) Even the mighty CCI hyper round were muffled quite considerably. One down side modorator is on the long side but hay when the quality and the performance is that good and the price band is that of the SAK the Swift SPR sound moderator is a fantastic buy.
If you are pondering what sound moderator to buy for your 22lr then my reccomendation would be Richard Popes Swift SPR mod.
Tony Grosch01 May 2010 at 09:58 PM
can you please tell how to buy the swift moderator as I have tried several dealers and they do not stock the item
mel probert10 Feb 2010 at 11:34 AM
i left 2 messages on the edtors answerphone re, the non existant article on the SOUTHPAW SAVAGE, in jans edition gunmart, i thought a return answer would have been nice. i would just like to say ! at £3.50, it was an artical i was looking forward to reading, i might as well not bothered , apparentley ,its the same attitude your editor has to his coustomer base,in i am 52 and have been buying this mag since adam was a lad, but i do not think i will bother in the future, if you can not be bothered , why should i, NOT HAPPY , MR ALAN LYON
mr alan lyon01 Feb 2010 at 03:12 PM