This week, with our ongoing suppressor coverage, we got to test one of unique products on the market. The Daniel Defense Wave, the first 3D printed suppressor in history. As we would expect from the name Daniel Defense, it proved to be spectacular.
DD Making Waves
When I first heard this device was 3D printed, I was extremely skeptical. 3D printing, from what I have seen of gun parts so far has traditionally meant plastic and fragile. Not what you want in a can. So, I was happily surprised to find that Daniel Defense constructed the suppressor almost entirely of Inconel. This is a nickel-based super alloy very common in sound suppressors. Among its many benefits, it is extremely tough against abrasion, making it perfect for this application.
How, exactly, did DD print with this? Via a process call sintering, which is basically welding powdered metal one layer at a time. The result is seamless baffle stack and outer shell, with a pattern you could achieve in no other way. The best part here is the no seams on the shell. In the military, that was always the failure point on our cans. You could tell quickly, when carbon started leaking out of the welds. They still worked, but performance was degraded. The DD was obviously built to correct that issue.
- Caliber: 7.62
- Weight: 17.2 0z.
- Diameter: 1.59 in.
- Overall Length: 7.6 in.
- Threads: 5/8 –24 TPI
- Attachment Type: Quick Detach
- Material: Inconel
- MSRP: $1,157
- Manufacturer: Daniel Defense
The can is overall cool, but does it work? Durability will be an ongoing test. The materials are correct, and DD says toughness was the primary concern in design. You can tell that when you pick it up, this is no runway waif. It isn’t even close to the lightest suppressor on the market, nor was that the goal. DD also built the 7.62 model, by design, to work for 5.56 through .300 Win. Mag. Unfortunately for our durability question, ours only shipped with a 5.56 flash hider.
The can is quick detach design, hence the flash hider issue. Daniel Defense built the family of flash hiders to the same outer dimension for each caliber, but obviously not the same thread dimension. I have actually seen a 5.56 flash hider rigged onto a 7.62 rifle, and the result was spectacular. If you call an .30 caliber bullet trying to exit a .22 caliber hole at high speed spectacular at least. I’m really glad I wasn’t the one holding it. The point is, Daniel Defense did set you up for one can across many rifles. But they also built in a fail-safe against stupidity. Can’t fault them on that one.
Anyway, using a .300 Win Mag rated suppressor on 5.56 is a long way from a toughness test. But we did make lemonade out of our shit sandwich. Or whatever analogy is appropriate here. On a 5.56 gun, the Wave was perfectly hearing safe with supersonic ammo. It ran great and had a repeatable zero shift of right at one inch low. I did have one group go haywire when taking the can on and off, but that is most likely user error. Either I shot that group like a monkey slapping the trigger, or I didn’t have the can fully-seated when I started.
On my Barnes Precision 18-inch rifle, the suppressor had no negative effects on accuracy. One of my suppressed groups was under a half inch, similar to the rifle naked.
The Wave comes out of the box with everything you need to get started. The flash hider is already in the suppressor, to save packaging space. Also included is a complete shim kit for timing the brake, and a small tube of Rocksett for permanent installation.
Time will tell, next up for the DD wave is a 16-inch .308 and a pile of bullets. This should answer the durability question nicely. But for now, I will say this. The decibel reduction does seem to be as advertised ( 30-40 decibels, depending on rifle platform), and the zero shift is one of the best on the market. The price is competitive, especially for a product from Black Creek’s home of uber high-quality products.
For more information about Daniel Defense Wave, click here.
To purchase a Daniel Defense Rifle on GunsAmerica, click here.