What is a Trainer suppressor and what does it actually do? Surefire’s product page makes the following points:
- Does not suppress sound
- Mimics the weight and dimensions of a fully featured suppressor
- For use in a training environment with:
- Marking cartridges (e.g. Simunition FX, and UTM)
- Training ammunition (e.g. SRTA)
- Frangible and live ammunition
Interestingly, although the real thing is noted for not suppressing sound, adding HAO’s replica to a 10″ AEG does affect the report – much like a longer barrel does.
HAO’s Trainer suppressor is attractively finished with H-series Cerakote. Whoever is applying it seems to be getting better with practice and based on what I’ve seen so far, I really do think HAO is knocking it out of the park with their current series of cans – which you’d expect for the price. H-series Cerakote is resistant to high temperatures and is used by Surefire on the real thing, by the way.
In keeping with the realism theme, the collar of the product is anodised and this is another area HAO is getting very good at – interpreting tan/FDE/RAL8000/tanodised ano shades.
The trades are one area where the Trainer differs from HAO’s current generation of suppressors. For the latter, HAO decided on some impressively bold ‘pneumatic pinning’ – gouging furrows in the can to make the trades really pop. Here, however, they’ve gone for trades which are closer to what people normally expect from airsoft replicas. This may be a price point move, but it looks great nonetheless – very clean and well defined.
This is a hollow, end cap-free structure. There are no baffles because the end is not closed – it’s a tube, open at one end. This part is composed of Stainless Steel (304) and the can is of equal weight to the RS. However, unlike HAO’s other cans, the steel portion is not welded together – it’s one piece. The collar is cleanly CNC milled aluminium and as mentioned earlier, the ano is a pleasing shade of tan.
As usual with HAO cans, it feels like brick. Absolutely solid and impressively weighty.
The can indexes on RS or HAO SOCOM flash hiders only – details of which can be found on HAO’s Trainer Suppressor product page.
Again – as usual with HAO’s cans, lock up is awesome and for some this could be the biggest reason to buy one. It uses exactly the same method as the RS: an eccentric cam, tightened using a ratchet system.
Removing the collar exhibits chunky threads and numerous splines, with which the can’s ratchet mechanism interacts to get that no-wobble set up.
I was intrigued to find out just what the Trainer can would do to my PTW’s sound signature. Adding something to the end of an AEG generally does change its report, whether that’s the resonant metal ‘ding’ of a pronged flash hider; the suppression of a baffled can; or – horrifically – a Noveske Fire Pig type ‘sound hog’ (which makes a quacking noise, IIRC).
Adding the training can makes my 10″ AEG sound like it has a longer barrel.
I can imagine that someone who’s involved in training using airsoft replicas may want to use one of these cans, simply to be closer to authentic practice methods. It’s already a niche thing to fit blue bolts, and mags which replicate the look of training ammunition; so, for some, this product could represent an additional realistic step.
It’s also significantly cheaper than HAO’s other suppressor replicas, which will be of interest to many.
On a general note, HAO is absolutely going in the right direction as far as its suppressor range is concerned. It’s no secret that I didn’t think much of its original offerings, but they’ve come a long way since then and are also now offering a broader range.
HAO’s Surefire SOCOM Fast-Attach Suppressor Trainer Replica is available here.