September 25, 2023
Big is in. With the rise in popularity of straight-wall cartridges in formerly shotgun-only deer states, we’ve seen the introduction of “over .30” cartridges like the .350 and .400 Legends, and the .360 Buckhammer. Not to mention the change has provided a boost to older numbers like the .45-70 and .450 Bushmaster.
Recognizing this, Silencer Central has introduced the Banish 46, which will handle cartridges up to .45-70. It will work with the .338 Lapua as well, which has a bullet diameter of .339 and is too big for the company’s Banish 338. Like all Silencer Central suppressors, the Banish 46 can also be used for smaller calibers down to 5.56, although you start to lose some effectiveness the smaller you go.
I ordered the Banish 46 as a direct-mount with both 11/16x24 and 5/8x24 direct-thread inserts. It’s available with several other direct-thread inserts as well as piston or muzzle brake mounts.
The Banish 46 provides more than 34 decibels of sound reduction in its long configuration. A .45-70 gunshot produces around 160 dB, so a 34 dB reduction would take it below the roughly 140 dB hearing-harm threshold for a single exposure like a gunshot. That’s a typical hunting scenario, so the Banish 46 is going to help preserve your hearing in the field—and to me that’s the biggest selling point to using a suppressor for hunting. However, for all the range work I kept my hearing protection on, both because I tested the short configuration and because of the potential harmful effects of multiple shots on a covered range.
In its full-length configuration, the Banish 46 is 10 inches long and weighs 20.4 ounces. In its short configuration, it weighs only 16.3 ounces and is 7.9 inches long. The light weight is thanks to its WhisperTech titanium alloy tube, which is 1.73 inches in diameter, and its titanium baffles.
To change it from long to short, unscrew the extension from the main body and swap the muzzle cap with the provided tool key and T-45 Torx wrench.
The Banish 46 is easy to disassemble for cleaning, which is recommended every 50 to 100 rounds. (Side note: Silencer Central discourages the use of lead or plated lead bullets in the Banish 46.)
After removing the suppressor from the rifle and unscrewing the muzzle cap, if the Banish 46 is not too dirty you can tap the end on a table and the baffle stack may fall out. I wouldn’t count on that, although if you follow the company’s instructions and spray the inside of the suppressor with solvent and let it sit for 24 hours, it might work that way.
I used Silencer Central’s baffle removal tool—sold separately, as is the tool adapter required for the Banish 46—to push out the baffles. It’s a handy device I think is definitely worth having, but the manual says it’s also possible to push out the baffles with a dowel.
I had more than 100 rounds through the Banish 46 prior to cleaning it, so it was really dirty. Initially I placed the baffles in the original Hornady sonic cleaner, which has a timer setting that maxes out at eight minutes. After two times through, the baffles were cleaner than they had been but not fully clean. A sonic cleaner with a longer run time might be the way to go.
In the end, I grabbed a brush and a bottle of Bore Tech carbon remover and scrubbed the baffles. The method is a bit messy and not super fast, but it gets the job done easily.
The baffles in the main tube—including the Inconel blast/accuracy baffles—are indexed for easy reassembly. Aside from the blast/accuracy baffle needing to be on top of the stack (closest to muzzle), the baffles can be assembled in any order. Simply match up the indexing tabs with the notches on the neighboring baffle.
Slide the tube over the stack. With the tube fully over the stack, tip it just enough so you can slide a finger underneath, and while placing upward pressure on the baffle stack, turn the tube upright. This ensures the baffles stay properly aligned.
Reinstall the muzzle cap. If the installation was done correctly, the orange O-ring on the muzzle cap will not be visible. The other check is to shake the assembled tube. If you hear a rattle, something’s amiss. The assembly procedure for the full 10-inch configuration is the same, except the two baffles in the extension are not indexed. Make sure these are used in the extension only, never in the main tube.
I tested the Banish 46 with three rifles: Ruger American Ranch in .450 Bushmaster, CVA Scout in .350 Legend and Marlin 1895 Trapper in .45-70. The first two were accuracy tested at 100 yards; the Marlin was field tested at 50 yards with Federal Hammer Down.
Aside from the dramatic reduction in noise and muzzle blast and a considerable drop in recoil with the suppressor installed, the difference in accuracy is pretty amazing—1/2 m.o.a. or more. Sure, you don’t need pinpoint accuracy when you’re shooting whitetails at 100 yards or so, but it definitely doesn’t hurt.
If you’ve spent much time with lever actions in .45-70, you’ll really appreciate the Banish 46. It makes the shooting experience a lot more pleasurable. I ran the Marlin at speed with iron sights at 50 yards. Yes, the addition of the suppressor does change the handling some. After all, you’re adding a pound or more at the muzzle, but I didn’t find it affected my offhand accuracy.
It does make the gun longer and moves the balance point farther forward, but at least in the Trapper version with its 16-inch barrel, I don’t think it makes the gun unhandy. However, the 1895 Trapper’s ghost ring sights were just barely tall enough to be able to get a sight picture over the tube. That’s not ideal, and other iron sight setups probably wouldn’t work at all, which is something to consider if you’re not scoping your rifle.
If you live in a state where suppressors are permitted for hunting, and you’re looking for a way to preserve your hearing while reducing recoil and potentially improving accuracy with an “over .30” rifle, the Banish 46 is well worth the $1,249 investment (plus $200 for the federal tax stamp).
If the process of buying a suppressor seems intimidating, Silencer Central makes it incredibly easy. The company’s customer service folks are excellent and will walk you through it. Thanks to electronic forms, the approval turnaround time is quicker than it used to be. We’re still talking about the BATF, though, so have realistic expectations. Regardless, the suppressor will be worth it.