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How to Buy a Silencer

How to Buy a Silencer

The National Firearms Act of 1934 has created a very detailed and nuanced process when purchasing controlled items – leading many to ask how to buy a silencer. Thankfully, at Frontier Justice, our experts are here to help you better understand the process of purchasing a suppressor! In this blog, we’ll be discussing the history of the NFA, the legal definition of a silencer, what exactly a tax stamp is, and how we can help you streamline the NFA process.


Are Silencers Legal?

We are often asked about the legality of silencers. The truth is, suppressors have always been legal, however, from 1934 forward, they have been more difficult to acquire, and require more effort and time than a firearm transaction. In 1934, the National Firearms Act was passed into law, with the intent to limit access to silencers, short-barreled rifles, shotguns, machine guns, and “any other weapons” (AOW). This process drastically changed how to buy a silencer, and still impacts us to this day.

The NFA Process – How to Buy a Silencer

The NFA requires the registration of all NFA firearms and other items with the Secretary of the Treasury. For example: to purchase and register a manufactured silencer, ATF Form 4 must be submitted, along with two sets of fingerprints, two photographs, and $200.

Paperwork and all of the companion materials are typically mailed in. On average, there is a 250-370 day wait for NFA approval.

If this act seems like a lot of hoops to jump through, that’s because it is. According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), the NFA was structured to discourage public use of NFA firearms.

“As the legislative history of the law discloses, its underlying purpose was to curtail, if not prohibit, transactions in NFA firearms. Congress found these firearms to pose a significant crime problem because of their frequent use in crime, particularly the gangland crimes of that era such as the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre. The $200 making and transfer taxes on most NFA firearms were considered quite severe and adequate to carry out Congress’s purpose to discourage or eliminate transactions in these firearms. The $200 tax has not changed since 1934.”

While that $200 tax isn’t nearly as steep as it was back in 1934, it’s still an additional hurdle on top of the expense of your NFA firearm or other NFA items.

The official definition of a silencer can be found within the NFA, and is as follows:

Silencers: “A firearm silencer and a firearm muffler are defined as any device for silencing, muffling, or diminishing the report of a portable firearm.18-inch Firearm silencers are generally composed of an outer tube, internal baffles, a front end cap, and a rear end cap. The definition of a silencer also includes any combination of parts, designed or redesigned, and intended for use in assembling or fabricating a firearm silencer or firearm muffler.”


What is a Suppressor tax stamp?

How to Buy a Silencer

So, as we mentioned above, this process on how to buy a silencer has been in play for roughly 90 years, and once completed, will provide you with the tax stamp needed to legally own a silencer. Again, the tax stamp is $200, and is purchased from the ATF. While in years past it was only possible to do so by mailing a check to them with your paperwork, we’ve partnered with Silencer Shop to make the process significantly easier.


Now, you can purchase a tax stamp using your Silencer Shop Account, and they’ll take care of writing a check directly to the ATF on your behalf. Once the check is cashed, Silencer Shop will notify you! This means that they are able to fully guarantee all Form 4 submissions Powered By Silencer Shop, which can be completed at Frontier Justice using our Silencer Shop Kiosks!

Our mission at Frontier Justice is promoting safe and responsible firearm ownership for every American citizen, and firearms that fall into the NFA certainly are a part of this mission. While the NFA application process has remained constant for nearly 90 years, we’ve worked to effectively streamline and update the process, bringing it into the 21st century with our Silencer Shop Kiosk in each of our stores.

The Silencer Shop Kiosk is an interactive and simple solution to the struggles faced by those interested in buying a silencer. The kiosk saves all the time that was usually spent chasing down photos, and fingerprints. Not only that, but when combined with the Silencer Shop mobile app, we are able to completely eliminate the need for paper forms.

Now, you can walk into any Frontier Justice location, walk up to our kiosk, and immediately complete the entire process (except the NFA wait!). The hardest part for you is simply deciding which silencer is right for you! (That’s where our FJ Experts come in to help!)


Just follow these simple steps to purchase your silencer at our Silencer Shop Kiosk:

  • Purchase a silencer
  • Purchase a tax stamp
  • Submit fingerprints
  • Fill out information
  • Submit photo
  • Choose how to file
  • Electronically sign
  • Wait until approval
  • Pick up your silencer

Learn More about How to Buy a Silencer

Still curious about the NFA or interested in purchasing a silencer? Come to Frontier Justice and speak directly with one of our firearms experts! We are dedicated to teaching everyone in our community about their Second Amendment rights. Part of that dedication is educating people about the NFA and opening up access to NFA firearms and items for more American citizens. We are here to teach you how to buy a silencer, because silencers are a great tool for both recreation and defense, and we believe firmly in helping you get the perfect one for your unique needs.

Learn more about what makes Frontier Justice different by reaching out to us, signing up for our membership club, or scheduling a class. You can also always simply stop by to check out our store, boutique, and range for yourself!

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