The No Country For Old Men suppressed shotgun

The actual gun used in the movies.

I have seen a couple of suppressed shotguns up close. They were pretty bulky and I wondered how effective the suppression would be with such a big caliber. For comparison: the area of the cross section of a 12 gauge bore is almost twice as large as .50 caliber bore!

Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


  • Jesse

    That is pimp and absurd at the same time.

  • Matt

    This thing is down the hall from my office. It is a generous loan from Independent Studio Services – a California based prop department that supplies motion pictures with firearms. We requested it for an upcoming exhibit where we will be displaying famous guns seen in movies. No Country for Old Men is one of my favorite movies as well as one of our Senior Curators, so of course it was a must have.

    • Matt, you have a very cool job 🙂

  • Jacob

    That does not look like the actual gun to me.

  • Carl

    I’d be a bit worried about the plastic shot cup or indeed the shot themselves hitting the baffles in the suppressor.

  • Tom Stone

    I think the silent shells they developed during the 70’s are a bit more practical despite the smaller payload.

  • HK_WSU

    Has anyone ever shot one of these before? I am curious to the effects on balance, recoil and how much noise suppression it actually provides.

  • B Woodman

    Just for giggles and grins, I volunteer to try it.

  • Clint

    A 12 gauge is 73 cal, your math has a 68 which is a 20 gauge.

    The cross section areas are:
    A 50 cal is 0.196 sq inches
    A 20 gauge is 0.363 sq inches
    A 12 gauge is 0.419 sq inches

  • Redchrome

    The solution for silencing shotguns is to use a perforated tube rather than just a plain hole through baffles. Small Arms Review had an article on a shotgun silencer some months ago; and the core was a perforated tube wrapped in wire screen. Crude by modern silencer standards, but a useful proof-of-concept.

    I’m sure if there was sufficient demand, Advanced Armament would have a well-designed and efficient model available.

  • You can do this with any two calibers, simply substitute D₁ for the larger and D₂ for the smaller.
    ( (π×(D₁÷2)² ) ÷ ( π×(D₂÷2)²) ) × 100 = 185%

  • Carl

    Redchrome, interesting. I suppose you could fashion an integral suppressor from the barrel itself, in this way. Just drill some holes in it and put a larger tube over it. A plastic beverage bottle would probably do for a temporary DIY solution.

  • Ramsey

    A while back I saw some information on someone who made a ver long aluminum barrel extension (like 8 feet) that had a similar effect to a silencer.

    In comparison, this thing looks positively svelte.

  • Kurby

    Matt, would you be able to take a good photo of the shotgun and email it to me? You must work in one of the coolest places in the US.

  • Matthew

    In the movie they dubbed over modified audio of a nail gun, when the shotgun fired. But I still love that movie A LOT.

  • Martin

    It’s not so much bore size, but charge and velocity that matters.

    12ga shells typically use only about 30 grs. of power, while a 50 BMG uses 185-240 grs. depending on brand.

    12ga shot only has a velocity of about 1200 fps, while 50 BMG is around 2800 fps.

    Both of these figures result in a shorter can. There are fewer gasses and report to suppress, and the lower velocity increases the time the expanding gasses are in the suppressor.

    Fully suppressed shotguns are used in the UK, and the suppressor is the full length of the barrel. I’m not sure what the db numbers are, but I’d like to see them.

  • Thanks for the math corrections.

  • c. Trapp

    The bore is quite big but it’s the powder charge that makes the noise. So suppressing a shotgun with its comparativly light loads is easier than one might think. It looks strange, though.

  • Matt

    Whats your email Kurby?

    Heres a good reference shot from the film.

    Note that the screw heads in both photos are in the 2 o’clock and 8 o’ clock position.

  • Travis

    One of those “makes cool guns stuff” guys like MartyTW or Tromix made a suppressed shotgun. Yes, you have to port the barrel, rather than more normal baffels. That process of drilling thousands of perfect little holes was enough for them to say, never again!

    I expect you could scale up a pistol suppressor, since pressures are similar, and do it on a Form 1. That means it could be light. But the marked it still small.

    Many states specifically outlaw suppressors for hunting game animals, so not that big a market for shottys. Like Hog hunting in TX with suppressed weapons is rather normal, but thats because those are not ‘game animals’.

  • Matt
  • Dave

    Here are some genuine silenced shotguns sold in the UK…

  • Kurby

    Thanks for the photos Matt.

  • Kurby

    My email is

  • Kurby

    Did you take the photos yourself? I was wondering because I would like to post one of the photos on a website if that is ok with you? What I wouldnt do to get a job where I could be around firearms all day lol.