Earlier this year, Pete wrote an article about Greg Latka and GSL Technology. Well earlier this month I got a chance to visit GSL Technology and meet the people behind some of the most iconic suppressors in the past two decades. Many people are not familiar with the name GSL Technology or its founder and owner Greg Latka. In fact GSL is Greg’s initials. Greg and GSL Technology was the company that built Gemtech.
The Man Behind GSL Technology
I am sure many of you have heard of Gemtech suppressors well before they were sold to Smith & Wesson and before Ron Martinez bought it, Greg Latka was president of Gemtech for over 20 years. In fact he was the wizard behind the curtain so to speak. GSL Technology is based out of Jackson, Michigan while Gemtech was in Boise, Idaho. Many of the suppressor designs and patents are the brain child of Greg Latka.
I got a chance to interview Greg Latka and here is the video from that interview.
As mentioned in my interview with Greg Latka, here is the helical baffle that he designed back in the 80s. The concept is similar to the OSS suppressors but predates it by a couple decades. It works by giving the expanding gasses more surface area and room to slow down and expand. This style of baffle is found in their machine gun suppressor the G7.
Listen to the high pitched pinging noises. That is the brass hitting the metal tripod legs. It is louder than the gun!!
In the interview, Greg mentioned the MK-9K suppressor. That was what 9mm suppressor technology looked like back in the day. It was Greg Latka who was able to shrink it down, have machined baffles and no need to weld anything. The Gemtech Raptor was born. At this moment in suppressor history, subsequent suppressors followed this design. 1.5″x7″ is a rather common dimension for 9mm suppressors and it is all thanks to Greg Latka.
Greg’s parents were involved with aerospace machining and that is how Greg got involved with machining. They made tool-less couplers that are found on planes, helicopters, M1 Abrams and certain cruise missiles.
His knowledge of couplers helped him come up with the Bi-Lock QD suppressor attachment method and tri-lock. You can see the various flash hider and muzzle brake designs he came up with. See the large .50 bmg flash hider? Does it remind you of anything? That is the prototype that eventually became the B.E. Meyers .50 cal flash hider.
Back in the 90s when FNH imported the P90, GSL Technology got the first two out of four. FNH got the other two. Greg came up with the bi-lock flash hider you see below and the suppressor for the P90.
You may recognize the item below. The ubiquitous Grip-Pod. Greg had a hand in developing the latch system for it.
Remember Greg mentioned his bellevue washer design? It is a uniform spring washer that can be designed to interface off the face of the muzzle or on the shoulder of a barrel. When you tighten the suppressor, the spring washer uniformly deforms and provides constant pressure on the threads and prevents the suppressor from unscrewing as it is fired. It is similar to a crush washer but is not permanently deformed and is reusable.
Here is Greg’s patent for the bellevue washer.
The bellevue washer attachment can be found in the following direct thread suppressors: Tactical, Swat-5, GT-308, GT-MAG, GT-450 and the Copperhead.
GSL Technology Is Certified Higher Than Anyone Else
One aspect of GSL Technology that everyone there is proud of is their ISO 9001:2015 certification. No other suppressor company has this rating as far as I know. This mostly applies to nerds in the manufacturing world. Aerospace and government agencies won’t work with you if you are not certified. For us layman non-machinst people, this rating is like the Better Business Bureau. The certification is very exclusive and very difficult to obtain. Not only does it certify that their manufacturing and quality control is impeccable it also looks at their customer service. Every step of manufacturing down to the person who ships out the unit is logged so that if there are any issues for the end user, they can track down any mistakes down to the person responsible. Because of their flawless service and quality, which is ISO 9001:2015 certified, GSL Technology offers an unconditional lifetime warranty on all of their products.
I have only seen one other factory this clean. It was SCCY Firearms in Daytona Beach FL.
The woman in charge of their quality control is a bit OCD when it comes to organizing her tools to check for proper dimensions of GSL Technology’s products.
Below is her “junk drawer”
The World’s Finest Suppressors
While I was in Jackson, Michigan Greg Latka and Lee Maule, Vice President of Sales, took me to the range to test out their suppressors. Below is Lee’s suppressor demo case.
Here is a video montage of all the different guns and suppressors I got to try out.
Their suppressors are similarly priced to their competitors but most of them come with extras that you would normally have to pay for. Take their Multi-Cal suppressor for example. It comes with both the 5.56 and .308 bi-lock flash hiders as well as the direct thread 1/2×28 and 5/8×24, that is four mounts included with their can. Their pistol suppressors will come with an industry standard piston at no extra cost.
The most intriguing I found were the .22LR Woodland, the GT-MAG 6.5 Creedmoor and .224 Valkyrie suppressors. The .22LR Woodland has the highest reduction I have seen in a rimfire suppressor. GSL Technology boasts a 40db reduction and you can “hear” it when I shot the Ruger American Rimfire bolt gun. The GT-MAG 6.5 Creedmoor was the most pleasant experience when shooting the Ruger Predator bolt gun. The tone and pitch were lower and it sounded quieter compared to using a .308 suppressor.
As mentioned in the video above, I like to use my X95 to test suppressors. Because it is a bullpup, it is worse to suppress due to the proximity of the barrel and ejection port to your face. Out of the handful of different suppressors I have tried, only the SureFire Socom and the GSL Technology suppressors were comfortable to shoot without hearing protection.
In the interview, Greg mentioned some “secret squirrel” stuff for clandestine groups. It is the Pillbox. Behind it is the Aurora/Boss and a pen gun in .380 acp.
I was one of the first to test fire their new Boss suppressor. It is based on Greg’s original design which became the Gemtech Aurora. However the Boss has a few changes and has some interesting things going on inside as well as how it will be sold to the public. But that information will be released on a different date once their patent is approved or when they can claim Patent Pending.
Greg The Collector
Greg is an avid firearm aficionado and collector. His gun vault is stocked with some very impressive firearms.
The Sterling is one of my all time favorite SMGs and the integrally suppressed MK4 is a grail gun. I got a chance to shoot it and it did not disappoint.
The Machine Gun Pistol drawer is the stuff of dreams.
The Glock 23C has an aftermarket selector switch. Made similar to the Glock 18 selector but it is missing the selector markings like those on the 18 and the parts are not the same.
See the sear trip just below the striker? The top one is from the G18. The one below that is the modified 23C.
I do not see many Gen2 G18 that often.
This M93R looks brand new.
Not only does Greg collect firearms he also collects ammunition. Have you seen the ridiculous video of the .950 JDJ? GSL Technology manufactured the projectile. 2400 grains!!
A shotgun shell to rule all shotgun shells.
He has quite the collection of Trounds.
And this folded cartridge.
GSL Technology and Greg Latka welcomed me with open arms. It truly is a family and Greg is the father figure. He calls you on your BS but cares deeply about everyone at GSL Technology, even if he finds them annoying. Looking at you Drayton and Lee. Greg has been influential in suppressor design for decades and was the genius behind Gemtech during their glory days. All that experience and passion can be seen in GSL Technology’s products. If you can own suppressors I would highly recommend checking out what they have to offer.