Silencer Shop Authority: AAC Ti-Rant 9M Review

Back in 2013, I made my first suppressor purchase – a SilencerCo Octane 45 HD. At the time, my decision made a lot of sense as I didn’t have any other cans and caliber flexibility was paramount to me. In the four years following that purchase, I’ve learned quite a lot about myself as a shooter and silencer enthusiast, primarily that I shoot 9mm far more often than .45 ACP and I hate, hate, hate heavy suppressors. Though the Octane is still a phenomenal performer it’s a good bit larger than it needs to be for effective 9mm suppression and I’ve recently started to look around for a lighter, shorter option for my 9mm handguns.

Jumping back to 2013 for a moment, while I was off shopping for a .45 silencer, Advanced Armament Corp. (AAC) was busy ruling the 9mm roost with their phenomenal Ti-Rant 9. For several years, the Ti-Rant led the performance pack in the 9mm category and its reign has only recently come into question. Joining the Ti-Rant 9 in AAC stable was the shorter, lighter, and louder version of the can, the Ti-Rant 9S. While the two peacefully coexisted within AAC’s lineup, they ultimately presented buyers with a difficult decision between performance and maneuverability.

For 2017, AAC has introduced what is effectively a merger between the Ti-Rant 9 and 9S with the modular 9M. I previously tested AAC’s Ti-Rant 45M and found it to be immensely underrated. As soon as I saw this new suppressor was coming out, I knew I needed to give it a shot (see what I did there?). A few weeks ago, the good folks at Silencer Shop sent one out so I could do just that.

Meet the AAC Ti-Rant 9M

Tech Specs

Perhaps the biggest selling point for the Ti-Rant 9M is the fact that it can be configured in two different lengths. In its shortest configuration the suppressor is a mere 5.875″ long from the rear of the piston to the face of the end cap. It’s tiny and so very handy.

The shortened Ti-Rant 9M on my Beretta M9

The longer format of the 9M, with the front module installed, comes in at 8.063″. The full-size configuration is on the longer end of the 9mm spectrum and comes close to my SilencerCo Octane 45, but it offers improved performance over the short setup. Regardless of configuration, the Ti-Rant is 1.375″ in diameter.

The 9M might be dimensionally close to my Octane 45, but it is much, much lighter. All-in, the Ti-Rant weighs in at just 9.2 ounces. Even better is that with the front module removed, it’s a 7.5 ounce suppressor. For reference, my Octane hovers around 12 ounces. Part of the appeal of a 9mm silencer is lighter size and weight than .45 ACP suppressors and the 9M stays mostly faithful to this trend.

Even in its full-length configuration, the 9M is very manageable.

The rest of the 9M’s vital statistics can be seen below:

Materials & Design

The Ti-Rant 9M is effectively the product of a merger between the formidable Ti-Rant 9 and 9S (short). As a result and in keeping with it’s name, the can features a Grade 9 titanium main body, though the extension at the front is a 7075 T6 aluminum tube.The piece is then finished in high-temperature Cerakote. One thing to note about the Cerakote on this rendition of the Ti-Rant is that it’s actually reasonably durable. If you remember my Ti-Rant 45M review, that can’s finish had some serious issues – bad enough that I asked AAC about them while at SHOT this past January. According to the guys there, finish complaints prompted a major tune-up of their application equipment. They apparently had several thousand dollars worth of upkeep that was neglected during AAC’s factory move.

The Cerakote finish on the 9M seems to be improved over that of the 45M I tested.

Taking the silencer apart for cleaning or to shorten it is as easy as it gets. The front module unscrews from the main body and moving the front cap over to the primary tube is all that’s needed to go from full-size configuration to “K” (kurz, German for “short”) format. With the end cap removed, it’s possible to dump the three baffles inside the front segment. Likewise, the the five-baffle primary stack can be pushed out the main body so long as the additional module and front cap are removed.

The front module comes off easily enough and houses three baffles. Each of these three are different, so there’s only one way to put this thing together.

Like past Ti-Rants, the 9M sports a stack of fairly traditional K-baffles. K’s are fantastic for pistol and rimfire applications because they efficiently trap slower gasses along the perimeter of the silencer’s tube. Unlike concial or M-baffle designs, they also impede forward and rearward movement of gasses inside the can. This makes them very quiet. It’s also probably why the Ti-Rant is still one of the absolute quietest 9mm suppressors on the market. To help ensure proper alignment of the baffles (keeping the ports lined up), the baffles are keyed.

The 9M fully disassembled

Notice that the baffles are keyed to keep them lined up during reassembly.

The 9M is rated for full-auto use on both .22 LR and 9mm, though I’d seriously avoid using it on the former in any form. The robust 17-4 stainless steel blast baffle can no doubt handle the anemic round, but since the rest of the baffles are aluminum, they aren’t as easy to clean as ones made of other materials. Moreover, the K-baffles aren’t isolated from the walls of the outer tube. With enough rimfire use and some negligence it’s entirely possible that a person could foul the inside of the 9M enough to prevent easy disassembly.

Here is the hearty stainless steel blast baffle.

Owners of past Ti-Rants and shooters who are concerned about piston availability will be happy to know that the 9M’s booster assembly is identical to older entries in the series. In even better news, AAC has decided to include both Imperial and Metric threaded pistons. By that, I mean that the box contains both a 1/2-28 RH piston and an M13.5×1 LH part as well. Honestly, when buyers have to fork over $600+ for a pistol silencer, including pistons with both of the common thread pitches is a smart move. AAC also makes a 3-lug mount for the Ti-Rant series, but it is sold separately.

If you own a previous version of the Ti-Rant, this booster assembly should look familiar.

The Ti-Rant 9M includes both a 1/2-28 piston and one in M13.5×1 LH.

I could have sworn the 9M wouldn’t work on my Beretta’s threaded factory barrel. When I got home from the range, I checked it again and I think it might actually clear the guide rod. Sadly, I didn’t test the combo.

Range Report

I hate to start this section this way, but my session with the 9M mounted to my USP 9mm was plagued by reliability issues. Historically my USP has been an absolute workhorse, both suppressed and unsuppressed. I’ve used a wide variety of 9mm and .45 ACP silencers on the pistol with absolutely no issues to report. Unfortunately and for reasons unknown to me, the Ti-Rant 9M caused stovepipe failures to eject on nearly 50% of the rounds I put through the gun/can combo. It was unlike anything I’ve ever seen with my USP, but I do have some theories. For one, the 9M is a relatively low backpressure suppressor. Thanks to its K-baffles, it doesn’t kick much gas back into the handgun’s action and doesn’t appreciably increase slide speed like other designs might. This is also why I feel that the short configuration was even less reliable than the full-size setup – a real paradox considering the affect silencer weight can have on reliability. I wasn’t able to verify whether this truly was the cause, but it’s my strongest theory.

There are also a couple of other potential causes. First, it could be as simple as the ammunition I was using. Throughout the day, I made exclusive use of Freedom Munitions’ 147 grain FMJs. While I’ve never had any trouble with Freedom’s 9mm loads, I recently hit a speed bump with their 5.56mm rounds in the form of a split casing. Freedom has a history of occasional reliability problems, but I can’t see their ammo causing as much trouble as I had with the 9M. Second, it’s possible that the piston assembly just needed some lubrication and break-in. If the spring was too stiff or the piston failed to move freely inside the booster, the can would not be able to “unlink” itself from the pistol’s barrel. In this case, the weight of the suppressor at the end of the USP’s barrel may have prompted the failures.

When the can and pistol were working in harmony, they sounded phenomenal and had very little first round pop (FRP). The Ti-Rant isn’t exactly a new design, but it has aged well. For years, the original Ti-Rant 9 was king the 9M carries on that tradition. The full-size configuration is identical in length and performance to its progenitor. As a result, it is still one of the quietest 9mm suppressors out there with superb tone and as mentioned previously, very low backpressure. Near the muzzle, Silencer Shop has tested both the Ti-Rant 9 and 9M to deliver 124 dB performance. Interestingly, Silencer Shop also found the 9M to be much quieter at the shooter’s ear than the 9 (126 dB vs. 131 dB). Since the two cans are effectively the same internally I am inclined to believe that the difference can mostly be attributed to testing conditions. From a subjective perspective, I can verify that you absolutely do not need additional hearing protection when shooting with the 9M in its long format as it is very pleasant on the ears.

Adaptable silencers like the 9M are essentially standard for leading manufacturers these days and I’ve been fortunate enough to try several offerings of this sort. Even so, I continue to be amazed by the performance of their abbreviated configurations. The Ti-Rant 9M did not disappoint in this regard. Though it was noticeably louder when shortened, the 9M knocked enough of the edge off the 9mm subsonic ammo to make it comfortably hearing safe. It was unfortunate that the short setup caused so many cycling problems because to be honest, I preferred it over the full-size configuration from a handling perspective, enough that a few extra decibels didn’t bother me much. For numbers-oriented folks out there, the short 9M rated at 134 dB (131 dB at-ear) in Silencer Shop’s testing.

Conclusion

For many readers I expect the bit about the Ti-Rant’s reliability issues will put a severe damper on this review. As surprising as the problems were for me, I still want to caution that they’re very likely isolated issues that aren’t likely to arise with other examples and hosts. It’s entirely possible that a brand new silencer with a fresh booster spring could need some break in. It’s also important to realize that the low backpressure that makes the Ti-Rant 9M sound so good could also mean slow slide speed, which contributes to the challenge. Either way, this is a sample of exactly one unit and thousands of other Ti-Rants, both old and new, are serving shooters throughout the nation perfectly fine.

Where the treads meet the road, the Ti-Rant 9M hits all the right notes. It’s light in either configuration, but is extremely handy when shortened. Meanwhile, the 9M is every bit as quiet as its forefathers and shares the same pistons as well. While it might be mostly an incremental or generational improvement over the classic Ti-Rant 9, the 9M is a worthy contender in the 9mm field.

If the Ti-Rant 9M sounds like a suppressor that belongs in your safe, head on over to Silencer Shop where you’ll find it for as low as $599.

This has been a review of products provided by and sold at Silencer Shop. All opinions are my own.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *