I have moderators fitted to most of my Rifles, both rimfire and centrefire, so when I was looking for a new .30 calibre moderator I thought back to the summer of 2014. I was shooting on Bisley’s Century range and a mate of mine had a new moderator fitted to his Remington 700 bolt action rifle. It looked great, even from a distance and I’d never seen one before; I later found out it was one of the new Wildcat Evolution units from UK Custom Shop. Each time my mate fired, I was really impressed by how quiet his rifle was and even removed my hearing protection for a few of his shots, to really get a sense of how reduced the bang was. I was even more impressed when I noticed my companion was shooting his .308 calibre 700, not his .223! This fact made me even more impressed by his new acquisition. If a moderator could make a .308 sound like a .223, well, I had to have one.
When my Evolution arrived, I was even more impressed than I had been before; the overall design and construction is extremely clever and each component is perfect, with an excellent fit and finish to all of the components. The alloy moderator un-screws in the middle, with the front section housing the removable, one-piece diffuser, with its stainless insert to take the brunt of the hot gases on discharge. The rear portion extends back around the rifle’s barrel and has a twin walled construction that the removable, internally threaded ‘bridge’ diverts gas back into. A rear bush keeps the moderator central on the barrel, so there are two points of contact, ensuring the can’ stability even if it suffers a hefty blow whilst out in the field. The muzzle’s threaded portion is also protected from being bent out of line by a knock. The rear bush is also removable and can be bored to suit the barrel it is to be fitted to by the makers, at no additional cost when ordering.
I guess the dimples in the front tube serve no real purpose but they do make the exterior look rather smart, and contrast nicely with the textured rear portion. I’ve shown the Evolution to a lot of people since I’ve had it and every single person has been as impressed as I am.
An added bonus of the moderator’s modular construction is the fact you can buy an additional diffuser in a different calibre and use the Evolution on another Rifle. You may need to change the threaded ‘bridge’ if the rifle’s screw cutting is different and an additional rear bush may be required; even factoring in these additional parts, it’s still cheaper than buying a whole new unit and the parts are quick and easy to change over. The parts will also take up less space in your gun cabinet than an extra silencer.
I’ve only used the Evolution a couple of times since it arrived a few weeks ago but it’s certainly impressed me when out shooting foxes and I have no hesitation recommending them to anyone after a quality moderator. An added bonus is that it only costs £199 and that’s got to be a bargain!
Graham Allen, Kent.
I have experienced a huge number of Moderators over the 30+ years I have been shooting and the Evolution is one of the best I have used. They are very well designed, built to a very high standard and strip down for easy cleaning and maintenance. The 'over barrel' design doesn't add too much to the overall length of the gun, which makes the unit both more pleasing to the eye as well as practical. In fact the whole of the Wildcat Moderator range is top quality. I'm a convert.
Peter Crossing (Lifelong shooter and RFD)
Hi everyone at shopatukcs just wanted to say thank you for an absolutely stunning piece of design and engineering in the Wildcat Evolution sound moderator. Up until recently I had been using the Hardy sound mod on my .223/.243, but with some of the land I shoot on being in close proximity to farmhouses/estate properties I had to re-evaluate my sound footprint. After speaking to Ali, I managed to source an Evolution from my local RFD and what can I say....it was like going from popping a party balloon to popping bubble wrap. The Evo performed so well that a friend who was out with us one evening remarked that he didn't realise that Tikka made a 17HMR rifle...the only snag...I was actually using my .243. The Evo is just that quiet, and not only that, it is extremely light weight. The modular build of the Evo, also means that with a couple of twists you can have it broken down into its component parts to be easily cleaned with soap and water...then just a quick spray of gun oil it's as good as new. This sound mod is such good value for money and also a very good looking piece of equipment....so good that I applied for a variation and now have another Evo with the correct baffle stack for my .223. In a nutshell, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR...if you want to keep the surrounding property owners happy and keep your hearing GET an Evo (or two) you will not regret it and the after care and advice from Ali at Shopatukcs has been second to none. Thanks again for a remarkable product and PLEASE keep up the good work".
As the major if not only UK designer and manufacturer of moderators UK Custom Shop has been around for a long time and in my capacity of Editor of Shooting Sports and the Technical Editor of Gun Mart magazine I have tested all their products.
The latest Evolution (EVO) moderator is probably their best yet. It offers something between their Predator 8 and 12 and uses 10-baffles in a more compact and light layout. It weighs 446 grams and is 9.75” long and 1.75” in diameter. It’s a more balanced design with a 45-55% baffle to expansion chamber ratio, which I reckon makes it more efficient. It’s fully strippable and the spider (muzzle thread section) is easily replaced with Wildcat offering 1/2UNF: 14x1: 5/8UNF and 18x1 as standard fittings, with others custom made to order. The build is 99% hard-anodised, hi-strength alloy with a stainless steel primary baffle. The exterior of the expansion chamber is crackle-finished with the baffle unit dimple-drilled for grip.
Calibres are covered by five basic bore sizes - .17, .22, .243, .270 and .30. Wildcat told me they have tested up to 270 Winchester Short Magnum with no problems. I tested a 243 example on a Browning X-Bolt GRS and put about 50-rounds through it in the course of the day and it performed well on all fronts; weight, handling and sound suppression. Plus with a price of sub-£200 it offers exceptional value for money combined with good efficiency!
Pete Moore (Editor) Shooting Sports magazine
I recently had my Steyr SSG PII .243 cut down and a target crown done at "UK Custom Shop LTD". First of all I cannot explain how extremely helpful and professional these ladies and gents were. I waited in store whilst this was done and inspected by myself before I departed. I have in my time of 10 years as a weapons instructor in the Military and twice that amount shooting in the field, tried numerous amounts of sound moderators. I decided at the same time after the successful Wildcat "Predator" moderator to try the brand new "EVOLUTION".
After a cup of coffee and plenty of discussion, tips and experiences passed between myself and Josh Banner (top gent as well as Shop Manager) I left the shop in Droitwitch,Worcestershire a very happy man. With my .243 cut down and fitted with the new mod. I couldn’t wait to get out and field test this awesome bit of kit.
I took out my hunting wingman, who has also been in the industry for several years. We both couldn't believe how light but also well balanced, this moderator was. I checked zero and straight away the reduction of sound and recoil was phenomenal! My friend was utterly shocked at the difference. Darkness wouldn't fall quick enough until this could be tested on the ultimate quarry. The quick judgment of confirmation of target, distance, wind, backstop had to be made as well as building up a shooting position before he got wind of something and decided to disappear through a hedge with just a flash of the brush as he disappears into the night to wreak havoc......yes the Fox.
With the first coating of snow in 2013 we headed out - confident with the kit we had to work with. A large dog fox appeared at 186 yds (paced) without thinking about it I rested up against a large old oak tree and pulled up the .243 with ease. I squeezed the trigger and down he fell. It was unthinkable how quite it was, even when shooting up against woodland. It felt like I had just pulled the trigger on a 17HMR due to lack of recoil and noise. Chuffed to bits we paced out and collected our targeted quarry. On route back to our original position another set of eyes appeared glaring straight at us, a matter of 80 yards away. This time I was not quite quick enough to pull the rifle up before he headed to the safety of the woodland. He still sat there looking through the brash, not bothered, but more likely he hadn't even noticed in the slightest that a shot had been fired a matter of minutes ago in his vicinity, due to the performance of the "EVOLUTION".
Due to the overall experience and extreme effectiveness of the "WILDCAT EVOLUTION", I can safely say this is certainly one bit of kit you need in your gun cabinet. The "EVOLUTION" doesn't just reduce sound and recoil by a dramatic amount, but also is superbly balanced and seducing to the eye!!! I would recommend it to anyone that is seriously into shooting.
Jonathan Good, Shropshire