What is a Muzzle Brake?

Muzzle brake is a device that is fitted to the muzzle of a firearm to redirect propellant gasses to counter recoil and unwanted rising of the barrel during firing. When shooting a rifle, for example, the muzzle brake can be very effective in reducing the amount of felt recoil. Additionally, muzzle brakes can be used to reduce the muzzle rise that often occurs when firing a handgun.

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Many muzzle brakes on the market today are made from high-quality materials such as stainless steel or titanium. Some even feature a self-cleaning design that helps to prevent carbon buildup on the device. Muzzle brakes are an essential piece of equipment for many shooters and can be found on both rifles and handguns.

If you are looking for a way to improve your shooting experience, then a muzzle brake may be the perfect solution for you. Browse our reviews of muzzle brakes below and find the perfect one for your needs.

Muzzle Brake Benefits

There are many benefits to installing a muzzle brake on your firearm. Perhaps the most obvious benefit is the reduction in felt recoil. This can be a huge help when trying to stay on target for follow-up shots, or when shooting larger caliber weapons. Muzzle brakes can also help reduce muzzle rise, which can again help you stay on target and improve your accuracy.

Another big benefit of muzzle brakes is that they can help reduce the report of your firearm. This is especially important for hunters who need to worry about spooking the game, or for shooters who are using suppressors. By redirecting some of the gases away from the shooter, muzzle brakes can make your firearm much more pleasant to shoot.

Types of Muzzle Brakes

There are two main types of muzzle brakes: linear compensators and porting.

  • Linear compensators work by redirecting the gases exiting the muzzle in a linear fashion. This helps to counter the muzzle rise and can slightly reduce felt recoil.
  • Porting, on the other hand, uses small holes drilled into the top and sides of the muzzle brake to bleed off some of the gases. This also helps to reduce muzzle rise and felt recoil.

Which type of muzzle brake is right for you will depend on your individual needs and preferences. If you’re looking for maximum recoil reduction, then a linear compensator is probably your best bet. However, if you’re worried about the added noise of a linear compensator, then a ported muzzle brake might be a better option.

Did you know?

A muzzle brake or recoil compensator is a device connected to, or a feature integral to the construction of, the muzzle of a firearm that redirects propellant gases to counter recoil and unwanted muzzle rise. They have been used in firearms for as long as they have been around.

Early muzzle brakes were simply large boreholes drilled into the barrel following the rifling. This device was effective at reducing both recoil and muzzle rise but had a major disadvantage in that it also vented gas and noise to the side, making it unpopular with soldiers.

  • The first real attempt at an effective muzzle brake was developed by Eliphalet Remington in 1857 for his newly designed rifle, which would go on to be known as the Remington Rolling Block. His design was a simple one, a set of vents drilled into the barrel just ahead of the breechblock. These vents allowed gases to escape to the sides, reducing both recoil and muzzle rise. The design was effective, but had the same disadvantage as the earlier large bore holes; it vented gas and noise to the side.
  • The next major development in muzzle brake technology came in World War I with the introduction of the Enfield Pattern 14 rifle. This rifle was equipped with a muzzle brake designed by Lieutenant Colonel Edward Cawthorne. His design used a series of baffles and ports to redirect gases upward and to the sides, effectively reducing both recoil and muzzle rise. The only downside to this design was that it vented gas and noise to the rear, making it unpopular with soldiers.
  • The next development step came in World War II with the introduction of the M1 Garand rifle. This rifle was equipped with a muzzle brake designed by Major General Julian S. Hatcher. His design used a series of baffles and ports to redirect gases upward and to the sides, effectively reducing both recoil and muzzle rise. The only downside to this design was that it vented gas and noise to the rear, making it unpopular with soldiers.
  • The last major development in muzzle brake technology came in the Vietnam War with the introduction of the M16 rifle. This rifle was equipped with a muzzle brake designed by Colonel Robert D. Hinks. His design used a series of baffles and ports to redirect gases upward and to the sides, effectively reducing both recoil and muzzle rise. The only downside to this design was that it vented gas and noise to the rear, making it unpopular with soldiers.

Today, muzzle brakes are an essential part of many firearms, including rifles, pistols, and shotguns. They are also used on some large caliber weapons such as mortars and howitzers. Muzzle brakes are available in a variety of designs, but all serve the same purpose; to reduce recoil and muzzle rise.

Muzzle Brake FAQ

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Muzzle Brake Buyer’s Guides

No matter which type of muzzle brake you choose, you’re sure to see an improvement in your shooting. So if you’re looking to take your shooting to the next level, be sure to check out some of the best muzzle brakes on the market!