I get a good number of customers who have some really pretty “Safe Queens” at home – beautiful guns that sit on their thrones in the gun safe, but are rarely used. Main reason: recoil. “Man, the recoil is pretty bad.” or “I would shoot it more if it did not kick so bad!” You know who you are … Well thank goodness the muzzle brake was invented!
A muzzle brake threads onto the end of your barrel and redirects propellant gas out of the barrel in varying directions when the gun is fired. The redirection of the propellant gas disperses energy and counteracts the backwards recoil of the gun.
Pros of a Muzzle Brake:
-The amount of felt recoil by the shooter is drastically reduced with the use of a muzzle brake – in some cases as much as 50%. Muzzle brakes can be especially important for guns for small statured individuals such as women and children.
-The muzzle brake allows a shooter to shoot a larger caliber of gun that may be required to take larger game while shooting the rifle at a comfortable recoil level.
All things in life have pros and cons. There are a few negative factors to consider when selecting, and using, a muzzle brake.
Cons of a Muzzle Brake:
-The main drawback is the noise. When the propellant is vented, it increases the volume of the bullet leaving the gun. If you are shooting a gun with a muzzle brake, you and everyone around you should be wearing hearing protection. However, we believe you should be wearing hearing protection at all times anyway when shooting guns.
-Muzzle Brakes can kick up dust around the end of the barrel at the shot. When the air is expelled through the holes in the muzzle brake, the elements around it are forcefully blown around. This is especially true for muzzle brakes that are non-indicated and have vent holes on the bottom of the muzzle. With an indicated muzzle brake, the holes are on the top and sides of the barrel. The holes are then aligned perfectly to the top of the barrel.
When selecting a brake, select one based on functionality, not cosmetics. At Horizon Firearms, we are big believers in the use of brakes. We manufacture and install muzzle brakes on many different large and small calibers, and can even thread barrels to accommodate a brake.