AR15 Muzzle Brake Basics

Muzzle brakes, also known as compensators or comps for short, collect the exploding gases and particles created when a cartridge is fired to change the acceleration of the rifle. A baffle system inside the muzzle brake acts as an expansion chamber and holes drilled into the expansion chamber at various angles bleed off the excessive pressure created before, during, and after a projectile exits the barrel.

The purpose of the AR15 muzzle brake is two-fold: recoil reduction and muzzle movement control. The exact design of the compensator varies depending on the performance required of the unit. To reduce recoil only, for instance, the muzzle brake will have holes drilled equal distances from one another around the entire brake.

If the AR-15 muzzle brake is also designed to control or eliminate muzzle movement, holes are drilled in the top and the sides of the expansion chamber, but not on the bottom. Also, the holes in this type of brake must be offset to one side or the other to account for the spin of the projectile induced by the barrel rifling pattern.

It’s also important to point out the difference between a muzzle brake and an AR-15 muzzle flash suppressor as this two terms are often used interchangeably even though they have completely different purposes. A muzzle brake is designed to reduce recoil and muzzle jump. In order to do this, hot gases are ejected from the sides of the AR15 linear comp brake creating a loud noise and a fireball. A flash suppressor, on the other hand, reduce the flash generated by unburned gunpowder and hot gases make contact with oxygen. Flash suppressor have practically no effect on recoil but significantly reduce the report of the rifle when fired.

Choosing the correct muzzle brake for your AR depends on many factors including ammo type, body type, and shooting stance. Reading AR-15 muzzle brake reviews can help you choose a solid compensator but only through trial and error will you find the perfect brake for your particular setup and shooting style.

A properly dialed in muzzle brake is a great asset in shooting competitions as it enhances your shooting speed while eliminating muzzle jump entirely so you can maintain your sight picture through the recoil. This is especially important in speed shooting events.

Joe Bob Outfitters offers a full line of muzzle brakes, AR15 linear compensators, and flash suppressors for your AR and shipping is always free on orders of $90 or more. If you have questions about which AR muzzle brake is right for you, Contact Us or call 785-639-7121 today.