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Muzzle Breaks

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  • Muzzle Breaks

    What's your opinoin on muzzle breaks? I have a new 300WSM in Kimber, it weighs about six pounds and kicks pretty hard. I've heard the cons about muzzle blast. Wondering if anyone had any accuracy issues or loss in velocity.

  • #2
    love my brake

    I shoot a .300 winchester magnum.Its a FN mauser with 22 inch barrel,fiberglass stock ,with a 3x9 burris fullsize scope.I had it a short while ,then i had a KDF brake installed on it.Its the best thing i could have done to it.Im only 5'6,so the magnum can be hearsh,but with this brake I can shoot 20 -30 rounds thru it and never really feel a thing.I no longer flinch which is nice..LOL.I shoot full power reloads and factory loads,,no problems.The muzzle blast can be harsh,but with your ear plugs in its void.When your hunting,the blast can leave your ears with a ring,but what gun doesnt do that.To me its worth every penny I paid for it,I would definetly recommend one if your being bothered with the kick of your gun.


    • #3

      How about good gunsmiths in the greater Anchorage area? Each time I get a recomendation and go to check them out, there's something that just doesn't sit right with me. I guess I'm just picky about who I let work on my guns.


      • #4

        I have a Sako 300 Win Mag and had Wild West Guns put on one of their muzzlebrakes and I can shoot that gun all day long with no flinch. It is VERY LOUD and you will get everyones attention at the range. In the field you don't care. It was money well spent for me. Jim West and their gunsmith are Great, there is 1 guy there dark hair, glasses, sounds like he is from the northeast who leaves something to be desired in the customer service area, but all the other people I have dealt with there are great. I will always go there first to buy a gun, Jim West has treated me very well in the past.


        • #5
          I've had one on my 300 Ultra for several years. I feel it puts the recoil around 243 level. Recoil is simply insignificant regardless the number of shots. However, the more time that goes by I find myself more reluctant to choose that gun because I don't want my ears damaged. I carry ear plugs but more than 50% of the time I don't put them in while shooting in the field.

          Usually I hunt alone but if I am with someone I warn them several times every day about covering their ears if I need to shoot. You can also be quite surprised by the dirt in the eyes and teeth when shooting prone and the noise is tremendous if shooting under a dense canopy or a tree filled with snow. It just seems to capture the sound.

          Regarding accuracy, a muzzle brake should improve it. It helps with initial bullet stabilization. I have tested mine under a few different conditions and I consistently get better groups with the brake, maybe a difference between 1.0" vs. .40".

          This is my go to gun for long range (400+) with high wind, but that is all I want it for anymore. Right now I am trying to decide on the Ultra or my 257 Wby for Kodiak goat this fall. If I take the brake off then the 257 is more accurate, if I leave the brake on then I risk damage, both have adequate power at range but the 257 drifts much more than the 300 in wind.

          If it was my son asking for this advice, I'd say don't go for the brake. I think you can overcome the recoil of a 300WSM with the right techniques.


          • #6
            For a hunter in the field shooting without ear protection:

            The muzzle blast from a muzzle brake is immediately deafening.

            A muzzle brake equipped magnum rifle (like a .300 or .338 Magnum) produces a sound pressure level (SPL) in the 130-dB range.

            Any SPL in excess of 100 dB, is a potentially damaging level.

            Nearly complete temporary deafness is experienced by a shooter and anyone within 10ft of the blast.

            This loss of hearing usually lasts from about a minute, up to several minutes after firing a powerful magnum rifle equipped with a muzzle brake.

            Hours later after only a single blast will all of the shooter's hearing return, but a certain amount is permanently lost and the losses are cumulative.

            On the lighter side, my annual Moose hunting party:

            There's this guy that show's up with some of my buddies that has an R-700 338 REM Ultra MAG w/ Muzzle Break. The rest of us call it a Texas PU$$Y Break

            Not even HIS buddies that invite him will team up with him because that rifle puts such a ring in your ears for days!!!

            I personally wish to retain my hearing while in the bush, but for some people the "kick" is just so a monster under the bed. So…lifetime hearing is traded out for a gentle touch…

            The good news is Knitting needles have no recoil and we all need sweaters in the AK winter, so those who "fear the kick" can take up knitting... PROBLEM SOLVED.
            God, Guns and Guts is what made America Great


            • #7

              I am with you on this one, with the improvements in recoil pads, mercury recoil reducers etc their is no need to blow yours and your buddies ear drums out.



              • #8
                I have a 300 WSM with the savage muzzle brake you can turn on and off. Great at the range to lessen the recoil. Great in the field, with the brake turned off. You don't notice kick when shooting at critters.
                I also have 2 guns with adjustable muzzle brakes, like a browning boss. They do just what the boss is supposed to do. You can dial in the accuracy you want.
                I'm not from Tx. but I'm a ***** when it comes to recoil. Not afraid to admit it either.
                I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
                I have less friends now!!


                • #9

                  I've got one on my .338 ultra. I guess I'm a *****. I'll take the lack of fear for my rifle (which also increases accuracy) and a little noise anyday. If your freinds are worried about it they can plug thier ears.
                  I had mine done at extreme rifleworks in palmer. my dad had his done at wild west guns. Dad's only has large holes on the sides which doesn't work quite as well, but does keep the muzzle flash and the dirt down compared to mine which has little holes all the way around.


                  • #10
                    little noise, not!

                    Great post whateveri8 you’re exactly right! People don’t get hearing loss is cumulative and the difference between 130d blast and a 140d blast is about double.
                    Put a mercury recoil reducer in or add weight but don’t lose your hearing because you don’t want a little more kick.

                    I was caribou hunting with some guys, and I was videoing I already had my bull. Two guys lined up in front of me going to take a shots at two beded down bulls. I had previously told these guys one in particular that hearing protection was needed when ever firing a rifle and especially with a gun with a muzzle break. Well the one guy that I was telling me I was a idiot didn’t have not protection on and a 30-378 Weatherby mag. with a break next to him. Long story short it was a terrible display of shooting ability and 4 rounds from the 30-378 was shot right in that guys ears. I was just laughing back about 10 ft behind him with my ear plugs in. For the next week was saying his ears hurt and he still had ringing sound in them. I didn’t say a thing I just smiled.

                    He probably has permanent hearing damage!


                    • #11
                      Ditto on the don't do...

                      I had muzzle breaks on both of my kid's .30-06's (BOSS system). It helped them shoot the "bigger calibers" better at the range. However, the muzzle blast is way loud...too loud for the field without hearing protection. Now that they are grown, I'm in the process of rebarreling so their hearing will be protected into the future. If you really feel like a muzzle break is necessary, you can have one made that screws on/off. I had one for my .375H&H, and it was handy...made by Stan Jackson here in Anchorage. Screw it on for the range, take it off for the field...I had a ring that would screw over the threads when in the field...didn't look goofy...and didn't affect accuracy. However, got to admit that when I rebarreled that rifle (just this year), I opted not to have it tapped for the muzzle break. I just don't care for them...even at the range... they are offensive to other shooters (I'm a Range Safety Officer on weekends).


                      • #12
                        I consider breaks an abomination, absoultely effective but not worth the damage to your hearing, especially since you can learn to deel with signifigant recoil without resorting to a break.

                        If you aren't currently using a PAST mag recoil pad when at the range, get one, and you'll see a dramatic difference in felt recoil. It costs much less than a break, and works with every gun.

                        I've worked up to shooting my 458 Lott and 500 Jeffrey unbraked off the bench, and have learned several things about how to deal with recoil. They key is being set up so the gun won't hurt you, and having each shot re-inforce that.

                        First of all, limit your shooting sessions when dealing with hard kickers, or working your way up to them. Do alot of dry firing at home before your range session. If you feel uncomfortable, or detect a flinch, stop shooting the gun immediately. If you try and shoot through it, it'll be 100 times harder to master the gun. Bring a 22rf to the range and do the majority of your shooting with it, and alternate between the 22 and your centerfire.

                        If you're fatigued, stressed, have had too much cafeine, or haven't been shooting in awhile, your recoil tollerance will be dramatically reduced. If all you're up for that day is a 22, that's all you should shoot. If you're in a mellow good, you can shoot some serious rifles with no ill effects.

                        I've also found that shooting a big bore, ie 40 cal and over makes the small bores feel recoil-less.
                        Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

                        If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.


                        • #13
                          Muzzel Brake- Pistol

                          I have found muzzel breaks to be very effective. I have a 14" Lone Eagle in 30-06 with a removeable muzzel break. I have fired it with and with out the break. There is an huge difference between with and without. The break makes the pistol pleasent to shoot. Without the break the fireing experience is down right offensive. To over come the draw backs of the increased volume I use Peltors electonic hearing protection. It allows me to hear nornally up until the point of the inpulse from the gun being fired. I an able to hear clearly even the smallest sounds.
                          Hope this is help full.
                          Train today to succeed tomarrow

                          US Army Miltary Police

                          Watch your speed ( Chronographs work great! )


                          • #14
                            What is this mercury recoil reducer you talk about? I have heard people talk about it never seen or heard anyone with one. Where can you get one and whats the cost?


                            • #15
                              Check out Brownells, I'm not sure what the cost is, but I believe with a gunsmith intallation you're looking at at least $100. It is a metal tube that has mercury in it and I believe a baffle plate. What it essentially does is increase the impulse duration. Part of the recoil is used to move the mercury through the device, so the initial pulse is reduced, and then at the end of the recoil pulse the mercury moves with the gun, or so I understand. I haven't read any reviews to compare the mercury tubes with an equal weight slug of lead. Adding 1# to a rifle makes a very notable decrease in the recoil, but you also have to tote that pound everywhere with you, and an extra pound in the hands is also notable after a weeks hunt.
                              Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

                              If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.


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