Muzzle Devices come in all shapes and sizes. If you are looking to enhance performance on your weapon platform a muzzle device should be the first area to spend some hard earned dollars.
The AR15 Platform specifically is an over-gassed system. This means the AR15 direct impingement gas system runs at a higher operating pressure then is required to cycle the action. This is true even on rifle systems greater then 16 inches in barrel length and becomes even more prominent in shorter barrel systems.
You are essentially shooting a 5.56mm or .223 caliber round that is designed for 16 Inch and 18 Inch platforms. When you shorten a barrel you get more pressure and powder that hasn't burnt exiting from the barrel of the weapon platform at a high pressure output. (Apparent on the 7.5inch AR15 Barrel seen left.) This ultimately results in increased felt recoil, mechanical recoil, muzzle rise, muzzle sway and usually larger flash.
So why does this matter? Well you essentially have free energy at your disposal. Even on a 16 Inch AR15 Rifle platform there is a significant amount of muzzle sway, muzzle rise, felt recoil, and moderate flash. If that energy is redirected the operator can greatly increase performance not just at longer ranges but also significant accuracy gains can be achieved at short range and with rapid fire. The same concept applies to the bull in a china cabinet AK47 7.62x39mm round. Performance increase is more then just marginal simply by changing out your muzzle device.
WHAT TYPES OF BRAKES ARE THERE?
More then you can usually count. There are a large number of manufacturers for muzzle devices, thankfully they do all fall into a few basic categories.
1. Flash Hider
A device used commonly on milspec AR15/M16 platforms to disperse muzzle flash in a manner to reduce the operators signature.
2. Muzzle Brake
A device used to direct gasses to limit the muzzle rise of a weapon system. Original designs were utilized on tanks and artillery pieces.
A device used to reduce felt recoil and mechanical recoil of a weapon system.
A device like the HADES Hybrid by design acts as a Compensator, Muzzle Brake and Flash Hider in a single device.
5. Lawn Ornament
Devices that my not improve or may worsen performance but look "cool".
A device that increases muzzle control while suppressing the sound signature of a weapon system.
A device that is specifically designed to decrease the sound signature of a weapon platform.
From a performance perspective we will be focusing on devices that maximize efficiency of weapon control. COMPENSATORS are a common device that usually are found to provide the best performance but at a cost. While very effective at eliminating felt recoil and reducing mechanical recoil they tend to be much louder, have a large flash signature and develop muzzle sway which can hinder performance of sustained fire. MUZZLE BRAKES come in various shapes and sizes and are regularly used on weapon platforms to reduce muzzle rise which helps when dealing with larger calibers and long distance shooting. Muzzle Brakes usually are not obnoxious like compensators are. They tend to have less flash signature then a compensator but are limited in control for sustained or rapid fire rates. HYBRID DEVICES such as the HADES Hybrid by PAMAX Tactical are usually found to be the most efficient and effective. This is because they are usually specifically tuned to certain weapon platforms, barrel lengths, calibers and designed around purpose over aesthetics.
A HYBRID Device like HADES Hybrid was designed for Law Enforcement on 16" or longer rifle platforms. It's purpose was how to increase accuracy under sustained fire without muzzle sway. It amazingly in testing far surpassed the companies expectations. The patented design maximizes driving down force from the gas output to eliminate felt recoil, mechanical recoil, muzzle sway, muzzle rise and reduce flash signature. Surprisingly the back pressure is very manageable and the bark is softer then most compensators on the market. This device is now offered for AK47/AR10/AR9 platforms as well as other larger bore calibers however it was specifically designed to accommodate the specifications of a 5.56/.223 cartridge. We would recommend looking at HADES and other HYBRIDS on the market. They are usually very reasonable in price as the HADES runs for $89.95 per unit. You can find more at www.pmtactical.com and see some additional testing in a video below.
Bottomline is there are numerous options on the market for muzzle devices. Major brand such as Strike Industries, BCM, JP, Lantac, and many more can be found in major stores like Optics Planet, Sportsmansguide, MidwayUSA, Cheaperthandirt, and Brownells. Just keep in mind price point and compare real data testing versus paid reviews. There are alot of major companies out there that focus more on a gimmick marketing slogan attached to a sub-par muzzle device then actually focusing on purpose driven product design. Please subscribe to our website and app to get more updates and posts related to new, innovative designs that our small USA company strives to provide.