Center Shot Rifles Mini Magnum Muscle Brake Review
By Michael Newton
A couple of weeks ago Jim See of Center Shot Rifles contacted me and said that he had designed a new muzzle brake that was a smaller Muscle Brake called the Mini Magnum Muscle Brake intended for use on factory contour magnum rifles such as the Winchester magnums, up into the ultra mags, and that he would like me to test one for him. Being a huge fan of Jim’s brakes I was ecstatic. Every muzzle brake I own was made by him and I expected this one would be on par with the rest.
When I received the brake, I was pleased with its appearance and size. It looked like a scaled down version of the original 3 port Muscle Brake that I have on my 338LM. Dimensionally, the Mini Magnum Muscle Brake is 1" wide and .850" tall slab to slab. This is the same as the standard Mini Muscle Brake, but the Mini Magnum Muscle Brake’s ports were opened up considerably to allow more gas volume to escape the ports, thus increasing its effectiveness with larger chambers. The Mini Magnum Muscle Brake has a thread tennon of 9/16 x 24 threads per inch. This allows it to fit most standard factory barrel contours. Jim's website states it will fit all barrels with a barrel dia. at the muzzle of .620" to .850". The port opening closest to the shooter is 90 degrees, or perpendicular to the barrel. The next two ports angle back at 15 degrees from perpendicular. This is similar to all the other Muscle Brake models.
The rifle I chose to put this brake on is a Savage 116 Weather Warrior in 300 win. Not a bad recoiling rifle considering the hot loads that it shoots, but not something you put a beginner on either. Once the brake was installed it was time to remount the scope and go play. The first couple of times I had a buddy of mine shoot so that I could get a feel for the concussion that was being produced. For the first shot I was straight behind him and felt no back blast at all. For the second shot I was behind and to his left at a 45 degree angle about 5 feet away and the back blast was present but very little. Anyone who has ever been around a traditional radial brake knows that it can be downright miserable for everyone around but the shooter, but with this brake that was not the case at all.
Next it was my turn to shoot. I got settled behind the rifle and squeezed off the first shot. I didn’t notice the recoil at all and had to pay closer attention to it on the second shot. I do not know of a way to measure actual force of recoil, so I just had to go by feel. To me it feels similar to my 22-250 but probably a little less because it was easier to spot my shots. It is very very easy to shoot and you barely lose sight picture. And by barely I mean it comes up just enough to lose it but it came right back on the target and I was able to spot my hits on the gong at 400 yards. This is a very light rifle. If you used something with a little more weight to it, I don’t think you would ever lose sight picture. We tested it in several different shooting positions and it’s just a super comfortable rifle to shoot at any angle now.
The overall appearance of the brake on the rifle is also very good. I was a little worried it might look big on that light sporter barrel, but after installation I think it looks very proportionate. I would not hesitate to do it all over again. It maintains the sleek look of the rifle but adds a little character. I look forward to finding something else that needs a brake on it because I will be adding another one of these Mini Magnum Muscle Brakes to the collection. This brake is a great addition to Jim’s line up and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a brake.
I would like to thank Jim for the opportunity to be a part of the testing for this new product and for always delivering a quality product that he stands behind.