Shooting any rifle without ear protection will cause hearing loss. So, the apparent increase in volume of a braked rifle is of little real consequence - we should never shoot a firearm without ear protection.
Another factor that is often overlooked in the brake debate is the human side of the equation and our inability to get punched in the face and not flinch.
We simply can't tolerate excessive recoil - it's a myth. If anyone thinks they can, over time, shoot these big boomers and get the crap kicked out of them, and still retain the ability to keep exact, constant shoulder pressure, trigger control and sight picture throughout the shot - they're deceiving themselves...
The felt recoil on my Wolf is less than that of my Remington 700 VLS in 6mm. I can shoot the thing for hours with nary a flinch...
Another factor is the behavior of the rifle during the shot. The effect of a brake is to calm the rifle. When shooting off a bipod, as many of us do, that is a huge factor not only in sight realignment, but also in repeatable accuracy.
So Finris, get yourself a relatively heavy rifle with a good brake and practice like a madman...
STL. Principal Consultant and Managing Partner - Association of Bifurcated Tangential Ballistic Apologists, LLP.
ONe last question I hope. I want to know if any of you use a surpressor? I know even with supper sonic rounds the pop out of the barrel gets disipated, and all you have left is the sonic crack of the bullet.This would help on hearing loss and reduce the recoil of the rifle.What are your ideas on that as being muzzle brake for one of these rifles?Thanks again for all the replys and good sugestions.
I too have a question on this brake subject. Maybe best suited for you gun smiths out there.
I know muzzle crowning is very important, 11 deg. or the step crown. When we use a brake what kind of crown is under the brake?
Another factor with the bigger boomers is concusion. After about 15-20 round through a well braked .338-416 Rigby Imp., I had a headache. Took a short nap and felt fine. If you have a normal or long neck and each shot feels like a grenade just went off, you might want to limit the number of rounds per session. A doctor said that the affect is the same as whiplash felt in an auto accident.
I have brakes on a lot of rifles and really appreciate how they help one to get back on target quickly.
308 Hawg, the concussive force you describe can lead to permanent and serious injury to the shooter. That is one reason the militaries are getting rid of the 50cal for sniper use. Feedback from Canadian snipers in Afghanistan showed that they were getting beat up badly while keeping the peace.
All large case magnums with a muzzle brake will deliver more dB to the shooter and more muzzle blast. That is how they work. The more effective the brake, the more "impact" on the shooter.
Personally, I have gone to very heavy rifles and long barrels. I like this sport but I love me better. Get some 31dB Leightning ear muffs and 33dB earplugs (both by Howard Leight). Using both will really improve your shooting. No kidding. Getting rid of that boom will allow you to shoot much better. We all flinch so some degree and noise/concussion just makes it worse. It all adds to our perception of recoil.
Finris, not sure where you are but without licenses, etc, using a suppressor will get you in big criminal trouble.
PennMonty, you do not need to worry about the crown on a muzzle brake. The gap around the bullet and brake is too large. Just cleaned up on a lathe is fine.
The crown condition will be just as critical, as it allows gas to escape evenly as the bullets leaves the rifling and the brake both. The correct degree on the crown I would agree is debatable, assuring it's a good crown job is essential IMHO.
I've seen people more effected by heavy kickers than I have from muzzle blast, although a condition where blast is diverted from the side and then back at the shooter, such as objects near by is an awefull experience to put up with, with a 50BMG it can easily feel like you got punched in the nose. The 90 degree diverting brakes I've used seem tolerable without any blast in the face, but I'm not bothered by much anyway so who knows. [img]images/icons/grin.gif[/img] A muzzle brake is more and more effective the lighter the rifle gets, I'm told by my smith.
Flinching is something I've managed to elliminate in my practice, but it did take alot of work. Holding perfectly still on the bull consistantly when it goes off is the part I work on mostly. If you can get a suppressor it's the way to go I think, just too many troubles and eyes on you if you do, I think that's why most don't elect to. My buddy has a full auto suppressed Glock 9mm and many more, the Glock is a riot tho.
Brent, you are right. What I meant was that a concentric crown on the muzzle brake is all that you need. The angle really doesn't matter. Taking a hand drill and hogging out the end of the muzzle brake probably will not lead to the best performance.
Everyone reacts differently to noise and recoil. what I know is that reducing both as much as possible will lead to more accurate and consistent shooting. When I said no to muzzle brakes, it was during the hunting situation (still hunting). The noise can really cause damage but taking the recoil of one or two shots is not going to hurt most.
Besides anyone hunting beside or near you will appreciate not losing their hearing too. Ask any guide in Africa - no brakes allowed and with those cannons, a brake would really help.
For range shooting, that is when I use the brakes.
It is ironic that society/governments hate suppressors. They also hate the sound of gun fire. If they let us use the suppressors and permit them like a handgun, we would all be happier.
as most know, getting the permit to own and use a handgun in Canada is pretty complicated. Lots of steps and a test, so why not just permit the suppressors in the same way. If there is concern about the use to hurt people, I don't think a piece of paper is going to stop anyone from using a registered firearm to shoot another. It would just be noisier.