AR-15 Compensators – Do They Really Reduce Recoil?

This is an experiment I’ve been wanting to do for a long time. So having a Monday off for MLK Day, I headed to the ranch with no kids to distract me.

I was curious about the effects of a compensator or muzzle brake if you could eliminate the human factor. So I strapped my rifle to a work bench stand and used the Hands Off Trigger Release to actuate the trigger. Capturing the results of each muzzle brake with the video camera, I was able to see the linear effectiveness of each brake.

My conclusion is fairly obvious… any compensator is better than nothing at all. However, every muzzle brake I tested but one (the Dragon’s Head from Surplus Ammo) performed the same as far as the X & Y movement of the rifle is concerned. This result was most unexpected. I was expecting to see much more of a difference between the muzzle brakes. I suspect with all the various models on the market and all linear movement being equal, there has to be a difference in how they perform on the Z axis. I have a few ideas how to test for this so I may give that a try.


AAC Breakout:…



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