Muzzle brakes are an awesome addition to any long-range rifle. While the brake won't change the gun's accuracy, it does make it a lot easier to shoot and it's very likely to help the shooter's accuracy! With much of the recoil out of the equation, a brake allows you to focus on your shot, and not be bracing for the recoil. And when the gun goes off, it doesn't jump hard, making it much easier to be consistent shot after shot.
Is there a down-side to a muzzle brake? Yes. Brakes work by allowing the explosion that's pushing that bullet to escape in many directions when it leaves the end of the barrel. This results in the force of the explosion not pushing all of its energy straight back into your shoulder. Along with the air/gas, etc., the sound also goes in many directions, instead of straight out the front. Muzzle brakes make the rifle louder, a LOT louder.
You should be wearing hearing protection every time you shoot a rifle with a muzzle brake - even in the field while hunting. There are many options in the hearing protection category - some cheap, some more expensive, but they all work well.
Many people feel that the trade-off is worth it, especially with larger calibers. What you gain from having the brake on your gun supersedes the couple of seconds it takes to put on your hearing protection.
As part of our dial-in service, we will install a muzzle brake at your request, and it'll feel like a completely different gun.
The popular clamp-on muzzle brake is very simple, doesn't requite barrel threading, and is extremely effective - eliminating over 60% of the rifle's recoil. Additionally, there are no ports out the bottom, which helps out big time by not blasting dirt and debris while shooting in the prone position. Because of their simplicity and outstanding performance, quite a few of the ALR rifle packages are equipped with these, as well as customers' rifles sent in for us to dial in. There's also a thread-on version of the same brake.
Threaded brakes are a great option, and are more cosmetically pleasing. Our Hell's Canyon and A7 rifle packages are equipped with a threaded brake, and also a cap that covers your threads if not using the brake.
Note: installing or removing a brake WILL change the rifle's point of impact (sometimes drastically), so you will need to re-zero in either situation.
Please give us a call with any other questions about the pros and cons of brakes.