On muzzle devices

Various Surefire muzzle devices.

We have a multitude of wonderful options in muzzle devices now for our rifles.  However I have been seeing some odd trends that disturb me.  First I run into many people running muzzle breaks on short barreled rifle (SBR) variants. These short 5.56 rifles only gain marginal recoil reduction, and the cost of a large increase of flash and blast, almost always annoyingly so.  Several of the owners of these short rifles tell me that their rifle is their home defense gun.  I do hope that they never need to fire those rifles indoors with out hearing protection.  Pronged flash hiders are also coming back into style.  These tend to be more effective then closed ended flash hiders, but many will ring like a bell when tapped or as the rifle is discharged.  Sometimes prongs can be bent, or they can bloom like a flower.  I recommend against pronged flash hiders on full length rifles, and on firearms that are going to be used in think brush.  However these pronged flash hiders are an excellent choice for the sub-16 inch .30 cal rifle and for SBRs as they mitigate flash and blast better then many of the enclosed flash hiders.  One last note, some flash hiders have sharp edges, points, and/or barbs for use as a impact weapon.  I highly recommend against these as standard flash hiders work well in that role, and the expensive specialized ones end up just cutting holes in your range bags and cases.

Ruger SR556

Got to shoot a Ruger SR556 last Saturday.  Recoil was smooth and pleasant, the narrow railed hand guard felt nice in the hand.  However when I field stripped it, I found metal shavings under the rear take down pin all the way up under the bolt catch.  Bolt carrier tilt was shaving metal from the buffer tube.  While shooting the Ruger rifle was nice, it looks like they have not worked out all the kinks yet.