Are you currently looking for a way to reduce recoil as much as possible from your .450 Bushmaster rifle?
If so, you’ve arrived at the right place, because we’re going to go over the number one accessory you need in order to do so, and that’s a muzzle brake.
Best Budget Pick: Next Level Armament Ruger American NLX-11 .450 Bushmaster Brake
The Next Level Armament NLX-11 muzzle brake for a Ruger American bolt action rifle in .450 Bushmaster is not a mass produced product, which means that it is made with a higher level of attention to detail but at the cost of it being harder to find with less made overall. If you’re looking for a muzzle brake for your Ruger American in .450, this is one of the best choices.
Best Value Pick: Brownells .450 Bushmaster AR-15 Barrel and Muzzle Brake Combo
The Bushmaster .450 AR-15 Barrel and Muzzle Brake combo is an excellent value because you purchase both the barrel and muzzle brake together instead of spending more to get them each separately. If you are looking to build a .450 AR-15 from the ground up and know you will want a muzzle brake installed on it, you will save a lot of money by buying this combination. However, if you already have a barrel, then you may want to get just a muzzle brake on its own.
Best Overall Pick: Silencer ASR Muzzle Brake .450 Bushmaster
The Silencer ASR is our choice for a .450 Bushmaster muzzle brake due to its stainless steel construction, black oxide finish for excellent rust and corrosion resistance, and three port design that really helps to keep recoil to the absolute minimum. It’s also designed to be compatible with several .450 sound suppressors on the market as well and makes it easy to attach the suppressors using a one-handed operation.
Even though you can never completely get rid of recoil out of a .450 Bushmaster, you can still reduce it as much as possible by adding a muzzle brake. Also known as a recoil compensator, a muzzle brake is capable of reducing recoil by as much as 50%, depending on the ammunition that you are using as well as the specific type of muzzle brake as well.
In this guide, we’ll go over the history and the merits of the .450 Bushmaster round, what a muzzle brake is and its pros and cons, a comparison of muzzle brakes to other muzzle devices, the top qualities to look for in a muzzle brake, and then our choices for the top three best muzzle brakes that you can get on the market this year.
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Why Go With The .450 Bushmaster Round?
You may not yet even be convinced that the .450 Bushmaster is the right round to go with for your rifle. If that’s the case, then you’ll want to read on.
While the .450 Bushmaster was originally intended for the AR-15 platform, it’s also available in several other rifles as well, including the Ruger American bolt action rifle and the Ruger Gunsite Scout Model 77 rifle as well.
The .450 Bushmaster was originally designed to create a round that would help give an AR-15 firepower more comparable to a .45-70 Government. It was originally designed by LeMag firearms, but the term Bushmaster is added to the end of its name because LeMag designed the round while working with Bushmaster (which in turn was owned by Remington Arms before they currently went bankrupt, and as of 2020 Bushmaster is now owned by Franklin Armory).
The .450 Bushmaster was designed from the beginning to function in an AR-15 rather than an AR-10. As a result, it is fully compatible with a 5.56x45mm NATO caliber lower receiver, but you will need to get a new .450 Bushmaster upper and barrel and the associated components with that, including the muzzle brake.
LeMag Firearms also got the idea for the .450 Bushmaster from Jeff Cooper, the man who has arguably had more impact on modern tactics for firearms than any other person in history. Cooper argued that while the AR-15 was a superb platform, the 5.56 rounds were simply too light to be used as defense against dangerous game.
Cooper therefore envisioned a new chamber for the AR-15 that would deliver ballistics similar to the .45-70 Government. However, he also wanted to avoid creating a new cartridge so large that it would need to be used in the larger AR-10 platform. The AR-15 is much more lightweight and compact than the AR-15, which makes it a handier weapon for walking around in the woods with.
The .45-70 Government has traditionally been used as a defensive round against dangerous big game in North America. Hunting guides in Alaska and Canada, for instance, will often carry Marlin 1875 .45-70 Government rifles to stop grizzly bears and other large game that act aggressively. The .45-70 is hardly a long range precision round, but it hits exceptionally hard within short distances.
The .450 Bushmaster delivers ballistics similar to the .45-70 Government. However, the advantage is that by using it in a platform like the AR-15, you have semi-automatic capabilities and faster reloading than in a lever action rifle like the Marlin 1895.
This was accomplished by taking a .45 Professional Cartridge and shortening it in order to accept a flex tipped bullet. The result was the .450 Bushmaster as we know it today.
A .450 Bushmaster will offer flat trajectory out to around two hundred yards. It’s not a long range precision rounds, but as a mid range weapon, it’s highly effective. A standard 30 AR-15 5.56 magazine will hold 13 rounds of .45 Bushmaster, and a 20 round 5.56 magazine will hold 9 rounds while a 10 5.56 round magazine will hold 5. However, not all 5.56 AR-15 magazines are compatible with the .45 Bushmaster. Generally speaking, the metal GI metal magazines will work better than the polymer mags. We recommend to read our guide on .450 Bushmaster magazines.
Of course, the .450 Bushmaster is not only made for AR-15s, and there are many bolt action rifles that are made for the caliber as well.
The .450 Bushmaster is a very powerful round, and if you know anything about the comparable .45-70 Government, you know that it can deliver quite a lot of recoil. Fortunately, one of the best ways that you can easily mitigate that recoil will be to go with a .45-70 Government.
What is a Muzzle Brake, and Is It Truly Necessary For Your Rifle?
First and foremost, a muzzle brake is not a totally necessary feature for your rifle. In fact, most rifles don’t even have them.
Nonetheless, if you truly value reducing recoil as much as possible, then investing in a muzzle brake will be a very good idea. The .450 Bushmaster delivers considerably more recoil than the 5.56 out of an AR-15, so investing in a recoil can be a good idea, especially for making faster follow up shots. It can also deliver harsh recoil in other rifle platforms as well.
A muzzle brake is simply a recoil device that is added to the end of your rifle’s barrel. Its purpose is to redirect the propellant gases away from the barrel and your rifle. This helps to reduce recoil and muzzle rise at the same time, which will make it both more fun and easier to shoot your rifle.
Remember that one of the top uses for the .450 Bushmaster is as protection against dangerous big game out in the North American woods. Reducing muzzle flip as much as possible will really be something highly desirable for this purpose.
While it depends on the specific muzzle brake that you get and the ammunition that you are shooting, in general, you can expect your muzzle brake to reduce recoil from anywhere from twenty to fifty percent. A major factor in how much recoil will be reduced is how far the profile of the barrel is raised over our stock.
Muzzle brakes were originally designed for anti-tank weapons and artillery guns. As you can imagine, the recoil from these massive weapons can cause huge issues for the soldiers operating them in their vicinity, so the muzzle brakes were designed to help create less of a hazard for the soldiers surrounding them. This also enabled the soldiers operating the guns to increase their rate of fire.
It wasn’t long before the concept of the muzzle brake was applied to small arms. Most muzzle brakes can be threaded onto the end of the .450 Bushmaster barrel, but others are a little bit more complicated and will need to be pinned, clamped, or otherwise twisted on.
There are really only two negative downsides to using muzzle brakes on your rifle. The first is that they will add weight and length to the end. While you can mitigate this by going with a smaller and lighter muzzle brake, it’s still going to add weight and length no matter what.
In addition, a muzzle brake will also add a lot of noise to your rifle as well, and you’ll really need to invest in good ear protection as well. Some other people shooting at a range alongside you may not appreciate the louder noise as well, so take this into consideration.
In general, you’ll need to follow this process to install a muzzle brake onto the end of your rifle:
- Confirm that your rifle is empty
- Place the upper receiver or the entire rifle into a vise
- Install the crush washer if it is required for you to do so
- Threaded on the brake clockwise, until it is as tight as possible (apply a torque of fifteen to twenty pounds, but start low and then work your way up)
- Make sure that the brake is properly aligned with any visual indicators
Also take note that if your rifle’s barrel is less than 16 inches, the muzzle brake will need to be permanently fixed in order to be legal under United States Federal law.
Muzzle Brakes vs. Other Kinds of Muzzle Devices
People often confuse muzzle brakes with other kinds of muzzle devices, and this confusion becomes even more pronounced in the event that you are using a hybrid muzzle device.
As previously discussed, a muzzle brake is designed to redirect gas and pressure away from the barrel and the rifle in order to make it much easier to control. The main purpose behind a muzzle brake is to reduce recoil and make it easier for you to fire faster follow up shots.
Some people confuse a muzzle brake with a compensator. The main difference is that a compensator redirects the gases from your rifle upwards, which stops your rifle from climbing upward when you are firing faster shots.
In other words, a compensator prevents higher muzzle rise, while a muzzle brake prevents harder recoil being delivered into your shoulder. Contrary to what many people believe, a compensator does little to nothing to reduce physical recoil.
A flash suppressor is designed primarily to reduce flash, which can also be a much nicer feature to have when you are trying to conceal your position while firing in darker conditions. Flash suppressors further make it very easy to shoot more accurately in darker environments, as the bright flash from firing a rifle can often be disorienting in dark conditions.
One kind of muzzle device that exists as well is a muzzle brake and flash suppressor hybrid, which is where the device both reduces recoil and reduces muzzle flash at the same time. Such a device is a highly valuable addition to have for tactical missions, although at the expense of much louder noise.
Buyer’s Guide For The Best .450 Bushmaster Muzzle Brakes
These are the most important factors to consider when looking for a new muzzle brake for your .450 caliber rifle:
Ease of Attachment
First and foremost, your muzzle brake should be very easy to attach to the end of your rifle. It should ideally not require any specialized tools in order to do so, and it most certainly should not require the aid or services of a professional gunsmith. The best kind of muzzle brakes can simply be threaded on and off.
Compact Size and Lightweight
A muzzle brake is going to add weight and length to the end of your barrel no matter what. After all, it’s an additional component to add. But the smaller and lighter you go for your muzzle brake, the more that this issue will be mitigated. The last thing you want is a muzzle brake so large it’s going to make your rifle more of a pain to carry around.
Adept At Suppressing Flash
The whole point at getting a muzzle brake is to reduce recoil but suppressing muzzle flash is another feature that you can look for in one as well. Some muzzle brakes will also come with a flash suppressor installed on them, and
Good Durability and Corrosion Resistance
The best muzzle brakes will be built out of a very durable and corrosion resistant finish. Examples includes stainless steel or parkerizing. Most muzzle brakes these days are built out of stainless steel, and sometimes with an additional finishing or coating over them as well, such as nitride.
The Best .450 Bushmaster Muzzle Brakes For 2020
Now that we’ve covered why you need to consider adding a muzzle brake to your .450 Bushmaster, here are our top three choices for a .450 Bushmaster muzzle brake for 2020:
Silencer ASR Muzzle Brake .450 Bushmaster
The Silencer ASR Muzzle Brake for the .450 Bushmaster will not disappoint you. It’s built out of a highly durable stainless steel, and also comes with a black oxide finish for excellent rust and corrosion resistance. This represents a major step up in quality from budge solutions.
It also offers three very large ports that help to keep recoil down to an absolute minimum and makes faster follow up shots much easier. Another standout is how it’s easy to mount a sound suppressor or silencer to the end, and with only a one hand operation. An example of a suppressor that works with the ASR is the Hybrid 46.
Finally, the ASR has 3/4” -24 threading specs. Overall, this is a solid choice for a muzzle brake for a .450 Bushmaster and is further a good option if you plan on using it in conjunction with a sound suppressor.
The Silencer ACR .450 Bushmaster muzzle brake offers high quality stainless steel construction with a black oxide finish for excellent rust resistant. The three large port design helps to reduce recoil as much as possible.
- Excellent stainless steel construction
- Has a black oxide finish for excellent rust resistance
- Enables one handed attachment for a suppressor
- Has three large ports to promote excellent recoil reduction
- Higher priced for a muzzle brake
Next Level Armament Ruger American NLX-11 .450 Bushmaster Brake
The Next Level Armament NLX-11 .450 Bushmaster muzzle brake is designed to function on the Ruger American rifle, which is one of the most common and popular affordable bolt action rifles on the market today. Finding a muzzle brake for a Ruger American in .450 Bushmaster isn’t exactly easy, but fortunately, this one will work well.
This muzzle brake comes with 11/17×24 threading. It’s built out of stainless steel, which not only provides the strength needed to withstand immense pressure, but also adds much resistance against moisture and water. And since it only weighs three ounces in total, it will add hardly any weight at all to the end your barrel.
Take note that this is not a mass produced product. This means that while you will receive a product that has a more careful attention to quality than items that are mass produced, it also means that less of these are made. Therefore, you should pick up one up when you can find it.
Overall, the Next Level Armament is one of the best choices for a .450 Bushmaster muzzle brake for the Ruger American. Since it’s not mass produced, it is built with a higher level of attention to detail, but at the expense of far less of them being made.
- American made
- Built out of high quality stainless steel
- Will not fit an AR
Brownells .450 Bushmaster AR-15 Barrel and Muzzle Brake Combo
The Bushmaster .450 Bushmaster is a barrel and muzzle brake combo for an AR-15. If you are building your .450 Bushmaster AR from the ground up and know that you will want a muzzle brake on it, buy purchasing this combination you can save money instead of purchasing both components separately.
This AR-15 features a button rifled design that is machined out of high quality 4150 mil-spec steel, with a 1:14 twist rate. It also has an 11/16×24 muzzle thread pitch, with added nitride coating for excellent rust and corrosion resistance. It’s also been threaded for suppressor use.
Finally, Brownells conducted magnetic particle inspecting on this barrel as well to ensure that it could hold up well after many thousands of rounds. It’s built in the USA, and the muzzle brake itself is a 3-port design to help mitigate recoil.
If you are looking to build an AR-15 in .450 Bushmaster from the ground up and know that you want to have a muzzle brake installed on it, then it makes a lot of sense to go with this option because you will pay less for the barrel and muzzle brake together instead of purchasing them each separately.
- Comes with an entire barrel if you don’t already have one
- Magnetic particle inspected for high quality
- 100% American made
- Built to mil-spec standards
- You get the entire barrel and not just the muzzle brake, so not the most convenient if you already have a barrel
And that concludes our list of the top three best muzzle brakes for your .450 Bushmaster rifle. Any one of the three muzzle brakes that we have covered here today represents a solid option, or alternatively, you can follow the buyer’s guide that we listed out before in order to choose a solid muzzle brake as well.
Remember, while a muzzle brake may not be totally necessary for your .450 Bushmaster rifle, it will still be a very handy accessory to have if you want to reduce the recoil out of your rifle as much as possible.