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One of the most asked questions we get is, “how do I install my muzzle brake/can?” One of the number one complaints we get is, “my muzzle brake is defective it won’t time itself correctly.” We’ve come to realize that the problem isn’t the part itself, but not knowing the proper steps to properly clock and time your muzzle brake to your barrel. There’s a right way of installing your muzzle brake, and some awesome tips we’d like to share with you guys so you can successfully time your brake at home without having to take it to a gunsmith for such a simple install.

You will need:

-A sturdy workbench

-A vise attached to your workbench

-A clamshell block, some kind of AR15 upper receiver vise block or vise block for your particular rifle you’re working on

-A strap wrench or a long screw driver or similar thin steel rod

-A few strips of electrical tape (optional but recommended)

First thing you’ll be doing is securing your receiver to your vise block, and into the vise. You will then remove whatever is currently on your barrel. You will next place your included crush washer onto the barrel, concaved inner bowl side faces outward, flat outer bowl side faces the barrel shoulder. Do NOT use loctite on your threads, ever! You will thank me later when in the future you want to change your muzzle brake or simply need to remove it to change out parts on your AR15 or similar rifle. Next you will tighten your muzzle brake by hand until it stops. This is the step where most folks stop, and then email us to either ask us how to install their muzzle brake, or to tell us their muzzle brake is defective because it didn’t align itself properly. Thing is, muzzle brakes do not align themselves, they will need to be torqued into position. Most folks stop here because they are afraid they’ll break something. Fear not! So long as your receiver is secured properly, there is no reason to be afraid, torque away! Once hand tightened, you will take your strap wrench to align the small top ports to the 12 o clock position. Do not exceed more than a full turn. You will want to use the strap wrench to tighten the brake enough to get the top ports at 12 o clock where it needs to be. If that means only a few degrees turned to achieve the results, then that is all you give it. Do not exceed more than a full rotation however, as you will flatten the washer and break it or flatten it and it’ll be a real pain to remove in the future.

If you do not have a strap wrench (a $10 dollar investment at Harbor Freight Tools or Home Depot), this is the part where you use the long screw driver and electrical tape method. Take your screw driver or similar long steel rod, wrap a few strips of electrical tape in the middle of the rod. Insert the screw driver through the SIDE MIDDLE baffle on the brake. You will now use this as leverage to help tighten the brake into position. Again, trying to get the top ports to 12 o clock, without going more than a full rotation. The reason for the electrical tape is so you don’t mar the finish on the muzzle brake or ding it.

If you purchased a fake suppressor, it came with a threaded jam nut. If you purchased threaded jam nuts to use as an upgrade over the crush washer, then you will not need a strap wrench or a screw driver, you may not even need a vise and work bench. All you will need is a thin adjustable wrench. I know I’ve personally done some of these installs with a jam nut, the lazy way; by holding my AR15 rifle in between my legs as I tighten the jam nut with a small open end wrench.

You’ll want to first thread on the jam nut all the way until it stops. Next you’ll want to thread on your muzzle brake or fake suppressor all the way until it stops. Then you’ll want to back off on the muzzle brake or fake suppressor just enough to get it aligned where it needs to be, top ports facing up 12 o clock, and for a fake suppressor, print facing to the right side of the rifle. If facing to the left, it’d be upside down. That’s it! A video will follow so you can follow along on the install and do it yourself. Sure is rewarding to buy your own tools and do things yourself as opposed to paying someone else for doing it for you.

Happy Shooting!