View Full Version : Best approach to reducing muzzle rise?

August 12, 2012, 07:50 PM
Which is the best way to reduce pistol muzzle rise - downloaded ammo or a compensator?

Assuming I want a range toy that needs no more power than necessary to cut through a paper target, I see two ways to minimize muzzle bounce. The first is to select the smallest cartridge for the desired bore size (in this case, 9MM) and load it with as light a bullet and powder charge as will reliably cycle the pistol. Less-powerful recoil springs and even machine work to lighten the slide may be required.

The other method is to continue to use a light bullet but put a bunch of powder behind it (say, using a .357 SIG if I'm keeping the bore size the same), add a compensator to the pistol, and let the extra gas work through the compensator to hold down the muzzle.

(Two notes - I want to reduce muzzle rise; increased blast and flash are of NO importance. Also, I've never worked with compensated pistols so I don't know how effective they are.)

Which of these two approaches would be more effective?

August 13, 2012, 09:36 AM
Both the load and/or compensator can have effect on muzzle lift.
But good technique will overcome muzzle lift more than either.
Watch some of the top shooters on the many videos on the web to see.
And it won't cost anything or mess up the operation of the gun.

Hunter Customs
August 13, 2012, 04:44 PM

I've built a lot of compensated pistols, I can tell you from experience a good compensated pistol is the best way to reduce muzzle rise.

The gun in the picture works extremly well. It has a compensator built in the end of the barrel ( where the three rectangle ports are) plus three ports that start venting gas before the gas hits the compensator.

This gun will stay pretty flat in your hand.

Keep in mind that light bullets and heavy charges of slow burning powder work best in compensated guns.

Best Regards
Bob Hunter

August 13, 2012, 07:54 PM
Thanks, Bob. That's exactly the kind of info I needed. I have an early Glock 24 from back when they came with compensated barrels but no "C" suffix for the model number. My plan is trending toward an extended-length .357Sig barrel with multiple compensator cuts both at the slide cut-out and in front of the slide. With sub-90 grain bullets, there should be plenty of gas to help the compensators work.

Any suggestion what powder might be best to start experimenting with? I have some HS6 and AA9 but if there's a "go to" powder for this application, I could use a hint.

Thanks again,


Hunter Customs
August 13, 2012, 09:52 PM
Ben, you are welcome for any help I may have given you.

As for powder I prefered N350, many of the 38 super, super comp and 9x23 shooters I built guns for was using SP2.

I've been out of the competition circle for awhile so I'm not sure what's being used now.

If you have a USPSA club close by ask some of the open division masters and grandmasters what powder they are using or recommend.

Best Regards
Bob Hunter

Jim Watson
August 14, 2012, 01:40 AM
When I don't want recoil, I shoot .38 wadcutters.
It seems hard to get best accuracy out of a 9mm with much reduced loads. But moderate loads in a steel gun don't flip much at all.

Don P
August 17, 2012, 06:22 AM
22lr should really cut down on recoil and muzzle flip:eek:

August 17, 2012, 12:51 PM
Even with +P loads, how much muzzle rise is there? A lot of guys shooting 9mm in practical competition are using 147 grain bullets at 900fps, and describe it as, "Like shooting a .22".

August 17, 2012, 11:17 PM
Move here to Kansas and buy a suppressor, best comp on the market. :D

Hunter Customs
August 31, 2012, 09:11 PM

My new revised website is now up and running. When you get a chance take a look at the competition guns on the our work page, you'll see several different types of compensated competition guns there.

Best Regards
Bob Hunter

September 3, 2012, 06:00 PM
Personally, my thoughts on recoil control is the following:

- Good grip (usually a thumbs-forward competition-style grip...and remember that the support hand should be providing at least 50% of the gun control strength) and proper body position (shoulders rolled forward) helps somewhat in mitigating muzzle rise.

- More importantly, those proper mechanics will help drive the gun back down on target after the shot. I think that recovery from the recoil is just as important (if not more so) than controlling the recoil

- Finally, learn the rhythm of your gun. There's a certain speed at which you can drive your gun back on to the target, and you need to shoot the gun a LOT to figure out what this rhythm is.