Shooting in pitch dark or low light settings without a flash hider can be a real issue as muzzle blasts can cause night blindness, putting you in a precarious situation. Here are the best AR-15 flash hiders nowadays and the essential factors to consider before buying one for your rifles.
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Table of Contents
- 1 Top 10 Flash Hiders for AR 15
- 2 Why Use an AR-15 Flash Hider
- 3 Guide to Buying
- 4 FAQs
- 5 And the Best AR-15 Flash Hider is...
Top 10 Flash Hiders for AR 15
1. Griffin Armament
Griffin Armament is made of melonite treated with 17-4 PH stainless steel, making it highly durable and impact-resistant. It was designed with an anti-resonance feature to prevent pinging under fire and can handle extreme temperatures. It’s effective in reducing muzzle blast.
This minimalist flash suppressor weighs 2.9 ounces only, roughly 40% lighter than most flash suppressor mounts in the market. It doesn’t add any significant weight to the suppressor system and firearm barrels, which can increase the shooter’s responsiveness. Its solid lock-up system minimizes point-of-impact shift.
2. Manticore Arms Eclipse
One of the best flash eliminators is the Manticore Arms Eclipse. It was designed specifically for 5.56 and .223mm cartridges. It’s not intended for larger calibers. It uses a twisted triple prong design to eliminate flash even in dark or low light environments.
This flash suppressor is made of 8620 steel, making it durable and longer-lasting. It also works like a compensator, which keeps the muzzle from rising.
It weighs 3.6 ounces and is treated with an oxide finish. It has a dimension (HxLxW) of 2.10×2.80×4.90 inches. It has rounded edges to prevent snagging. It also includes a crush washer.
3. Yankee Hill
Yankee Hill 28-5C1 Phantom Flash Hider is designed for a 5.56mm cartridge. It features smooth end cuts and threaded for 1/2 “-28. Noticeably, it has no downward facing port, which helps reduce dust problems when shooting from a prone position.
Aside from being a flash hider, it’s also a compensator as there are no vents on the bottom. It reduces muzzle flash brightness to 0.41 Lux and performs better than a standard A2 flash birdcage flash hider. Hence, it’s a great companion for night shooting.
It’s one of the decent picks as it features the standard A2 birdcage accessory slots. It’s 2.25 inches long, so it meets the 16-inch barrel length requisite in some states. It comes with a crush washer.
4. Black Rain
Black Rain is a budget-friendly AR-15 muzzle device. This flash regulator is made in the US and constructed of 416r stainless steel. It is machined for .223 Remington and 5.56mm calibers. It’s great for AR-15 or AR-10 and threaded for 1/2 “-28.
It features an aggressive and serrated surface area to eliminate flash. Quite interesting, you can use it to break doors, glasses, and other non-lethal materials. It comes with a crush water accessory.
5. SureFire 3 Prong Eliminator
SureFire 3 Prong Eliminator is precisely machined from the US with a heat-treated stainless steel bar stock. It’s coated with black melonite, which provides maximum protection against harsh environmental conditions. It’s also DLC-coated to withstand wear and tear and for consistent, high-quality performance.
This three-prong flash suppressor can provide a 99% reduction in flash as compared to an ordinary muzzle. The high-pressure expanding powder gases are directed away from the shooter’s line of sight.
It’s ideal for M4, M15, and AR-15 platforms. It’s threaded for ½’’-28. It features multiple bearing surfaces for accurate suppressor alignment.
6. Guntec USA AR-15 9mm Spiral
The Guntec USA AR-15 9mm Spiral Flash Hider was developed and carefully machined to make it last for a long time. It’s constructed from stainless steel materials and treated with a nitride finish. The spiral slots provide flash suppression and recoil reduction.
This flash suppressor is designed for door breaching and is best suited for AR-15. It can cater to 7.62x399mm and 9mm Luger calibers and is threaded for ½’’x36 TPI. It is 2.12 inches long and weighs 1.8 ounces. It’s a good option for any shooting competition, hunting, and tactical operations.
7. Mission First Tactical E-VolV
Tactical Evolve is designed for 5.56mm and .223 calibers and fitted for AR-15 and M4 rifle platforms. Its three-prong curved contour reduces flash signatures significantly. It’s constructed of 416 stainless steel and treated with a black nitride finish. It comes with a crush washer.
Unlike the traditional muzzle brakes, the small porthole on its top part aids in directing gas to reduce muzzle climb and recoil. There are no slots on the bottom part to keep the dust down during a low-level shooting.
8. Stag Arms
One of the affordable flash hiders on the market is Stag Arms flash hider.
It is made for .300 AAC Blackout caliber and compatible with AR-15s. It’s treated with a black finish and threaded for ⅝’’x24 TPI.
The slots help dissipate the gas in different directions to eliminate flash and reduce recoil.
9. Ballistic Advantage
The Ballistic Advantage AR15 A2 Flash Hider w/ Crush Washer is a durable and reliable flash suppressor that’s great for nighttime shooting and tactical operations.
It reduces muzzle flash quite effectively, thereby helping shooters conceal their positions from their opponents. This flash hider was designed to divert vented high-pressure powder gases to prevent night blindness. It’s compatible with AR-15 and fitted from 5.56x45mm NATO.
10. Guntec Usa Guntec 3 Prong
Guntec USA is famous for its high-quality products. The Guntec 3-prong flash hider is made for heavy-duty purposes. It’s treated with a matte black oxide finish and made of steel material.
It features Guntec’s original design of flash suppressors. It controls the velocity and pressure of the powder gases to reduce flash signatures. It keeps the muzzle flat, so the point of impact is least likely to shift.
This muzzle device is 1.75 inches long and weighs 1.9 ounces. It’s excellent for retro rifles like AR-15 and threaded for ½’’x28. It’s suitable for action shooting sports and tactical operations.
Why Use an AR-15 Flash Hider
Muzzle devices have flash hiders. A flash hider or eliminator reduces the flash visibility when shooting down a rifle in dark environments. There are three main advantages to using a flash hider:
It prevents night blindness by reducing flash signatures.
Shooting a rifle, especially with a short barrel, often produces an extremely bright flash, which can obstruct vision and cause temporary blindness. Thus, it can be challenging to make accurate successive shots.
It helps conceal the shooter’s position.
Flash makes your position visible, but you can keep your shots and yourself hidden from an intruder or attacker with a flash hider.
It is helpful with night vision and recoil management.
Guide to Buying
One of the relevant factors to consider when purchasing muzzle devices is design.
Look at the contours and determine their functionality and performance. You may choose a design intended not only for eliminating muzzle flash only but also for breaking doors and other materials. Some flash hiders also function like a compensator.
Don’t forget to consider the compatibility of the muzzle devices to your rifles and ammunition. Choose a flash hider in multiple thread pitches so it will fit with many calibers. There are vertical gas ports and gas ports on top or the side of a flash hider.
If you prefer a flash hider that can eliminate muzzle rise pretty well, you may opt for the Surefire Warcomp, although it’s slightly pricey. WARCOMP also features flash suppressors with vertical holes for venting expanding powder gases.
If you want a medium price range option, go with a flash hider from Smith Enterprise company, Primary Weapon Systems company, or Precision Armament company. If you want a flash hider with four prongs, check out products from Strike Industries or WARCOMP. For maximum recoil and muzzle blast reduction, you may try EFAB hybrid-flash eliminators.
Take note that some flash eliminators also work as compensators. They are often confusing to distinguish. Flash eliminators disperse flash while compensators prevent the muzzle from rising. WARCOMP and EFAB flash eliminators combine these two.
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When choosing a flash hider, consider the threading size. The most commonly used threading size is ½ – 28, which is used for AR-15 rifles and 9mm weapons in 5.56mm or .223mm. If you have a .388mm cartridge, the threading size is ⅝ – 24.
Moreover, also take note of the length of the flash hider, compensator, and barrel. There are legal restrictions for the required overall length of barrel and firearms in some states. Choose barrels that are about 14″ long so that when you add a flash hider on the muzzle device, it won’t exceed the required limit of 16″ firearm length.
Material & Construction
Choose a flash hider made of high-quality materials as it is often exposed to scorching, high-pressure powder gases.
Flash eliminators are often made of carbon alloy or (bar stock) steel. Both are corrosion-resistant and able to withstand harsh temperatures. Since these materials are quite available on the market, you will notice that most flash eliminators are fairly priced.
Flash hiders that are made of carbon are coated with a decent finish like nitride or phosphate for rust protection and for preventing chemical reactions with other chemicals. They are easy to machine and are very affordable.
All stainless steel flash hiders are excellent because they don’t stain or rust. They also don’t require a finish coating.
Some flash hiders are also made of titanium, which is becoming more popular nowadays. They are lightweight and durable. They also don’t require a protective finish, although they are harder to install and pricey. In terms of durability, titanium-made muzzle devices are your best bet.
Finish – Nitride or Phosphate?
Muzzle devices, including flash suppressors and compensators, are coated with a protective finish to protect them from corrosion, abrasion, and heat. It helps increase surface hardness, minimize carbon fouling, and reduces your cleaning time.
Carbon steel and aluminum are often treated with protective finishes as they rust and stain easily. Titanium and stainless steel are durable and rust-proof, so they are often untreated.
There are two commonly used finishes for a flash hider, muzzle brake, or compensator:
- Nitride has a compound layer consisting of nitrogen, oxygen, and iron. It’s resistant to abrasion and extreme temperatures. It’s now becoming popular with muzzle brakes, bolt carrier groups, and other rifle parts. It offers more protection from wear and tear and corrosion than a phosphate finish.
- Phosphate provides protection from abrasions, rust, and corrosions. It also adds lubrication to the weapon, which can reduce friction between moving adjacent parts.
Another important consideration when buying all parts of a muzzle device, including a muzzle brake, flash hider, or compensator, is easy and fast installation.
Some flash suppressors need some tools for installation, especially when tightening it around the end section of the muzzle brake. The process of installing a flash hider is the same as a muzzle brake or compensator.
There are different methods for attaching items in a muzzle set: locking nuts, crush washers, peel washers, and nothing at all.
The locking nuts are placed on the threaded barrel first and then followed by the flash hider.
Peel washers need proper alignment. You have to heat it and “peel” it off. You need to apply the right amount of torque to the muzzle device, which is not easy to do.
Crush washers are to be “crushed” when you tightened them up to create the lock between the barrel shoulder and the flash hider. They don’t require proper alignment. Among the three methods, it’s the best option.
All flash hiders aimed to reduce muzzle flash, but if you want to pick the best AR-15 flash hider, note its durability. If you’re going to use your rifle for thrusting, choose a solid and impact-proof muzzle device.
Examine the composition and the protective finish. The best AR-15 flash hiders are adequately machined and designed to withstand abuses and harsh temperatures.
Consider the design, whether it’s 3-prong, 4-prong, spiked, or has diverging expansion nozzles. Smith Enterprise and Guntec companies are known for their highly durable flash hiders.
For quite some time, a flash suppressor was considered as military gear, so it was legally regulated. In 2004, the ban for the use of this muzzle device was lifted, but some states didn’t follow suit, including Massachusetts, New York, California, and New Jersey.
Yes. The National Firearms Act regulates the overall length of the firearm. Permanently installed muzzle devices are considered an extension of the barrel’s length. In some states, the required size is 16″. You can purchase 14″ barrels and a 1.5″ muzzle device to meet the legal standard.
Yes. You can use the same flash hiders for different cartridges. However, you need to consider the rifle’s projectile and the concentric accuracy of the threading. As long as the bore and the flasher are bigger than the caliber, then you’re good to go.
No. Flash hiders are used to conceal the visibility of the flash, whereas sound suppressors or silencers are used to minimize the noise coming out of the rifle after shooting. However, some sound suppressors are said to work like flash hiders too.
And the Best AR-15 Flash Hider is...
We think that the best AR15 flash hider is the Griffin Armament. It’s lightweight and therefore doesn’t add any significant weight to the muzzle device.
It also reduces Lux significantly and muzzle climb. It doesn’t shift the point of impact of the caliber. It’s pretty durable and treated with a great finish making it resistant to corrosion and abrasions.
This flash hider can withstand extreme temperature, which is vital for long-lasting performance and more flash-concealing effect. It’s small and compact, which is excellent for competitive shooting, hunting, and tactical operations. Above all, it’s reasonably priced for its quality and performance.
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