The video below shows Mike shooting the Cobalt Kinetics Evolve rifle, which is equipped with their Pro Buffer System and Pro Muzzle Brake. The rifle is shooting full-auto and the video is slowed by about 60%, but take a look at the muzzle control.
U.S.A. –(Ammoland.com)- A few of the more interesting AR-type rifles we have tried over the years have been the rifles made by Cobalt Kinetics. Cobalt is known for adding a slew of custom features to their rifles in order to create a viable system that has helped competitive rifle shooters on their paths to victory.
From repositioning the bolt catch to a dual forward assist, allowing empty magazines to drop automatically or the bolt to drop when a fresh mag is seated are a number of features found in their rifles. But, there are two other features of these rifles that make them all pleasant to shoot: The Pro Buffer System and the Pro Muzzle Brake.
Cobalt Kinetics has recently made these available to the public for private purchase to install on rifles other than those manufactured by Cobalt.
They sent us a few to check out and we installed the MILSPEC carbine Pro Buffer system on an SBR with a carbine length gas system and a full-length rifle system on a precision rifle build that we have been working on for some time.
Cobalt Kinetics Pro Buffer System
The patent pending Pro Buffer System allows the shooter to balance the rifle’s operating system in an effort to enhance performance and reduce felt recoil. Cobalt provides weights with this kit to allow the shooter to create a 2.6, 3.6, or 4.6-ounce buffer. The kit also includes four color-coded springs to create twelve possible configurations.
This gives the shooter the ability to alter the weight of the buffer to tailor it to any particular rifle and ammunition in order for it to run smoother and to do so without the use of tools.
Cobalt's receiver extension is lined with a hard polymer film made of the same polymer that is in the body of the buffer that eliminates the kinetic forces before they transmit into felt recoil. It also eliminates that springing noise found in most AR rifles.
Once the tube and the buttstock are installed, getting the weight correct will take a little experimentation and some trial and error. We had the precision rifle version dialed in almost immediately based on the instructions. The SBR took a bit of trial and error.
This is common though as just about everything in the AR platform is tailored to the 20” barrel and rifle length gas system. When you start changing barrel lengths gas system lengths, etc. more workarounds come into play, particularly with our SBR as it is often used as a host in various suppressor tests that we conduct.
Cobalt stipulates that the receiver extension supplied with the Pro Buffer must be used with the kit. This means your buttstock must be compatible with the tube. Certain rifle stocks that use a proprietary tube cannot be used with the Pro Buffer System.
Note: Because of the nature of the polymer film inside the receiver extension, you cannot have the Pro Buffer Tube Cerakotred due to the heating process as it will degrade or melt this film.
The only other limitation is that the system cannot be used in conjunction with a pistol length gas system and the mass of the bolt carrier group needs to weigh between 6 and 12 ounces. Pricing is $195 for either kit from Cobalt Kinetics.
We noticed the difference once everything was dialed in and that is when we went to the Pro Muzzle Brake.
Cobalt Kinetics Pro Muzzle Brake
Typically, I am not a fan of muzzle brakes as they tend to make rifles louder. The exception is when the brake is used as a silencer mount to act as a blast damper, absorbing the brunt of the flash in order to prolong the life of our baffles. But, in Cobalt's case, we have seen firsthand how well they perform at keeping the rifle shooting flat.
The Pro Muzzle Brake utilizes a symmetrical linear array of six intersecting spheroid cuts that vent the blast to the sides in order to reduce dust signature and prevent muzzle rise. Pricing from Cobalt is $160.
Now at this point, you may be thinking that somewhere on the interwebs that three is the magic number for ports on either side of a linear compensator or muzzle brake and someone pointed out that anything else is excessive, wasteful, etc.
For the most part, we agree with that, but in the case of Cobalt, these muzzle devices are tailored for the competitive shooter and if those extra holes add as little as 0.05% of an improvement that can be the difference between winning and losing a match.
The Cobalt Kinetics Shooting Team (Keith Garcia, Kalani Laker and Rick Birdsall) has used the Pro Buffer and the Pro Muzzle brake to win numerous competitions. According to the team, the Pro Buffer’s outstanding performance was a contributing factor to their success and numerous wins from 2015-2017. The Pro Muzzle Brake was also used by Max Leograndis to take top honors at the 2017 California Bay Area Rifle Challenge.
About Mike Searson
Mike Searson's career as a shooter began as a Marine Rifleman at age 17. He has worked in the firearms industry his entire adult life as a Gunsmith, Ballistician, Consultant, Salesman, Author and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1989.
Mike has written over 2000 articles for a number of magazines, websites and newsletters including Blade, RECOIL, OFF-GRID, Tactical Officer, SWAT, Tactical World, Gun Digest, Examiner.com and the US Concealed Carry Association as well as AmmoLand Shooting Sports News.