The Browning semi-automatic centcrfire rifle was a spin-off of Fabrique National's (FN) development of military weapons. It has a gas-operated mechanism with a rotating bolt head which engages shoulders in the rear of the barrel. Its box magazine can. but need not. be detached from the hinged floorplate for loading. M. Ernest Vervier was its principal designer.
When introduced in 1967. the rifle was availabe in Grades 1 (no engraving) and 11 (light engraving) chambered only for the .30-"06 cartridge. The following year, chamberings included .243 Win., .270 Win., .308 Win.. 7 mm Rem. Mag.. .300 Win. Mag., and .338 Win. Mag. Browning's 1971 catalog showed the more elaborately decorated Grades 111 to V. Grades II. Ill and V were discontinued in 1975.
Since 1976, Browning semi-automatic center-fire rifles have been assembled at an FN facility in Portugal. The .338 Win.
Mag. chambering was dropped at that time. In 1979. Grades I. Ill and IV were offered. Engraving differs between the standard and magnum versions. It also varies over the years within a grade. The 1979 Grade HI depicts Bighorn rams and bull elk on the sides of its receiver. The original Grade 111 showed deer and antelope heads.
When chambered for magnum cartridges, the Browning semiautomatic rifle is supplied with a recoil pad and a 24" barrel. Barrels for standard cartridges are 22" long.
Browning refers to this semi-automatic hunting rifle as the "BAR", which has caused confusion with the selective-lire Model 1918 military rifle of that name. The Model 1918 BAR (Browing Automatic Rifle) was designed by John M. Browning (1855-1926) and was a mainstav weapon of U.S. troops in World Wars I and II.
Browning Grade I Magnum autoloading rifle above is distinguished by its recoil pad, 24" barrel and plain (no engraving) receiver. Its three-round detachable box magazine snaps onto the hinged floorplate. In standard calibers, the rifle is supplied with a 22" barrel, black plastic buttplate and a four-round magazine.
1. Action bar—right or left
2. Action spring
3. Action spring guide
6. Bolt cover
7. Bolt sleeve
9. Buffer plate
10. Butt plate
11. Butt plate screws
12. Butt stock 13 Cam pin
15. Disconnector pin
16. Disconnector spring
17. Disconnector spring plunger
19. Ejector retaining pin
20. Ejector spring
22. Extractor spring
23. Firing pin
24. Firing pin retaining pin
25. Firing pin spring
27. Forearm escutcheon
28. Gas cylinder
29. Gas piston
30. Gas piston stop pin
31. Gas regulator
32. Gas regulator gasket
34. Hammer pin
35. Inertia piece
36. Magazine body
37. Magazine floorplate
38. Magazine floorplate pivot pin
39. Magazine floorplate spring
40. Magazine follower
41. Magazine follower spring
42. Magazine follower rivet
43. Magazine latch
44. Magazine latch spring
45. Magazine latch spring plunger
46. Magazine latch stop pin
47. Magazine retaining spring
48. Magazine retaining spring pin
49. Mainspring—right or left
50. Mainspring guide—right or left
51. Mainspring pin—hammer
52. Mainspring pin—trigger guard
53. Operating handle
54. Operating handle lock
55. Operating handle lock pin
56. Operating handle lock spring
58. Safety cross-bolt
59. Safety spring
60. Safety spring plunger
61. Safety spring retaining pin
63. Sear pin
64. Sight bead, front
65. Sight hood, front
66. Sight ramp, front
67. Sight assembly, rear
68. Sling eyelet, front
69. Sling eyelet washer
70. Sling eyelet, rear
71. Stock bolt
72. Stock bolt washer
73. Stock bolt plate
74. Support rail—right or left
75. Telescope mount filler screws
76. Timing latch
77. Timing latch retaining pin
79. Trigger pin
80. Trigger guard ft
Reliable functioning of the mechanism requires that the gas system be kept clean. The following procedure is recommended:
Close the magazine floorplate and pull the operating handle (53) rearward until the bolt locks in its open position. Remove the front sling eyelet (68) with small wrench. Grasp the forward end of the forearm (26) and pull it away from the barrel carefully until resistance is felt. Then slide the forearm forward and off.
Close the bolt and pull the support forward ends away from the rotmd rails (74) forward from their slots in connecting studs on the inertia piece the receiver (No. 1). The action bars (35). forward out of the receiver
Remove gas regulator (31) from ened in the gas cylinder, and care the front end of the gas cylinder (No. must be taken to engage the wrench
3) with a V wrench. The gas securely, regulator will be very securely tight-
Pull the inertia piece back toward the receiver until rear face of the gas piston (29) can be pushed forward out of the gas cylinder with a small punch (No. 4). An extremely dirty gas system may require driving the gas piston forward with a hammer and drift punch. Extreme care must be used to avoid scoring the parts. If the gas piston will not move with moderate force, put nitro-solvent around the piston, wait about 15 minutes, and try to push it out with the drift punch. If the piston still will not move, put more nitro-solvent on it and allow it to set overnight.
Grasp the receiver and pull the end of the action spring guide can action spring guide (3) forward then be moved to one side (No. 5).
toward gas cylinder until it is clear of then rearward to remove it with the its recess in the receiver. The rear action spring (2) and inertia piece.
Residues in the gas cylinder and on the gas piston should be thoroughly removed with nitro-solvent or bore cleaner. Heavy residues can be removed by scrubbing the gas cylinder with a 20-ga. bronze wire bore brush and solvent.
The gas piston, gas cylinder, and other parts of the gas system should be wiped with a very lightly oiled cloth after cleaning. The gas cylinder interior and the gas piston should not be oiled beyond this.
Reassembly is the reverse of the disassembly procedure. The action spring, action spring guide, and inertia piece are replaced first. The gas piston is then placed into the front of the gas cylinder and pushed rearward over the end of the action spring guide. The small guide pin at the rear of the gas cylinder must be engaged in the lengthwise groove on the rear of the gas piston. If properly oriented in the gas cylinder, the gas piston may be pushed partially out of the rear of the cylinder when the inertia piece is pulled rearward.
The gas regulator is then screwed into the front of the gas cylinder. It must be very securely tightened with the wrench.
The action bars and support rails are replaced next. The projecting section of each action bar is carefully placed in its corresponding slot in the bolt before the hole in its forward end is placed over the stud on the inertia piece. It may be necessary to pull the inertia piece slightly rearward to engage the action bars. The support rails are then installed.
Reassembly is completed by locking the bolt in its open position and replacing the forearm. Be very careful, since it can be split if forced into position incorrectly. It is retained by replacing the front sling eyelet. Further disassembly is not required for ordinary cleaning. A buffer plate and magazine latch spring plunger will be found only on rifles of early production.
To remove the bolt assembly and firing mechanism, take off the forearm. support rails and action bars as previously described. Close the bolt. Then remove the buttplate (10) and unscrew the stock bolt (71) to take off the butt stock (12).
Screw the stock bolt into the stock bolt plate (73). Using the stock bolt as a handle, slide the stock bolt plate up out of engagement with the trigger guard. Then tilt the plate up into the receiver and pull it out rearward. The trigger guard assembly will then slide out straight to the rear.
Pull the operating handle rearward until the bolt locking lugs are visible. Slide the bolt cover (6) forward until it covers the rearmost locking lug. Holding the bolt assembly in place, pull the operating handle lock (54) outward. Then slide the operating handle forward and pull it out through the slot in the bolt cover. The bolt assembly is then removed by sliding it to the rear of the receiver, then downward. The bolt cover is removed by sliding it to the rear of the assembly and lifting the side of the cover having the slot for the operating handle.
Further disassembly is not recommended. ■
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