Browning rifle question


December 29, 2012, 04:24 AM
Im in the market for a new bolt action rifle. So I've been doing some searching/reading and noticed the Browning "x-bolt" rifle is made in Japan? Anyone have any quality/reliability issues with theirs?

I have been contemplating the xbolt composite stalker in either 300 win mag or 338 win mag. I've done a bunch of ballistics researching and I'm leaning towards the 338.

One thing I am curious on though, does the 338 win mag commonly use a belted style cartridge? Similar to the 300 win mag? With reload potential in the future I'm reading that just creates an additional hassle...does anybody have a picture of the two rounds next to each other? If so, that would make my day! :)

The gun will be used as distance targets, occasional elk season, and maybe (depending on reloads) some deer seasons.

Sorry if this is in the wrong section or isn't typical format, I'm still new here so bare with me!

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December 29, 2012, 05:31 AM
I don't know about the X-bolt but I own (among others) two winchester 92 in 44-40 and a browning t-bolt, all build by Miroku in Japan and they are the best crafted rifles I have held in a while.



December 29, 2012, 06:55 AM
AFAIK, the earlier line of Win Mags were pretty much all based on the original .375 H&H belted mag. I have a 7mmRem and also had .300 WM for a while. The .338 is a pretty stout round from what I hear. Never shot one. Bought it for an elk trip that never happened.

I do have three Brownings that were made in Japan and have looked at many more. Beautiful rifles

December 29, 2012, 07:50 AM
Both use the same shell holder (#4 RCBS). Yes pretty much any older magnum is going to have a belt. Just the name of the game then. Headspace off the shoulder, not the neck and you'll be fine.

December 29, 2012, 08:54 AM
The .338 WinMag is a belted case as mentioned above.

The X-Bolt is made by Miroku in Japan. I'm very pleased with mine. The short bolt lift is nice. It is by far the lightest rifle that I own. The magazine is lightweight, positively locks in place and feeds smoothly.

1911 guy
December 29, 2012, 10:08 AM
Miroku has been making Browning firearms, both rifles and shotguns, for years. No quality problems that I'm aware of.

Correction: Miroku has been making them for decades, not years.

December 29, 2012, 10:20 AM
We had firing pin/trigger problems on (3) X-bolt short mag rifles. They were "bargains" that Dad could not pass up-many deer missed with those things.

Have several A-bolts Mags "Made In Japan", that have spotless service.

December 29, 2012, 10:21 AM
My Browning BLR is Japanese-made and is of fantastic quality. I wouldn't hesitate to buy another.

Sock Puppet
December 29, 2012, 10:45 AM
My A-bolt is a very well made rifle and an incredible shooter. I wouldn't hesitate to own another.

December 29, 2012, 11:48 AM
I have both an A-Bolt II Medallion and an X-Bolt Medallion. These both are exceptionally well made, beautiful, highly accurate, tight, smooth rifles.

I would look toward anything made by Miroku as an example of the highest quality in firearms manufacturing.


December 29, 2012, 01:27 PM
Excellent! Thanks guys! I think that will make a nice birthday gift to my self next month...other that grain of bullets, is there anything else that differentiates the 338 to the 300 (both win mag)? I've checked ballistics, but what about physical size of round, cost per round, availability of round? I'd hate to buy a rifle that is difficult to find ammo for...?

December 29, 2012, 02:57 PM
don't have an X-bolt, but my A-bolt Medallion is the nicest rifle I've ever owned (and there's been dozens.) I hate to say it, but I'd buy another over a Rem. 700 in the blink of an eye...

December 29, 2012, 05:35 PM
The A-bolt, last I checked, was made by FN in South Carolina.

.300 Win Mag ammo is easier to find and shoots flatter thanks to the lighter bullets fired at higher velocity. The .338 is a more powerful round and carries energy downrange better. You can find fairly cheap .300WM ammo, not so much the .338. In comparable ammo, though, they cost about the same.

December 29, 2012, 07:18 PM
I have a stainless X-bolt in 30-06 and could not be happier with it. The X-bolt is a light, smooth, well engineered rifle, and in my mind is an almost perfect incarnation of what a hunting rifle should be. As for your caliber choice, are you fairly adept at shooting rifles with high recoil levels? The X-bolt has a good recoil pad, but, even so, such a light rifle chambered in .338 WM is going to buck and roar.

December 29, 2012, 07:44 PM
Browning Xbolts are some of the best rifles being mass produced today. Absolutely no quality issues as browning builds some of the best quality rifles around no matter where they are built. Now as said above the 338 is going to be one bucking bronco. The 300 will be pretty stiff recoil but not as much as that big 338. You may want to consider that before buying or at least get you a good shoulder pad such as a Past for bench shooting.

December 29, 2012, 08:30 PM
X Bolt .308 Medallion here-terrific quality, light, accurate, very pleased (can't say I like them better than their FN "cousin" though! (Winchester, which IS made in SC)

December 29, 2012, 08:51 PM
(Winchester, which IS made in SC)

Sadly, not for long... :(

December 29, 2012, 08:59 PM
Those are indeed made in Japan. Generally good quality stuff. The only thing in that regard to consider is that Browning does not offer a warranty. They intend to just make everything right as they see it and see fit. Hopefully that works out.

You can just neck size your belted mags like any other bolt rifle round. No big deal there.

December 29, 2012, 09:33 PM
Everything sold in the US has a warranty as part of consumer protection law. Browning doesn't specify exact terms which means that the standard "fit for intended use" warranty applies.

December 29, 2012, 09:54 PM
I have an Xbolt is .243 win. I'm very happy with it .

December 30, 2012, 03:09 AM
Thanks for the info, heading down to cabelas to check out their selection tomorrow. 300 win mag might be my choice after all..

December 30, 2012, 03:35 AM
Sadly, not for long... :(

Where are they going?

December 30, 2012, 10:25 AM
I have 2 Japanese made rifles, both are exceptional quality. Lexus is made in Japan no one questions it's quality. Japan's problem is their products are too good = too expensive to compete with China.

December 30, 2012, 01:52 PM
X Bolt .308 Medallion here-terrific quality, light, accurate, very pleased (can't say I like them better than their FN "cousin" though! (Winchester, which IS made in SC)
The A-Bolt is made right there with the Winchesters.

December 30, 2012, 02:02 PM
The A-Bolt is made right there with the Winchesters.

Last one I looked at said Made in Japan by Miroku....but that was used.

Unless Browning needs to update their website, they also say the A-bolt II is made in Japan

December 30, 2012, 02:07 PM
The A Bolt is not made in So Carolina.

December 30, 2012, 02:27 PM
It certainly was at one point.

December 30, 2012, 02:29 PM
I don't think so.

December 30, 2012, 02:44 PM
I actually had the reference from the Herstal Group corporate site, but they redid the site and I can't find it now.

December 30, 2012, 02:55 PM
Never owned an X-Bolt but I do have an A-Bolt II, absolutly no mechanical issues with the rifle and I like the features, but I had FITS trying to get the thing to group, it hated all four brands of factory ammo I ran through it and took twenty or so trys to find a handload it could hold better then 1.5" with. Sadly the least accurate rifle I have owned in years though it does give me acceptable (not great) accuracy now with my Serria Game King/Big Game loads. Like the feel of the rifle, but a Savage or Tikka is a whole lot easier to work with at the range.

December 30, 2012, 03:08 PM
To the best of my knowledge no Browning products wrere manufactured at FN's So Carolina plant.
The Winchester 70 was moved there after New Haven closed, but Browning has a long-standing history with makers outside the US & no real reason to take up floor space in the So Carolina operation.

"Winchester" has been bounced around the world since the USRAC plant was dismantled on '06, and it looks like the 70 is leaving the US.
Brownings have been made all over outside our shores for many years.

If you saw anything on FN's website about a Browning being built in So Carolina, it was probably either a plan that never came to be or an outright mistake.

December 30, 2012, 03:21 PM
Possible. I know that at least they *were* made in the US recently. The X-Bolt was a Miroku product from the get-go. The Winchester lever guns as well when they resurrected the brand.

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