Considering a Browning BLR...


December 30, 2012, 10:32 AM
I'm getting a real hankerin' for purchasing a Browning BLR, preferably in .30-06 since it is a fairly common chambering as opposed to my three other long guns which are not. Will probably purchase new, and do not plan on mounting a scope.

I was wondering if there are any owners of BLR's out there, and what sort of likes or dislikes you have about the rifle. Thank you very much in advance.

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December 30, 2012, 11:24 AM
For what's its worth I owned a BL-22 and it was a great gun. Hard to go wrong with a Browning.

December 30, 2012, 11:39 AM
BLR's are an excellent gun. The only problem I have with them is their heavy trigger. I'm spoiled I guess.

December 30, 2012, 01:15 PM
Also, the entire trigger assembly follows the lever down when you eject a cartridge. Mr. Browning knew what he was doing with that one.

I consider John Moses Browning to be the Nikola Tesla of firearms- he was indeed a true genius.

Thank you for the responses so far- please keep 'em coming.

December 30, 2012, 01:34 PM
Browning had nothing to do with the BLR.
The rifles are accurate and generally reliable. With an alloy receiver they can be fairly light to carry.
The only real complaint I have about them is that the action is difficult to take apart & get back together again.

December 30, 2012, 01:52 PM
I would consider the .308 over the 30-06. The cartridges are about equal and the .308 makes for a shorter action and lighter weight.
I have an older (steel frame) one in .308. The detachable magazine is extremely rare and expensive. Don't fall into that trap if you go used.
Accurate and light enough to carry.

December 30, 2012, 03:35 PM
Gave one in .308 as a wedding gift to my best friend. Awesome rifle. I would like one myself one day. +1 on the .308. Shorter action in this instance seems logical.

December 30, 2012, 03:44 PM
Unconfirmed on Bruce, and Crash was talking about John Moses.

December 30, 2012, 03:58 PM
Unconfirmed on Bruce, and Crash was talking about John Moses.

My comment about JMB was intended to be a general one regarding his talents, not whether or not he was intimately involved with the BLR design.

Anyway, back to the program...

I'll look into the .308 some more. I should add that I will be reloading and probably casting for whatever chambering I choose, so some added flexibility may be desirable. I honestly don't have any intended initial purpose for a BLR other than I would like to get one if there are no serious issues with them, which it sounds like that's the case...

December 30, 2012, 09:04 PM
I have found the blr to have too much lop for my likings. You might want to shoulder it a few times before you comitt. Other than that and the cheap alloy receiver I can find no fault with them. They are truly excellent rifles.

December 31, 2012, 12:08 AM
Have the newer aluminum-alloy receivers been prone to failure? That would certainly be a deal-breaker for me.

December 31, 2012, 12:19 AM
I have a BLR in .308 that is 3 years old...has the aluminum issues with failure on the receiver to my knowledge.

Great rifle for deer hunting, etc., especially in the woods of Alabama and the Southeast in general. Accurate enough, but it is not a target rifle; however, my BLR will shoot 1 inch groups at 100 yards plus or minus a 1/4 inch with Federal Fusion ammo in 165 grain.

Only issue I have is that the cocking mechanism (the hammer) is the only safety, so the hammer has to remain uncocked or half-cocked and folded while in the deer stand, and cocking the thing with a deer within 30 or 40 yards is a delicate maneuver to remain quiet enough not too scare the animal away. Having said that, the few that I have shot with the Browning BLR were neither scared away and they didn't run after the shot.

If I had to do it over again, I would still buy the BLR.

December 31, 2012, 02:27 AM
I've heard of no failures in the alloy frames.
One of the Browning project managers told me a couple years back that with the bolt head locking into steel in the barrel extension, the frame "could be made out of cardboard", it's that un-stressed.

The frame is mostly there to hold the guts in & connect the front end to the back end on the BLR.
It doesn't provide any lockup function, and moving parts don't abrade or stress it unduly in operation.

WNC Seabee
December 31, 2012, 08:07 AM
I love my .308 BLR. As a lefty, it's a great alternative to a bolt gun. Topped with an older Weaver 4x it is my "go to" deer rifle.

As an earlier poster mentioned, pay attention to the availability of magazines if you buy an older one. I've seen mags go for well over $100.

BTW, at least in my .308, any of the short action gas will work, it doesn't need to be caliber specific. I.e, the .243 stamped mag loads .308s with no trouble.

December 31, 2012, 09:16 AM
As a lefty, it's a great alternative to a bolt gun.

This is a major reason why I prefer amphibious firearms; I'm a southpaw myself.

ETA: Yogi Berra used the term 'amphibious' when he meant 'ambidextrous' ;)

December 31, 2012, 10:36 AM
IIRR the BLR has a 30-degree lever throw as opposed to the 90-degree throw on other models.
And the aluminum receiver has a steel insert for the locking lugs.
I really toyed with the idea of a BLR in 358 Win and trying cast pistol bullets for cheap practice.

December 31, 2012, 11:06 AM
My sister-in-law has hunted with a BLR in 7mm-08 since 2003. It's accurate, fast handling, and dependable. Browning still builds very well crafted rifles!


December 31, 2012, 02:59 PM
I never said nor meant that the alum. receiver was problematic. I just like steel better.

December 31, 2012, 06:22 PM
Perhaps not. However, using the word 'cheap' as in 'cheap alloy receiver' does in fact imply quality issues...


Looks like I'll probably get one within the next couple of months, I may hold out until I get my Income Reduction Service (IRS) refund, or I may just go out and snag one...

Thanks y'all for the input on this. It is much appreciated.

December 31, 2012, 08:13 PM
No- Browning holds their contractors to very high standards. :)

Sam. Colt
December 31, 2012, 08:56 PM
Look into the takedown model. I'm a huge fan.

December 31, 2012, 11:13 PM
Another lefty here. During my lifetime, choices in lefthanded boltguns were extremely limited, especially in calibers like 7mm-08. So, being working-class, I settled for leverguns decades ago.
If it weren't for the trigger, the BLR would be perfect.
Of course, as somebody else has already mentioned, it is not for mere mortals to venture in among the delicate gears, cams, and thingamajigs that make these rifles run.
Thou Shalt not eateth from this tree! :evil:
By the way, I've never understood this "finger-pinching" levergun epidemic some people are claiming. Since 1978, I've fired at least a zillion rounds through my old-fashioned Marlin Golden 39A without ever pinching my trigger finger under the lever.

January 1, 2013, 12:07 AM
I worked with the takedown in .308. Slick, light & accurate.
That action isn't something you want to get into yourself, though. :)

January 1, 2013, 02:34 AM
I'm late to reply, but another big fan of the BLR here. Mine is chambered in .243 Winchester. I've been killing deer with it since 1996 when my dad got it for me as a teenager. It was used when he got it, and other than the cosmetics of all those years in the woods, it still runs like a new rifle. It is very predictable, shoot them in the heart, walk 40 yards, and there will be a dead deer. Never fails.

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