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Browning BL-22 Rimfire...

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by GZOh, Feb 24, 2012.

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  1. GZOh

    GZOh Member

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    Looking for some feedback/owner comments on the Browning BL-22 rimfire rifle.
    I guess, wondering how it compares to the Win-9422 and Marlin 39A?
    Thanks

    .
     
  2. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    They are very solid, a bit heavy, and the lever throw takes a bit of effort. (It's a shorter throw than the others so leverage is a bit more).

    Very high quality, solid-feeling rifles. Feels like a man's rifle rather than "just a .22". I haven't shot a winchester or a marlin to compare.
     
  3. forindooruseonly

    forindooruseonly Member

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    I've got a couple of BL-22s and a 9422 in .22 magnum. The Browning is a very nice gun, as 1KPerDay stated. Well built and nicely finished. I think the Winchester is a little nicer, but it is also pricier. I don't own a Marlin 39, but the Browning seems nicer in finish from the few I handled. I can't compare to how one shoots, as the Marlin has a great reputation as a shooter.

    The Winchester is bigger, so it fits me better, and has a much nicer trigger. However, the BL has a really short throw that allows fast follow ups, if that's your thing. IMO, the fact that the trigger comes down with the lever is the weakness of the BL, as I understand it is hard to improve the trigger on one. I grew up shooting a BL, so I'm partial to them for nostalgic reasons, but if I had to choose one based on no previous experience, it would be the Winchester. I never liked the looks of the Marlin and it seemed a bit too utilitarian for my taste, so I never got around to buying one. I think the BL occupies a middle ground that is pretty reasonable for it's price.

    That's my very subjective .02 cents.
     
  4. RainDodger

    RainDodger Member

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    I've had a BL-22 for many years and it's been a great shooter. Although the trigger issue may be a weak point, my trigger was worked on by a Browning 'smith in the late 80s and it's very, very nice and crisp. So, it's not impossible to get a nice trigger on one. It just might be more difficult than with the others. I have no experience with the others though.
     
  5. Clipper

    Clipper Member

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    I was just sighting my BL-22s scope in for stingers yesterday...Bit of a quartering breeze, so the 100 yard groups kinda opened up to 1.5"...

    Wouldn't even consider any other .22 lever. I don't know where 1K gets the idea they're heavy though. At 5#, it's a feather to carry in the woods. Fit and finish are superior to anyone's .22 lever, and the short lever throw makes it able to cycle it without even moving your grip of the stock...Just flick your fingers.
     
  6. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    Maybe I'm remembering wrong. The two I've handled and shot felt more like 7 lbs.
     
  7. squarles67

    squarles67 Member

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    Love my BL-22, very accurate. You get used to the short throw on the lever. BL-22 is smaller than the other two and I like it that way.
     
  8. VA27

    VA27 Member

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    I've had all three. The BL22 is the lightest of the bunch. The short lever throw rocks for a fast follow up shot. The wife took the Marlin, 'cause that's what she grew up shooting (her grandfathers 1881, she still has it, but it's a wreck). I kept the Browning and the Winchester is gone.

    Light, accurate, fast and it shoots everything well. It's a keeper.
     
  9. az_imuth

    az_imuth Member

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    I love the little rimfire leverguns and own several from various manufacturers, including Winchester and Marlin. The BL-22 is one that I would like to pick up, but I've only seen and handled one at a nearby shop and it was priced right at MSRP so I passed. Here's a little chart I've been working on lately that gives a little information on a few of the models out there. Just forgive the poor quality image and remember that it's still a work in progress.

    levergunchart2.gif
     
  10. matt 7mm

    matt 7mm Member

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    i have had my bl for 16 years and love it.it is a light,accurate,fast fun little gun to shoot.the way the trigger moves with the lever makes it easier to make fast follow up shots.the browning is the only lever 22 i have owned but i have shot a freinds marlin 39 quiete a bit and i believe that the bl has smoother action and nicer fit and finnish.as for the 9422 i have never handled one so i cannot compare
     
  11. GooseGestapo

    GooseGestapo Member

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    If I'm not mistaken, the Winchester and Browning are both made by Miroku, in Japan. Essentially the same action, but different features, and finish.
    Both have excellent finish and shoot well. Brownings are high luster finish. Winchester low-luster.....
    The Marlin's have a lower luster finish, but are equal in quality.
    Differences in accuracy varys more from gun to gun than make to make. (ie: individual barrels).
    I have a Marlin M39D. A "very plain-jane" version of the M39 with 20"bbl. It is well worn internally, meaning it is smooth. Accuracy is excellent, though not up to level of my CZ452 (one-hole groups @ 50yds with "capable" ammo).
    It wears an improved set of open iron sights (Marbles open/adjustable rear; 1/32" bead front). I use it for plinking and general pest control. Stands watch besides the rear bedroom door. ..... I bought it about 12mos. ago for $180.00. I don't believe you'll get a Browning/Winney for that price !!!
     
  12. Furncliff

    Furncliff Member

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    I gave my wife a BL22 for Valentines Day some time ago. She's very good with it, it's lighter than my Marlin 39 by a very noticeable amount and has a shorter barrel. It has better factory sights than my 39 (now has a Skinner) and it's very accurate, The BL22 comes from the factory with a high blue and high gloss finish, very nice.

    The BL22 has a smoother feel to the action, but I have had some feed problems with it, that I still haven't solved, it's complicated to break down and reassemble and for all practical purposes is cleaned from the muzzle or by using a a bore snake. The BL is the favorite of all the ladies in my family.

    My 39 is not as smooth and its well used (1971??). I've had this one to the smith to solve some feed issues. The 39 is an easier rifle to clean, it's built like a tank.

    These two rifles have a very different heft and feel to them. The differences usually make a choice pretty easy.

    But I like them both.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2012
  13. az_imuth

    az_imuth Member

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    While Miroku does currently makes Winchester leverguns, they have never produced any 9422's. All of Winchester's 9422's were produced at their New Haven, Connecticut plant from the beginning of production in 1972 until the end of production in 2005, and they had very little, if anything, in common with the design of the Browning BL-22.
     
  14. crestoncowboy

    crestoncowboy Member

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    I collect 22 lever guns, and the browning is my least favorite of all, however I will say quality and accuracy is just as good as the 9422 and the 39, and better than the Henry, Ithaca guns. I just dont care for the feel of the short throw lever and the trigger (sadly the henry does have the better factory trigger of the lot in my experience) nor do I like the shiny stock. Also all of the Brownings I own as well as the few I have fired and didnt own have had loose forearms, and need to be shimed, which should not be an issue on a $500 rimfire.The only thing Browning done better than the others on is the design of the inner mag tube which doesnt have to be pushed down in a certain spot and turned to load you just push it down anywhere. My personal favorite is the 9422 but I cant even decide why, If you like the feel of the browning I dont think you will be disappointed at all with the quality or accuracy of it.
     
  15. GZOh

    GZOh Member

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    Thanks for all of the help and information...
    Decided to go with the Winchester. Was able to get a 9422 Traditional in excellent condition and should have it shortly.
    Again, thanks for all the input.

    .
     
  16. az_imuth

    az_imuth Member

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    Excellent choice!
     
  17. dubbleA

    dubbleA Member

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    I just weighed my 1976 BL-22 and it tipped the scale at 4lbs 10 oz, a far cry from 7 lbs.
     
  18. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    Maybe mine was full of gold coins. Dangit! :D
     
  19. Davek1977

    Davek1977 Member

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    I can comment on two things in this thread...the BL-22 in our family has NEVER has a loose forearm, after thousands of rounds. Two, the 9422 has NOTHING in common with the BL-22, other than being a rimfire lever action. That's really where the similarities end. Accuracy wise, I've found the BL-22 to be just fine, though I haven't shot "groups" with ours in ages. However, it routinely kills whatever prairie dog or rabbit that erroneously sticks his or her head out in its vicinity, and have pulled off one of my best shots EVER with the rifle....a headshot pheasant at a verified 100 yards....one shot.
     
  20. Scatterman123

    Scatterman123 Member

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    BL-22 triggers

    I have two BL-22s and love them both! (I have a bevy of .22 and love them all, ditched the ones I didn't like.) I have done my own trigger work on almost all of them, including the BL-22 It is more complicated than some and easier than the CZs. IF (big "IF") the trigger is crisp, without creep, then the job is not too bad. Both of my BL-22s had HEAVY triggers, would lift each gun and "bounce" on the trigger without firing. (Put an empty case in the chamber to dry fire.) It's all about springs! There are three that need to be shortened ONE round each - no more - or you'll get inconsistent ignition. Mine will now just ALMOST lift the weight of the gun, the "fire" just before the total gun weight is off the floor. Many gunsmiths will work on them. Most of the time the problem is NOT the sear/hammer engagement, but springs that are unnecessarily strong. Both of mine run about 4.5 lbs (were 8 lbs), and have 100% ignition. -Scatterman
     
  21. rodensouth

    rodensouth Member

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    I love my little BL-22. Very accurate and feeds all lengths perfectly. Hate the factory sights. Does anyone make a good peep that mates the reciever mount?
     
  22. T.R.

    T.R. Member

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    The Brownings really hold their value well in the used market. For good reasons, too: outstanding attention to detail and select walnut.

    I've had very good accurasy and good hunting luck with my Henry 22LR carbine.

    TR

    Henry22.gif
     
  23. Ghost Tracker

    Ghost Tracker Member

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    My 1971 BL-22 is an accurate, reliable, fine-finished rifle. Compact & flat (idea for a saddle scabbard), light & quick, grooved for a conventional scope mount (unlike the Winchester when I made the choice) & while I've heard negative comments about the trigger, mine is a clean/crisp 2.5 lbs. The short throw lever allowed fast follow-ups on cottontails. I've owned/traded Marlin 39s & Winchester 94s, they're nice .22 lever guns, but the one I've always kept is the BL-22. I've never owned a Henry so I've no idea how they compare.
     
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