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Removing and Replacing Browning A Bolt barrel

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Unread 05-23-2010, 04:44 AM
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Location: Carlisle, PA
Posts: 478
Re: Removing and Replacing Browning A Bolt barrel

Originally Posted by Rustystud View Post
Since making this post I have been in contact with the R&D Department of Browning.

The tec that I spoke with could not tell me if the actions were investment cast. He said he would find out and call me back.

He verified the threads had been changed from 20 tpi to 32 tpi.

He said no glue was use to lock the threads.

He said with the appropriate wrenches and technique the barrel would screw right off the action. He said he had done thousands of them.

He said the actions did have an anti seize compound on them.

He could not have been any nicer and appologized for the persons lack of response from their Browning service center.

The wrench from Brownells should be here today.

Nat lambeth

Please follow up and let us know what you find when you do the work.

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Unread 02-13-2013, 11:10 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 11
Re: Removing and Replacing Browning A Bolt barrel

Sorry, I know it has been years but any further info on this?
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Unread 02-13-2013, 11:50 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Texas
Posts: 7,236
Re: Removing and Replacing Browning A Bolt barrel

Originally Posted by Rustystud View Post
Normally I don’t do things that I know that later down the road I may regret. I have a very good friend whose son has a Browning A bolt in 300 Win Mag. The son is small in stature and his father wants me to install a muzzle brake on his son’s stainless Browning A bolt.
I have been told that Browning A bolt rifles are made from extruded metal and not milled from a piece of billet metal. I have been told horror stories about these actions cracking and crumbling when someone tried to remove or replace the barrel. I have further been told that the barrels are put on with a glue instead of grease an/or anti-seize. I have been told they frequently seize up during the barrel removal process. I have been told that within the last few years that browning changed the threads on their A bolts from 20tpi to 32 tpi. This would significantly increase the surface tension greatly increasing the odds of a galling with stainless steel to stainless steel interface.
I contacted Browning’s service center in Missouri and they refused to provide me with any information saying that it is proprietary. There web site list approximately 25 independent gunsmiths are factory authorized Browning service centers. I called about a half dozen of them and asked if they removed any Browning A bolt barrels to install muzzle brakes and or replace the barrels. None said they had ever removed a Browning A bolt barrels. None stated they had removed any A bolt barrels from the action. Some indicated they had heard some of the same previously discussed comments about Browning A bolts. Some went as far as saying if one is buying a new rifle they should not buy a Browning. One stated he formerly worked for Browning in the Missouri service center. He stated that Browning only paid $85.00 for a barreled action and when one was returned to the service center that required it be re-barreled, the action was destroyed and replaced with a new barreled action.
I thought about making a mandrel to fit inside the action and an a collar for the barrel. Turning and threading the muzzle in the steady rest, (Without removing the action from the barrel). This goes against my better judgment. Brownell’s sells a Browning A bolt wrench head for their action wrench set for about $80.00. They too could not give me any advice on removing Browning A bolt barrels. I am of the mind to tell my friend that I cannot install the muzzle brake on a Browning A Bolt.
I believe John Mosses Browning would roll over in his grave if he knew the company that bares his name is making and selling products that cannot be serviced by a machinist/gunsmith.
If you have any experience or advice about removing and replacing Browning A bolt barrels I would appreciate hearing it. Especially if it was a later model Browning A bolt.
Nat Lambeth

Why remove the action just to install a muzzle break ?

If your lathe spindle is to long to except the barreled action find someone that has a smaller Lathe
with a short spindle.

I do not have a large Lathe and it will take a 23" barrel with enough sticking out to thread the
muzzle of the barrel for a break.

I hope I understood you. This way you wouldn't have to remove the action and all stainless
barrels are about the same material (416 R) and this would not in anyway effect the integrity
of the rifle.

I hope this helps.

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Unread 02-15-2013, 11:17 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Utah
Posts: 125
Re: Removing and Replacing Browning A Bolt barrel


I have removed a number of A-Bolts to rebarrel them and I found it's been hit or miss. I use an outside action wrench and a 4LB hammer some come right off but others don't, and I just don't feel they can take any more force, so I make a relief cut which you can't make in your case.
The same as I have found with Howa's.

Elk Meadow Performance
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