Gun Porn: Browning BL-22

Browning BL-22, Grade I. This lever-action .22 caliber carbine is probably my favorite gun. The gloss American walnut stock is beautiful, as is the deep blued steel. The Grade II upgrades the looks with checkered grips, fancy engraving and a gold-colored trigger. It is also available with an octagonal barrel and a silver-finished receiver in the “FLD” models. However, I personally find the no-nonsense look of the Grade I to be the most attractive of the line. No doubt, it is the prettiest of my guns (click for full-sized pics):

Browning BL-22BL-22BL-22 buttstock wood

The 20″ barrel is matched by a full-length tube magazine which holds 15 .22 Long Rifle, 17 .22 Long, or 22 .22 Short rounds. Reloading is accomplished by depressing the button on the end cap, sliding the magazine rod and spring assembly out of the magazine tube, and dropping in the ammo either from the end or a cutout on the bottom of the tube. It is probably possible to load a round by hand into the receiver, but it would require some precision maneuvering, as there is enough space inside the receiver for a round to get caught up between the guides and the side of the receiver. A misfeed of this sort can also happen if one is not careful to open the action all the way. But that’s probably the best part of this handy little rifle: to recharge, the lever must only be moved through 33 degrees of arc. That is not very much:

BL-22 Action DetailBL-22 Action Open

You’ll notice that the trigger moves down with the trigger guard, meaning no pinched fingers. The short-throw lever means that it is very easy to snap through a full magazine quickly without taking the gun off-target or losing your cheek weld. There is no safety, although there is a half-cock notch. The trigger must be depressed in order to lower the hammer.

Without a doubt, this high-capacity, quick-firing assault lever rifle is enough to strike fear into the hearts of rabbits, squirrels, and tin cans everywhere. Maybe Browning should rename it the ALR-22 😉

Browning’s product page for the BL-22, Grade I. The MSRP is around $500, and street prices are at best about $450. Yes, it’s pricey for a .22 levergun, but I feel that it is worth it. For some reason, it is very hard to find one of these guns — maybe they are snatched up quickly, or perhaps the Miroku plant in Japan is just not making very many of them. None of the local Browning dealers had one in stock, and they were even doubtful about their ability to get one in anytime soon through special-order, so I bought mine online and had it shipped to a local FFL.

Browning also sold a slightly altered model chambered in .17HM2 for a couple of years, dubbed the BL-17. There appears to be a few of those still available through various outlets.

Advertisements
Explore posts in the same categories: Uncategorized

11 Comments on “Gun Porn: Browning BL-22”

  1. Sebastian Says:

    I’ve been looking at getting a .44 magnum lever gun in order to do lever action silhouette. The Henry Big Boys are rather expensive. Not sure if I want to make the investment yet.

  2. BobG Says:

    Nice looking gun. My 22 rifles are in bolt action, semi auto, and pump configurations, but I don’t have a lever gun in any caliber. Been thinking about one to go with my 44 mag wheelguns.


  3. […] Another Browning. […]

  4. soloban Says:

    I’ve got one of these beauties as well. I love shooting it!

  5. johnny Says:

    i got one of those

  6. J.C. Says:

    I’ve got one just like the one pictured above. I cant beleive its worth more than my AK-47. I payed $350.00 for my WASR-10 AK-47. My dad gave me the Browning 22 when I was 9 or 10 years old. I figured the AK would’ve cost more.

  7. Jason Says:

    Hi there from Australia
    I recently bought a bl 22 and really enjoy shooting it.
    However, i recently lent it to my uncle. I’m not sure it came back in the same condition i lent it or whether it is my imagination. Or perhaps the actions loosen over use.
    Anyway there seems to be about 1 cetimetre ( bit <1/2 inch) of free play of the lever between its position against the stock and when the action starts to be positively cycled/engages on the downward stroke.
    Was it always like this? When cocked, i thought i remembered the lever been tight and strong against the stock and any movement started opening the champer in a positive manner. Now it stll maintains thw rigt position against the stock but i can jiggle it up and down a centimetre without opening the action with this movement.
    Is this normail on your bl 22?
    otherwise it operates flawlessly.
    Your advice is greatly appreciated.
    Thanks,
    Jason

  8. Dan Says:

    I just bought one new myself. I was sold when i felt the throw on the lever what a great little action!

  9. Anonymous Says:

    I just bought a used one with a scope for $325.00. Sweet little rifle. I like the fact that I can shoot .22 shorts (holds 22 rounds) great for the backyard.

  10. Anonymous Says:

    Just found one in a pawn shop and decided I had to have it! It’s a Grade 2 model w/ the gold trigger and engraving. It’s used but in mint condition with a box, They were asking $425.00, a little pricey but not bad. I had one about 20 years ago, but had to sell it. I’m jazzed to find this one to add to my .22 rifles. I just love the weight and how the Browning functions!

  11. yusuf Ismail Says:

    Hi there all. I’m South African and bought the exact model as the one mentioned above. Is it possible for a gunsmith to put a safety on that gun? Is there a website where I could order another loading stick?
    Please advise. Thanks


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s