American Rifleman - April 2011 - 74

TECHNICAL

DOPE BAG

More on the Web

www.americanriļ¬‚eman.org/xbolt

BROWNING LEFT-HAND X-BOLT HUNTER
B

rowning combined timetested design features with a
number of modern enhancements in its X-Bolt rifle ("A 'Radical' In The Family," May 2008,
p. 52). Fundamental design elements were built into the X-Bolt,
and although the gun's lineage can
be traced to the company's BBR
and A-Bolt, the X-Bolt stands on its
own as the next-generation Browning
bolt-action.
The new, left-hand Hunter
version is essentially a mirrored
version of the original. The blued
steel receiver is fixed to the stock
by two screws that pass through
the cast-aluminum bottom metal.
Female barrel threads and locking
lug recesses are integral with the
receiver, a welcome reprieve for

many traditionalists. Longitudinal
raceways cut into the receiver
guide the three-lug bolt during
its entire travel, although the third
lug is guided along one edge only
because of the ejection port. The
lugs are symmetrically arranged
and uniform, reminiscent of
the A-Bolt's design, and allow a
60-degree bolt throw. A pivoting
extractor lies between the two left
lugs, and unlike the rotating bolt
head on the A-Bolt, the X-Bolt's
bolt head is fixed to the bolt body.
The recessed bolt face has a
plunger ejector.
The one-piece recoil lug and
collar is sandwiched between
the barrel and receiver. It is fully
glass-bedded to the stock, and the
hammer-forged, blued steel barrel
is free-floated. The light barrel's
diameter tapers from 1.11" just in
front of the collar to 0.60" at the
muzzle, which features a recessed,
target-style crown.
The sliding, two-position safety

is tang-mounted. A bolt-unlock
button on top of the cast-steel bolt
handle allows the user to unlock
the bolt with the rifle on safe.
When compressed, the button
disengages a bolt-lock pin from its
recess in the bolt handle, keeping
the trigger and sear blocked.
The upward rotation of the
bolt handle cocks the firing pin
and extends a cocking indicator beneath the rear of the bolt
shroud. The pivoting bolt release
on the right rear of the receiver is
a departure from the unnecessarily large release on the A-Bolt. It is
narrower, serrated on its rear and
much less obtrusive.
The newly introduced Feather
trigger is screw-adjustable from
3 lbs. to 5 lbs. The three-lever
design is comprised of the trigger and two sears, instead of the
usual trigger and single sear, and
provides increased mechanical
advantage over standard designs.
This contributes to the crisp

The bolt assembly consists of a
cylindrical steel body with a separate,
pinned handle and three-lug head (l.).
A pivoting extractor and plunger ejector lie in the face (r.).

70 A

PRIL

2011

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American Rifleman - April 2011

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