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TOM, Gunsmith
Category: Firearms
Satisfied Customers: 4312
Experience:  17 YRS EXPERIENCE,Certified Armorer
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A friend of mine has an old Browning bolt action rifle. I

Customer Question

A friend of mine has an old Browning bolt action rifle. I know very little information about it. Did Browning only make hunting bolt actions or did they also make military 303 rifles? He says it's a .303? He's had the gun over 50 years, handed down by this father. Sorry I don't have more information to give you. Maybe you can give me some idea about Browning bolt action (antique) rifles over 50 years old. Thank you.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Firearms
Expert:  TOM replied 2 years ago.
The only gun that I know of that was produced by Browning in 303 was the 1919 Mk II machine gun. FN produced rifles in most American and European calibers.
Is he sure it is a 303 and not a 308? The bolt face on a 308 is about 0.475" in diameter. The 303 bolt face is about 0.550". Removing the bolt and measuring the bolt face will let me know which it is.
Browning made many different rifles, some on Mauser receivers (actions)both large and small ring, some on Sako receivers and the rest on their own receivers. They are listed as "FN Hi-Power" models. There are 3 grades, Safari, Medallion and Olympian. These guns were manufactured from 1960 to 1974. The "A-Bolt" was introduced in 1975.
The list of calibers is long, but 303 is not listed. It is possible that a rifle made for the European market could be in 303.
A couple of pictures would help to identify the model and the bolt face measurement will help with the caliber.