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Thread: Thinking of buying a BAR

  1. #1
    Member ADUKHNT's Avatar
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    Default Thinking of buying a BAR

    Does anyone here have experience hunting with a Browning BAR in AK. All their ads say the rifles are awesome but have they tested them in AK conditions? I can't seem to find anyone who owns one, I used the search and not much. Maybe that answers my question but I'd still like to hear from someone who has hunted with one here in AK. If you own one or have owned one let me know your experiences.
    I have such a hard time trying to decide which outdoor activity to do every chance I get!! Living in AK is a mental challenge

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    Wouldn't recommend the BAR. Had nothing but problems with a 270. Basically gave it away to a friend who sent it back twice to Browning before they could figure out what was wrong with it....(stovepiped)...

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    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    Had a client with one in a 338 on kodiak once. Four shots and three of them jammed. They are a no go for me.
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    Member Casper50's Avatar
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    I have a 338 and have not had any problems.

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    Had 2 of the non-magnums. Worked great. Both Belgium made. Had a newer .300 win mag. Surprisingly accurate but prone to malfunction. Two trips back to Browning and a final trip to the gun show.

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    Member shimano 33's Avatar
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    Have loved mine from day 1.

    Really sweet shooter in 7mm08. I have roughly 100 rounds down the tube and have NEVER had a malfunction for what its worth. I originally bought the gun for dog hunting in the lower 48 and have thought about selling..but it has proven its keep. Would also be a fantastic option for the wife while hunting IMO.

    I have a Tikka in 7mm08 as well and the felt recoil difference is surprisingly large. Tikka is more of a snap and the Browning is a way smoother felt push. Kinda hard to explain…just have to feel.

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    Friend of mine in CO collected the Grade 2 Belgium BAR's. He had every caliber. He had a 7mm Rem Mag that would rival any custom bolt gun I've ever owned accuracy wise and never missed a stroke.

    I think they are a good rifle. Obviously a few duds out there but that happens with all of them. I say get one and shoot it a bunch. If it's going to be a problem I bet it will turn up quick.

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    Member BAR300's Avatar
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    I had a Belgian Browning, around a 1982 or so, 300 Win Mag, had failure to eject all the time, at least 1 out of 5 shots. I thought it was going to be the way to go for me,,, throw lots of lead and hope to hit something. Turns out- a little practice and I'm way better with a bolt. I couldn't make it my go to weapon knowing it couldn't do follow up shots. First shot no problem, after that it's a wing and a prayer... I did however get good at clearing the malfunctions, but that aside I traded it off. Perhaps the newer ones are better, or I just needed to spend more time and money chasing whatever the problem was. Alaska being what it is, your likely to get sand, dirt, leaves, ect. into your action and if you do, I'd rather have a bolt than a semi auto.

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    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    I just don't know if I would want to rely on a semi when it comes to big game.......especially the ones with fangs......lol.

    I own an old Browning semi shotgun and love it, but that duck or goose isn't going to eat me if I wound it.....lol.

    My son's grandfather gave my son one in 300wm. I told him I would take the nice scope off the thing and put it on the Savage 325 I bought him. I guess that kinda shows you my thoughts on the BAR. But that's just me......
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Member highestview's Avatar
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    I have really wanted a 338 one for a while just so I could build a semi auto 416 Taylor out of it. Everything I have read seems to agree with some of the other posters. The older Belgian made ones are worth it.
    Born in Alaska: The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance. Psalm 16:6

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    Member JR2's Avatar
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    Bought the wife a left handed BAR short track in 7mm-08, only been to the range once with it and it performed nicely. More time will tell but it is what the wife wanted. Will be used for black bears, Bou and maybe a moose some day.
    2007 Kingfisher 2825 - Stor Fisk

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    One of my hunting partners took one out a few times while I was with him, last day of the season he wanted to shoot it a little "because he hadn't shot it it ages". First round went of, the only thing I heard after that was cussing...


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    I had one I bought new in the late 80's or so. I was a reloader so I bought some small base dies and had some FTE's and I was getting gray residue that looked like fine graphite powder back into the magazine onto the rounds.
    I bought some factory ammo and after a few rounds the same thing happened. I took it back to the LGS I bought if from who sold mostly highend stuff and had an onsite gunsmith with a shop in the basement. He was factory authorized to worm on all of the major brands. I left it with him while I went on vacation for a week or so. When I returned be said he cleaned and oil then test fired it with a few rounds and had no problems.
    I took it to the range and again after a few rounds more FTE so I brought it back to him and he sent it back to Browning. A few weeks later I got it back and was told they put a different piston in it and it was functioning ok. Off to the range again and after half a box it was running just fine. I took it home and broke it down and had another smith parkerize it. While it was gone I stripped the gloss finish off of it and much to my dismay all the walnut color came off too leaving a white stock. I guess it was a walnut dye in the urethane finish.
    I got some minwax and stained the stock and forearm and put a few coats on tung oil on it and let is site for two weeks before I assembled it. Back to the range and I shot up the remainder of the box with no issues. I picked up another box and made a few shots to verify the PPI had not changed. A month later on the second day of a hunt I was overlooking a deep canyon in southern AZ eating a sandwich was heard something moving in my direction below. It happened to be a big whitetail and I took air at it when it came around a bend giving me a shot. I was shooting almost straight down but shot just over it. Entirely my fault for not correcting for the angle. As I recovered quick for a fast follow up shot reality set in that I did not hear the expected sound of the case landing on the rocky ground. Yup, another FTE. I sold that rifle a few weeks later. It was bittersweet as I really like it, the way it balanced and how it looked after I gave it a facelift. I have not bought a Browning product since except for a camp pillow.

  14. #14
    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PRDATR View Post
    I have not bought a Browning product since except for a camp pillow.
    Well at least you probably got some good use out of that pillow......lol
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Member shimano 33's Avatar
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    So I have learned 3 things from this thread:

    A. Don't buy a used BAR UNLESS you can put some rounds down range prior.

    B. If you have one that works reliably, hang on to it.

    C. You are taking a chance when buying one NIB.

  16. #16
    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shimano 33 View Post
    So I have learned 3 things from this thread:

    A. Don't buy a used BAR UNLESS you can put some rounds down range prior.

    B. If you have one that works reliably, hang on to it.

    C. You are taking a chance when buying one NIB.
    Nowadays I think we are taking a chance buying ANYTHING NIB......lol.

    Oh and btw.....I hope that caribou wasn't too much of a mess. Where you able to pull it to higher ground?
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

  17. #17
    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    I'd pass on any of the older slab sided BARs for serious use... The newer short and long trac guns seem to be better...but I gotta admit, for a hunting rifle I'm just a bolt action kinda guy.

    I did mess around with a Benelli R1 and once you get past the ridiculous trigger, it shot OK and functioned fine.

    I guess for a hunting rifle I just find the autos just too fiddly and finicky.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

  18. #18
    Member shimano 33's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4merguide View Post
    Nowadays I think we are taking a chance buying ANYTHING NIB......lol.

    You got that right 4mer! That is actually the reason why I opted for a Win Mod 70 in the Weather Extreme over a Kimber. At the time, I had honestly just heard of too many problems from them right out the box..


    What made that bou trip even more memorable than where it expired, was that it was during one of our "5 mile death marches" off the Dalton!

    I initially didn't realize how boggy the area was (was shooting down-hill) until we walked up on where the caribou lay. Luckily we were able to drag him to a slightly drier spot for skinning.

    Man that was a brutal hunt. We ended up shooting 2 bou 5 miles out and I honestly didn't think my buddy was going to make it out (due to dehydration). I have never seen someone pound 2 gatorades as fast as he did upon arrival back at the truck. It took us two days to get all the meat out the field. My buddies horns are still laying out there on the tundra somewhere lol. He didn't have it in him for another trip.


    Mark

  19. #19
    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shimano 33 View Post
    You got that right 4mer!
    Man that was a brutal hunt. We ended up shooting 2 bou 5 miles out and I honestly didn't think my buddy was going to make it out (due to dehydration). I have never seen someone pound 2 gatorades as fast as he did upon arrival back at the truck. It took us two days to get all the meat out the field. My buddies horns are still laying out there on the tundra somewhere lol. He didn't have it in him for another trip.



    Mark
    I can certainly understand..... I once ran out of water while guiding for sheep....!!! Never did the "death march".....don't really think I want to..........lol
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

  20. #20
    Member shimano 33's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4merguide View Post
    I can certainly understand..... I once ran out of water while guiding for sheep....!!! Never did the "death march".....don't really think I want to..........lol

    Haha

    Lets just say I brought my dad up for a bou trip the following year and we FLEW off the Dalton LOL

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