A win­ner for the keen be­gin­ner

The Medal­list was a well-de­signed shot­gun for the en­try-level mass mar­ket, says Charles Smith-jones

Sporting Gun - - Used Guns Blast From The Past - JAN­UARY 2019 www.shootin­guk.co.uk

There can be very few peo­ple who have not heard of the Brown­ing Arms Com­pany. Founded in 1878, the com­pany quickly de­vel­oped a de­served rep­u­ta­tion not just for the man­u­fac­ture of sport­ing and mil­i­tary firearms but also for a wide range of fish­ing tackle and other sport­ing goods. Co-founder John Moses Brown­ing is widely re­garded as one of the world’s most pro­lific in­ven­tors of firearms and his name is syn­ony­mous with qual­ity.

It is, how­ever, im­por­tant to recog­nise from the start that the Brown­ing Medal­list was never ac­tu­ally made by Brown­ing — it was sim­ply dis­trib­uted by the com­pany. Early pro­duc­tion of the Medal­list was in­stead done by the Ital­ian shot­gun man­u­fac­turer Zoli to Brown­ing spec­i­fi­ca­tions, but for rea­sons of cost and over-com­pli­ca­tion of de­sign soon switched to FIAS — bet­ter known as Sa­batti — another Ital­ian com­pany.

Specif­i­cally giv­ing the gun the name Brown­ing seems to have been a com­mer­cial de­ci­sion taken to el­e­vate its im­age on the open mar­ket.

The name, how­ever, is not a real is­sue. The Medal­list has al­ways been a ro­bust and well-de­signed shot­gun in­tended for the mass mar­ket as an en­try-level budget model. Apart from the very ear­li­est ones, which tended to be a lit­tle over-com­pli­cated, the ac­tion de­sign quickly evolved to be­come much more straight­for­ward and re­li­able.

Switch

The sin­gle trig­ger uses a sear sys­tem to switch be­tween bar­rels. The trans­fer to the sec­ond sear is op­er­ated by an in­er­tia mech­a­nism driven by re­coil. One shoot­ing fault that I have no­ticed, es­pe­cially among be­gin­ners, is that if the gun is not firmly seated in the shoul­der when fired, the trans­fer will not take place and as a re­sult the sec­ond bar­rel will not fire.

The safety is con­ve­niently placed in the usual lo­ca­tion on the top strap and it dou­bles as a bar­rel selec­tor. While the safety catch is non-au­to­matic, it can eas­ily be con­verted

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