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Old February 20, 2010, 11:29 AM   #1
Amateur
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1946 Browning Auto-5 is not semi-auto

I have recently inherited a 1946 Browning A-5 from my father-in-law. I took it out to fire it, loaded 3 #8's and started to shoot. I "thought" it was semi-auto, but after the first shot, nothing else happened. The spent shell stayed in the chamber. After each shot, I would have to manually eject the used shell and then press the bolt release button to allow the receiver mechanics to insert the next shell. It's like having a single-shot with a magazine, but not as fast because every time I pull back on the bolt to eject a used shell, I have to press the little button on the outside of the receiver so that it will chamber the next shell. Other than the safety, the only other operator control I can find is the little lever that allows you to eject the chambered shell without loading another shell. My father-in-law didn't have a manual, so I'm searching for reasons. Anybody have any ideas on what's wrong or what I'm doing wrong?
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Old February 20, 2010, 11:33 AM   #2
mete
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Call Browning and get the instruction manual.
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Old February 20, 2010, 01:21 PM   #3
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Do an online search. I don't know about all A-5's, but they can be set to shoot high brass or low brass by adjusting a ring under the forearm. Sorry I can't be more specific. I am not at home, so I can't look at mine. Yours is probably set for high brass now, if you have any high brass, give it a try.
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Old February 20, 2010, 01:24 PM   #4
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Took your advice, went out to their website and they had the manual on-line, so I downloaded it. Had no idea they would have that info so readily available. Anyway, it gave me some direction to check on a few things. Thanks for your suggestion. Wish me luck.
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Old February 20, 2010, 05:36 PM   #5
jaguarxk120
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Go to www.shotgunworld.com they have a Browning forum, everything you wanted to know about the A5 is there. Also Midwest Gun Works has a great web site with the factory service manual for down load. Explains how to take a A5 apart right down to the last screw/pin.
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Old February 20, 2010, 06:19 PM   #6
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Several things could be happening....

1 - adjust the ring under the forearm
2 - If using paper hulls they may have swollen
3 - If using reloads, brass may not have been resized
4 - Check to make sure the shell length matches the chamber (3" in a 2 3/4" would be a problem)
5 - Clean and lubricate action, try different ammo.
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Old February 20, 2010, 08:51 PM   #7
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OK, I'll tackle this one. First off "high brass" and "low brass" means nothing, you have to read what's printed on the box as to what charge is in the cartridge you're shooting. Let's assume you're shooting standard field loads. Your friction rings should be set as follows: barrel, then friction ring assembly, then steel ring, then the recoil spring. Trap or target loads usually require that the steel ring be stored under the action end of the spring to prevent loss. Some inportant points: the gap in the bronze friction ring and the gap in the steel spring around it must be lined up or the friction ring does not work. Lubrication of the mag tube is very important, and may be the root of your problem. A couple of drops of oil smeared over the tube and then wiped off thoroughly with a clean rag will accomplish this. Over lubing of the friction assembly has the opposite effect of canceling the braking effect and causes battering of parts and possible cracking of the rear of the frame. Here endeth the lesson. Goatwhiskers the Elder
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Old February 20, 2010, 09:49 PM   #8
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Old February 21, 2010, 01:14 AM   #9
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Get your owners manual here:

http://www.browning.com/customerserv...uals/index.asp
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Old February 21, 2010, 03:08 AM   #10
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From someone who has bought A5s low and sold them high because of functioning issues, and owns and hunts several A5s: either do it yourself or have a smith do it, but completely disassemble the gun (including removing the buttstock), completely clean it, lube it well with CLP or similar oil, very lightly lube the magazine tube, reassemble, and fire it again. Old grease and oil cake up in the receiver, the trigger group, the action spring (inside the buttstock), and the inside of the magazine tube. When you put the friction rings on, set them for light loads, get a box of "game loads", and function test it. I would bet it will shoot.
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Old February 21, 2010, 10:42 AM   #11
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Concur with the advice given above, with emphasis on cleaning the gun and making sure that the friction ring is set up for non-magnum loads.
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Old February 21, 2010, 11:36 AM   #12
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Advice I got from a Browning service rep: set the rings as for standard game loads and shoot, as long as it ejects don't change. The light setting is for trap loads and shooting game loads with the rings set for light loads will eventually cause problems. If it fails to eject properly then try the lighter setting. Goat
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Old February 21, 2010, 04:10 PM   #13
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Quote:
It's like having a single-shot with a magazine, but not as fast because every time I pull back on the bolt to eject a used shell, I have to press the little button on the outside of the receiver so that it will chamber the next shell.
Sounds like you may have something more going on than just the ring flipped the wrong way.

Does the bolt lock back even with shells in the magazine?
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Old February 21, 2010, 09:04 PM   #14
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Someone on the forum with an old 16 guage A-5 had a problem like this that turned out to be caused by the gun being chambered for a shorter shell than was being used. The gun would fire the too long shell but would not eject it. The OP in this thread doesn't mention what guage gun he's got or what size chamber the gun has or what size shell he's shooting , so I have no idea whether this is a similar problem or not, but just saying...
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