I never did understand the wails of despair from the traditionalists when the first lever guns came out with stainless metal and laminate stocks. I love the classic look of walnut and blued steel on my lever guns as much as the next guy but to my eye the stainless/laminate combo is equally fitting.
Think about it–lever guns are working guns, meant to stand up to tough use and abuse and keep doing their job without complaint. When a dusty cowboy is ambushed by a gang of desperados he doesn’t open up a felt lined case and assemble his gun like some English lord at his grouse peg in the heather. No, he yanks the rifle out of a beat up scabbard that is soaked through with horse sweat and he starts shooting. The extra ruggedness and durability of stainless and laminate are just what you’d want.
Browning just announced that it is offering stainless and laminate versions of all its lever guns including the BLR Model 81 Takedown. These takedowns will come in a full spectrum of cartridges, from .223 Rem. to .325 WSM. Prices start at $1,149 for most calibers. The WSMs will cost about $80 more. Once I take delivery of one I’ll post a review here after running it through the paces.