This arrangement was only used until 1976, when Browning standardised its serial number identification.The serial number remained at the front but a two letter code now denoted the year of manufacture with a three digit numerical code for the firearm type and grade of finish. 01035RT246 = a .22” Semi-Auto Grade 2 rifle, made in 1976 with the serial number 01035.It was also known as the ‘Browning Semi Automatic 22’ or ‘SA-22’.A leaf rear sight with a knobbed wheel adjustment was later replaced with a simple fold down rear sight.That said, the numbering system appears to be straightforward, digit only and sequential.With the importing of rifles to the US, the serial numbering system was changed to a combination of letters and numbers.
A tubular magazine is located in the walnut butt-stock and, in early rifles, loading was by means of a port located in the top of the stock.The barrel lock, located underneath in front of the breechblock finger piece, is pushed forward while the breechblock is moved back about a quarter of an inch.This prevents the extractor from catching during disassembly.During the move of production, in 1974, from Herstal to Miroku, Japan, the order of the serial number code was, in effect, reversed.The serial number now preceded the calibre code, followed by a two figure year code. 1270T74 = a 1974 Semi Auto rifle in .22” LR calibre with the serial number 1270.
In 1976, production resumed but now in Japan by Miroku.