If an old school plinker is your desire, the Browning Challenger III could be the gun for you. Made between the 1960s and 1980s, the Challenger was created in response to the Ruger Mark II. Up until that point, .22 LR pistols were primarily made for hunters; but the Ruger Mark II and Browning Challenger changed that, marketed towards recreational shooters.
Browning Challenger III Specs
In looking at the aesthetics, one can see an attention to detail in its styling — a contrast to predecessors. Rounded beavertail, curves cut in the slide, and a unique stepped sight all lend to a more pleasing appearance. In true Browning style, it also has the iconic gold trigger and medallion.
The Challenger III sports 10-round mags. (Photo: Taylor Thorne/Guns.com)
The 5.5-inch bull barrel is coupled with target sights while the rear sight is adjustable. It’s worth noting, the front sight is stationary. Interestingly, the rear sight is attached to the barrel to improve accuracy, which does make racking the slide very awkward. The bottom-fed magazine is true to its era with 10 rounds. The alloy frame, however, was innovative for the time. Hefty in the hand at 35-ounces, the weight does help when steadying on distant targets and transitions.
Shooting the Browning Challenger III
How was it on the range? The Challenger feels nice in the hand and the grip angle is natural. I tested the Challenger on an array of steel plates and noticed that transitions and precision shots were easy. It felt like an extension of the hand.
The trigger has a long pull and is on the heavier side, compared to other .22 LR match pistols. I adapted to this quickly and feel this pistol would be a great one for beginners. In fact, there are endless stories about the Challenger being the first pistol for many.
The Challenger feels nice in the hand. (Photo: Taylor Thorne/Guns.com)
For all its perks, the Challenger is ammo sensitive. I had to go through a variety of ammunition to find what worked best. Keep in mind, though, .22 LR is notorious for being finicky so this was no surprise. I started with my trusty ole Remington Bucket O’ Bullets, which is a less expensive high velocity round. Unfortunately, Remington didn’t work so well. I bumped it up to high-velocity CCI rounds which didn’t yield different results.
Moving down in velocity to 1,240 FPS with Federal helped smooth out some issues but it wasn’t perfect. Finally, I discovered with standard velocity 1,200 FPS Federal ammo, the Challenger performed best. It seems this gun prefers standard velocity rounds, most likely because when the pistol was first introduced high-velocity rounds were not prevalent.
(Photo: Taylor Thorne/Guns.com)
This classic .22 LR pistol is sure to please. The Browning Challenger III is a staple in the plinking world, capable of sporting, hunting, and bullseye shooting. Replaced eventually by the popular Buck Mark, the Challenger is still a fun throwback living up to its name.
Please Help Support BeforeitsNews by trying our Natural Health Products below!
Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at https://mitocopper.com
Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at https://www.herbanomic.com
Get our Free Ebook, "Suppressed Health Secrets" with Natural Cures THEY don't want you to know!
Humic & Fulvic Trace Minerals Complex - Nature's most important supplement! Vivid Dreams again!
Ultimate Clinical Potency Curcumin - Natural pain relief, reduce inflammation and so much more.
pathogens and gives you more
energy. (See Blood Video)
Oxy Powder - Natural Colon Cleanser! Cleans out toxic buildup with oxygen!
Organic Hemp Extract (CBD) - Full Spectrum high CBD (3300mg) hemp extract eases stiff joints, relieves stress and more!
Nascent Iodine - Promotes detoxification, mental focus and thyroid health.
Smart Meter Cover - Reduces Smart Meter radiation by 96%! (See Video)
Immusist Beverage Concentrate - Proprietary blend, formulated to reduce inflammation while hydrating and oxygenating the cells.