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It Isn’t So Bad Being a Southpaw Anymore

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June 02, 2011

It Isn’t So Bad Being a Southpaw Anymore

By David E. Petzal

I learned a couple of days ago that the Browning X-Bolt Micro is now being made in a left-handed version, which means that if you are both vertically and directionally challenged, you can simply plop your plastic on any gun dealer’s counter and walk out with a first-class rifle that will fit you to a T. If you are of average height and left-handed, you can buy all manner of rifles, either factory or custom, that will work off the sinister shoulder. It was not always thus.

Before 1958, left-handers were almost totally ignored. A gunsmith named Barbour did conversions of right-handed rifles, and there was a custom bolt-action called the Mathieu (I’ve seen two in my life) that was very good, and I believe Mauser turned out a very few left-hand actions, but that was it.

The only prominent left-hand gun writer I can remember from the 1950s was Charley Askins, an Army officer, former Border Patrolman, national pistol champion, and big-game hunter who also liked to shoot people for recreation. (See his book.) Charley was fond of Barbour conversions, as I recall.

In 1958, Savage and Weatherby came out with southpaw versions of the Model 110 and the Mark V, and that was progress. However, the original Model 110 rifle was an inanimate hideosity, and the Mark V cost $250, and who had that kind of money? It wasn’t until Remington started making left-hand 700s in 1973 that the dam really broke, and now we are almost full-fledged members of the shooting fraternity.

Comments (50)

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from ckRich wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Almost. It's still rare for me to walk into a shop and see more than one, two, or three different left handed models. And that's probably the main reason I haven't purchased a new rifle lately, even though I've been searching.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jason Hart wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

I agree with you that it is rare to see a left handed rifle on a dealer's shelf. But it is good to know that in case my little boy is a left hander that there will be options for him. I was never afforded the opportunity to learn as I shoot right handed.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Amflyer wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

In my neck of the woods, you don't hear much about the A- or X-bolt. I've always though they felt good in the shop, but have never fired one set up and ready to go.

Is there more of a Browning club somewhere? Maybe the Southwest or West coast?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

There even making pants and shirts for Southpaws!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Amflyer wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Oh, and Dave, I think I had an inanimate hideosity removed a few years ago. Luckily it turned out to be benign.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

From the looks of things on the Browning Web site the old A Bolt Micro Hunter in left hand is all but kaput. It is only listed in .22 Hornet now. I assume Browning will be shifting all their eggs into the X-Bolt basket in the future. The gun was basically designed to be CNC friendly. I don't really like the styling of the X-Bolt but I must say the cartridge offerings in the regular lefty Hunter version are generous. They even offer the lefty Hunter version in 25/06 and .280 Remington. When was the last time you saw a .280 in a port side regular issue rifle?

My wife enjoys her A-Bolt Micro Hunter in 7-08. It fits her well, is easy to deploy and does not fatigue her to carry it. She and I have both eagerly recommeded that rifle to women, young folks and those of slight build over the years. Looks like we'll have to update our recommendation to the X-Bolt.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Hey Dave,

You gonna do a work up the lefty X-bolt family?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from sgaredneck wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Dang, the A-bolt at least looked the part like a proper bolt action. +1 on Bee's recommendation there on the Micro. Alas, the X-Bolt looks like it was designed by the same folks that brought us the Pontiac Aztek....

or the Xplor....

or the Vinci...

I mean, are there corporate board meetings going on at the major firearms makers, where someone is going, "Company X just introduced this, we should out-fugly our competitors' products..."???

But hey, as a lefty here I applaud any and all firearms makers for making stuff for us southpaws. Now since we live in the world of CNC and modern manufacturing practices, how about a lefty Model 70?

Clay,

Lucky for me, they even make left-handed guitar picks and strings...

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Southpaws?

The only problem I have with them, is the hot brass down the back of my neck during rapid fire! NRA Match High power Match 200yd sitting & 300yd prone

GOD LOVEM!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

sgaredneck

Coming soon,

Left handed barrels with left hand twist!

left-handed guitar picks and strings?

Now that's funny!

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from focusfront wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Good news. Too bad it's not stainless/ synthetic. I used a .300 Win Mag A-Bolt for deer about fifteen years ago; an awesome rifle. Never handled the X-Bolt. Guys (like you) who are making lists of the greatest firearms of the last century, ten years, etc. usually forget to mention the A-bolt or the X-bolt, and custom gunsmiths don't seem to use them, either. Why is that?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from davycrockettfv wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Did you say he liked to shoot people for recreation?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mike Diehl wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

As a matter of curiousity, are lefties that shoot lever rifles bothered by a right-side loading port?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Hil wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

BeeKeeper, I shoot the X-Bolt in 7mm08 (not the micro, and not the left-handed version) and I have been extremely happy with it. Relatively minor differences between it and the A-Bolt, but the differences (removable box magazine and bolt unlock button) are handy in my eyes.

Some call it ugly but I happen to like the look of it. Course I'm also a fan of the Browning Cynergy that a lot of folks think is ugly as well.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bellringer wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

When are the powers that be going to get around to making left handed ammo for these rifles?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from bluegraytx wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Having fumbled and stumbled through my early years with righthand rifles and shotguns designed with zero consideration for lefthanders (the M1 tops the list), I get absolutely giddy these days when I open my gun safe to "air out" a host of wife-numbing, lefthand rifles and shotguns (including a Model 70, "sgaredneck").

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Had to custom make my own left handed gun slings. Note to fellow left handers - If you reverse the sling swivels during installation they will work fine on a lefty rifle.

Hil,

Good to have the female perspective on a new rifle. Your remarks are duly noted. I am just not warming up to the sculpted stock. Oh well... in time. Thanks!

As a life long lefty I have shot lever guns, semi auto .22's, shotguns, and even semi-auto centerfires without mishap. Never interfered with my vision or distracted me either. For some reason I do get the ocassional bit of trash in my eyes when I shoot my left handed 1100!

Most left handers adapt well to products dsigned and forced onto us by right handed mutants. But we do appreciate their concessions in catering to us in certain things.

Now how about a left handed ball point pen...?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Bluegraytx,

Do you have one of the lefty M70's that will shoot? The one I had wouldn't group inside a hat and looked like it had been fitted up and finished with a hatchet, shovel and bench grinder. Glad someone wanted it!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from bluegraytx wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

@Mike Diehl

I have several lever-action Marlins and have yet to be bothered by their rightside ejection. I think where the big lefthand "bother" comes in with any righthanded weapon is in the reloading. Hold any righthanded weapon in firing position and imagine how you're going to reload in a hurry from the southpaw side. This was especially troublesome in an M1 when you had to hold the bolt back with the edge of your right hand (like a karate chop) as you seated a new clip and jerked your thumb back before it was amputated. The only way for a lefty to accomplish this was to momentarily switch the rifle to the right side, reload, and then switch back to the left side. Then imagine the words that would come to mind during this delay if enemy bullets were zipping around.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from bluegraytx wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

@Beekeeper

I must have lucked out. Mine is a work of art and likes to put its 7mm WSM's where I point.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jeff Bowers wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

It's nice that they make them. They so-called make many different types of left-handed rifles.

But the shooters are still being pretty much ignored. During my hunts for the elusive left-handed Remington, I was told that most lefty rifles are made only during one short run a year. Places like Bass Pro usually put in an order, and wait for up to six months (usually people give up by then) to try and get one. I saw two (2) lefty rifles in a huge gun show, and didn't like either caliber.

Give us some of the production numbers for these compared to right-handed versions. It's nice of them to go through the trouble, but more need to get out into the world.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from focusfront wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Diehl:

It is easier to reload a Marlin or Winchester lever gun if you are a lefty than if you are a righty. Just keep your left hand on the wrist of the stock where it belongs and push bullets into the loading gate with your right hand. My Marlin ejects straight to the side, but not in your face (unlike early M-16 before they put the bump on it), so no trouble there. My angle eject Winchester gives no trouble in any way. .30-30 and .35 Rem, etc. are low pressure rounds so case ruptures are unlikely. When I had to go lefty I got rid of my bolt rifles but kept my levers. That says something.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Bluegraytx,

You are fortunate. I had to order mine sight unseen and it must have been made by the same shift as the ones Dave Petzel complained about. Bully for you! Enjoy!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

I had no idea that there were as many of you so encumbered.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from sgaredneck wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

bluegraytx,

Should have clarified my comment as "a NEW GOOD LH Model 70".

The one I saw for sale used must have been like Bee's old one. It looked like something made in a high school shop class. No way I'd have owned it. Hope yours is different in every good way possible from the one I saw.

S GA

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from NHshtr wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

I'm hoping for more top tang safety designs on future models of both rifles and shotguns.

Loading, unloading and right-hand ejection on RH guns hasn't been a big problem for me. Cross-bolt safeties on the front of the trigger guard however, is a big restriction to buying a number of guns I'd like to own.

The cross-bolt on the rear of the trigger guard for either rifle or shotgun can be acceptably managed for game. But for shotguns for grouse, uhuh, top tang is for me.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mike Diehl wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Always loaded my levers the way you describe, Focusfront. I just wondered if it seemed cumbersome to lefties to have the loading port on the right side.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from RJ Arena wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

@Mike Diehl;
Like everything else in this right hand dominated world, a lefty gets used to anything. never had a problem with a lever action, I was just used to doing everything a@s backwards for so long I never thought about it. That was until I developed a left eye problem that forced me to shoot right handed(Dave gave me a few tips on switching eye dominance), The left eye is getting better and now I have the bonus of being equally good(or bad some days) shooting left or right, sort of like batting switch hitter in baseball.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

RJ, Good news on the eye and it never hurts to be versatile!

Like you said a lefty adapts to a right hand world. Everything from school desks to composition books are made right handed. When I went off to college I was amazed to find actual left handed desks, two per room!

I've shot righthand semi-auto shotguns for so long I have to think about how to manipulate my lefty 1100!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

WAM,

We are quietly plotting a take over...

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from gman3186 wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

im a lefty and shoot right handed guns i have never shot a left handed gun. i can shoot with either hand but i am more comfortable shooting left handed the one advantage i have found shooting left handed guns right handed that if the gun does happen to jam you see it right away instead of having to the roll the gun to one side but to be honest i dont think i ever would buy a left handed gun im so used to shooting right handed guns lefty

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Del in KS wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

What we need is a good left handed scope for all those left handed rifles.
BTW one day a large gobbler came in on my right side and I could not bring the SBE around far enough to shoot. He got away and I started dry firing from either shoulder. Have shot several birds from the wrong side since that day. Learned to play baseball as a kid batting left and throwing right.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mike Plotner wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

on some guns i shoot better lefty than righty. i am left eye dominate but i shoot right handed most often. but i never shoot lefty in the field. maybye if ihad more pratice

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from 99explorer wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Del,
Speaking about left-handed scopes, I have a friend who accidentally mounted his new scope rotated 90 degrees to the left, with the windage turret on top and the elevation turret to the left.
He got his rifle completely sighted in, and was preparing to leave the range when a bystander happened to notice the odd arrangement and commented on it.
One of life's most embarrassing moments.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Cbass wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Bee: In some circles, you have already taken over. Obama, Clinton, and George Bush I were southpaws- at least concerning their signatures. So was Ford.

Some company...

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Carney wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Dave Petzal: We who have long been full fledged members of the shooting fraterniy, now welcome you in!

Enjoy all the rights, privleges and free gear that such membership affords!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Carney wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

99 -- Speaking of life's embarrassing moments; I was acting as range officer when a guy showed up to shoot his grandfather's Browning Lever Rifle. He was getting frustrated because he couldn't get it to fire. On closer inspection I could see that the rear stock (straight grip) had inadvertantly been installed upside down and the lever couldn't close all the way. He looked really sheepish and blamed it on his grandad. But who knows...

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from dickgun wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Not sure, but, after skimming the postings, I do get the impression that "left handed shooters" may be the only non- subsidised and / or minorities remaining in the US. With our current President and his priorities it would seem to be a great time to press forward to get those discriminations corrected. ALCU should be supportive.
Might divert his administrations subvertive sneaking toward gun control objectives.
onward,

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

I think the recent style changes in all the Browning and in the autoloading Winchester rifles are in response to Benelli. Just look at the BAR now and the Winchester auto. They both look like the Benelli R1.

In the "tactical" "counterculture" (LOL), it is thought to be better to have a gun that has controls for manipulation by your weaker hand. This is because modern tactical doctrine requires that you maintain your firing grip at all times, doing everything else with your weak hand. So an AK/AKM would be ideal for a lefty, because he can rack the charging handle with his [non-firing] right hand.

I think the same doctrine is being followed by some righthanded varminters and benchrest shooters.

I wish CZ would continue making left handed CZ550s. And not just in .375H&H. Maybe in .300H&H?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from nc30-06 wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

One company, Stag Arms, makes a left-hand AR type rifle. I always wanted a left-hand M14 and M16 when in the Marine Corps. Sure would have made a difference. Thompson Center makes/made a left-hand black powder rifle. I have one of those and of course my Remington 700 left-hander. All my pistols and revolvers are right or left hand models.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jeff Bowers wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Charter Arms makes one of their little .38s in a "Southpaw" model. I like it, just wish it had a longer barrel.

My biggest drawback is target shooting with a bolt action. I have to completely break position to move my head to work the bolt. To me, it means more when I can get 4 rounds under a quarter.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Del in KS wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

NOS but this morning I read an article in the Investors Business daily page A15 about Obamma's Commerce secretary nominee John Bryson.
We should do everything we can to keep him out of the Commerce Dept. Talk about a left wingnut this guy is one in the flesh. This is putting a fox in charge of the chicken coop. If these guys had their way gasoline would be 8 or 10 bucks a gallon so the little people (us) could not afford to drive and a major polution problem would be solved. The United Kingdom is already like that. Only the well heeled can afford even a Smart car over there. Everybody else rides the subways, buses, taxis, bikes or walks.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

CBass it seems I read some where that a good many presidents have been leftys.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from jamesti wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

i can't understand why companies didn't go after the lefties for sales a long time ago. a lot of missed sales i think.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

And gratitude!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from dtbc333 wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

mike diehl...As a lefty I have never had any problems with shooting right handed guns, except when it comes to loading certain models. Not so with lever actions. I have a marlin, and the loading actually feels pretty natural to me. I also never even really notice the ejecting shells. To be honest I have gotten so used to doing things backwards on a right handed gun that it might feel cumbersome to try to switch to a left handed model.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Not to wander too far off topic, but the last turkey I killed several years ago worked his way around behind me, walking from left to right and started going away from me uphill when he was over my right shoulder. It was a lefty shot or nothing, so I leaned a little to the right, shouldered the 870 Super mag, and whacked him. Skinned my finger a little on the trigger guard from not having as firm of a grip as I should have.

Back to Army days, everyone needs to learn and practice operating all weapons from the weak side. Might come in more than a little handy some day.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from scratchgolf72 wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

being a lefty and a fan of browning over/under shotguns i may have to give one of these a look...i feel as though i will stick with weatherby and remington for off the shelf left hand rifles.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from focusfront wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Mike Diehl:

Wasn't trying to insult your intelligence. I only wrote that to point out that lefties actually have an advantage with traditional bolt rifles (and single action handguns, too). A lefty can top off his Winchester or Marlin without juggling the gun or missing a beat. Who needs a spare mag when you can do that?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mike Diehl wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

None taken, Focus.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from sgaredneck wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Dang, the A-bolt at least looked the part like a proper bolt action. +1 on Bee's recommendation there on the Micro. Alas, the X-Bolt looks like it was designed by the same folks that brought us the Pontiac Aztek....

or the Xplor....

or the Vinci...

I mean, are there corporate board meetings going on at the major firearms makers, where someone is going, "Company X just introduced this, we should out-fugly our competitors' products..."???

But hey, as a lefty here I applaud any and all firearms makers for making stuff for us southpaws. Now since we live in the world of CNC and modern manufacturing practices, how about a lefty Model 70?

Clay,

Lucky for me, they even make left-handed guitar picks and strings...

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

sgaredneck

Coming soon,

Left handed barrels with left hand twist!

left-handed guitar picks and strings?

Now that's funny!

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Carney wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

99 -- Speaking of life's embarrassing moments; I was acting as range officer when a guy showed up to shoot his grandfather's Browning Lever Rifle. He was getting frustrated because he couldn't get it to fire. On closer inspection I could see that the rear stock (straight grip) had inadvertantly been installed upside down and the lever couldn't close all the way. He looked really sheepish and blamed it on his grandad. But who knows...

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

From the looks of things on the Browning Web site the old A Bolt Micro Hunter in left hand is all but kaput. It is only listed in .22 Hornet now. I assume Browning will be shifting all their eggs into the X-Bolt basket in the future. The gun was basically designed to be CNC friendly. I don't really like the styling of the X-Bolt but I must say the cartridge offerings in the regular lefty Hunter version are generous. They even offer the lefty Hunter version in 25/06 and .280 Remington. When was the last time you saw a .280 in a port side regular issue rifle?

My wife enjoys her A-Bolt Micro Hunter in 7-08. It fits her well, is easy to deploy and does not fatigue her to carry it. She and I have both eagerly recommeded that rifle to women, young folks and those of slight build over the years. Looks like we'll have to update our recommendation to the X-Bolt.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mike Diehl wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

As a matter of curiousity, are lefties that shoot lever rifles bothered by a right-side loading port?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from dickgun wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Not sure, but, after skimming the postings, I do get the impression that "left handed shooters" may be the only non- subsidised and / or minorities remaining in the US. With our current President and his priorities it would seem to be a great time to press forward to get those discriminations corrected. ALCU should be supportive.
Might divert his administrations subvertive sneaking toward gun control objectives.
onward,

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from ckRich wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Almost. It's still rare for me to walk into a shop and see more than one, two, or three different left handed models. And that's probably the main reason I haven't purchased a new rifle lately, even though I've been searching.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bellringer wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

When are the powers that be going to get around to making left handed ammo for these rifles?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Hil wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

BeeKeeper, I shoot the X-Bolt in 7mm08 (not the micro, and not the left-handed version) and I have been extremely happy with it. Relatively minor differences between it and the A-Bolt, but the differences (removable box magazine and bolt unlock button) are handy in my eyes.

Some call it ugly but I happen to like the look of it. Course I'm also a fan of the Browning Cynergy that a lot of folks think is ugly as well.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Carney wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Dave Petzal: We who have long been full fledged members of the shooting fraterniy, now welcome you in!

Enjoy all the rights, privleges and free gear that such membership affords!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

I had no idea that there were as many of you so encumbered.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Hey Dave,

You gonna do a work up the lefty X-bolt family?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Had to custom make my own left handed gun slings. Note to fellow left handers - If you reverse the sling swivels during installation they will work fine on a lefty rifle.

Hil,

Good to have the female perspective on a new rifle. Your remarks are duly noted. I am just not warming up to the sculpted stock. Oh well... in time. Thanks!

As a life long lefty I have shot lever guns, semi auto .22's, shotguns, and even semi-auto centerfires without mishap. Never interfered with my vision or distracted me either. For some reason I do get the ocassional bit of trash in my eyes when I shoot my left handed 1100!

Most left handers adapt well to products dsigned and forced onto us by right handed mutants. But we do appreciate their concessions in catering to us in certain things.

Now how about a left handed ball point pen...?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Bluegraytx,

You are fortunate. I had to order mine sight unseen and it must have been made by the same shift as the ones Dave Petzel complained about. Bully for you! Enjoy!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

RJ, Good news on the eye and it never hurts to be versatile!

Like you said a lefty adapts to a right hand world. Everything from school desks to composition books are made right handed. When I went off to college I was amazed to find actual left handed desks, two per room!

I've shot righthand semi-auto shotguns for so long I have to think about how to manipulate my lefty 1100!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mike Diehl wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Always loaded my levers the way you describe, Focusfront. I just wondered if it seemed cumbersome to lefties to have the loading port on the right side.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Del in KS wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

NOS but this morning I read an article in the Investors Business daily page A15 about Obamma's Commerce secretary nominee John Bryson.
We should do everything we can to keep him out of the Commerce Dept. Talk about a left wingnut this guy is one in the flesh. This is putting a fox in charge of the chicken coop. If these guys had their way gasoline would be 8 or 10 bucks a gallon so the little people (us) could not afford to drive and a major polution problem would be solved. The United Kingdom is already like that. Only the well heeled can afford even a Smart car over there. Everybody else rides the subways, buses, taxis, bikes or walks.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from bluegraytx wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

@Mike Diehl

I have several lever-action Marlins and have yet to be bothered by their rightside ejection. I think where the big lefthand "bother" comes in with any righthanded weapon is in the reloading. Hold any righthanded weapon in firing position and imagine how you're going to reload in a hurry from the southpaw side. This was especially troublesome in an M1 when you had to hold the bolt back with the edge of your right hand (like a karate chop) as you seated a new clip and jerked your thumb back before it was amputated. The only way for a lefty to accomplish this was to momentarily switch the rifle to the right side, reload, and then switch back to the left side. Then imagine the words that would come to mind during this delay if enemy bullets were zipping around.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Amflyer wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Oh, and Dave, I think I had an inanimate hideosity removed a few years ago. Luckily it turned out to be benign.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

I think the recent style changes in all the Browning and in the autoloading Winchester rifles are in response to Benelli. Just look at the BAR now and the Winchester auto. They both look like the Benelli R1.

In the "tactical" "counterculture" (LOL), it is thought to be better to have a gun that has controls for manipulation by your weaker hand. This is because modern tactical doctrine requires that you maintain your firing grip at all times, doing everything else with your weak hand. So an AK/AKM would be ideal for a lefty, because he can rack the charging handle with his [non-firing] right hand.

I think the same doctrine is being followed by some righthanded varminters and benchrest shooters.

I wish CZ would continue making left handed CZ550s. And not just in .375H&H. Maybe in .300H&H?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from sgaredneck wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

bluegraytx,

Should have clarified my comment as "a NEW GOOD LH Model 70".

The one I saw for sale used must have been like Bee's old one. It looked like something made in a high school shop class. No way I'd have owned it. Hope yours is different in every good way possible from the one I saw.

S GA

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from 99explorer wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Del,
Speaking about left-handed scopes, I have a friend who accidentally mounted his new scope rotated 90 degrees to the left, with the windage turret on top and the elevation turret to the left.
He got his rifle completely sighted in, and was preparing to leave the range when a bystander happened to notice the odd arrangement and commented on it.
One of life's most embarrassing moments.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Cbass wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Bee: In some circles, you have already taken over. Obama, Clinton, and George Bush I were southpaws- at least concerning their signatures. So was Ford.

Some company...

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Bluegraytx,

Do you have one of the lefty M70's that will shoot? The one I had wouldn't group inside a hat and looked like it had been fitted up and finished with a hatchet, shovel and bench grinder. Glad someone wanted it!

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from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

WAM,

We are quietly plotting a take over...

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from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

CBass it seems I read some where that a good many presidents have been leftys.

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from Del in KS wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

What we need is a good left handed scope for all those left handed rifles.
BTW one day a large gobbler came in on my right side and I could not bring the SBE around far enough to shoot. He got away and I started dry firing from either shoulder. Have shot several birds from the wrong side since that day. Learned to play baseball as a kid batting left and throwing right.

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from jamesti wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

i can't understand why companies didn't go after the lefties for sales a long time ago. a lot of missed sales i think.

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from nc30-06 wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

One company, Stag Arms, makes a left-hand AR type rifle. I always wanted a left-hand M14 and M16 when in the Marine Corps. Sure would have made a difference. Thompson Center makes/made a left-hand black powder rifle. I have one of those and of course my Remington 700 left-hander. All my pistols and revolvers are right or left hand models.

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from bluegraytx wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Having fumbled and stumbled through my early years with righthand rifles and shotguns designed with zero consideration for lefthanders (the M1 tops the list), I get absolutely giddy these days when I open my gun safe to "air out" a host of wife-numbing, lefthand rifles and shotguns (including a Model 70, "sgaredneck").

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from bluegraytx wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

@Beekeeper

I must have lucked out. Mine is a work of art and likes to put its 7mm WSM's where I point.

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from RJ Arena wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

@Mike Diehl;
Like everything else in this right hand dominated world, a lefty gets used to anything. never had a problem with a lever action, I was just used to doing everything a@s backwards for so long I never thought about it. That was until I developed a left eye problem that forced me to shoot right handed(Dave gave me a few tips on switching eye dominance), The left eye is getting better and now I have the bonus of being equally good(or bad some days) shooting left or right, sort of like batting switch hitter in baseball.

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from focusfront wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Good news. Too bad it's not stainless/ synthetic. I used a .300 Win Mag A-Bolt for deer about fifteen years ago; an awesome rifle. Never handled the X-Bolt. Guys (like you) who are making lists of the greatest firearms of the last century, ten years, etc. usually forget to mention the A-bolt or the X-bolt, and custom gunsmiths don't seem to use them, either. Why is that?

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from focusfront wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Diehl:

It is easier to reload a Marlin or Winchester lever gun if you are a lefty than if you are a righty. Just keep your left hand on the wrist of the stock where it belongs and push bullets into the loading gate with your right hand. My Marlin ejects straight to the side, but not in your face (unlike early M-16 before they put the bump on it), so no trouble there. My angle eject Winchester gives no trouble in any way. .30-30 and .35 Rem, etc. are low pressure rounds so case ruptures are unlikely. When I had to go lefty I got rid of my bolt rifles but kept my levers. That says something.

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from focusfront wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Mike Diehl:

Wasn't trying to insult your intelligence. I only wrote that to point out that lefties actually have an advantage with traditional bolt rifles (and single action handguns, too). A lefty can top off his Winchester or Marlin without juggling the gun or missing a beat. Who needs a spare mag when you can do that?

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from Jeff Bowers wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

It's nice that they make them. They so-called make many different types of left-handed rifles.

But the shooters are still being pretty much ignored. During my hunts for the elusive left-handed Remington, I was told that most lefty rifles are made only during one short run a year. Places like Bass Pro usually put in an order, and wait for up to six months (usually people give up by then) to try and get one. I saw two (2) lefty rifles in a huge gun show, and didn't like either caliber.

Give us some of the production numbers for these compared to right-handed versions. It's nice of them to go through the trouble, but more need to get out into the world.

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from Jeff Bowers wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Charter Arms makes one of their little .38s in a "Southpaw" model. I like it, just wish it had a longer barrel.

My biggest drawback is target shooting with a bolt action. I have to completely break position to move my head to work the bolt. To me, it means more when I can get 4 rounds under a quarter.

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from Amflyer wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

In my neck of the woods, you don't hear much about the A- or X-bolt. I've always though they felt good in the shop, but have never fired one set up and ready to go.

Is there more of a Browning club somewhere? Maybe the Southwest or West coast?

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from gman3186 wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

im a lefty and shoot right handed guns i have never shot a left handed gun. i can shoot with either hand but i am more comfortable shooting left handed the one advantage i have found shooting left handed guns right handed that if the gun does happen to jam you see it right away instead of having to the roll the gun to one side but to be honest i dont think i ever would buy a left handed gun im so used to shooting right handed guns lefty

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from Jason Hart wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

I agree with you that it is rare to see a left handed rifle on a dealer's shelf. But it is good to know that in case my little boy is a left hander that there will be options for him. I was never afforded the opportunity to learn as I shoot right handed.

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from Mike Plotner wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

on some guns i shoot better lefty than righty. i am left eye dominate but i shoot right handed most often. but i never shoot lefty in the field. maybye if ihad more pratice

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from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

There even making pants and shirts for Southpaws!

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from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Southpaws?

The only problem I have with them, is the hot brass down the back of my neck during rapid fire! NRA Match High power Match 200yd sitting & 300yd prone

GOD LOVEM!

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from NHshtr wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

I'm hoping for more top tang safety designs on future models of both rifles and shotguns.

Loading, unloading and right-hand ejection on RH guns hasn't been a big problem for me. Cross-bolt safeties on the front of the trigger guard however, is a big restriction to buying a number of guns I'd like to own.

The cross-bolt on the rear of the trigger guard for either rifle or shotgun can be acceptably managed for game. But for shotguns for grouse, uhuh, top tang is for me.

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from davycrockettfv wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Did you say he liked to shoot people for recreation?

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

Not to wander too far off topic, but the last turkey I killed several years ago worked his way around behind me, walking from left to right and started going away from me uphill when he was over my right shoulder. It was a lefty shot or nothing, so I leaned a little to the right, shouldered the 870 Super mag, and whacked him. Skinned my finger a little on the trigger guard from not having as firm of a grip as I should have.

Back to Army days, everyone needs to learn and practice operating all weapons from the weak side. Might come in more than a little handy some day.

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from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

And gratitude!

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from Mike Diehl wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

None taken, Focus.

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from scratchgolf72 wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

being a lefty and a fan of browning over/under shotguns i may have to give one of these a look...i feel as though i will stick with weatherby and remington for off the shelf left hand rifles.

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from dtbc333 wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

mike diehl...As a lefty I have never had any problems with shooting right handed guns, except when it comes to loading certain models. Not so with lever actions. I have a marlin, and the loading actually feels pretty natural to me. I also never even really notice the ejecting shells. To be honest I have gotten so used to doing things backwards on a right handed gun that it might feel cumbersome to try to switch to a left handed model.

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