SOLD FOR: $2913
Make: This rifle was made by Miroku of Japan for Browning
Model: 65 High Grade #554 of 1,500
Serial Number: 00554PN667
Year of Manufacture: 1989 (This is the only year this model was made, with 3500 made in Grade 1 and 1500 in High Grade, all in .218 Bee.)
Caliber: .218 Bee
Action Type: Lever Action with Button Magazine
Markings: The left side of the barrel is marked “BROWNING ARMS COMPANY MORGAN, UTAH & MONTREAL P.Q. / MADE IN JAPAN” and at the chamber with “BROWNING MODEL 65 CALIBER 218 BEE”. The top rear of the barrel and the top of the receiver’s chamber ring are marked with a “NP” proof mark. The front underside of the receiver is marked “00554 / PN667”. The right side of the barrel is marked “BROWNING MODEL 65 CALIBER 218 BEE”. The sides of the receiver have fine floral scroll engraving with gold inlaid animals of prey. The left side of the receiver is also marked with the engraver’s name “T. NAKA”.
Barrel Length: 24″
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a hooded brass bead dovetailed into a base screwed to the front of the barrel. The rear sight is a square notched semi-buckhorn elevator sight dovetailed into the top of the barrel.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The stocks are two-piece smooth walnut with capped forend, pistol grip, straight comb and checkered steel buttplate. The stocks have no notable wear or damage, only light storage marks. There are no chips or cracks. The LOP measures 13″ from the front of the trigger to the back of the buttplate. The plate has no notable wear or damage. Overall, the stocks are in Excellent condition.
Type of Finish: Blue Barrel & Grayed Receiver w/ Gold Inlays
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is bright and the rifling is sharp. There is no erosion in the bore.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 99% of its original metal finish. There is no notable wear or damage, only light handling marks. The screw heads are sharp. The markings are clear. Overall, this rifle rates in Excellent condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The hammer has a half-cock safety and the trigger pull is crisp. We have not fired this rifle. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: This rifle comes in a two-piece black cardboard Browning box with serial-matching label, styrofoam tray and manual.
Our Assessment: The Winchester Model 65 had a relatively short run in the time-span of Winchester lever-action rifles. Manufactured from 1933 to 1947, the Model 65 could be described as a successor to the Model 53, which itself was an improvement on the design of the famous Model 1892. The Model 65 was the rarest of the 1892 family. Only about 5,700 were manufactured, compared to 25,000 for the Model 53 and approximately a million for the 1892. The Model 1892 and its successors were all chambered in popular small-game cartridges. In 1938, Winchester introduced the .218 Bee, based on a necked-down .25-20 WCF. The .22 Bee was the first competition for the .22 Hornet in the category of varmint cartridges. The .22 Hornet was chambered in bolt action and single shot rifles, and so for the first time, those with a fondness for lever guns and small game/varmint hunting had a lever gun chambered in a varmint cartridge. The Bee and the Hornet were the only two flat shooting varmint cartridges available until the .222 Remington made its debut in 1950. In 1989, Browning marketed a faithful reproduction of the Model 65, chambered only in .218 Bee. 3500 were made in Grade 1 and 1500 in High Grade. This limited edition High Grade rifle is in Excellent condition with no notable wear or damage, appearing to have spent more time in its included factory box than out. With only 1,500 made, this rifle makes an excellent choice for the Browning collector to expand his/her collection with a lever gun. It is also a good choice for the shooter wanting a lever action varmint rifle. Please see our photos and good luck!