A friend asked a favor of me while I was at this years NSSF- SHOT Show. This person knows I have a lefty in the family and that I look for products that support ambidextrous use, or are left-hand specific. I was presented the task of inquiring why a company no longer makes a left-handed product in their lineup.
UPDATE: A left-hand rifle is mentioned in the following video!
Winchester Model 70, left-handed, bolt-action rifles
QUESTION: Does Winchester make the Model 70 in a left-handed bolt-action?
Among my appointments and interviews, I found time to stop by the Winchester booth to inquire about a left-handed model 70. I mentioned this rifle in my suggestions On choosing a big-game hunting rifle. We happen to have one in our collection. It is a rifle we are familiar with, but it is right-handed. LG is interested in a left-handed model as well.
I stopped by the booth, and this is what I learned about the Model 70 bolt-action rifles in regards to availability in left-handed profiles.
Long ago Winchester manufactured the M70 in New Haven, Connecticut. That plant was closed down and the tooling relocated to South Carolina. The tooling for the left-handed models was old and outdated. It was not included in the move. Moreover, it is a very expensive process to create the tooling required to build a left-handed platform.
I inquired as to whether or not they have intentions of bringing the left-handed models back. The representative indicated there are no immediate plans to build tooling to manufacture left-handed model 70’s.
I then inquired as to where lefties might access a rifle with left-handed action. I was directed to Winchester’s sister company, Browning.
Browning’s booth was merely a few steps away from Winchester. We thanked the kind lady for her assistance and made our way over to see what rifles Browning offered to left-handed shooters.
Browning – Left-handed X-Bolt & A-Bolt rifles
Browning indeed offered left-handed bolt-action rifles in multiple product lines.
- T-Bolt – Rim fire (visit Browning’s site for additional details)
- X-Bolt – Center fire (visit Browning’s site for additional details)
Lefties will find Browning rifles with wood or composite stocks and in a variety of calibers. The one option Browning did not have available for the left-handed shooter was the thumb-hole stock. A left-handed shooter can, however, purchase one via after market companies. Browning boasted “The bolt unlock button works with the top-tang safety to offer enhanced safety while unloading. Styling features offer more compact dimensions for a smaller, quicker, sleeker look and feel, and also trims weight.”
ANSWER: No, Winchester does not make the Model 70 in left-handed, and yes, you can find quality left-handed bolt action at their sister company, Browning.
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