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 Browning Hi-Power .41 Action Express Conversion??
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Spring Creek
Senior Member

USA
1595 Posts

Posted - 08/09/2003 :  11:00:12 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mark or anybody with answer, please.
Although I've played with, collected and admired the Browning Hi-power for close to 35 years; I came across something at the recent Browning Collectors 25th Anniversary Show in Ogden, Utah that I had never seen before.
So naturally I had to "acquire" it.
It is a new in the box (Action Arms Ltd.) .41 Action Express conversion kit for the Browning Hi-Power.
.41 Action Express barrel and 2 "quality" magazines.
Also included was a full box of UZI brand .41 Action Express ammo.
?1. When was this conversion made/offered for sale?
?2. Approximate cost when new?
?3. What was wrong with this cartridge, that it didn't catch on?
Any other pertinent information in regards to this item would be very much appreciated.
Thanks

mark christian
Administrator

Panama
18935 Posts

Posted - 08/09/2003 :  11:30:55 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hello Spring Creek, my memory on this one is a little fuzzy but it seems to me that these kits were offered by Action Arms in the late 1980's and into the early 90's for around $200. I had thought that the conversions themselves were produced by Tangfoglio in Italy along with the MECGAR made magazines. The only factory loaded .41AE ammunition I ever heard of came from Samson. The idea behind the .41AE was to produce a cartridge which offered performance superior to the 9mm Luger but be able to chamber in a 9mm pistol with minimal modifications. This would make the round very useful in the USA and popular in various countries where civilian ownership of pistols chambered for military calibers (like the 9mm High Power) is prohibited. The usual expediant in most cases was to chamber the pistol in .30 Luger for sale in these restricted countries and suffer the resulting loss of power. Although the .41AE had much to recommend it, it was quickly eclipsed by the .40S&W which could also be chambered in 9mm sized pistols (with more modifications) and was more readily available...and the S&W name did not hurt either. There are too many blank spots in my old memory to give you the details that I know you'd expect from me on something like this and I appologize in advance.

Mark T. Christian
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Spring Creek
Senior Member

USA
1595 Posts

Posted - 08/09/2003 :  11:55:59 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mark,
I'm the one that should apologize, because it's an awful lot to ask
to have you "always available" for a quick answer.
And as usual, you were right there again with what I wanted to know.
The full box of (50) UZI brand ammo is in a cardboard box that is designed to look like a wood case. The ammo is in a well constructed blue plastic ammo tray.
On the box it says: .41 Action Express, 170 gr J.H.P.
Manufactured in Israel by Israel Military Industries, Rama Hasharon
On the case stamping it says: IMI/41AE
The mags are as you say, Italian made MECGAR, which in my estimation are as about as good as it gets for mags.
I must have been "out to lunch" when the .41AE era was around, as it just doesn't "register".
A few "blank" spots are part of this "maturing" process, I guess!
It's inevitable, but the alternative isn't great either!
Thanks again and take care.
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mark christian
Administrator

Panama
18935 Posts

Posted - 08/10/2003 :  12:22:03 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Glad I could help you out Spring. Samson was a trade name used by IMI for ammunition and various other items which it produced for world wide distribution. Action Arms was the sole U.S. distributor for Samson, Uzi, Galil, Timberwolf, and other IMI products. I believe that the Action Arms Company closed its doors in early 1995. Like everything from IMI, Samson ammo is top quality and you can stake your life on it. The MECGAR folks are the same people who produce about 90% of the factory magazines for the big names like Beretta, Walther, FN, SIG/Sauer, and a long list of others-- they don't come much better than MECGAR. It was not a case of "being out to lunch" during the .41AE era since the .41AE made a big splash and then came and went pretty quickly, although it deserved a better fate.

Mark T. Christian
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Pearyw
Advanced Member

3715 Posts

Posted - 08/10/2003 :  11:34:21 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Widener's in Tenn. still has IMI brass and 200 gr loaded ammo for the 41 AE. I have a Tanfglio in 41 AE. I reload for it using Sierra 170 hp bullets made for 41 Magnum use. I remember when the Browning conversions were offered. As I recall, there was usually some fitting required. It is a good cartridge, but the introduction of the 40 S&W killed the interest in it.

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rldowns3
Advanced Member

USA
6718 Posts

Posted - 08/10/2003 :  11:51:20 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
That's the one I have, the Hi-Power .41ae conversion. And yes, there is a bit of fitting that needs to be done to get the rounds to feed properly. Especially to the feed ramp. Note that these kits also do fit the FEG PJ9K Hi-Power clone as I tried one in the FEG as well and it fit about the same as it did in my Browning. Still needed ramp and lots of polishing to get it to feed properly though but once that was done they have both fired flawlessly. Although finding ammo is another situation in and of itself. I suggest if you are going to use this round that you do your own reloads.

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ATF
Advanced Member

USA
9261 Posts

Posted - 08/10/2003 :  11:58:04 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Here's a picture of one of mine it's new in box (unfired)Excam Tanarmi by Tanfoglio.



Here's another,A FEG Browning clone I bought the kit in Shotgun News a while ago for $100.00 including barrel,heavy recoil spring and 4 Meggar mags.Better caliber then .40 S&W.Just could not compete with S&Ws marketing.




ATF<P><br>

Edited by - ATF on 08/10/2003 12:15:03 PM
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rldowns3
Advanced Member

USA
6718 Posts

Posted - 08/10/2003 :  12:22:47 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
love the FEG's. As good as a real browning for less money.

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v35
Advanced Member

USA
12570 Posts

Posted - 08/10/2003 :  12:52:58 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
My P35, 41AE conversion was purchased about that time. As I recall
IMI in Philadelphia ran a special including a barrel, slide spring and
three or four magazines for about $120. The parts came with no box or ammo. I bought 500 or 1000 pieces of brass from them at that time. IMI only offered loaded ammo and brass, no bullets.
Minor Dremel work on the barrel and the magazine catch slots of the mags was necessary to adapt the kit to a WW2 Canadian/Chinese P35 Inglis Browning.
Some 200 grain loads chronographed at 1045fps
As I recall, there were some cycling and feeding problems due to incorrect bullet profile and with lighter bullets. Loading data is based on the 41AE bullet profile so 41 Magnum bullets of the same weight,assembled to the same overall length will have different seating depths. There was never much of a choice in bullets so 41 mag bullets were used. If 41 AE bullets are available now, they should be used.
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