- Browning Citori
Browning Citori Type Double-barreled shotgun Place of origin Japan Production history Manufacturer Miroku Corporation Produced 1973 - present Specifications Barrel length 26, 28, 30, or 32 inches Caliber 12, 16, 20, or 28 gauge or .410 bore Action Break-action
The Citori, a design variation of the highly successful John Moses Browning-designed Browning Superposed shotgun introduced in 1931, is manufactured in a wide variety of models, styles, and gauges to accommodate enthusiasts of clay target games such as trap, skeet, and sporting clays, and also upland bird and waterfowl hunting.
The Browning Citori ("Citori" has no meaning and is an advertising construct) was designed and introduced in 1973 as a more affordable version of the highly successful Browning Superposed shotgun manufactured in Belgium by Fabrique Nationale de Herstal (FN). Browning Arms Company is a wholly owned entity of FN.
The last completed design, and possibly the most elegant firearm design, completed by famous small arms designer John Moses Browning, the Browning Superposed has been a top seller and highly prized firearm among sportsmen and shotgun collectors for nearly a century since introduction in 1931. FN's marketing challenge was to design and manufacture a modern over-under shotgun with all of the styling themes of the Browning Superposed, but manufacture and offer it at prices affordable to the everyday sportsman and competitive shooter. Selection of the manufacturing site became Japan (Miroku Corporation) to satisfy the required high quality and volume of production requirements. Over the decades, the Citori has proven to be everything FN wanted and more -- a high quality, reliable, yet an affordable, contemporary, fully featured shotguns designed from the timeless classic.
Browning Citoris come in all of the popular shotgun shell gauges, and are made in an over-under "stacked" barrel configuration with forends and buttstocks made from high quality walnut wood finished in a glass-like high gloss. The top barrel has a vented rib attached by soldering for the entire length of the barrel tube. All metal parts are bright blued for the standard model, "in-the-white" higher grade models with more elaborate machine-applied engraving can also be purchased. Newer Citori internal barrels are chrome-lined for added surface strength. Citori actions are made with internal hammers and coil springs and all Citori models have shell ejectors, which expel spent empty shells when the breech is opened by pressing aside the top lever and bending the action fully open, which also re-cocks the internal hammers.
As is a decades old tradition among many shotgun manufacturers, the single trigger is gold-plated. Current Citoris feature screw-in "Invector" style choke tubes to regulate shot patterns downrange and thus provide versatility for usage in hunting and target shooting; older models had factory fixed chokes. Also, rubber recoil butt pads (12 gauge) or plastic butt plates (sub-gauges) are standard. Barrel lengths can be purchased from 26 inches for skeet target shooting, out to 32 inches for sporting clays and trap shooting enthusiasts.
The Browning Citori has a single trigger. A barrel selector mechanism is used to choose whether the top or bottom barrel fires first. The barrel selector is combined with the manual safety and is located at the top rear of the receiver, behind the top lever. If the first shot misfires and the gun does not recoil, the trigger can be reset to fire the second shot. This is accomplished by moving the safety / barrel selector back to the "safe" position and then forward to the "fire" position, without changing the barrel selection. Opening the action does not automatically engage the safety mechanism.
Some newer 12 gauge and 20 gauge Citori models have back-bored barrels. These are barrels with slightly larger bore diameters. Their purpose is to improve shot patterns by reducing the friction of the shot charge on the barrel wall, while also reducing felt recoil.
Older Citori models have fixed chokes and steel shot is not recommended. Newer models have screw-in choke tubes that can be used with either lead, bismuth, or steel shot. Models with conventional barrels use Invector choke tubes, while models with back-bored barrels use Invector Plus choke tubes.
- Performance test of Browning Citori Lightning Field Grade, Ruger Red Label, and Beretta Silver Pigeon, Gun Tests, January 1997
- "Premier Competition STS Vs.Citori XS: We Prefer Browning", Gun Tests, August 2007
- Field test of Browning Citori 525, Outdoor Life, Summer 2002
- Bourjaily, Philip. "Shotguns: The Best Guns of the Year" (2002), Field & Stream
- Product review of Browning Citori Ultra XS Sporting, Shotgun Report, August 7, 2001
- Hawks, Chuck. "Browning Citori O/U Shotguns", chuckhawks.com
- "What is Back-Boring?", Browning Customer Services Top Questions
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