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Posted: 9/1/2004 12:26:36 PM EST
I am looking at buying a lever gun to use as a brush gun for deer. At the moment I have narrowed it down to two possiblities. Either 44 mag or the old stand by 30-30. The only requirements I have is that I want a 16" barrel and it has to be a Marlin becuase I want the side eject.

Right now I'm leaning towards the 44 mag. But I'm not sure on the performance of it on norhern whitetails.

Keep in mind that this is only going to be a brush gun. All shots kept inside 100 yards max.

Thanks for any help!
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 12:32:41 PM EST
No experience here with the .44 and 30-30 is one of those "can't go wrong" type decisions.

- BG
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 3:56:50 PM EST
30-30 has probably killed more deer than any other caliber in north America..
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 10:18:49 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 4:33:29 AM EST
Yeah, you guys are right. I should just stick with with the old stand by 30-30. (They're a little cheaper too.) I was just looking at the 44 mag to have something a little differant.

The only thing I really want is a light wieght carbine for carrying in the woods since my 30-06 is heavy and clumbersome (sp) to carry in the thick stuff.

As far as interchangeable ammo if I carry a hand gun I usually carry my 686 and that is just used for a finishing shot if needed and nothing else.

Thanks guys
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 5:40:03 AM EST
[Last Edit: 9/2/2004 5:42:31 AM EST by Sukebe]
Check out the Marlin 336Y "Spikehorn". It's a Youth Model 336 with a 16.5 in. barrel. OAl is something like 34 inches. Weight is 6.5Lbs. A very light and compact .30-30 lever gun. With the short length of pull, it should work well when you are bundled up during the cold northern winter.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 6:19:57 AM EST
I looked at the 336Y on the web. But I was concerned about the length of pull. I don't need to take my eye out with the hammer if I shoulder it quickly.

The last two yaar of deer hunting have been unseasonably warm (mid to upper 40's) so I'm not always wearing a heavy jacket while walking.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 11:55:02 PM EST
The .44mag out of a levergun is more than adequate for deer. Out to 100 yards is no problem (I would not go past that). Go to www.leverguns.com and do a search--there is a ton of info there.

BruceWayne
Link Posted: 9/4/2004 9:58:25 AM EST

Originally Posted By BruceWayne:
The .44mag out of a levergun is more than adequate for deer. Out to 100 yards is no problem (I would not go past that). Go to www.leverguns.com and do a search--there is a ton of info there.

BruceWayne



I read a guy dropped an elk with a .357 at 200 yards with a pistol. Since I'm planning on getting a 16" lever carbine in .357, I'm sure I could get some better velocity out of it, and it will still be effective on pretty much all game here.
Link Posted: 9/4/2004 3:04:03 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/4/2004 4:06:03 PM EST
3030 Is the way to go ammo is found everywhere it's an old round but great deer getter
Link Posted: 9/4/2004 4:30:23 PM EST

Originally Posted By Troy:

Originally Posted By Matthew_Q:
I read a guy dropped an elk with a .357 at 200 yards with a pistol. Since I'm planning on getting a 16" lever carbine in .357, I'm sure I could get some better velocity out of it, and it will still be effective on pretty much all game here.



I read about a guy who ALMOST landed a Great White Shark on 4 lb. test, too. Don't believe everything that you read, and you should certainly not use a single anecdotal piece of information to base your caliber and hunting parameters on.

-Troy



The anecdote was to show that it's been recorded that someone did that with a pistol at that range... thus it must be accetably useable at closer ranges, say as a brush gun. Given the performance of the cartridge out of a handgun, it can only be assumed at reasonable ranges from a carbine, it will perform adequately. ;)
Link Posted: 9/5/2004 8:43:16 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/5/2004 8:46:00 PM EST by muddydog]
i've killed elk..

i cry bullshit...of a .357 at 200 yards..BULLSHIT......CACA de VACA....

a .44 is not equal to a 30-30 in a rifle. a 30-30 rifle up until a generation ago was a serious frickin 30 caliber rifle.. taking deer, bears ALL 3 KINDS ON NORTH AMERICA...elk...cougar an numerous banditos..

its proven performer each year still..taking more deer than any other cartridge...it will out penetrate any ,44 load out there with partition or bonded type bullets.

and quality ammo is everywhere..

i've taken alot of game with both...

the new winchesters are Angle Eject that allow for standard scope mounts..so choosing a marlin for this is moot....look at the XTR 94's. very nice handling.

there is a pre-64 winchester 94 in the closet that holds a special place in my heart..and it should be burned with me on my funeral boat...along with my 629, my P89 and my marlin model 60.
Link Posted: 9/6/2004 2:41:15 AM EST
Get the Marlin 336 in .35 Remington. It's harder to find the ammo, but it's a better short range cartridge.

Ross
Link Posted: 9/6/2004 3:23:34 AM EST
30-30 is my vote. As a general rule I stay away from pistol rounds in a rifle. Where in ND are you from? I was stationed in Minot, ND for 5 years in the AirForce.
Link Posted: 9/6/2004 6:32:42 AM EST
yup 30-30...

I remember years ago, that when I would shoot deer with a 30-30 that they were so far away, I had to salt the bullet to keep the meat from spoilin till I could get there...Yup, I did........
Link Posted: 9/6/2004 8:20:16 AM EST
[Last Edit: 9/6/2004 8:24:23 AM EST by imposter]
The 44 Mag in a carbine has decent ballistics. It is easily a 125-150 yard gun. If you zero at 100 yards, you will be about 6" low at 150 and never be more than 3" above the line of sight. The muzzle energy is in the same league as the 30/30.

I have a little Winchester 94 Trapper, which was $300 new. I bought it as a truck gun. It works out better for me than a 30/30 because has a lot more rounds in the magazine (9 v. 5). It is very handy. Winchester says their rifles now eject to the side to mount a scope, but I have neve bothered to check on that.

As far as lethality, I have never hunted with either round. 30/30 has certainly proven itself.
Link Posted: 9/6/2004 9:54:36 AM EST
[Last Edit: 9/6/2004 9:56:48 AM EST by ktrout01]
30-30 IMHO is the way to go. 16" bbl in a lever action is the best brush deer gun that there is.

ETA- I have 2, both Winchester Model 1894, one is an old top eject that lives in the safe and the other is an average condition side eject that see quite a bit of use and abuse. I don't think I paid over $100 each used.
Link Posted: 9/6/2004 10:48:55 AM EST
[Last Edit: 9/6/2004 10:51:10 AM EST by 50cal]
I have one of the 44Mag 1894 S rifles. It shoots great. I handload 240g XTP's on top of AA#9 powder. It will hit 4" clay pigeons at 100yds easily. I wouldn't give it up for anything.
I black powdercoated the rifle a bunch of years ago to use it as my bad weather gun. It sits behind the seat of the truck, I break it out every now and again to punch the bore out and put it back.

It's a great value right now. I've seen identical ones in the $200 range.
Link Posted: 9/7/2004 5:14:10 AM EST
[Last Edit: 9/7/2004 5:28:14 AM EST by GTTacoma]

Originally Posted By imposter:
The 44 Mag in a carbine has decent ballistics. It is easily a 125-150 yard gun. If you zero at 100 yards, you will be about 6" low at 150 and never be more than 3" above the line of sight. The muzzle energy is in the same league as the 30/30.



I have hunted with both the .44 magnum and 30-30..I'm convinced the .44 is the better cartridge. To be fair, I have never shot a deer at farther than 130 yrds though.

The .44 magnum out of a 16" barrel is NOT a wimpy handgun round. It's advantage is with its much larger diameter and heavier bullet.

Remington UMC 180gr .44 magnum chronos at ~2300fps in my Marlin 1894p. (16"barrel)

Remington express 170gr 30-30 chronos at ~2080 in my Win 94 trapper (16" barrel)

This goes against a lot of people's assumptions about the two cartridges, but it's true. If you want a carbine.. the .44 magnum is the better round.

Link Posted: 9/7/2004 5:27:51 AM EST
[Last Edit: 9/7/2004 5:29:55 AM EST by GTTacoma]

Originally Posted By ktrout01:
30-30 IMHO is the way to go. 16" bbl in a lever action is the best brush deer gun that there is.



Thats fine. But a 16" barrel is optimal for the .44 mag.. the 30-30 is losing velocity with a 16" barrel. The fastest I have chrono'd a 170gr factory load in my 94 trapper was 2080fps. In my Marlin 1894P .44 180gr Rem UMC chrono at 2300fps. That's quite a difference.

So in a 16" carbine the .44 has - larger caliber, heavier bullets, more velocity, higher capacity... but the 30-30 is a better brush carbine?? I don't think so.
Link Posted: 9/7/2004 9:14:13 AM EST
Why don't you take a look at some of the big boys, .450 magnum, .444 Marlin, 45/70..

If your hell bent on the 44mag, try loading them with 265 grain XTPs..
Link Posted: 9/7/2004 12:44:59 PM EST
From what some have posted here, what I read on other sites and looking at a ballistic program, inside 125 yards the 44 mag (out of a rifle) and the 30-30 are about the same as far as energy. I like the fact that the 44 offers a bigger bullet diameter and more weight. So that is why I'm leaning that way.

The 35 Rem looks intriguing but they are kind of hard to come by around here. Especially since I'm looking at used rifles. That and Marlin no longer makes the 44 mag with a 16" barrel only 20" now. his
MaineAR, I'm around the Fargo area. I usually get up to Minot once or twice a year for pistol shoots. I guess I got lucky and was stationed in Florida for my 4 years in the Air Force.
Link Posted: 9/7/2004 7:28:38 PM EST
45-70 govt
444 marlin

Remman
Link Posted: 9/7/2004 7:38:23 PM EST
.44 is an excellent choice for deer.
Link Posted: 9/8/2004 5:34:42 AM EST
What would make a REALLY excellent carbine would be the S&W 500. Supposed to be 3x as powerful as the .44 Mag out of a pistol. It would pack a wallop out of a carbine!!
Link Posted: 9/8/2004 5:41:31 AM EST

Originally Posted By Remman:
45-70 govt
444 marlin

Remman



Remman brings up a good point. You are in ND so I would go big so you can use it for elk and bear. I like the .444 Marlin. It body slams deer. You hear talk about deer dropping from high powered rifles but a good hit from a .444 Literally knocks a deer off it’s feet. It won’t run. Just lays there and twitches. The .45-70 is also a good hand loaded cartridge. Most factory loads are anemic but you can stoke them up. Inside 100 yds you can’t go wrong with either round. Look into a quality red dot scope.
Link Posted: 9/8/2004 5:50:20 AM EST
I LOVE MY .44 MARLIN 1895. The deer hate it!!!
Link Posted: 9/8/2004 8:06:14 AM EST
I thought about the 45-70, 444, 450 and what not but I kind of wonder how my shoulder would like it. Plus, don't most of those have ported barrels or noise enhancers as I like to call them? My ears are ringing just thinking about it.

I was thinking actually thinking about putting one of those A.O scout mounts on it with a red dot. Not that I would really need it but I have one just laying around right now with out a home. When ever I make a decision and buy a lever gun.

Also I was kind of wondering about the micro-grooved barrels on the 44's. I know you shouldn't give them a steady diet of lead. But do they last a long time with only shooting jacketed bullets? And if I buy a used one and it has some lead fouling in it. Am I going to be spending 4 days trying to get it cleaned out?

Sorry about all the questions. Just trying to get informed as much as I can before I get one.

Thanks guys! You are giving me a lot of useful information.

Link Posted: 9/8/2004 7:09:12 PM EST
A lot of people don't like pistol cartridges in rifles but I think it's mainly do to the fact that you don't get any better performance out of them. But, that doesn't apply to magnums as it would a 9 or .45. Magnums get really good ballistics out of rifles the only problem is range. Even a .357 mag would be a good choice at a certain distance/skill level. For 100 yds you can definately do it with .44 if you're good enough. Plus wouldn't you get 4 more rounds or something like that? That's cool.
Link Posted: 9/8/2004 7:18:06 PM EST
Im really happy with my Marlin 1894 Cowboy Special Edition in 45 LC. If I need something for really long range I have a couple 45-70s that I can use.
Link Posted: 9/9/2004 5:08:59 AM EST
If it's between the .44 and 30/30 I'd take the thuddy thuddy. I love my 336 Marlin, although I'd like on in 35 Rem too.


Every deer that I've shot with a 30/30 has dropped right in their tracks.

As far as which cartridge has taken the most deer? I'd say the .22 nudges the 30/30 out. If we're talking strictly legal, then the 30/30 wins hands donw. It's been killin' deer for over a hundred years.
Link Posted: 9/9/2004 6:11:39 AM EST
I had a nice Marlin 336 in .30-30. Kinda wish I didn't have to sell it, but I did because money was tight then. I think a lever action .30-30 should be in everyone's safe. Eventually, I'll probably get another one. For now, I will be trying to get my 16" lever in .357. I should be able to get some decent loads for shorter range "brush gun" use out of it without problem.

I'm sticking to .357 because I already have a revolver in .357 that is/will be my hunting sidearm.
Link Posted: 9/9/2004 9:32:26 PM EST
i have a .444 winchester and it doesnt kick at all..

i enjoy touching one off...
Link Posted: 9/10/2004 5:55:00 PM EST

Originally Posted By shotgun:
A lot of people don't like pistol cartridges in rifles but I think it's mainly do to the fact that you don't get any better performance out of them. But, that doesn't apply to magnums as it would a 9 or .45. Magnums get really good ballistics out of rifles the only problem is range. Even a .357 mag would be a good choice at a certain distance/skill level. For 100 yds you can definately do it with .44 if you're good enough. Plus wouldn't you get 4 more rounds or something like that? That's cool.



Exactly!

Look at the ballistics. The .44 magnum out of a 16inch barrel has the same ballistics at 200yds! as the same round at POINT BLANK RANGE from a 8inch revolver.

That is the reason that the .44 mag carbine is considered a good blackbear round, and the 30-30 isn't.
Link Posted: 9/18/2004 10:33:25 PM EST

Originally Posted By GTTacoma:

Originally Posted By shotgun:
A lot of people don't like pistol cartridges in rifles but I think it's mainly do to the fact that you don't get any better performance out of them. But, that doesn't apply to magnums as it would a 9 or .45. Magnums get really good ballistics out of rifles the only problem is range. Even a .357 mag would be a good choice at a certain distance/skill level. For 100 yds you can definately do it with .44 if you're good enough. Plus wouldn't you get 4 more rounds or something like that? That's cool.



Exactly!

Look at the ballistics. The .44 magnum out of a 16inch barrel has the same ballistics at 200yds! as the same round at POINT BLANK RANGE from a 8inch revolver.

That is the reason that the .44 mag carbine is considered a good blackbear round, and the 30-30 isn't.




The 30/30 win has more energy at 200 yards than the .44 rem mag does at the muzzel!

I sold my trapper .44 to my son-in-law but kept my 30/30,and my .375 win 94!

The .375 win will pump a 250 grain bullet 300 yards before you get a real drop!!

The 45/70 will punch out about 250 then drop like a softball!

You might think about the win BigBore!

Anyway what you asked was about the 30/30 and the .44! For the best close to mid range the 30/30 would be my choice!


If you go marlin the .444 would be nice!

Bob
Link Posted: 9/19/2004 6:35:57 PM EST
bobbyjack..

i was honestly going to get the big bore 375 XTR

i was looking for one...but my friend had just gotten himself a marlin guidegun .444
and i was impressed with the ballistics and lo and behold found my big bore .444XTR.

i think they are a helluva gun..

people are always raving about the guide guns..

the XTR is a non ported rifle..and handles better..to most who have carried and shot both.

do you reload???
Link Posted: 9/19/2004 6:47:25 PM EST
My family has been using a Marlin 44mag on deer for 10 years now. What an excellent firearm. Safe for kids to learn with. Quick handling and light weight for GrandPa. It holds 10 rounds and sometimes sports a Tasco Pro-Point Red-Dot. You will find it is more than adequate and function with a variety of loads. I use 200grXTP most of the time and have run 300grXTP at times.

MT

If you have any questions email me...Maybe we could even yak on the phone.
Link Posted: 9/21/2004 5:53:40 AM EST

Originally Posted By muddydog:
bobbyjack..

i was honestly going to get the big bore 375 XTR

i was looking for one...but my friend had just gotten himself a marlin guidegun .444
and i was impressed with the ballistics and lo and behold found my big bore .444XTR.

i think they are a helluva gun..

people are always raving about the guide guns..

the XTR is a non ported rifle..and handles better..to most who have carried and shot both.

do you reload???



The 375 Win. is/was a great cartridge. If you find a 94 big Bore in good shape grab it. Current factory ammo is loaded to standard 94 pressure, you have to handload to get full performance out of it, but it's worth it. Plenty accurate and the terminal performance is impressive.

Back to the original question: I'd go with the .44, it's more versatile.
Link Posted: 9/22/2004 4:48:09 AM EST
[Last Edit: 9/22/2004 4:52:41 AM EST by dog_tag]
Sorry I haven't logged in, in a while. I was surprised that this was still on the first page.

Well first I would like to say thanks for all the great info and opinions. But, I have made a decision. I am going to go with the 44. A local place has a Marlin 1894 P with the 16" barrel for a decent price not great but decent. So I am going to go that route. For one reason being, is that Marlin quit making the 44 mag with a 16" barrel for some unknown reason. And I also think the 44 is a little more versatile. But someday I will get the 30-30 just becuase everyone should have one. And can a guy ever have too many firearms....

Thanks again.

BTW, I saw some guys posted loads and ammo they use in the 44 for whitetails. What do you guys think is the way to go for factory ammo.?
Link Posted: 9/22/2004 3:55:10 PM EST

Originally Posted By bobbyjack:

Originally Posted By GTTacoma:

Originally Posted By shotgun:
A lot of people don't like pistol cartridges in rifles but I think it's mainly do to the fact that you don't get any better performance out of them. But, that doesn't apply to magnums as it would a 9 or .45. Magnums get really good ballistics out of rifles the only problem is range. Even a .357 mag would be a good choice at a certain distance/skill level. For 100 yds you can definately do it with .44 if you're good enough. Plus wouldn't you get 4 more rounds or something like that? That's cool.hr


Exactly!

Look at the ballistics. The .44 magnum out of a 16inch barrel has the same ballistics at 200yds! as the same round at POINT BLANK RANGE from a 8inch revolver.

That is the reason that the .44 mag carbine is considered a good blackbear round, and the 30-30 isn't.




The 30/30 win has more energy at 200 yards than the .44 rem mag does at the muzzel!



Bobhr


Damn some people are dumb. HAS
!!WHEN IT IS FIRED FROM A HANDGUN!!!

With comparable weight bullets, OUT OF A CARBINE, the energy is about equal.


Link Posted: 9/22/2004 5:54:32 PM EST
Stick with the 30-30. Load her up with some 170 grn soft-points...no worries.
Link Posted: 10/1/2004 9:16:46 AM EST
So I picked up my .357 Mag carbine last weekend. Here she is:



Haven't gotten to take her out to the range yet, but I should this weekend. This is the beginning of my Tactical Levergun. Eventually she will have synthetic stocks, parkerizing, threaded muzzle, suppressor, and some manner of dot sight.

My only gripe so far is DAMN the trigger is HEAVY!! It must be damn near 10lb!! Anyone know of any information on how to smooth/lighten it up? I heard they're a bitch to completely strip, but that never stopped me from taking apart any of my guns, and I always got them back together in working order.
Link Posted: 10/1/2004 7:46:40 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/1/2004 7:47:10 PM EST by ddc]
Hello Matthew_Q,

Where are you getting the synthetic stocks from?

I've got one of the $299 special Big 5 1894 Marlin .357's with badly mismatched wood.

I'd consider a set of synthetic stocks if I could find them. Done a little googling but haven't stumbled across anything yet...

Thanks,
ddc
Link Posted: 10/1/2004 7:52:58 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/2/2004 5:11:39 AM EST

Originally Posted By ddc:
Hello Matthew_Q,

Where are you getting the synthetic stocks from?

I've got one of the $299 special Big 5 1894 Marlin .357's with badly mismatched wood.

I'd consider a set of synthetic stocks if I could find them. Done a little googling but haven't stumbled across anything yet...

Thanks,
ddc



I haven't found any yet, but then, I haven't really looked. I know they exists... at least for some lever rifles.
Link Posted: 10/2/2004 10:08:16 AM EST
ramline makes synthetic stocks for the 94. i don't know about the marlin
Link Posted: 10/2/2004 10:38:54 AM EST

Originally Posted By occaar:
ramline makes synthetic stocks for the 94. i don't know about the marlin



Cool. Thanks! I'll remember that!
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 12:09:47 PM EST
Is North Dakota the same as Wyoming were you can buy ammo at just about every store in or out of town including gas stations and convieniance stores? If that is the case , evn though the.44 Mag is a common caliber , your more than likely to find .30-.30 EVERYWHERE ! That would be a plus to me. Also w/the .30-.30 you would be able to extend your range a bit over the .44 Mag.I'd go.30-.30. My 2 cents. Take care.
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 7:18:56 PM EST

Originally Posted By dog_tag:
I thought about the 45-70, 444, 450 and what not but I kind of wonder how my shoulder would like it. Plus, don't most of those have ported barrels or noise enhancers as I like to call them? My ears are ringing just thinking about it.



My Guide Gun in .45/70 actually kicks less than my Benelli Nova 12 Gauge. It isn't that loud either. You must remember, there are a wide variety of .45/70 loads. You can shoot relatively mild loads all the way up to the Buffalo Bore monsters.
Link Posted: 10/7/2004 7:54:32 PM EST

Originally Posted By dog_tag:
Yeah, you guys are right. I should just stick with with the old stand by 30-30. (They're a little cheaper too.) I was just looking at the 44 mag to have something a little differant.

The only thing I really want is a light wieght carbine for carrying in the woods since my 30-06 is heavy and clumbersome (sp) to carry in the thick stuff.

As far as interchangeable ammo if I carry a hand gun I usually carry my 686 and that is just used for a finishing shot if needed and nothing else.

Thanks guys



Marlin makes a .45-70 in a few variants. If the deer are big, it would be an excellent round. I have one and that is what I would use.
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