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Posted: 10/9/2001 3:50:17 PM EDT
My wife and I tried out Cowboy Action shooting a few years back. We gave it up (details not important). But we both agree that the lever gun was a real hoot! Now I got a hankering to add a quality lever gun to the collection. Requirements: Centerfire caliber. Lethal at 150 yards. So I note that my gunstore's website lists a used Marlin 336 (.30-30) at $225. I've read a bit on this gun and it seems to be a classic. The ammo ain't too cheap though. But ammo cost is NOT primary concern (see requirements above). The vast AR15.com wisdom pool that I'd like to tap into and ask about is this: 1. Does a .44 magnum lever gun meet my requirements above? (also, can a .44 magnum lever rifle fire .44 specials too?) 2. How is the kick on a .30-.30? Can I shoot 20 to 100 rounds on the range and not regret it later? For that matter, is the .44 Magnum rifle kick less or more than the .30-30? Sorry if these seem like obvious questions, but I've only shot the AR15 and 12g pump shotgun when it comes to shoulder arms. (talk about opposite ends of the recoil range!)
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 3:58:38 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Rogue_Star: Requirements: Centerfire caliber. Lethal at 150 yards. 1. Does a .44 magnum lever gun meet my requirements above? (also, can a .44 magnum lever rifle fire .44 specials too?)
View Quote
[b]Yes; Yes, if you can hit it; Yes[/b]
2. How is the kick on a .30-.30? Can I shoot 20 to 100 rounds on the range and not regret it later? For that matter, is the .44 Magnum rifle kick less or more than the .30-30?
View Quote
Not bad; Yes; Same (to me) Go ahead and get the 30-30 unless you are aleady set up to load 44 Mags. You'll be happier.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 3:59:59 PM EDT
The kick really isn't a 30-30, just a little stronger than a 7.62x39. I have a Winchester 1894 and love it[:D]. I also shot a '94 in 357 magnum and it easily traveled 100 yrds and group rather well at that range, so I am sure a 44 mag would do just as well. Not sure about shooting 44 specials out of it. Someday I want to get a '94 in 45LC, so that's another round to think about. Also, with the rifles you can usually load the pistol rounds a little hotter if you reload. All in all I wound suggest going with the 30-30. Larger selection in bullet weights, longer range, and it's a classic.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 4:05:05 PM EDT
some 44 mag lever actions tend to be finicky when shooting the shorter 44 specials thu.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 4:08:20 PM EDT
I bought the wife a .357 Winchester 94. She loves it and so do I. I kick is real nice - if that is an understandable word for it. It just feels real solid. Accurate and lethal at 150 yds. easily and it goes great with her .357 revolver. A great little rifle.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 4:12:03 PM EDT
Just played with a Marlin Model 1895 Cowboy in 45/70...man was that a blast to shoot. I have a couple of 94's, if you're into the cowboy shooting thing that would be the rifle. I visit a cowboy shoot out here near Norco and that's pretty much what they're shooting. A 30-30 is good to over a 100-150 yards, but any more than that and you're getting a pretty good drop. Everyone should have 1 or 2 or more 94's or 336's.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 4:22:40 PM EDT
I have a Marlin 1894CS in .357. Very nice rifle. Almost no kick at all and will shoot any 38 sp. except wadcutters. The manual said it wouldn't work with wadcutters but I had to try it anyway. They were right. The trigger isn't bad but not as good as on my 1957 vintage 336 30-30. I have have always preferred Marlin over Winchester. Just my opinion.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 4:41:38 PM EDT
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 5:01:34 PM EDT
... I favor Winchester model 94AE chambered in the formidible .44 REM MAG. Perfect for kill zones inside the 150 yard range, ammo is plentiful and compact. The rifle itself is compact yet can hold eight cartridges and one in the pipe. ... the magnum kicks like a mule but if you're just plinking with the little lady sport .44 special loads.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 5:09:01 PM EDT
The g/f has a Marlin 336RC. She is not a big girl, so recoil was an issue. However, she only "hunts" paper. So, to help her enjoy the rifle, I began loading for her .30-30 using the 125 grain Sierra round and a moderate charge of powder. This allows her to concentrate on accuracy and shoot longer! [:D] BTW: I was very suprised to see a Marlin lever action [b]chambered for .308[/b] at a gunshow recently! This gunsmith specializes in customizing lever actions for unusual catridges. {unusual for slab-sided receivers, that is} Just hard to imagine the carbine with a .308 load. Hope nobody buys it & forgets [b]not to use spitzer bullets![/b] [:O]
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 7:17:23 PM EDT
For hunting the 30/30 is superior to the .44mag as the range gets longer. It is also a lot flatter shooting. Don't most Cowboy shoots require cast lead bullets? I also own a Marlin 1894 in .44mag. Great gun. I bought it to go with a S @ W 629 handgun. The Marlin 1895 Guide Gun in 45/70 is awesome! But, lot of recoil and LOUD, it is ported. I also prefer the Marlin design over the Winchester.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 7:27:26 PM EDT
Originally Posted By jean-claude: ... BTW: I was very suprised to see a Marlin lever action [b]chambered for .308[/b] at a gunshow recently! This gunsmith specializes in customizing lever actions for unusual catridges. {unusual for slab-sided receivers, that is} Just hard to imagine the carbine with a .308 load. Hope nobody buys it & forgets [b]not to use spitzer bullets![/b] [:O]
View Quote
I would [b]NOT[/b] want a .308 FMJ tip resting on the primer of the live cartridge spring loaded right in front of it in a lever action!!!
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 8:05:17 PM EDT
In 95 or so I bought a M94 in .356 Win, and have never regretted it. It's a little expensive to buy, but not hard to load for. It is accurate out to the 200-250yd range and absolutely devastating inside 100. Ballistics: mvel 100yds 200yds 300yds Win 200grn PP 2460 2114 1797 1517 energy: 2688 1985 1434 1022 Somewhere between a 06 and 308, in a nice little package.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 8:14:15 PM EDT
If you're buying it specifically for cowboy action shooting, buy a straightwall cartridge - possibly the same one that your pistol is chambered for. The straightwall cartridges mean you can reload 'em without case lube. Personally I'd prefer something in 44 mag or 45 Colt - you can load them subsonic for plinking or all the way up to deer levels. I've heard that some 30-30 lever actions can be hard on brass - limited reload life due to case stretching.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 8:14:49 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/9/2001 8:12:52 PM EDT by AmOTramp]
I was comparing lever guns a while back and if memory serves me, the Winchester 44 mags twist rate was way faster than Marlins. I settled on a Browning lever action in 308, Browning lever guns go up to 300 mag. Possible because they use a magazine instead of the tube mag others use. This is the Winchester 44 mag I liked. [url]www.winchester-guns.com/prodinfo/catalog/md94/m94_packrifle.htm[/url]
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 9:19:00 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/9/2001 9:17:37 PM EDT by warlord]
I shot a Win 94 with 16" BBL at a paper target 100 yards away, and the bullet hit the ground abround 75 yards. My feeling is that if you want to hit object 150 yards away go with a real rifle cartridge at least a 30-30 Win. If you are going with the 44 Rem Mag, my friend reloads and he had to modify the internals on his Win 94 in order for the semi-wadcutter to feed, othewise it jams. He had to get semi-round nose bullets.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 10:53:33 PM EDT
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 11:01:41 PM EDT
I would go with the model 94 Winchester in .357 mag. I have the Mod 94 Trails end(20" barrel). Paid $350 for it.
Link Posted: 10/9/2001 11:15:43 PM EDT
The best, most modern centerfire lever-action rifle is the Browning BLR. BAR(pun intended)NONE. Here's a link to the BLR page at Browning: [url]http://www.browning.com/products/catalog/firearms/blr/blr.htm[/url] This rifle is on my wish list, and the most practical choice for me would be the 7mm Rem.Mag., to go with a couple of other rifles in the caliber. Saves getting another caliber, etc. But, the one I think would be a real blast is the short-action 7mm-08. With a Leupold 1.5-5x20 scope in a 1-pc. base. Nice little rifle/scope package. The caliber is a good one, too. So is the .308. That's my recommendation.
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