I've got corona overload and because I know several here have and enjoy lever actions  thought I'd ask for input/advice/scorn/suggestions.

CPTSpaulding  mentioning  VA's new gun laws and reference to 22F's excellent post about "The Mistress"  along with the P&S  podcast on non-standard def. long guns  has me once again reconsidering a lever action project  I've had in mind for sometime.   Plus, I'm noticing an AR is making people who are OK with most firearms start sucking wind.   

www.lightfighter.net/topic/the...-marlin-336-in-30-30

youtube.com/watch?v=VX04M0MsqCM

What I'm currently have planned:

Finding a used 336Y 16" model

Probably a Williams receiver sight or X/S with .19 aperature  with a  X/S  .100" white line front sight 

Actually thought of using an AR15 rear sight with protective ears rounded/ trimmed somewhat  and adjusting windage by front sight height.   I haven't made measurement but saw one on a bolt scout rifle and thougt it was a neat setup. 

X/S  rail for mounting  a Burris scout scope in detach rings

VTAC or BF sling  with flush swivel mount on left side of buttstock

Rough  stippling forend and pistol grip  

Rounding and beveling  a finger groove for comfort in the lever right behind the trigger guard where my index finger rests when carrying  a lever action

I've got a couple of ideas on a recessed cartridge holder routed into the offside of the buttstock that wouldn't interfere with cheek weld when firing from the  support shoulder/hand.   One idea is a box that swings partially out that holds rounds and the other consists of  drilled  recessed   cartridge holes  with a leather flap.   

Secured under the butt plate would be a spare front half firing pin, ejector and lever/takedown screw

I'd like a tool-less takedown/lever screw that could be finger tightened and have thought about having some commercially made for resale but I have a large dragon to fight (dragon my butt that is.)

Interested in any suggestions or what you've done to improve your lever actions.

 

 

 

 

Original Post

The standard XS ghost ring and white stripe front is very quick even in the dark.

Brockman makes a spring loaded ammo carrier recessed into the bottom of the stock. 

Aside from internal polishing up, the XS sights,MI light mount and sling would be my only changes.

A .357 or .30-30 would be my pick.

Thanks MrMurphy,  I'll have to checkout the Brockman cartridge trap and MI light mount.

I like the X/S front sight, especially the .10" with a large aperture.  I have one on an AR carbine and really like the sight picture.

I've had a .357  Marlin for many years and shot it a lot but have never been satisfied with the accuracy.  It will hold about 3moa for about five rounds and after that it's a wild guess.   Nothing I did brought happiness.

I'm going 30-30 to consolidate but reloading straight cases and the price of pistol bullets and powder  are huge pluses.    On the other hand I like that the 30-30 in a decent gun gives me all the range or power I need here.

 

At some point I'll inherit a .357 Marlin, and I have .357 n .38 wheel guns, but a .30-30 will straight get shit done. .45-70 if I lived where large animals were an issue.

stray round posted:

I've got corona overload and because I know several here have and enjoy lever actions  thought I'd ask for input/advice/scorn/suggestions.

CPTSpaulding  mentioning  VA's new gun laws and reference to 22F's excellent post about "The Mistress"  along with the P&S  podcast on non-standard def. long guns  has me once again reconsidering a lever action project  I've had in mind for sometime.   Plus, I'm noticing an AR is making people who are OK with most firearms start sucking wind.   

www.lightfighter.net/topic/the...-marlin-336-in-30-30

youtube.com/watch?v=VX04M0MsqCM

What I'm currently have planned:

Finding a used 336Y 16" model

Probably a Williams receiver sight or X/S with .19 aperature  with a  X/S  .100" white line front sight 

Actually thought of using an AR15 rear sight with protective ears rounded/ trimmed somewhat  and adjusting windage by front sight height.   I haven't made measurement but saw one on a bolt scout rifle and thougt it was a neat setup. 

X/S  rail for mounting  a Burris scout scope in detach rings

VTAC or BF sling  with flush swivel mount on left side of buttstock

Rough  stippling forend and pistol grip  

Rounding and beveling  a finger groove for comfort in the lever right behind the trigger guard where my index finger rests when carrying  a lever action

I've got a couple of ideas on a recessed cartridge holder routed into the offside of the buttstock that wouldn't interfere with cheek weld when firing from the  support shoulder/hand.   One idea is a box that swings partially out that holds rounds and the other consists of  drilled  recessed   cartridge holes  with a leather flap.   

Secured under the butt plate would be a spare front half firing pin, ejector and lever/takedown screw

I'd like a tool-less takedown/lever screw that could be finger tightened and have thought about having some commercially made for resale but I have a large dragon to fight (dragon my butt that is.)

Interested in any suggestions or what you've done to improve your lever actions.

 

 

 

 

I like what Brother 22F did with the Mistress.  It seems simple and functional.

In between Racist Ralph's initial call for a special session to make a payment back to Bloomberg, and now, I've been working to find some solutions that fly under the "assault weapon" radar.  A used compact 336 in .30-30 followed me home from the LGS and as I have time and funds, it will get a good sling, WML, XS rail and fixed sights and either a LPVO (or a red dot from one of the banned carbines if that gets pushed through in 2021), and likely a buttstock pouch.

I've also been doing the same for pistols, and in the same time frame acquired a stainless Ruger Security Six 4", a S&W Model 66 2-1/2", and tanks to a fellow Lightfighter a blued Ruger Speed Six 2-3/4" - a cousin of Uncle Pat's "Toby", and all manufactured before 1980.  To my way of thinking those three are ample justification for a second lever gun in .357, that will be upgraded identically with the .30-30.

A T-grip is on order for the Speed Six.  

Should be a great thread. I've got a Marlin Dark  Series in 45-70 Govt. on ba L-order with Brownells  (got a good price).  A rifle/carbine I have absolutely no practical use for.   Which is why I ordered it. 

Was working up ammo selections, something tame for indoor range trials, something heavier of outdoor drills and some few outrageous to make people turn their heads at Ben Avery.  After all that and assuming ammo is still for sale and available in the US, lay in a supply for whatever. 

Any inputs on anything but iron sights would be appreciated.  I've got a few spare Aimpoint CompM2's but don't know if they can stand the recoil. 

Thanks

How are the currently manufactured Marlins? I know the older “JM” marked ones are highly recommended but one of the local shops says the new ones are better quality than the “post JM” ones that had a bad reputation...any truth to that?

According to some of the more reliable youtubers the new new ones are a lot better than the old new ones. I don't know if they are as good as the old old ones. I would  recommend checking over a candidate  really well before plunking down the cash. 

I have had 8 or 10 Marlin lever guns over the years and currently have 3 that I keeping forever. 30/30, 44 and 357.

There is a delete option for replacing the button safety with a dummy screw. I don't remember the vender off hand. I found that the button safety was getting accidentally engaged while carrying the rifle slung. I prefer to use the half cock instead of the safety so having the rifle not fire when I pulled the trigger was annoying. If you are opposed to removing a safety device (it can be reinstalled) but still want to deactivate it temporarily then a little rubber O-ring will fit around the button and be held in place by the annular groove in the button. That will keep it from pushing in easily. The purpose of the button safety is to allow you to unload by cycling the cartridges through the chamber and out. Instead  open the action and tip the gun sideways to let the cartridge on the lifter to fall out. You may need to jiggle a bit depending on the cartridge. With my 44 they just drop out if you get the angle right. My 30/30 needs more english. Now cycle the lever again and repeat til the mag is empty. Nothing goes in the chamber so no chance of a negligent discharge

If the magazine follower is plastic then I would replace it with a metal one. The mag spring will eventually cut through the plastic ones if it doesn't degrade and break due to age or chemical exposure first.

When buying older tube fed rifles you should check the inside of the mag tube. Twice over the years I have bought older Marlins that wouldn't feed reliably until I cleaned the rust and crud out of this oft neglected space. 

When shopping for old used Marlins don't discount the Glenfield -marked ones. They use the same action but usually have birch stocks and simpler sights. I had one in 30/30 that had an 18.5 inch barrel instead of the standard 20 or rare Marauder 16.5 , and a dovetail front sight. Wish I still had it. The 16.5 inchers can be unpleasant to shoot.  20" is longer than you need.  I think there may be Sears-marked models as well. My memory isn't great anymore but the could be marked Ted Williams.

This is probably the longest post I've made in the 16 years I've been a member here. I must be getting old and rambling.

leot

 

 

XTCBX posted:

How are the currently manufactured Marlins? I know the older “JM” marked ones are highly recommended but one of the local shops says the new ones are better quality than the “post JM” ones that had a bad reputation...any truth to that?

I bought a new Marlin 1894 CSBL last year, after trading a bunch of junk to the govt for silly money I thought it was important to turn "not a gun" into a gun.

I only have a 100 or so rounds through it but it seems ok (I'm a lever novice). The only issue Ive had so far is the rim of the round would catch on the edge of the magazine tube as I loaded it. I had to take it apart and file the edge down.  I like it but it feels heavier than you would think, looking at it.

They have expanded the Dark series line up to include .357/.38 I'd go with one of those if I was to start over, I'm trying to justify a 30/30 but ammo costs too much here. 

Love the levers, although they are hard to justify on a practical basis, unless you live in communist held and / brown bear territory, then there is an argument for them as a defense gun IMO.  


if you catch the bug, pick up a Henry 22.  It is a fun plinker for cheap practice.    Banging cans in the back yard with one is a real hoot for me and the kids, but mostly me.  

stray round posted:

Looks like Wild West Guns makes a takedown screw like I had in mind.  $25 ugh.

I don’t have any experience with it, but Range Point Precision has a similar product.  More expensive, but it looks like it would be easier to tighten by hand.

As for my lever gun journey, I picked up a 1975 pre-safety Marlin 336 for a good deal last August.  It was missing an ejector, which I found at Jack First Gun Parts.  The woman on the phone pointed me to the correct ejector, based on the model year.  I topped it off with a Vortex Viper PST 1-4 that I had on my .22, and a Rhodesian-style loop sling from Magpul (discontinued?).  Going forward, my plan is to use the off-season to break it down, check over everything, likely replace the magazine spring and follower, and re-finish the wood.  I’d like to send the metal off to be re-blued.  Maybe get an ammo cuff from Hill People Gear.

My vision for this is a general do-all gun for primarily hunting medium sized game or the occasional coyote.

Lost of rounds down (square) range for me through marlin lever guns. I'll make two observations -

Internal modifications have served me far better than external. Marlins are easy to take the bolt, trigger and carrier out of. A little smoothing goes a long way. I believe that most of the post JM issues could have been alleviated by the end user with a little shade tree gunsmithing. Similar to a revolver, lightly take down the burrs and high spots. A smooth action makes a world of difference.

Reloading - If you have a pistol caliber lever gun, straight wall cartridges are the easiest cartridges to reload. I always keep enough brass, bullets, primers and powder to nullify ammo panic buying, like now. We've had some discussion here about the juice/squeeze of caliber v. capacity in lever guns so I'll leave that alone in this thread.

My answer to "rolling heavy" with the various state to state restrictions near me is my .44 mag Marlin as a truck gun. 

Leot, of the three guns you have, if you only were to keep one, which would it be?

I have a pretty Henry Big-boy in .45LC, but it is a deployment commemorative and I don't shoot it much.  I was thinking of getting a .357, as I have a wheelgun in that caliber, but .44 keeps calling me.  I'd appreciate any opinions or points of view you'd like to share.

Tankersteve

I am a lever gun agnostic. Being from the high desert country of Montana, I always looked down on range and accuracy of the lever guns.

Fast forward a few years, I ended up getting a neat little Marlin 39A out of an estate. It is a joy to carry in the bush and has me thinking irresponsibly about picking up a Marlin 336 and dropping an Aimpoint T1 on top. The real benefit of the .30-30 lever carbine is that it has a form factor that is really easy to carry, it is lightweight, has enough power, adequate accuracy, and is relatively low recoil.

While I may not put a light on it, 22Fs Mistress, Jeff Lester's hog gun and the Hill Brothers lever gun have me thinking about it. A Surefire M300 would be the right size to compliment the trim, light, slim package of the lever carbine and would illuminate at the ranges that the lever excels at.

tankersteve posted:

Leot, of the three guns you have, if you only were to keep one, which would it be?

I have a pretty Henry Big-boy in .45LC, but it is a deployment commemorative and I don't shoot it much.  I was thinking of getting a .357, as I have a wheelgun in that caliber, but .44 keeps calling me.  I'd appreciate any opinions or points of view you'd like to share.

Tankersteve

That's a tough call. I could do without the .357. I haven't used it in years and am keeping it because it is one of the first ones made. A pre-safety model. I bought new in the 80s.

The other 2 have different uses. The 30/30 has a 24" barrel and a 1.5x5 scope , my serious hunting gun. The 44 is a 20" with peep sight. It's more of a utility gun.

If I  had to choose today I would keep the 30/30 rifle because I have killed a bunch of mule deer with it and it works well for me and I have other guns to use as a truck gun/utility gun.

If you are talking about choosing one of the 3 as my only rifle then it would be the 44 because I can hunt deer with it and it is light and compact enough for a utility gun.

leot

I have a Marlin 336SDT "Trapper" in .30-30, that I had threaded by Ranger Point Precision. 

 

I don't particularly love the sights on it, they are the fiber optic-insert stock ones. Adjusting them never felt very precise to me, and was kinda a chore every time I zero'd it because they lack the positive adjustments I was used to with AR style sights.

Anybody got iron sight recommendations? I could put an optic on it but I sort of enjoy it being simple and battery-free. It's main use is deer hunting but it could do other stuff, maybe. 

 

P.S. Ranger Point Precision rules, they had AWESOME customer service even during the Hurricane Harvey (I think it was Harvey) flooding, and the threaded barrel/suppressor combo makes it really really kickass. After going through emails I remember that RPP rushed it through and shipped back to me, despite their entire area being underwater, so I could have it in time for a hunting trip. Great company and great work. 

 

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Okay, so this topic is a fun one for me. I've long thought of doing something like this. I first recall reading about the concept years ago, possibly in one of Jeff Coopers works. The thought was it would cover a lot of things for me: Pure fun and why the hell not? reasons, "Streets of Fire" cool, steampunk/daydream, "Firefly" esque concept fun, and, actual real world potential in another AWB scenrio.  I've always thought lever guns were cool, and I bought one of the Marlin Guide Guns in .45-70 when they first came out for  the potential. I passed (foolishly) on the chance to get a .357 and .44 mag back in the day. I tabled the idea for years, but it rekindled with talk of more bans, the MI forend introduction, and  22F's "Mistress" thread. So, I went on a 336 buying spree. I aquired two in .30-30 and one in .35 Remington. All are JM guns with the cross bolt safety. I bought the .35 because I thik it is another cool caliber, and it will do a fie job on Black Bear should I ever be inclined to hunt them.

So far, I have only worked up one. I intended to put a MI forend on it, but so far I've just put on the Ashley full lenght socut rail. I also installed their sights. Note, on some of the guns, you may have to do a little file work to get the mounting screw to fit. A call to Ashley confirmed this, as the tapped holes ended up in slightly differetn positions over the years. I got a smoking deal on some a very lightly used Aimpoint PRO from an agency trade in, and I chose to mount it in a Larue CCO mount. I have several surefire 6P series lights, so I went with a magpul mount and put it on the rail. I believe the MI rail and a miniscoout would be better, but since I already had the light, this was very budget friendly.  I slinged it up with a Magpul two point and a stock pack from Triad Tactical with an adjustable comb. That allows me to carry 18 spare rounds on the gun. More than enough to get me home if its in some kind of truck gun role during a a period of disorder. Additionally, I can use it for a home or perimeter defense in the same scenario. It has be mentioned, discussed and written about that the asthetic of these guns MAY  be beneficial in the event of having to use it to defend ones self with it.

Future plans for the other one are a MI forend, a low power scope (I really wanted a Nightforce 1x4 with the IHR for one of these. Way more than the gun is worth, but its a poor mans short dot. Unfortunately, I hesitated on one of these as well due to cost, and now they are discontinued. Dammit). I'll probably go with a leather sling and ammo cuff next time, just for looks. A buddy of mine is on to me about going hunting with him, so this one is going to be pressed into whitetail service (I'll have to take the light off for that). Not concerned with range as where I will be hunting with it, a 75 yard shot will be the longest I can imagine. It shoots well, and I zeroed it at 100. I dont have the targets anymore, but with just the dot and my aging eyes, I was able to shoot 2 inch groups with ease, I got a few at MOA. I primarily use Federal Fusion 150 grain ammo, as it serves me well. The hornady lever gun loads were accurate as well. Over all, I'm pretty happy with it and enjoy the hell out of it. If I can find a decent JM in .357 or .44 mag, I'll grab one too. Ive seen a couple at auctions, but they went for a bit more than I wanted to pay. I vacilated on a 1895 in .444 in great shape a while back, and missed out on it. Still kicking myself over that one. At any rate, here are some crappy pics of my setup so far. It may see some future tweaking. Id like to get a large loop for it, but they are pretty pricy. If one is looking to do something similar, I would recommend either the pistol caliber or .30-30 to strart with, as the ammo for them is readily available pretty much everywhere.20200319_15273220200319_15270420200319_152656

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Always thought if we were so screwed to be at the point single loading was the only option, something like the Fallschirmjaeger bandolier for Mauser clips might be useful. 50-60 rounds center mass and out of the way of belt gear.

Leot posted:
tankersteve posted:
 

If you are talking about choosing one of the 3 as my only rifle then it would be the 44 because I can hunt deer with it and it is light and compact enough for a utility gun.

leot

That was what I was looking for.  Overall utility, .44 makes sense.  Guess I'll need a Model 29 to accompany it...

Tankersteve

tankersteve posted:
Leot posted:
tankersteve posted:
 

If you are talking about choosing one of the 3 as my only rifle then it would be the 44 because I can hunt deer with it and it is light and compact enough for a utility gun.

leot

That was what I was looking for.  Overall utility, .44 makes sense.  Guess I'll need a Model 29 to accompany it...

Tankersteve

I have a 20” Marlin, that holds 10 rounds of  .44 goodness, XS sights.  A 4” S&W Mountain gun that is one of the later updated variants but without the lock.  AND a mold that drops either a 270gr WFN or 250gr hp that either gun shoots quite well.   A pound of 2400 loads 334 rounds, Unique will do 700 and I have plenty of either.  

In the real world a fellow could be worse off if the feces hits the HVAC system. 

I wish Marlin would reintroduce the 1894 .44 Guide Gun that they only made one year.  Two less rounds than the 20” but you could almost carry one AIWB.

Rick R2 posted:

I wish Marlin would reintroduce the 1894 .44 Guide Gun that they only made one year.  Two less rounds than the 20” but you could almost carry one AIWB.

Had a Marlin .44 carbine like that. Accuracy was noticeable worse than my 20" rifle.

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stray round posted:

Lee Weems demonstrated and mentioned these in the pod cast that was earlier posted and was unaware of them.   

The cards hold six rounds and small enough to mount on the receiver or stock with the Velcro patch.

I've never liked the elastic butt cuffs because they always slide forward.

 

www.browncoattactical.com/product-p/h-rifle.htm

 

Image result for brown coat tactical cartridge holder

 

 

If you use a sling, the rear swing swivel screws through the butt cuff into the stock.  That keeps it from sliding.

I have had Marlin 1894 CB in 45 Colt sitting in my safe since 2006, she is bone stock and unfired. After reading this thread I guess I'm going to have to pull her out and add skinner sight and see if I need to do anythng else.

MAC08 posted:

I have had Marlin 1894 CB in 45 Colt sitting in my safe since 2006, she is bone stock and unfired. After reading this thread I guess I'm going to have to pull her out and add skinner sight and see if I need to do anythng else.

Before modifying it, check how much that would sell for on the auction sites. You'll likely be able to turn it into something serious.

I've got one of the early 1895G 45-70's that has the ports.  I bought it when they first came out to use on a hog hunt.  Only thing I've had done to it is a trigger job.    The 45-70 round is super easy to reload, and the 1895G can handle loads from mild to wild.  

Malpaso posted:
MAC08 posted:

I have had Marlin 1894 CB in 45 Colt sitting in my safe since 2006, she is bone stock and unfired. After reading this thread I guess I'm going to have to pull her out and add skinner sight and see if I need to do anythng else.

Before modifying it, check how much that would sell for on the auction sites. You'll likely be able to turn it into something serious.

Are they that hard to come by?

 

MAC08 posted:
Malpaso posted:
MAC08 posted:

I have had Marlin 1894 CB in 45 Colt sitting in my safe since 2006, she is bone stock and unfired. After reading this thread I guess I'm going to have to pull her out and add skinner sight and see if I need to do anythng else.

Before modifying it, check how much that would sell for on the auction sites. You'll likely be able to turn it into something serious.

Are they that hard to come by?

 

A JM Marlin CB model, yes, yes they are. Un-fired, even more so.

I'm ashamed I forgot to mention my 336SDT buttstock ammo cuff, from Andy Langlois of Andy's Leather (LF'r, former LF'r?). I thought he was out of New Hampshire but his website says North Carolina now: www.andysleather.com 

Andy is great, makes awesome slings and the buttstock cuff has held up nicely over at least 7 years of hunting and mistreatment. I definitely don't *need* six extra rounds on the buttstock, but I enjoy the cheek weld it gives and they aren't in the way, plus style points. 

 

Whats your favourite way to quickly and efficiently reload the rifle or keep it topped up?

I was thinking reloading from a belt or bandoleer straight into the loading port with the right hand would be good. How did they do it back in the day when these were primary weapons?

All my training has been to use the support hand for as much as possible, but the layout of a lever action makes this awkward or is that simply a training issue?

The more I shoot levers the more I like them but they just dont seem to mesh well with my previous shotgun/ rifle experience. I cant find many useful videos out there, compared to how many there are for the AR or shotgun, that cover reloading or admin tasks.

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