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New Marlin .357 lever gun, model 1894


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Now I am not a gun writer, I am a gun shooter.  Periodically something is manufactured and it is elevated from want to need.  So I found myself needing a new Marlin 1894 in .357/.38.  Now when it comes to CAS I shoot .45 and 44-40 and have yet to become a part of the .38 culture, I just like bigger calibers.  So this was not a CAS need.    Being a previous Marlin owner and connoisseur of lever rifles, I took the plunge.  I had seen the rifles at big box gun stores, but was holding out for the smaller LGS and managed to find one.  Here we go....

 

First off it is pretty, the wood, the checkering, the bluing, externally it is a pretty rifle.  The walnut stock fit the metal surfaces perfectly, the bluing was consistent and attractive and the quality and appearance of the wood was first rate.  I still prefer walnut and blue steel so this is right up my alley.  I actually read the entire owners manual, no surprises there, and commenced to take it apart as if I was going to clean the rifle.  From what I could seen it appeared to me exactly like my other Marlin's but internally the various friction points were nicely lubed by the factory in all of the right places.  It did not need a oil drain plug like some of the off shore rifles we buy for CAS.  The machining appeared to be spot on throughout the rifle.  To sum it up, Ruger did it right.  So after  some reassembly it was off to my favorite shooting location to see how this rifle performed.

 

I shot it at 25 - 50 - 75 and 100 yards from a bench.  Using factory Hornady 158 gr XTP ammo in .357, it was dead on.  75 yards was ideal, but out to a 100 it was a shooter.  Then off hand I shot it as  one would in a CAS match, and it cycled consistently.  No glitches in .38 or .357, accurate as can be using iron sights and old eyes. I am very happy with the rifle Ruger brought back.

 

Now the downside.  The action and trigger can use some work, not the worst out of the box but it is lawyer approved.  For my purposes, a pick up rifle, I will not have it tuned in the near future.  The sights are good but I would prefer a brass bead in the front.  The sling attachment points detract from the aesthetics of a lever gun, I can do without them.  I have to question the rubber butt pad, it is not a recoil pad just hard rubber.  It is nice and doesn't slip but I still prefer the old Marlin black butt plate.  Overall though, it is a keeper and a shooter.

 

I have seen these priced from $975 to $1499...inexpensive they are not.  Overall it is a solid rifle and I can expect to see it hanging from my saddle or carried afield in search of pesky varmints. 

 

Just some thought from a fellow shooter...

 

4.jpg 

Edited by Hashknife Cowboy
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It looks to have the bulky Fore End like the Modern Marlins, rather than the slimmer one of older Marlins ...

I wish they had made them like the guns of yore... Swivels I could do without as well.. 

How is the wood to metal fit ?

 

Jabez Cowboy 

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6 hours ago, Jabez Cowboy,SASS # 50129 said:

It looks to have the bulky Fore End like the Modern Marlins, rather than the slimmer one of older Marlins ...

I wish they had made them like the guns of yore... Swivels I could do without as well.. 

How is the wood to metal fit ?

 

Jabez Cowboy 

I agree 100%.  

 

I'd consider one without the cheap checkering, the old size and style stock and fore end, an old style butt plate, and no swivels....but not this over done and over priced rig.

Edited by Forty Rod SASS 3935
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Thank you for the review @Hashknife Cowboy :)

I was waiting for a Marlin in .45 Colt, but a deal on a Henry was too good to pass on so I bought a Henry. I wasn’t looking for a CAS gun, just a fun gun. 
 

I have been considering buying another .38/.357 carbine or rifle. Now that Marlin (Ruger) is making them I will have to check them out. C

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She is definitely a looker .

Some times we get lured in by Beauty ! 

And that can be Disastrous or Wonderful. 

Just depends. 

When you start to rub her down and your feeling all the smooth spots.

Then you hit a rough spot and you try to lubricate it and rub it out .

Then you start to slide your fingers in her !

And she feels Wonderful and New. 

But yet familiar. 

You start to think back .

Have  I  fondled  her

before ?

She feels LIKE like something I felt before  ?

You start to remember your first ! 

You never forget the first one you ever had .

She will always be special in your heart .

The way she felt in your hands and the sounds she made when you worked her over hard .

Remember the first time you got to the Third Stage with her .

She was the one for you .

She was the one for life .

Now all of a sudden ! 

Your holding a new one in your hands and she fills similar but yet deferent. 

They are NOT all the same.

They are not all built alike .

That's why we try so many before we settle on one .

We need to make shure she is the right one for me.

Make your choice wisely my friend. 

ps.  Your still thinking about your rifle right :P

 

 

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I'm hoping they do a 41 mag in that. :D

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10 hours ago, Hashknife Cowboy said:

Now I am not a gun writer, I am a gun shooter.  Periodically something is manufactured and it is elevated from want to need.  So I found myself needing a new Marlin 1894 in .357/.38.  Now when it comes to CAS I shoot .45 and 44-40 and have yet to become a part of the .38 culture, I just like bigger calibers.  So this was not a CAS need.    Being a previous Marlin owner and connoisseur of lever rifles, I took the plunge.  I had seen the rifles at big box gun stores, but was holding out for the smaller LGS and managed to find one.  Here we go....

 

First off it is pretty, the wood, the checkering, the bluing, externally it is a pretty rifle.  I still prefer walnut and blue steel so this is right up my alley.  I actually read the entire owners manual, no surprises there, and commenced to take it apart as if I was going to clean the rifle.  From what I could seen it appeared to me exactly like my other Marlin's but internally the various friction points were nicely lubed by the factory in all of the right places.  It did not need a oil drain plug like some of the off shore rifles we buy for CAS.  The machining appeared to be spot on throughout the rifle.  To sum it up, Ruger did it right.  So after  some reassembly it was off to my favorite shooting location to see how this rifle performed.

 

I shot it at 25 - 50 - 75 and 100 yards from a bench.  Using factory Hornady 158 gr XTP ammo in .357, it was dead on.  75 yards was ideal, but out to a 100 it was a shooter.  Then off hand I shot it as  one would in a CAS match, and it cycled consistently.  No glitches in .38 or .357, accurate as can be using iron sights and old eyes. I am very happy with the rifle Ruger brought back.

 

Now the downside.  The action and trigger can use some work, not the worst out of the box but it is lawyer approved.  For my purposes, a pick up rifle, I will not have it tuned in the near future.  The sights are good but I would prefer a brass bead in the front.  The sling attachment points detract from the aesthetics of a lever gun, I can do without them.  I have to question the rubber butt pad, it is not a recoil pad just hard rubber.  It is nice and doesn't slip but I still prefer the old Marlin black butt plate.  Overall though, it is a keeper and a shooter.

 

I have seen these priced from $975 to $1499...inexpensive they are not.  Overall it is a solid rifle and I can expect to see it hanging from my saddle or carried afield in search of pesky varmints. 

 

Just some thought from a fellow shooter...

 

4.jpg 

Thank you for your business 

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5 hours ago, Jabez Cowboy,SASS # 50129 said:

I really want one in .38-40....

 

Jabez Cowboy

One reason I rebuilt the road kill antique Marlin was it's odd 26" 38WCF caliber. I relined the barrel.  I know a guy that relined a Rossi 44 Magnum to 38WCF.  

765279530_Marlin94projectass2June2019.jpg.2551781c24716c36d3e237238e2e6ecf.jpg606737466_Marlin94projectass1June2019.jpg.f1753fb0ba51c33d7a69946f6a9d3ac3.jpg

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I relined a Winchester 73 in .38WCF. with a barrel that was ruined, it might have been able to have been bored out and re-rifled to .44 WCF, but the customer wanted it back to original caliber... I whole heartedly agreed, as I'm not positive that barrel had enough sound metal all the way through the full length, surprises half way down a barrel are not fun to discover... This was my first time installing a liner with Epoxy, and it worked great. I use a two angle crown lined up with the liner diameter, so the transition between the angles covers between liner and original barrel, I did the same kind of transition using two forcing cone angles. 

 

Jabez Cowboy 

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