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Been thinking about getting a lever gun.

Discussion in 'Rifle Discussion' started by Hammer_Man, Jun 3, 2012.

  1. Hammer_Man

    Hammer_Man Hillsboro Member

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    I've always liked lever action rifles, and I would like to get a Winchester, but they're out of my price range. So after doing some internet research, I've narrowed my choices down to either a Marlin 1895, or a Henry Big Boy. Anybody have any personal experience with either of these makes? What about the Italian made knockoffs? Any advice, or real world experience would greatly be appreciated. Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2012
  2. accessbob

    accessbob Molalla, OR 2A Supporter

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    Henry is one of the original lever action manufacturers. I have a Henry .22 lever action and the action is so smooth and sweet. Haven't fired the larger caliber ones nor have I fired the Marlins but I would be totally comfortable buying another Henry for myself.
     
  3. Benny503

    Benny503 Grants Pass Well-Known Member

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    I wish they make one in 7.62x39 cal. I hate to go outside differnt ammo.
     
  4. BlackSwanArms

    BlackSwanArms Monroe, WA New Member

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    I have a .45-70 Marlin 1895G "Guide Gun" with the ported barrel. I don't shoot it a lot, but it's one of my favorites. It is a very fast handling rifle but loud with the 18.5" ported barrel. At one point I even had a Trijicon Tri-power on top of it. The red dot looks out of place, but works extremely well if hunting in heavy brush. It may get an Aimpoint Micro H-1 in the future. I'd buy another in a heart beat, but I do like the Henrys' too. Just received their catalog last week and have been drooling over it.
     
  5. H2O MAN

    H2O MAN Georgia - USA Well-Known Member

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    I also have a Marlin .45-70 Guide Gun, but it's not ported and I've tweaked it a bit by
    adding a scout mount, larger lever, ghost ring sights and a +2 mag tube extension.
    Here it is with a Leupold FX-II... I have also run an Aimpoint Micro T-1 on the optic rail.
    The major work was performed by David at http://www.clementscustomguns.com/, I installed the sights and scout rail.

    EGG-Scout.jpg
     
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  6. Nwcid

    Nwcid Yakima and N of Spokane Well-Known Member

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    Marlin hands down unless it is an old Winchester you are looking at. I have no experience with Henry though.

    You dont say what caliber you are looking for.
     
  7. Joe Link

    Joe Link Portland, OR Well-Known Member Staff Member Lifetime Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    When my brother and I divided my grandfathers collection I had to choose between the Colt Anaconda I had always been in love with and the Pre-'64 Winchester 30-30 I grew up shooting. I chose the Anaconda, but I borrowed the 30-30 often and always wondered if I made the right choice. A couple years back my brother needed to make rent and offered to sell me my grandfathers rifle. I had to get a cash advance on a credit card, but I didn't think twice. Out of my entire collection that lever gun is still at the top of my list and I take it every time I go camping. A better all around brush/camping/truck gun doesn't exist, in my opinion. I've heard great things about all three of those manufacturers, and I often consider getting one in .357 or .44 mag to match one of my revolvers.
     
  8. Whaler

    Whaler Sequim, WA Well-Known Member

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    Another thumbs up for the Winchester.
    Here is my 1957 30-30.
    Winchester94.jpg
     
  9. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    I have a early 50's M94 Winchester that is a great shooter.And a recent (4-5yo) model Rossi 45 LC that is a very accurate rifle out past 100 yards.It has a very smooth action.Maybe shot a lot or some work,not sure.Then there is my brand new 357 Rossi that is accurate but could use some tuning to be smooth.
    In the past I have owned the Henry 22s and loved them.They were 22mag so they were sold.Too expensive for a plinker.22lr would be great.Never shot the pistol caliber Henry's but the cowboys up here use them some.
    The Marlins,IMHO,are the best for hunting.Probably better made than any lever gun.The heavy ammo manufactures always include Marlin for their fire breathing loads.Some of the others won't handle them as a steady diet,apparently.
    This does not include the brand spankin' new Marlin,or Remlins? as they have seen issues I have read.

    So if you want a nice handgun caliber,the Rossis and Pumas (Puma is just as high dollar Rossi) and Henrys are great.The Winchesters are rifle actions adjusted to handle shorter handgun cartridges and cycle fine at a slow rate.(cowboy shooter told me)
    If you want the best hunting ,rifle caliber lever gun,I would always buy a pre Remington Marlin.

    I can't speak on the older,1890's lever guns as I haven't owned one.

    But I can almost guarantee you will have fun with whatever lever gun you get.:thumbup:
     
  10. HenryJ

    HenryJ Eastern Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Another vote for the Marlin. I have an old 39A .22Lr, 336 30-30, and 1895XLR 45-70
    22.JPG
    3030.JPG
    leverloop.JPG
    Each a pleasure to shoot. The .22LR is a real tack driver, but I would hate to have to choose a favorite :)
     
  11. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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    Get a pre Remington Marlin. You will be a happy man. I am in love with my Marlin 1894C in 357Mag. I adore 30-30's in fact I just bought a 2nd one. A pre-cross bolt safety and she is a sexy wench.

    Henry, is the 39A for sale?
     
  12. H2O MAN

    H2O MAN Georgia - USA Well-Known Member

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    Good plan... I picked up a Ruger GP100 to go with my Winchester 94 Trapper carbine, both are .357 Mag.

    94Trapper.jpg
     
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  13. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    I tried getting one of those 39's from a guy at the gun show,but he wasn't quite sure his grandkids didn't need it.
     
  14. HenryJ

    HenryJ Eastern Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Mine was my mother's and I am sure some day it will be my sons. They really are a very good rifle.
     
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  15. saxon

    saxon springfield Active Member

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  16. Trailboss

    Trailboss Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    Nice looking lever H2O MAN

    I have a number of Winchester levers and never seem to tire of em. Congrats!
     
  17. Hammer_Man

    Hammer_Man Hillsboro Member

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    Hey guys thanks for all the replies! As far as what caliber, I think I'd like to use a 45LC, 45-70, or even a 44-40. The reason would be my desire to own a classic revolver some day, and it would be nice to only need one type of ammo for both. Markad: You mentioned buying a pre Remington Marlin? What year did Remington buy Marlin?
    HenryJ: I'm really jealous of your XLR! I really like that particjular finishin on the stock and foregrip. Was yours built before or after Remington took over?
     
  18. errackeleo

    errackeleo None Member

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    I am not a lever action gun fan, but I bought my girlfriends father a Henry Golden Boy .22 and was very impressed. He liked the old brass receiver look. I liked that it was american made. After shooting his gun I want one. It has the old school hex barrel as well. It's a really awesome gun. The action is smoother than a hot knife through butter. The price was spot on too. about 100 less than a basic Marlin 39A (also a great gun).
     
  19. civilian75

    civilian75 Hillsboro, OR Well-Known Member

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    I own a 1895 guide gun and a 357Mag chambered 20" bbl 1894CB. Both are a blast. I modified the 1895 with XS ghost rings and the 1894 with Williams peeps and front globe sight. With 180gr hand loads I have been able to shoot 2 MOA at 60 yds (~1"). If I ever have to part from my guns, those two will be among the last to go. My next lever will most likely be a 22LR or a 30-30. I am very partial to Marlins, being side eject. I am not too fond of top eject levers, but I am sure they are awesome firearms, too. Just do not have any experience. here is a couple of pics:


    th_Marlin1895_SRT45701-1.jpg
    Custom 45-70 suppressor from SRT.

    th_Marlin1895_threading3.jpg
    Threading job by Tornado Tech.

    th_Marlin1895_threading1.jpg

    th_DSC_0039a.jpg
    Marlin 1894BC
     
  20. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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    The date I am not sure of. About 4 years ago, I think.
    the best way to be sure if the JM proof mark on the rifle. If it is there it is a Marlin. Check the Marlin Owners forum for better details.