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Lever Guns!

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by 3M-TA3, Dec 4, 2019 at 15:16.


  1. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey Site Supporter++

    I've decided that one of my next long arms will be a lever gun in a cartridge that can use either black or smokeless powder. The two that come to mind are the 30-30 and the 45-70. I'm still deciding between the brute force of the 45-70 vs the less resource intensive but competent 30-30.

    My only experience with lever guns was hunting as a youth. Those days the Winchester 94 was king in our area. I have a small amount of experience with them - I saved up for a bolt action so I could shoot pointy bullets, but zero with the alternatives. Obviously I will sample and handle different models before I buy, but each will have strengths and weaknesses that aren't apparent on a look see.

    I'd like to get the thoughts of forum members on the brands an models they have used regarding things like durability, accuracy, maintenance, smoothness, strengths, weaknesses, etc..

    A quick check shows these manufacturers make lever guns in at least one of the cartridges I'm interested in. There is a strong chance I won't be buying new, so feel free to give your thoughts on any I have missed :

    Cimarron
    Henry
    Marlin
    Mossberg
    Winchester
    Rossi
     
  2. oldman11

    oldman11 Monkey+++

    I have Rossi lever guns in .45colt,two Rossi .44mag ,they are very good rifles. I also have a marlin lever in .41mag and a Winchester 94 lever in .30-30. And I just traded for a Winchester 1873 in .38-40. So you can see what I think about lever guns. You will enjoy your lever guns as they are one of the best bar none.
     
  3. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grudge Monkey

    WELL NOW, (licking my lips here)! a good Marlin ( Or WIn, or Henry) .45/70 is damn hard to beat, and it's usefulness is beyond contestation! From killing Dinosaurs on down to deer and even coyotes, few self contained cartridge firearms can equal it while allowing hand loading in the field! The real beauty is in the abilities to use both modern smokeless and Holy Black with every bullet you can get to fit and feed!
    Outside of that, my All time Favorite Lever action is the WInchester 1895 ( designed by our favorite saint, one John Moses Browning) and chambered in a mind numbing number of flavors, some modern, some lost to history, but all capable of very good to awesome, to insane performance!
    Depending on your budget and desires, one of those 1895 Winnies might just tickle your GunBone just right, and a word of caution, they are addictive as hell!
     
    GOG, Tully Mars, Oddcaliber and 4 others like this.
  4. Thunder5Ranch

    Thunder5Ranch Monkey+++

    Love my marlin 30/30 just a good dependable workhorse. Have a .45-70 Henry that does not get much time out of the cabinet. Most used lever gun I have is a old Henry .22 mag.
     
    GOG, Gator 45/70, techsar and 3 others like this.
  5. Lancer

    Lancer TANSTAFL! Site Supporter+++

    Interesting - I've been toying with the idea of a lever gun myself. Same calibers as well. And since I already stock .30-30 for a bolt rifle, I'll probably go that route.
     
    GOG, Gator 45/70 and Ura-Ki like this.
  6. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey Site Supporter++

    Are there any that have known issues or production years to avoid? I have heard, that JM Marlins are better than they were after Remington bought them. Don't know if it's a real thing or not as I have no experience?

    I know a lot of newer ones have tang safeties, but that's a non issue to me unless they can cause a failure other than operator error.

    I do dig the box magazine on the 1895. Shame that Browning doesn't make anything in the cartridges I'm looking at.
     
    HK_User, Gator 45/70 and Ura-Ki like this.
  7. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grudge Monkey

    Any of the Pre Remmy Marlins are going to be the most desirable, and the much celebrated, but little known 100 year anniversary and special editions are well worth having if you can score one! A 100 Year celebration half round/half octagonal barrel with the fancy wood and gorgeous bluing is a thing of beauty rarely seen in a production rifle!
    Rossi can be hit and miss, but we both know the perfect 'Smith to make one look and run flawless!
    Winchester are best pre Browning/FN merger!
    And for the 1895's ether of the three; FN, Browning, or Winchester would be the most awesome of all, especially one of the ultra rare FN's to which J.M. Browning was always a frequent designer, but few were ever shipped across the pond! You can still find both Browning and Winchesters New in the Box, and there isn't anything wrong with them at all, not as fancy as the older ones, but then they would be shooters, so they may be more useful to you in that regard!
    Henry are pretty bomb proof, and run pretty well, though I have only ever seen one and Didn't get to shoot it!
    I have heard that the New Marlins have shed the Remmy gremlins, but unless you are willing to take the risk, Or take it to see Tim, I would shop for a pre Remmy!
     
  8. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    A bit away from lever guns, but I do not know of any smokeless rated rifle that cannot handle the holy black. I dare say one would be well advised to not shoot black in any kind of semi auto, but would not be surprised to find some that will run quite nicely regardless.
     
  9. techsar

    techsar Monkey+++

    image. image. Only have two centerfire lever guns...a Rossi in .357/.38, which can be loaded with black powder, and a Browning in .308...not sure how that would work out, but some folks have tried it - and lived to tell, so... ;)
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2019 at 23:25
  10. Bishop

    Bishop Monkey+++

    I had a Mossberg 30/30 with the ar stock actually liked it but fell on hard times so it went.
     
  11. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey Site Supporter++

    I saw those when I was trying to see what was out there - it just looks wrong somehow like they started with one rifle and finished with a different one. If the AR ban hits before I leave Orygun I'm going to get one just to piss off the scary looking rifle panickers.

    [​IMG]
    upload_2019-12-4_17-51-42.
     
  12. Gator 45/70

    Gator 45/70 Monkey+++

    Now IF I was to have a lever gun I'd probably try out one of these?

    Marlin 1895 CB 45/70 or

    Perhaps a Rossi stainless 38/357

    marlin.

    rossi.
     
    HK_User, 3M-TA3 and Ura-Ki like this.
  13. Bishop

    Bishop Monkey+++

    It shot really good I practice driving and shooting and out of my wrangle I was dead on shooting milk jugs ever time.
     
  14. hot diggity

    hot diggity Monkey+++ Site Supporter+++

    Winchester 94 with a Marbles folding full Buckhorn rear sight is one of my favorites.
    [​IMG]
    This sight gives me three different aiming points for increasing distances. Start close with the lower notch above the diamond. Move further out using the center as a rear aperture and center it on the front sight. Further still the front sight can be leveled with the top of the horns to make an accurate long distance shot.

    I like the .30-30 cartridge in the Model 94 because it allows me to reduce the load while still maintaining supreme accuracy. My normal load is 11.5 gr Unique pushing a 170 grain coated bullet. Very gentle load, and eyeball accurate at 50 yards... offhand.
     
  15. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart Snow Monkey Moderator

    We have both a Marlin 336 and a Winchester 94 SaddleRing Carbine in 30-30 Winchester.. The 336 came from my GodFather’s collection, and the 94, I purchased NEW, as my PackGun when I lived in the North Cascades... Both will never be sold or traded, as they will go to the kids, when I am gone...
     
    GOG, HK_User, Gator 45/70 and 2 others like this.
  16. Big Ron

    Big Ron Monkey++

    I would go with a Marlin in either caliber. I am fond of the 45/70. It makes people stop and wonder what kind of cannon you're shooting!
     
  17. oldman11

    oldman11 Monkey+++

    I had a Marlin 45/70 until my grandson shot it one time,it went home with him. Between grandsons and granddaughters it's hard to keep a good gun. They are not into revolvers yet so I get to keep mine for now.
    [flag]
     
    Gator 45/70, Alf60 and Ura-Ki like this.
  18. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grudge Monkey

    Gator 45/70 and 3M-TA3 like this.
  19. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey Site Supporter++

    Gator 45/70 and Ura-Ki like this.
  20. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grudge Monkey

    I got my newest one from there for $550 plus fees and shipping!

    There are at least 5 I see there this time that should be had for under a grand!
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2019 at 17:47
    Gator 45/70 and 3M-TA3 like this.
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