Levergun Questions


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heypete
February 4, 2006, 06:43 AM
I recently have come across a very fine looking Marlin 336 in .30-30. Bluing is 100%, wood is about 99% (one or two minor scratches in an out-of-the-way place). $300 + tax + DROS + other California fees. In short, it's a stunningly beautiful rifle, and I feel that I got a really good deal on it.

Even better, it looks to be an older model with no cross-bolt safety or anything like that. The closest thing to a "safety" would be pulling the hammer back to half-cock so it doesn't ride on the firing pin.

I've got a sizeable collection of other guns, but this is my first levergun and I had a few questions for people more knowledgeable than I:

1) Other than removing the lever and bolt, cleaning the interior of the receiver, cleaning the bore, and lightly oiling all the components, what sort of maintenance does it need? I thoroughly disassemble and clean all of my other guns down to the "detail-strip" level at least once a year just to ensure there's no grime and whatnot stuck deep inside. As for regular post-shooting cleaning and oiling, are there any places I should be particularly aware of?

2) Is it safe to shoot cast lead bullets through the Micro-Groove barrel? What about using normal cleaning implements (patches, jags, or patch-loops? Bronze brushes ok in the Micro-Groove barrel?). I don't want to damage this gun if I can avoid it.

3) Is there any particuarly good way to load rounds into the tube magazine quickly? My Mossberg 500 shotgun allows me to load it fairly quickly, but it doesn't have that annoying little door in the way. Any suggestions?

4) Assuming cast lead bullets are ok with the Micro-Groove barrel, I'll probably stick to those (probably PMC cartridges so I can build up a stockpile of decent brass for cheap) for the time being, maybe shoot some jacketed ammo too. However, I'm curious what a good "serious work" cartridge would be -- I tend to keep a few boxes (or ammo cans...or linked belts...:evil: ) of effective anti-goblin ammo around for every gun I own. What would you all recommend for .30-30?

I'll see about getting some pictures soon...it's a beautiful gun!

-Pete

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mustanger98
February 4, 2006, 07:15 AM
2) Is it safe to shoot cast lead bullets through the Micro-Groove barrel? What about using normal cleaning implements (patches, jags, or patch-loops? Bronze brushes ok in the Micro-Groove barrel?). I don't want to damage this gun if I can avoid it.

Cast lead bullets are a no-go in the Microgroove barrel. I hear the barrel leads up way too fast.

All the cleaning tools you just mentioned are fine.

3) Is there any particuarly good way to load rounds into the tube magazine quickly? My Mossberg 500 shotgun allows me to load it fairly quickly, but it doesn't have that annoying little door in the way. Any suggestions?

Shove the .30-30 cartridge in to where the rim holds the gate open, then shove the next one in to that point. Repeat until the mag's full. And don't consider the door to be an annoyance or it will be.

4) Assuming cast lead bullets are ok with the Micro-Groove barrel, I'll probably stick to those (probably PMC cartridges so I can build up a stockpile of decent brass for cheap) for the time being, maybe shoot some jacketed ammo too. However, I'm curious what a good "serious work" cartridge would be -- I tend to keep a few boxes (or ammo cans...or linked belts... ) of effective anti-goblin ammo around for every gun I own. What would you all recommend for .30-30?

I know what you mean about having enough ammo on hand. As I said before, cast lead and Microgroove barrels are a no-go. For "serious work cartridges", Cabela's is listing 150gr and 170gr SP's for $49.99/100rds. Or you can pick up Winchester or Remington SP's in those weights for $8-10/20rds. It gets a little higher at privately owned gun shops. Handloading cuts the price in half and you know "what's under the hood".

TarpleyG
February 4, 2006, 10:56 AM
If you are going to be hunting with this rifle, I'd suggest checking out those new Hornady polymer tipped cartridges and sight in with those. They seem to offer the best ballistics for a .30-30 currently available.

Greg

rbernie
February 4, 2006, 11:24 AM
I have heard it said recently that gas-checked bullets are OK in a MicroGroove barrel, but that's just hearsay.

dodge
February 4, 2006, 01:45 PM
Go to www.marlinowners.com. These guys have a lot of information that will help in your questions.

Jim Watson
February 4, 2006, 02:39 PM
1. That is about all the cleaning the usual Marlin gets and is apparently all it needs.

2. There is no risk to rifle or shooter with cast bullets in Microgroove barrels, just that it can be difficult to get an accurate load with them. Keep velocity down.

3. Practice. The only "tactical" advantage of a tube magazine rifle or shotgun is that you can top off the magazine at any time while keeping the chamber loaded and ready to shoot.

4. The .30-30 is somewhat more powerful than 7.62x39 which works for every Communist and terrorist in the world, so it should be adequate for you. Any standard load will do. I'd use the 150 gr softpoint. Don't get in a rush to stock up on those lead PMCs, they might not work well; as in 2 above, you may have to keep fooling with it.

heypete
February 4, 2006, 04:59 PM
1. That is about all the cleaning the usual Marlin gets and is apparently all it needs.

2. There is no risk to rifle or shooter with cast bullets in Microgroove barrels, just that it can be difficult to get an accurate load with them. Keep velocity down.

3. Practice. The only "tactical" advantage of a tube magazine rifle or shotgun is that you can top off the magazine at any time while keeping the chamber loaded and ready to shoot.

4. The .30-30 is somewhat more powerful than 7.62x39 which works for every Communist and terrorist in the world, so it should be adequate for you. Any standard load will do. I'd use the 150 gr softpoint. Don't get in a rush to stock up on those lead PMCs, they might not work well; as in 2 above, you may have to keep fooling with it.

1. Excellent.

2. Hmm. I think I may try a single box of cast-bullet cartridges from PMC and see how it goes, and how difficult it is to get the gunk out. Fortunately, it's trivially easy to remove the bolt and clean from the breech, which is nice.

3. Indeed. I'll have to practice more; I only got it yesterday.

4. I was just wondering if there was any particularly good anti-bad-guy round (like a Speer Gold Dot or Federal Hydrashok for pistols, or Hornady TAP for rifles), or if over-the-counter softpoints'll do. If regular softpoints'll work just fine, that cuts my cost a whole bunch. :)

Thanks to all who replied, you've all been most helpful.

Sulaco
February 4, 2006, 11:03 PM
1. Excellent.

2. Hmm. I think I may try a single box of cast-bullet cartridges from PMC and see how it goes, and how difficult it is to get the gunk out. Fortunately, it's trivially easy to remove the bolt and clean from the breech, which is nice.

3. Indeed. I'll have to practice more; I only got it yesterday.

4. I was just wondering if there was any particularly good anti-bad-guy round (like a Speer Gold Dot or Federal Hydrashok for pistols, or Hornady TAP for rifles), or if over-the-counter softpoints'll do. If regular softpoints'll work just fine, that cuts my cost a whole bunch. :)

Thanks to all who replied, you've all been most helpful.

Regular old soft points punch holes just like other bullets. They will work fine.

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