Which lever-action .357 carbine?


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perpster
February 12, 2006, 05:25 AM
I want to buy a .357 lever action carbine for plinking/target/self-defense use. Which manufacturer/model should I go for? I want it to be Made in USA and of high quality for a reasonable price, under $400 or so.

Thank you.

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Glockman17366
February 12, 2006, 05:43 AM
Marlin makes a niice model...the 1894.

Dave Markowitz
February 12, 2006, 09:51 AM
If made in USA is a requirement, you're limited to a Marlin 1894 or a Winchester 94, if you can find one. Between the two, I'd recommend the Marlin, since it was designed for pistol length cartridges and should be less prone to jamming.

If you change your mind and can accept an import, the Rossi copies of the Winchester 1892 are nice. Very slick action and reliable. The Rossis imported by EMF and Navy Arms have somewhat nicer finishes than those imported by LSI, and also lack the st00pid bolt-mounted safety found on the LSIs.

I have an EMF/Rossi 1892 Short Rifle in .357. I.e., it has a 20" octagonal barrel and rifle style wood. It's an absolute hoot to shoot and quite accurate out to 50 yards, the furthest I've shot it so far.

TrafficMan
February 12, 2006, 10:00 AM
I have an EMF/Rossi 1892 Short Rifle in .357. I.e., it has a 20" octagonal barrel and rifle style wood. It's an absolute hoot to shoot and quite accurate out to 50 yards, the furthest I've shot it so far.


i saw the same rifle yesterday at the gunshop, it almost came home with me.

ChristopherG
February 12, 2006, 10:59 AM
I love my marlin 1894c. My son and I use it for cowboy action once a month, and it handles like a dream cranking little .38 rnfp lead shells through as fast as you can pull the lever.

Then, I slip on the aperature of the Lyman receiver sight on the rear and take it to the range, where it'll shoot under 2" groups at 100 yards with 158 gr. JSP's--going 2,000 fps.

Awesome little gun.

noresttill
February 12, 2006, 11:49 AM
The Win is also a top ejector and the Marlin is a side ejector. Puma makes one too, but I dont know where they are from.

I was looking into this for the same reason, but I decided that a rifle cartridge would make a better SD round than a premium .357 round.

Ranger J
February 12, 2006, 01:45 PM
I got an 1894C marlin for Christmas two years ago and made the mistake of letting my wife shoot it. It has now become her favorite gun. The few times I have got to shoot it has been both accurate and reliable. The model I have shoots both .357 and .38 SP with nary a hiccup. Real nice gun…I think.
RJ

_N4Z_
February 12, 2006, 02:14 PM
I've got a Marlin336 in 30/30 which I think is a daisy. I've toyed with getting an 1894 to compliment two .357 revolvers, but that hasn't happened yet. My vote is for the Marlin 1894. I've heard many good things about them.

Ohen Cepel
February 12, 2006, 02:19 PM
I would go with the Marlin. Right now there are some limited editions out with laminated stock, in stainless, with 16in barrel. Real nice set up. However, it will exceed the $400 limit you set.

I have a std version in .357, love it!

StrikeEagle
February 12, 2006, 02:25 PM
The Win 94 is my favorite rifle in 30-30, but it's awful in .44 Mag. Mine was so rough I took it back in less than a week. Then about a year later, because it's such a grea idea (.44 Mag in a carbine) I bought another one, which turned out to be just as rough. Win 94 just isn't good in pistol-length rounds. :(

So if it must be made in USA, I'd go Marlin for sure.

I have a Rossi in .357 which is a sheer delight. Highly recommended.

StrikeEagle

perpster
February 13, 2006, 04:52 PM
Sounds like it should be the Marlin, though I've heard Henry is coming out with a .357 lever right about now. What do y'all think of a Henry vs Marlin?

3 Barrel issues confuse me: Ballard vs. micro vs. button; octagonal vs round; 16"-18.5"; 20" lengths. I'm not a reloader and would shooting factory ammo 99% of the time. I don't know what the significance of the 1st two issues are. Not sure whether the lengths makes much difference. I'm guessing for my limited purposes (plink/target/SD) 16" or 18.5" are best but not clear what options are available on which models.

Ohen Cepel: do you have a link to the 16" SS Marlin?--I don't see it on their website (except in .44 caliber). How much over $400 are we talkin?

In fact, what is a typical retail price for these rifles (new)?

I do see two choices on Marlin's website catalog:

1894c: 18.5" deepcut Ballard; 9 shot; OAL 36"; 6 lbs.
1894 Cowboy: 20" deepcut Ballard octagonal; 10 shot; OAL 37.5"; 6.5 lbs.

What price range are we talkin' for the Marlin .357 models?

ChristopherG
February 13, 2006, 05:05 PM
Those 16" SS deals were a special run; might be hard to find one. The standard model is the 18.5" 'ballard' (a.k.a. button) rifled. They're in the neighborhood of four bills, depending on the neighborhood. The 20" is a cowboy-competition special, not your plinkin' gun, and would run an extra hundred bucks at least.

Brian Williams
February 13, 2006, 05:12 PM
I often recommend Marlin because I have one and I am starting to suggest a 1892 clone from Rossi/LSI/NavyArms/etc and have it checked out by Nate Jones over on Leveractions.com
I still think the Marlin is the best, you can remove the bolt easily and and the action is more closed in than a win 1892 or 94.
The Stainless versions are only thru Davidsons and Marlin only made 350 of them and they are getting pricey.
I like the 1894C with the round barrel for $350 to $500 but the CBC "cowboy" will be $490 to $750

perpster
February 13, 2006, 05:18 PM
I like the 1894C with the round barrel for $350 to $500 but the CBC "cowboy" will be $490 to $750

$350-$500 is quite a variation. I'll look around locally, but can they be bought over the internet?

Should I be concerned about the type of rifling? As I said, I'll be using factory ammo that will go both in revolver and lever, so will most likely be jacketed rounds most of the time. I can't rule out the occassional non-jacketed round such as round nose lead or SWC lead. Should I be concerned?

PS: I'd watch out for the Stobor if I knew what it was.

Sistema1927
February 13, 2006, 05:35 PM
I wouldn't worry too much if you find a nice one at the right price with Micro-Groove rifling.

I use such a carbine for CAS, and accuracy is just fine. Even after 40 or 50 rounds of lead Cowboy .38 ammo, all that it takes is a swipe of a bore-snake with a little CLP to make it shine like brand new. Possibly higher velocity lead rounds will lead it or degrade accuracy, but if I am going to shoot them they will be jacketed.

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