30/30 vs .357


October 9, 2008, 08:56 PM
I am wanting to get a lever action rifle. I guess I am a nosatlgia guy. I just need some info first, What are the balastics of the 30/30 round vs. the .357 round? Which is the better all purpose round?

I can get a used marlin for 200 w/ scope (it used to be mine but sold it to a friend) or a new Marlin 1894c for 479.00, what would you do?

If you enjoyed reading about "30/30 vs .357" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
October 9, 2008, 09:01 PM
Do you reload?

October 9, 2008, 09:04 PM
go with .30-30 IMHO

October 9, 2008, 09:07 PM
I have 2 .30-30's and love them both but really want a .357 lever so I would say get both ro which ever you can get easier and cheaper..

October 9, 2008, 09:09 PM
Short range plinking, or hunting for smaller game a 357 would be ok, probably ok for smaller deer and close ranges. 30-30 will shine at longer ranges, and don't forget it has been used as a hunting cartridge since 1894, probably fueling the change from bigger black powder cartridges to smaller smokless powder ones. It's hard to knock that kind of success.

October 9, 2008, 09:28 PM
There is really no good way to compare the two.

The 30/30 is one of the very best calibers an American hunter can have.
It isn't a "varmint" caliber but for deer, antelope, wild hogs, black bear, and coyotes within 200yds. it's very, very good. The recoil and muzzle blast are both very moderate, the ammo is relatively inexpensive and available everywhere, and it is typically very accurate.

The .357 is a different scenario altogether. It is a very Fun caliber to target shoot and plink with and, if you reload, it is cheap to shoot. It will handle coyotes, deer and wild hogs at modest ranges, its' recoil and muzzle blast are mild, and it is often very accurate.

Many folks have lever-action rifles in both calibers and wouldn't trade either of them off.

Good luck !

October 9, 2008, 09:59 PM
I have leverguns in several calibers and wouldn't be without at least a .30-30, .357, .44 and a .45-70.

I tend to think of my of rifles like golf clubs. I want the right one for the specific situation or need.

If I had to pick one it would be a tough call. I would probably go with the .30-30. It works well on most things.

If I just wanted to mostly plink and occasionally hunt I would go with the .357 or the .44. Probably the .44 because I reload and can keep the cost down.

Let us know what you choose,


Ben Shepherd
October 9, 2008, 11:27 PM
Do you already have a revolver in 357? Do you plan to hunt with it, or is it just one to have?

October 9, 2008, 11:37 PM
Ballistics for .357 Magnum from 18.5 inch Marlin 1894 rifle. Using Buffalo Bore Ammo

a. Item 19A/20-180gr. Hard Cast = 1851 fps
b. Item 19B/20-170gr. JHC = 1860 fps
c. Item 19C/20-158gr. Speer Uni Core = 2153 fps----
d. Item 19D/20-125gr. Speer Uni Core = 2298 fps----

Remington 55 gr. Accelerator 3,495 fps
Winchester 150 gr. Power-Point 2,405 fps
PMC 150 gr. Starfire 2,308 fps
Federal 170 gr. Nosler Partition 2,175 fps

I believe with the new ammo available from Hornady that the .30-30 is going to go on for a long time as very effective caliber. If you need the improved performance over the .357 your choice is easy.

I really enjoy my Marlin 1894c. I can shoot .38 or .357, I have the flexibility to go up to Buffalo Bore if I feel the need. I don't hunt anymore so this works for me. If you reload get the.357 first after a year of reloading for it you will have saved enough to buy a Marlin 336 in .30-30:D

Harve Curry
October 9, 2008, 11:51 PM
If your huniting game over 75 pounds, go with the 30-30.

Mr. 16 gauge
October 10, 2008, 12:21 AM
Another vote for the .30/30.

The .357 magnum is a great cartridge.....in a handgun!

Deer Hunter
October 10, 2008, 12:29 AM
If it can be killed with a 30-30, it can be killed just as equally with a .357 magnum.

Dead is dead. No such thing as "more dead".

October 10, 2008, 12:47 AM
If it can be killed with a 30-30, it can be killed just as equally with a .357 magnum.

Dead is dead. No such thing as "more dead".

You know thats funny. I have two brothers. Both are good guys but kind of opposite the ends of the spectrum, if you know what I mean. They both bow hunt, I dont. When it came time to sight in this year I was hanging out with them and noticed that my one brother, who is very practical, had a nice setup he got entirely off of ebay. Had like 125 in sights and all. My other brother has like 4 times that in his setup. They both shot equally well and with repeatabity. Like my cheaper brother said, dont matter if you spend 200 or 600, dead is dead, and the deer doesnt know how much you paid anyhow.

October 10, 2008, 12:56 AM
30/30 feels good in your mouth when you say it. That rifle was yours. It calls you now and beckons. Rejoin your comrade.

October 10, 2008, 08:56 AM
30/30 Would be a better bet for deer.

October 10, 2008, 09:03 AM
Out to 75, maybe 100 yds, not much practical difference for mid-sized game.

Over 100 Yds, .30/30 all the way. I haven't tried any yet, but the Hornaday 'Leverevolution" ammo is supposed to make the .30/30 good for deer-size game out to 200-225 Yds.

Now, if you already have a .357Mag wheelgun, and don't want to stock another type of ammo....

October 10, 2008, 09:25 AM
If you are buying the rifle mainly for plinking get the 357. If you are buying it mainly for deer hunting get the 30-30.

October 10, 2008, 09:30 AM
>357 is great as a back-up SHTF weapon, and for hunting up to Whitetails. If you want to hunt anything bigger go w\ the 30/30!:)

October 10, 2008, 10:32 AM
If you already have a 357 handgun and you don't believe you'll need or want to shoot beyond 100 yards, go with the 357. Remember that a 357 Magnum from a rifle is around 400 fps faster than from a handgun. It is effectively a whole new round.

357 is easier on the shoulder and easier & cheaper to reload.

30-30 is certainly more versatile, but if you are going to be hunting in the woods or target shooting under 100 yds. you're not getting much for the extra ammo cost.

October 10, 2008, 10:36 AM
The .357 mag can handle deer with ease. It can also handle small game which the .30-30 cannot.

October 10, 2008, 10:43 AM
Well, I'd agree that the 30-30 is a better deer rifle. It outclasses the .357 even without the new Lever Evolution ammo. With it, there's a clear difference, particularly out at 100 yards and past. There's an awful lot of deer and black bear that fall to the old 30-30 each year. Same goes for coyote, feral dogs, hogs, and other smaller creatures unlucky enough to get in the way.

That being said, the .357 is fun, cheap to shoot, and gives you a very broad range of ammo - even more if you're a handloader - to work with. You can plink all day with your Cowboy Action lightweight 38 ammo - or you can load with heavy .357 and still take deer or maybe black bear with good shot placement and reasonable ranges.

I'd definitely opt for 30-30 if I wanted a handy deer rifle. I'd definitely go with the .357 if I wanted something that would work for more situations and still have reasonable power, particularly if I had a .357 handgun or was a reloader (I am).

October 10, 2008, 11:08 AM
357 for fun
30-30 for hunting

Be safe


October 10, 2008, 12:06 PM
Thanks for all your replies.

I do not reload, but I do have a .357 revolver.

However, I think I will go with the 30/30. Better distance, and it would be nice to get my old gun back. I really liked that rifle.

October 10, 2008, 12:42 PM
By the way, where can you get a new Marlin 1894c for 479?

October 10, 2008, 12:45 PM
Whip it good!

(the dead horse that is)

If you enjoyed reading about "30/30 vs .357" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!