Lever Action in 45LC


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hawk45
July 10, 2009, 10:07 PM
Looking to get a lever action in .45LC. I hear good things about the Marlin 1894 but they are like $800. How are the Puma/Rossi models? It will just be for fun shooting. I don't really see myself getting into CAS. Also, will they hold up to the higher power loads (I reload).

Thanks!

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Harve Curry
July 11, 2009, 01:09 AM
Marlin 1894 models are probably the best all made in the USA , I think that is important.
They can handle hot 45 Colt loads, check the manuals.

Rossi/Puma are imported copies of the Winchester 1892 models and can be real good , strong rifles.

Marlins are still made with the square bolt just as they were in 1894. They do have a cross bolt safety which ain't all bad. I like the 20" short barrel octagons because of the balance. I think if you are patient you can still find them for $600 to $700. Round barrel carbines should be less.

Hanzerik
July 11, 2009, 02:10 AM
I have two Pumas in .44 Mag which are very nice rifles. I shoot factory loads and my own light loads (200gr RNFP & 240LSWC over 8grs of Unique). Both guns feed and chamber all rounds smoothly, and are accurate.
http://home.bresnan.net/~hanzerik/pics/Puma/Right-Side.JPG

bobotech
July 11, 2009, 04:17 AM
I believe that the 92s are the strongest. I base that assumption based upon the fact that the Puma/Rossi can be chambered in the 454casul round.

Shung
July 11, 2009, 04:45 AM
Get a Uberti/Cimarron model 1873 in 45LC.. they really look beautifull !

http://www.cimarron-firearms.com/RepeatingRifles/Images/1873.jpg

I like the 73 mechanism much more than the later stuff !

Harve Curry
July 11, 2009, 08:59 AM
" Get a Uberti/Cimarron model 1873 in 45LC.. they really look beautifull !

I like the 73 mechanism much more than the later stuff ! "

Me to. I have a original Winchester '73 converted to 45 Colt. It's a oct short rifle, 20"' and killed a 300 lb black bear with it in '96. One of the hunts I remember most.

1873 Win actions feed real well because they don't tip the cartridge' it lifts and goes straight in. But the hot loads like Hawk45 is asking about are not recommended in a 73 type action. There was an IItalian mporter (EuroArms?) making the 1873 in 44 magnum, but I have only heard of 2 of them. One was for sale and I didn't buy it.

Bill B.
July 11, 2009, 05:28 PM
I like the 73 mechanism much more than the later stuff !

+1 .........The Winchester 73's are the best of the lever guns in 45 LC! I owned them all when I was shooting in CAS. I liked the Marlin Cowboy also in 44/40 & .357. The Rossi 92 I had was a jamomatic in 45 LC and had a habit of throwing out live rounds. The Winchester 66's function well also in 45 LC but I prefer the 73.

mgkdrgn
July 11, 2009, 07:33 PM
Looking to get a lever action in .45LC. I hear good things about the Marlin 1894 but they are like $800. How are the Puma/Rossi models? It will just be for fun shooting. I don't really see myself getting into CAS. Also, will they hold up to the higher power loads (I reload).

Thanks!

I was in your same position about 2 months ago. Got the Puma/Rossi in 454 Casull. Still fires 45 Colt, but plenty strong enough to handle any 45 Colt non-cowboy load I care to toss at it. I've been very happy with it.

hawk45
July 11, 2009, 10:09 PM
I was in your same position about 2 months ago. Got the Puma/Rossi in 454 Casull. Still fires 45 Colt, but plenty strong enough to handle any 45 Colt non-cowboy load I care to toss at it. I've been very happy with it.
That sounds like the way to go.. I may have to go with the 454 Casull.

mdThanatos
July 11, 2009, 10:18 PM
Those Ubertis are gonna be more expensive than the Marlins you are looking at. The Rossi is a good strong action and if it is for fun shooting it should be fine as is. The only thing you hear bad about them is from CAS shooters but they slick up real nice for competition and there is a good smith out there for them but he gets a lot of requests, but you won't need to worry bout that.

Not sure where you live but you can check to see if there is a CAS club nearby, just contact the match director and tell him you want to check it out and usually you can watch for free, then get invites to try out some of the shooters equipment and you can see how you like each gun. At the local club we have 1873's 1894's and 92's and haven't met a selfish person yet.

Txhillbilly
July 11, 2009, 10:45 PM
I have a Uberti 24" 45 Colt and a Winchester 94AE 24" 44 Mag and shoot some pretty hot loads out of both with no problems. I'm sure that there are some loads that are probably too hot for these guns,but that is what common sense is for,Knowing when to say thats enough power!

Owlnmole
July 11, 2009, 11:48 PM
Not a lever action, but if you are looking for a fun campanion to your .45 LC lever gun or revolver, the H&R Buffalo Rifle comes in a handy little .45 LC carbine.

http://www.hr1871.com/images/zoom_cr_45lc.jpg (http://www.hr1871.com/Firearms/Rifles/buffalo.asp)

1858
July 11, 2009, 11:59 PM
Got the Puma/Rossi in 454 Casull. Still fires 45 Colt, but plenty strong enough to handle any 45 Colt non-cowboy load I care to toss at it. I've been very happy with it.

The Marlin 1894 will also handle stout .45 Colt loads. In fact, I shoot the same loads out of my Ruger Redhawk and the Marlin. The '94 in .45 Colt is the same design and dimensions as the .44 Magnum so they can handle anything from mild to wild.

:)

SASS#23149
July 12, 2009, 12:18 AM
To me,there is no comparing the metalurgy (sp) between any marlin, or winchester, and any Italian made gun.I've had my rossi for years and realllly like shooting it....45colt of course,lol....but the marliins can be made to run faster and are just a superior weapon.
same goes for my italian 'colt's', very ugly inside and softer metal than rugers,colts,etc.
imho,ymmv,etc

gga357
July 12, 2009, 01:58 AM
The '73 won't handle the hot loads, but it is the best looking and smooth. The '94 and '92 will handle the hot loads. I don't have the 92 but it is next on my list. Puma.

Ed Ames
July 12, 2009, 02:41 AM
I just picked up the puma M92 in .454 as well.

I'm not a lever nostalgist (didn't watch many Olde Weste movies as a kid) but my stainless 20" puma is slick, compact, and feeds .45LC or .454 flawlessly with a quick flick of the wrist. Hard not to like.

Shung
July 12, 2009, 08:59 AM
To me,there is no comparing the metalurgy (sp) between any marlin, or winchester, and any Italian made gun.I've had my rossi for years and realllly like shooting it....45colt of course,lol....but the marliins can be made to run faster and are just a superior weapon.
same goes for my italian 'colt's', very ugly inside and softer metal than rugers,colts,etc.
imho,ymmv,etc

Rossi AINT Italian... 1st thing.. Rossi is Brasilian

then, never said that Marlin was not better than uberti.. i just said a Uberti works fine, and the 1873 model look beats EVERY Marlin hands down..

http://i44.servimg.com/u/f44/11/94/71/06/winchs12.jpg

Oldtrader3
July 12, 2009, 11:11 AM
Marlin Model 1894's are about $600 in most larger shops and for the price are heads above the competition. I have a Model 92 Winchester (Miroku) in .45 Colt to go with my Ruger Vaquero and like it very much.

Cohibra45
July 12, 2009, 01:57 PM
If you guys want to talk leverguns, go here:

http://www.leverguns.com/

Paco Kelly is THE LEVERGUN GURU and has many articles and the forum is great there also.;):cool:

MCgunner
July 12, 2009, 03:56 PM
Those 73s are pretty, but I have been droolin' over my Rossi 92 for 25 years. It's a fine lookin' rifle in its own right, and one HELL of a good shooter. Mine's in .357 magnum. My son-in-law has a .45LC model. Both have aperture sights, his a receiver Williams peep, mine off an old .22 I had, barrel dove tail mounted. The rear sight is the only thing on these rifles I never cared for.

I really prefer the looks of the 92 to the 73 and a LOT better than the Marlin.

robctwo
July 13, 2009, 02:07 AM
I bought the Rossi Puma in .45 Colt this Spring. Paid about $460 OTD. I've run some stout loads through it, but mainly bought it for the pistol range with light loads. Lots of fun. Mine shoots a bit high. Thinking about getting a taller front sight, but not sure where to go for it.

I've taken mine down one time, with a good manual and a bit of time. Not the easiest gun to detail strip.

I have the 20" octagonal. Very nice balance.http://i39.photobucket.com/albums/e186/robctwo/DSCN0292.jpg

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
July 13, 2009, 02:17 AM
How are the Puma/Rossi models?

They are excellent functionally! Albeit with a plain jane stock finish and iron sights. And cheesy safety.

Uncle Mike
July 13, 2009, 10:55 AM
They are excellent functionally! Albeit with a plain jane stock finish and iron sights. And cheesy safety.

Pure unadulterated sacrilege.... damn safeties.

I know safety is key, but a safety on these fine lever guns just plain ol' ruins their persona.

:D

Shung
July 13, 2009, 11:01 AM
Uberti make no "safeties" on their '73's !!!

And how one can prefer the look of the 92 over the 73 is far beyond any logic ;)

barnetmill
July 13, 2009, 11:07 AM
As I understand it originally the .45LC was not used in lever guns due to the poor rim on the old balloon head cases. Are there ever any extraction problems with these guns when using modern .45LC ammunition?

Shung
July 13, 2009, 11:24 AM
I don't know, but for historical reasons, I much prefer the 44-40 in my Uberti's, even if its a painfull cartridge to reload..

barnetmill
July 13, 2009, 11:29 AM
I believe that the .44/40 has a tapered case. Is this why it is hard to reload? Me I would go with the .44spl/magnum option if I were going to buy a pistol caliber carbine.

Shung
July 13, 2009, 11:35 AM
yeah, 44-40 is slightly "bottled" and after reloading, you sometimes need to integrally "reform" the whole cartridge to chamber it it the tighter guns..

but knowing its a 130+ years old historical cartridge make it a real pleasure to use.

Btw, you cannot choose both 38sp/357mag or 44sp/44mag in a 66 or 73 model.. because, the cartridge lenght is what makes it able to go from the tubular magazine to the elevator... If you chamber 38sp or 44sp in a 357mag or 44mag 1873, it will block the mechanism..

barnetmill
July 13, 2009, 11:47 AM
What about in the Winchester 92 and Marlin actions for dual use of spl and magnum length cartridges?

batmann
July 13, 2009, 11:55 AM
If you intend to shoot heavy .45 Colt loads, I would go with the Marlin. For one thing it has a shotgun butt vs a cresent butt as found on the Puma's and like. Shoot a cresent butt with a heavy load and you will feel the difference on your shoulder. Puma's action can be rough plus I like the fact Marlin is made in the USA, may not mean much to some people, but it does to me.

gb6491
July 13, 2009, 01:32 PM
If you go with a Marlin, be aware that it can (unless Marlin has decided to modify the part) develop the dreaded "Marlin Jam" (http://marauder.homestead.com/files/Marlin94Fix.html):eek: They are very nice rifles. I had a an 1894 Cowboy that was an excellent shooter. My current 45 Colt lever gun is a slightly beat up, but slicked up Puma (no safety:)).
http://i32.tinypic.com/257ppgw.jpg
Regards,
Greg

Ed Ames
July 13, 2009, 03:26 PM
If you intend to shoot heavy .45 Colt loads, I would go with the Marlin. For one thing it has a shotgun butt vs a cresent butt as found on the Puma's and like.

Or you can go with the Puma .454 which also has the shotgun buttpad.

Mine (20" barrel) will hold 11+1 .45C or 10+1 .454 and doesn't seem to care which it is feeding... including feeding some shorter-than-normal (compression blackpowder) .45C loads I had sitting around without a glitch. Not sure if that's usual for the Puma .454 but I was impressed.

MCgunner
July 13, 2009, 03:50 PM
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. To me, the 73 looks porky, ugly, ungainly. The 92 is sleek, compact, purposeful. Of course, I never missed an episode of "The Rifleman" when I was a kid. "Mark" was about my age. :D Lucas McCain's gun was a .44-40, of course. :D

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IX2oZ6Kv_qo

http://www.tvparty.com/bgifs18/rifleman-header.jpg

No, .45 Colt in the 92 doesn't have an extraction problem that I know of, not my son-in-law's gun, anyway.

Albeit with a plain jane stock finish and iron sights. And cheesy safety

No safety on mine, 25 years old. I replaced the cheesy sight with an aperture, click adjustable for those light .38s, and it's a ghost ring to boot. Love the sight, now. My stocks are Brazilian walnut and linseed oil rubbed finish. It might look "cheesy" if you're used to those glossy polymer finishes Remington puts on BDLs and 1100s, but it's THE classic finish of the period. Pretty plain wood, I'll admit, not much character to the grain, but the finish has classic beauty to me.

MCgunner
July 13, 2009, 04:00 PM
.38s function fine in my .357 magnum Rossi 92. It is very accurate with 'em, too. I load 2.3 grains bullseye behind a 105 cast SWC and get about 900 fps, 1.5" at 50 yard accuracy, and very pleasant, similar to shooting a .22, actually. Makes the .357 model very versatile, from shooting squirrel and small game to hunting hogs and deer to 100 yards with an ammo change and a sight elevation adjustment. Mine pushes 1900 fps with a 165 grain gas checked SWC using 16.8 grains of Lil' Gun. Pretty danged good if you ask me. It'll kill anything in THESE parts. I've taken a doe at 80 yards with mine, lung hit, went about 20 yards and collapsed.

MCgunner
July 13, 2009, 04:15 PM
:D Equal billing for the 73.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anHXdxcraRI

Shung
July 13, 2009, 04:57 PM
73 is THE lever action ;)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f_N_k0mdsj4&feature=fvsr

bad_aim_billy
July 13, 2009, 08:00 PM
What's the general recoil from a carbine firing a hot .45 load? Similar to .30-30 I would assume? These handgun-caliber lever actions just look so versatile, I'm quite envious... :(

DammitBoy
July 13, 2009, 08:24 PM
I recently bought a 16" Puma/Rossi .454 in stainless and I already have a 20" Winchester 94 in 45 long colt.

Both are great guns and the Puma handles the .454 round very well - thank god for the nice thick buttpad.

I was pleasantly surprised with the fit and finish on the Rossi. Hate the safety though.

Anybody have any ideas on how to attach a sling for the Rossi? I'm thinking maybe a clamp for the front sling attachment? No place to screw in a swivel on the fore end...

MCgunner
July 13, 2009, 08:36 PM
What's the general recoil from a carbine firing a hot .45 load? Similar to .30-30 I would assume?

It ain't that bad even with hot "ruger only" handloads. Now, the .454 and .480 ruger models have a recoil pad for a reason. LOL Style is less important than comfort with those calibers, I reckon. .357 is positively sweet. :D


Anybody have any ideas on how to attach a sling for the Rossi? I'm thinking maybe a clamp for the front sling attachment? No place to screw in a swivel on the fore end...

If you flip back up to the pic of my gun, you might see, but I drilled and tapped the barrel band for a stud, wood screw stud in the butt stock. Turned out pretty danged decent and a sling is mandatory on a rifle I'm going to carry afield like I do the little Rossi. Hell, the thing is handier than carrying a X frame Smith, LOL!

*edit* Okay, here's the picture again. Sorry, it's a little fuzzy. I'm not a photographer by trade, obviously.

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=101415&d=1247424987

MCgunner
July 13, 2009, 08:55 PM
Oh, another thing, the .45 colt and .357 have the traditional tube magazine. The .480 and i think the .454 have a threaded plunger in the magazine that will screw out much as with a .22LR tube mag so you can dump the whole mag without having to jack each round out when unloading, a feature I really like and wish the .357 had. It'd be easier to unload when I got back to the truck.

DammitBoy
July 14, 2009, 03:42 PM
That front sling swivel looks factory mcgunner!

And you're right on the .454 - it is a threaded plunger that screws out.

1858
July 14, 2009, 04:51 PM
If you go with a Marlin, be aware that it can (unless Marlin has decided to modify the part) develop the dreaded "Marlin Jam"

I looked at the fix in the link provided, and read that it only takes 50 rounds or so to cause the problem. I've put more than 200 rounds through mine at the range without a single feeding issue, and have cycled the action hundreds of times at home. I was expecting the worst, but when I removed the lever there was no damage to the underside of the carrier. I could see a bright line where the bluing had been worn a little, but a fine pick dragged along the carrier revealed nothing but a perfectly flat surface. I radiused the contact point on the lever anyway and ran a bunch of snap caps through without incident.


Pure unadulterated sacrilege.... damn safeties.

Easily fixed for under $20 with a safety delete screw from www.longhunt.com .


I drilled and tapped the barrel band for a stud, wood screw stud in the butt stock.

I did a similar thing except that I TIG welded a front stud to the front stock retaining band ... I added a wood screw swivel in the butt stock too. I have XS ghost rings sights on mine and it makes for a very effective hunting rifle out to about 100 yards.


What's the general recoil from a carbine firing a hot .45 load? Similar to .30-30 I would assume?

I've never shot a .30-30, but I do put hot .45 Colt loads through my Marlin ... 23.0gr of H110 with a 250gr lead bullet to be exact **. The recoil is absolutely nothing to worry about .... I'd put it at about half way between a typical AR in .223 and a typical bolt action in .308 due to the fact that the '94 is a light rifle with a 20" barrel. On a side note, I've noticed a decrease in accuracy at 23.0gr of H110 but I've found the Marlin to be quite accurate around 21.0gr to 22.0gr and a 250gr bullet so that's where I'll be staying. Those loads are fun to shoot in the Redhawk too.


As I understand it originally the .45LC was not used in lever guns due to the poor rim on the old balloon head cases. Are there ever any extraction problems with these guns when using modern .45LC ammunition?

Nope!! As I mentioned above, I've put a couple of hundred rounds through my '94 already without a single extraction, FTF or any other issue. By the way, I've had no extraction issues with my Redhawk either.


Me I would go with the .44spl/magnum option if I were going to buy a pistol caliber carbine.

Not me ... I decided to go the .45 Colt route with two single actions and one double action revolver to accompany my '94 in .45 Colt. I'm not a fan of the barrel twist rate that Marlin uses for the .44 Magnum (1:38). The 1:16 twist rate in the .45 Colt is ideal for heavy bullets such as 300gr or even 350gr. So for me, a Ruger Redhawk or Blackhawk and a Marlin '94, all in .45 Colt with 250gr, 300gr or 350gr bullets pushed along by a healthy amount of H110 make for a formidable combination.


** CAUTION: These loads are for Ruger Blackhawk, Redhwawk and new Marlin '94 firearms only. They are NOT safe in Colt or clones of Colt SAA revolvers!


:)

DammitBoy
July 14, 2009, 05:00 PM
I agree 1858 - I have more rifles, pistols, and carbines that can fire the 45 long colt round than any other caliber.

I love my 5 1/2" Blackhawk in 45 long colt, it shoots like a dream.

1858
July 14, 2009, 05:16 PM
I love my 5 1/2" Blackhawk in 45 long colt, it shoots like a dream.

I can understand that. I really enjoy my Redhawk in .45 Colt but I'm looking for THIS (http://www.ruger.com/Firearms/FAProdView?model=459&return=Y) but want one without the internal (infernal) lock ... any ideas?

http://128.171.62.162/hawthorn-engineering/thr/ruger/bh_45colt.jpg

:)

MCgunner
July 14, 2009, 11:58 PM
I bought a used, but great shape stainless Ruger 4 5/8" Blackhawk. I liked it so much, I had it engraved and put Sanbar stag grips on it and had my initials engraved on the bottom of the grip frame. It's uber accurate and I ain't sellin' it.

Here's a test on the .480 Ruger Rossi M92. Sounds like a cannon.

http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0BQY/is_12_50/ai_n6275752/

Thanks, DammitBoy, it don't even look bad up close. :D

gb6491
July 16, 2009, 12:38 AM
...I was expecting the worst, but when I removed the lever there was no damage to the underside of the carrier. I could see a bright line where the bluing had been worn a little, but a fine pick dragged along the carrier revealed nothing but a perfectly flat surface...
That's good to hear:) My carrier had already been damaged some when I heard about the "jam". I smoothed it out when I modified the lever, but, before I got the right shape on the lever, a few test cycles would begin to mar it again. All was good after I got the lever shaped correctly. I wonder if Marlin has started making the carrier harder.
Regards,
Greg

1858
July 16, 2009, 03:13 PM
I wonder if Marlin has started making the carrier harder.

I don't know if they have or not, but one caveat is that I installed a much lighter hammer spring and one-piece firing pin from www.longhunt.com very early on. I will confess that I'm not exactly sure of every contact/pivot point in the action, but since the lever indirectly cocks the hammer, if the force required to do that is cut in half (or less), it's possible that the lever would exert less force on the underside of the carrier. This is just a SAWG for now but it might explain the complete lack of significant wear to the underside of the carrier after more than 200 rounds fired and hundreds of cycles at home.


I bought a used, but great shape stainless Ruger 4 5/8" Blackhawk. I liked it so much, I had it engraved and put Sanbar stag grips on it and had my initials engraved on the bottom of the grip frame. It's uber accurate and I ain't sellin' it.

I'm still looking for one of those which rules out anything new from Ruger due to the internal lock, but in the meantime, I bought this NIB Blackhawk which meets my criteria of a single action, in .45 Colt and no internal lock .... plus it has an extra .45 ACP cylinder. I don't think these are manufactured any more so I had to jump at the chance to buy a NIB one. They sure are great-looking revolvers.

http://128.171.62.162/hawthorn-engineering/thr/revolvers/blackhawk/bh_bisley_1.jpg

http://128.171.62.162/hawthorn-engineering/thr/revolvers/blackhawk/bh_bisley_3.jpg

My apologies to the OP for taking this thread off topic a little.
:)

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