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Marlin 1894C versus 1894 Cowboy

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Lone_Gunman, Jun 13, 2007.

  1. Lone_Gunman

    Lone_Gunman Well-Known Member

    Has anyone compared these two side by side? I am looking for one or the other in 357 magnum. If I go with the Cowboy, I would probably want the 20"barrel lenght. Is the action on the Cowboy model slicked up compared to the standard 1894? What justifies the difference in price?
  2. Boats

    Boats member

    I have both right now. The actions of the two are relatively the same. The 1894 CBC LTD is a little longer and heavier than the 1894c.

    The major differences:

    Cowboy is octagonal barreled.
    Serial number is on the tang on the 1894c, on the side of the Cowboy.
    The wood on the Cowboy is more figured and generally better looking. Many 1894c rifles are sporting beechwood stocks rather than walnut.

    Personally, I think of the Cowboy as having had CAS or SASS surtax on it. Many of the levers in the sport shooting cost way more than the Marlin, and the Marlin Cowboy "looks" the part better than does the 1894c. The market bears the price though.

    I paid the freight because the Cowboy is the better looking rifle and can be readily tang sighted.
  3. Lone_Gunman

    Lone_Gunman Well-Known Member

    Does your CB have a 20 or 24 inch barrel?

    If it is a 20 inch, how does it compare handling wise to the 18 inch 1894C? Does the extra 2 inches of barrel make much difference?
  4. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Well-Known Member


    Big 5 Sporting Goods has a version of the 1894 that looks to be non-catalogued. It appears to be their exclusive, but I don't know. Maybe it's an older catalogued version and they have a big backstock.

    I've seen it in .357 (18.5"), .44 and .45LC (both 20").

    From what I recall, it's smooth (uncheckered) stained hardwood, shaped like the Cowboy (not the fatter foreend of the regular 1894), with a round barrel like the regular 1894 models.

    When it's on sale, the price isn't bad. It's nothing fancy, but it does offer two things: a tough "cowboy-style" American-made pistol caliber carbine for cheap, and the best-priced new .45LC lever gun around. And they actually have them in stock, which is more than can be said for the 1894C, at least some of the time.
  5. 115grfmj

    115grfmj Well-Known Member


    the regular 1894c has checkered american black walnut stocks, the chain store version has birch stocks.....not that there is anything wrong with that:neener:

    The difference between the 1894c and the 1894cbc is :

    Barrel: 18.5" Round 20" Octagonal
    Stock: Checkered Walnut, Smooth Walnut
    Cap: 9 rounds, 10rd (in .357)
    Wt: 6lbs 6.5lbs
    Serial: Tang Receiver
    Barrel Band, Forend cap

    Also, 1894cbc is called "Cowboy" so add $$$$;)
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2007
  6. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Well-Known Member

    I wasn't sure if it was beech or birch, but that's neither here nor there. That's what I meant by "stained hardwood.":)

    The Cowboy versions have uncheckered walnut, the regular guns have checkered walnut, and the chain store guns have uncheckered beerch.:p

    I like the checkered walnut. That's what I have on my only current Marlin. And I'm a sucker for octagon barrels.

    But the fact remains that the chain store guns are a decent deal if they offer what you want, since they're half the price of the Cowboy version. They're good "working guns," especially in .45LC, where they're the best deal going I think.

    What happened to the CCH Cowboy Marlins, though? Octagon clashes with a plain blue receiver.:D
  7. 115grfmj

    115grfmj Well-Known Member

    Armed Bear

    The chain store guns are a GGGGRREEEAAATTT deal:D, with prices around 300 ish. Me I bought the regular one with Checkered Walnut, since chain stores that sell guns in NJ are few and far between:rolleyes:. I had to order mine, cost me $530, the CBC runs high 600's in NJ:eek:.
  8. .45&TKD

    .45&TKD Well-Known Member

    Any chance that the Big 5 versions of the pistol caliber carbines (1894's) also skimp on the rifling by having Microgroove instead of Ballard rifling, in addition to the less expensive wood?

    I'm thinking about the 1894 44 mag in particular, which according to the website should be Ballard, but the one I'm looking at at Big 5 looks like Microgroove.

    Are the barrels marked when Micrgroove? Is there an easy way to tell?
  9. Lars

    Lars Well-Known Member

    I'm real interested in a 45lc for hunting. I didn't know that Big 5 had some.
  10. vta33

    vta33 Well-Known Member

    Big 5: Round barrel, and if memory serves me, the barrel will be stamped "Microgroove."

    Cowboy version: Octagonal barrel, ballard type rifling. Cost is close to $600.

    The Cowboy version has a very smooth action, which is one of the reasons why they're expensive and Big 5 does not sell them.

    Btw, Big 5 also sells milsurp rifles. In today's newspaper, Big 5 advertised Moisin Nagants for $89.
  11. DWARREN123

    DWARREN123 Well-Known Member

    The 1894CB octogon barrel feels barrel heavy to me.
  12. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Well-Known Member

    That's certainly a dilemma.

    What feels right to one person feels wrong to another.

    For a gun you choose based on balance and handling (shotguns and lever rifles definitely!) there's no substitute for handling the thing. If you can shoot one, that's even better.

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