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Marlin - Are They Substandard Firearms Now?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Tomcat47, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. Tomcat47

    Tomcat47 Well-Known Member

    Just Setting around tonight and was looking at some new Rifles.

    Looking to get a new Marlin in .338 or .308....:cool:

    Looking at my old 336CS and RC varieties and poking around on the internet has brought some questions to mind?

    1. Do they in fact still make the .338?
    2. Has the Remington merger been a bad thing (besides the fact they did not do the employees right)?
    3. Has there been customer complaints on quality?

    I like the new Stainless models as well. Did Marlin produce Stainless models before the buyout as well? And can we identify those by serial number?

    Anyway hope someone has some answers.
  2. Nalgi

    Nalgi Well-Known Member


    what did you read?
  3. Tomcat47

    Tomcat47 Well-Known Member

    I am a Marlin fan ... what I had read referred to them as Remlins and to stay away from them because they are having manufacturing and quality issues from inexperienced labor as a result from letting all of Marlins workers go when the merger happened.

    I have many Marlins lever guns and in my earlier days collected them. I was just wandering what info THR members had due to I know how the internet creates non truths.

    It would be sad for Marlin Quality to go down for sure.
  4. Texan Scott

    Texan Scott Well-Known Member

    I have firsthand experience with this, and have heard from other forum or local range whose word I don't question say the same... GARBAGE. Improperly cut dovetails, misaligned (either laterally or rotationally, cases of both), bad loading gates, misaligned/ improperly driven taps/ screws, crookedly mounted magazine tubes, bad wood to metal fit... even the 2012 stuff. They've had YEARS to get their crap straight, and they just haven't done what it takes to make it right. I won't buy from them. Won't have it.
  5. RPRNY

    RPRNY Well-Known Member

    There is no question that when production moved to Ilion (end 2010 as I recall?) QC was appalling for quite some time. My understanding is that (and my dates may be off), they shut down production of Marlin lever actions rifles (I believe the XS7 series never had the same level of issues, for example) for a period of some six weeks in late 2011, reengineered production floor layout, undertook remedial training, and redesigned the QC process. That process has allegedly delivered returns and post shutdown product quality has substantially improved.

    Is it at the levels of pre-acquisition North New Haven? I can't say with any authority, but I am dubious.

    On the other hand, they also took over H&R production (which Marlin had acquired) and there was a fall in quality with the move from Gardener ti Ilion. That has indeed turned around and current H&R production and customer service are at least as good as at any time in post 1987 (Chapter 11) H&R history, IMHO.

    I would be wary of any post 2010 Marlin branded product and want to thoroughly inspect it. With Freedom Group up for sale (I have seen no news since the appointment of Lazard as IB for the deal) things may be shaky for the foreseeable future.
  6. Tomcat47

    Tomcat47 Well-Known Member

    Very sad where this corporate greed has taken some of the greatest of companies in the last decade.

    If I am correct the .338 (which I want) was initially produced by Marlin (prior to buyout) but did they have issues at start of it hitting the market or did they arise after the buyout?
  7. Sock Puppet

    Sock Puppet Well-Known Member

    I find their triggers lacking...even the new "Accutrigger" style.
  8. ApacheCoTodd

    ApacheCoTodd Well-Known Member

    Unfortunately, I'd say rather than sub standard, the current production level has become the standard.

    There isn't a manufacturer of any age which has been able to hold standards at a successful price for some time.

    In some cases it only really shows in fit&finish and in others it manifests itself in performance.

    I recall getting very excited about buying one of the new S&W 50s. I figured this would be my chance to buy an epic S&W offering as if I had been able to buy a NIB Model 29 back in the day. Imagine my surprise anticipating this "flagship" pistol to reflect the 29s I longed after but could not afford in my youth, only to see those sadly finished pistols they were offering.

    So, for me it was time to reevaluate my expectations and note that I would have to set aside time or money to make it look the way I believe it should.

    As to the modern disappointing Marlins - I look at them as I do another manufacturer with a standard quality concern but a great line of firearms. That is, I'll get one if it feels right but know ahead of time that I'll have to go through it and make it better. Almost like a pre-assmbled kit.

    From that other manufacturer, I've bought 4 firearms with the full intent of doing my own QC and for me, that has worked out just fine.
  9. stubbicatt

    stubbicatt Well-Known Member

    It seems to me that the quality of American produced firearms has gradually declined over the years to a point where I just don't want to go. I guess the younger guys, not having seen what things used to be, just don't complain when they buy a plastic stock on a parkerized bolt action rifle which sells for a premium as "tactical." Gone is the rich bluing, the precise fit and finish, etc.

    Plastic pistols. Plastic rifles.

    Now my trips to gunstores are almost like a brief trip to an alien planet... Sigh.

    Glad I have most of what I have desired through the years.
  10. Abel

    Abel Well-Known Member

    A plastic stocked parkerized Ruger American at least functions properly and it put together well. For $350, what more can you ask for? The problem with the Marlins, at least the lever actions, was that the rifles were (are?) put together poorly. In many instances to the point of non functionality.
  11. gotigers

    gotigers Well-Known Member

    Marlin has had QC issues in the last few years. One example was the canted dovetail on the 795. For 2 years, hundred if not thousands of the canted dovetails got through. I know, because mine had one. They replaced it. However the new one had the same issue.
  12. Hunterdad

    Hunterdad Well-Known Member

    I read a few weeks ago that all the QC issues have been mostly resolved on the lever guns.

    As for the Marlin bolt actions.....lets be honest. Remington makes some of the best bolt actions ever made. The Marlin "X" series rifles reflect that. Every one i've come in contact with has been amazingly accurate and reliable for a budget priced gun. I have one in .308 that wears a Boyd stock and love it.
  13. rodinal220

    rodinal220 Well-Known Member

  14. Jackal

    Jackal Well-Known Member

    Who would have thought 10 years ago that we would be seeing Marlin Lever actions built on par with some of the worst work Century Arms has done.:what::fire::cuss:
  15. bulletboy

    bulletboy Member

    Mines a shooter, I've put thousands of rounds of 45-70 through my 1895 and it's been nothing but reliable and accurate. I couldn't care less what these people putting down the new Marlins think. If I listend to complainers exclusively when buying firearms I wouldn't own any.
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2013
  16. greyling22

    greyling22 Well-Known Member

    I"m not real current on my marlin lever guns, but as of a year ago I wouldn't touch one. Basically nothing on the gun was done right. From the wood finishes to the metal polishing to the dovetail, nothing was right. Heck, they were even using regular tapered screwdrivers to put the things together and stripping screws from the factory. I will say this though, generally speaking, the actual quality of the wood (in terms of grain and figure, not how it's finished) has gone way up.

    Maybe is taurus buys out the freedom group quality will go back up ?!? (did I actually just type that. what has the world come to..........)
  17. Shanghai McCoy

    Shanghai McCoy Well-Known Member

    To be honest, I have had more trouble with my old 94 in 44 mag than my new(er) 95 Cowboy in 45/70...
  18. wriggly

    wriggly Well-Known Member

    Cabelas has a lot of Marlin Lever guns in the used gun racks that were sent back to be reworked and back up for sale. I looked them all over, I wouldn't touch one with your pole.
  19. rallyhound

    rallyhound Well-Known Member

    sad truth is that Mossberg is the new king of lever guns these days.

    I have a Mossy 30=30 Davidsons special and it is truly an excellent firearm.

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