1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Top Eject vs. Side Eject for Lever Actions

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by bergmen, Oct 17, 2012.

  1. bergmen

    bergmen Member.

    I have mostly Marlins (1936, 336, 1894, 39A) but recently acquired a top eject Model 92 clone.

    I'm just curious since all of John Browning's designs (1886, 1892, 1894, 1895, etc.) were top eject I wonder what advantage he saw in that. I see potential issues such as ejected cases falling back into the open action or being thrown into the face of the shooter, dirt falling in and fouling things, etc.

    Marlin took a different route with side ejection (which I prefer). My Dad always preferred Marlins because of pistol grip stocks and side ejection.

    In today's world where optical sights are often fitted, side ejection lends itself to more scope choices than top ejectors.

    Any thoughts?

  2. horsemen61

    horsemen61 Well-Known Member

    side eject

    I have a marlin 336 in 30-30 and I am a believer in side eject.
  3. hang fire

    hang fire Well-Known Member

    Over seven million Model 94 Winchesters manufactured, methinks the buyers never saw a problem with top eject.
  4. RPRNY

    RPRNY Well-Known Member

    They sold 145,000 Yugos in the US.

    I'm just saying...;)
  5. K1500

    K1500 Well-Known Member

    Top eject is 'way cooler' than side eject....
  6. Abel

    Abel Well-Known Member

    Side eject 336 is way cooler than the 94. Especially with a nice 3-9x40mm and see through rings.
  7. Roadking Rider

    Roadking Rider Well-Known Member

    I prefer the side eject, but that does not mean I think the top eject is not a good system. I think the side eject works better when there is a scope on the rifle. I'm pretty happy with my 1981 my Marlin 336 30/30.
  8. CraigC

    CraigC Well-Known Member

    All non-issues.

    Contrary to Marlin true-believerism and rhetoric about "field stripping", top eject guns are easier to clean without gunk falling into the action. Scope mounting was obviously not an issue when these guns were designed. However, they work just fine with a good peep sight.

    It might also be worthy of note that the strongest traditional levergun designs are John Browning's top ejects. The 1892, 1886 and 1895 are all stronger than their Marlin counterparts. The 1892 and 1894 are also lighter, more refined and more svelte than their Marlin counterparts.

    I have multiples of both makers and love them all for what they are. I find that those who grew up with Marlins tend to have a weird aversion to Winchesters. I do not find the reverse to be true. It's almost as if Marlin owners resent Winchester's popularity or some other similar, odd notion.

    Uh, yeah. :barf:
  9. bergmen

    bergmen Member.

    CraigC good post, thanks. I'm new to top eject but I have an open mind. I can certainly see how they are stronger, the bolt lock-up on my 92 is like a bank vault. I am finding myself shaking off my Dad's Marlin bias, he was hardly objective especially where guns and ammo were concerned.

    When he was a kid he got some Peters .22 ammo that had a bunch of duds in the box. This was back in the 30s and he never touched another Remington or Peters product after that. Talk about holding a grudge.

    Scopes are not a concern for me, I never scoped a lever (and won't).

  10. JSNAPS

    JSNAPS Well-Known Member

    ehh I use both. I like both. Browning's designs were at a time where scopes were not the norm.
  11. allaroundhunter

    allaroundhunter Well-Known Member

    I love top eject Model 94s....much more than any side-eject lever gun. Lever guns were made to be used with iron sights ;)


    Last edited: Oct 17, 2012
  12. kyletx1911

    kyletx1911 Well-Known Member

  13. CraigC

    CraigC Well-Known Member

    ^^^ "See thru" mounts are an abomination. Leverguns are designed with the proper comb height for iron sights, peep or open. Any scope mount will be a little too high for proper cheek weld. Jack it up on see-thru mounts and it will be way too high for a proper cheek weld. Not only are they ugly and make the rifle ugly but they don't work very well either. Scope or iron sights, pick one or the other. If you must have backup iron sights, use a standard scope mount with quick detach rings or a forward mounted scout scope or red dot sight. Not see-thru's. They're an answer to a question that should've never been asked.
  14. Malamute

    Malamute Well-Known Member

    I've used both, I prefer the Winchester. I've had several weird action lock ups in Marlins. Never found anything wrong, they just locked up. I've never had anything of the sort in a Winchester. I've used the 1886's, (original and modern Brownings), 92's (Browning), 94's and 95's (Browning).

    I prefer the way Winchester actions function also. I like to keep the magazine loaded and single load a small game round. Its just simpler to do with the Winchester. Open the lever, and either don't raise the lifter (carrier), insert the round in the chamber (easy with the top eject action), and close the action, or push the lifter back down if it comes up, and procede as above. With the Marlin, the next round can't be pushed back down, it has to be shaken out in a juggling act to leave the chamber empty or load another small game load.

    The angle eject Winchesters are simple to scope, and it's still easier to single load the chamber.

    It's interesting that "top eject" isnt mentioned as a negative in regards to most bolt actions, autoloaders based on the M-1 action, SKS, Savage 99, and others
  15. jmorris

    jmorris Well-Known Member

    I have both but when asking questions of why things are built the way they are it comes down to the easy/less costly method in most all cases.
  16. Slamfire

    Slamfire Well-Known Member

    Call me a Marlin fan boy. Over 30 years ago I could not get a Winchester in 44 Mag, the Browning version was very expensive, and that is how I got my first Marlin.

    I have looked how to disassemble a Winchester, in firearms Assembly/Disassembly books, and I decided it was not for me.

    As for strength, Winchester and Marlins are all rear locking actions, it would have to take a finite element model to really determine if there is a difference in strength between the two, I really doubt it is significant. Neither is as rigid or strong as a good single shot or a bolt rifle.

    All of these actions have proven themselves through more than a century of use.

    I wish I had gotten a Savage M99 when they were affordable. One of those in 308 would have been an interesting rifle.
  17. jim243

    jim243 Well-Known Member

    How I spend my money, speaks for my choice.


  18. Nathanael_Greene

    Nathanael_Greene Well-Known Member

    As a left-handed shooter, I thought I'd prefer top-eject. But the brass from a Marlin goes past my nose, not on my head, and I've grown to love Marlins.

    And the 1894C--what a lovely rifle!
  19. 76shuvlinoff

    76shuvlinoff Well-Known Member

    This ^, lefty here as well. I have 2 39As, an 1894c .357,(Marlins) and a top eject Ted Willams 30-30.

    As a lefty the only real problem I have with the top eject Ted Williams was I got it with a scope mounted offset to the left for a right handed shooter. I took off the scope, all is well. I don't hunt. the 30-30 is just a plinker for me.
  20. BCRider

    BCRider Well-Known Member

    Of the two center fire lever guns I've got I like both. I've got a Marlin in .30-30 and a Rossi Win '92 clone in .357 which I use for cowboy action.

    The '92 is not a good option for CAS as it tends to want to toss the ammo up and salute the sky when cycled with verve. But I'm so taken with the gun for a plinker that even if I finally cave in and get a '73 clone of some form for CAS I would most certainly keep my Rossi '92.

    There is also no doubt that Marlin is a better gun if the shooter wants/needs a scope. While options exist for Winchester/Browning guns to toss the brass somewhat to the side to allow for a scope they are kludge setups at best from what I've seen. So on the scope front Marlin wins hands down.

    For my part I think a lever gun with a scope is like an elephant in a tutu. But my opinion changes when I read about folks that hunt with a scope on a Marlin since in that case it's less about tradition and more about getting a clean and merciful kill. At that point it's all about being an effective tool for that particular job. And if that's what it takes then I applaud those that choose to go with a lever over a "normal option" of a bolt action.

Share This Page