Shortening Lenght of Marlin 336 Rifle

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Dog Wonder

Dec 6, 2008
East Coast
Shortening lenght of Marlin 336-30/30?

I have just bought a Marlin 336-30/30 for both plinking & home defense! The lenght is 37 inches which is a little too long !
Can you buy shorter stocks for this Marlin 336? The barrel is 20
inches in lenght! The Lever action is a stretch to reach--any ideas are welcomed!
Any reputable gunsmith can put the barrel length at 16.25" or 18.5", as well as drop an inch off of the butt stock.
Which dimension is it that you find too long? You mention overall length 37", barrel length at 20" and then say that the lever is a stretch to operate.

As per above, you can have the barrel cut to any length beyond 16" without SBR issues - that would drop overall length to say 33.5". But I suspect your concern is Length of Pull (LOP), the distance between the buttstock end and the trigger?

As I recall, my 336 30-30 is about 14.5" It is extremely easy to shorten the LOP on these rifles. You will essentially cut the stock down to correct the LOP. Be aware that doing so will substantially diminish resale value - not that you shouldn't do it, just that the market for 12" LOP rifles will be smaller (no pun intended, sort of).

If, like me, you don't trust your woodworking skills to do this yourself, you want a custom stock maker. It will not be a lot of money - varying by your location and the clientele of the stock maker.
This is the easiest way to shorten the stock without killing the value. It would probably be cheaper than having a gunsmith cut down the stock properly.

Shortening the barrel is another option, but it would probably just be best to buy a Marlin Spike Horn Youth model. It comes with a shortened stock and barrel.

Hope this helps you out!

If you're having trouble cycling the action, then a shorter stock is in order. Try a "Youth" size stock and see if the shorter length of pull helps. Like this. Now with a lighter stock on it you will get increased felt recoil, so if weight is not a concern for you it might make more sense to just have the original buttstock cut down to your proper length of pull. Then again cutting the wood stock might hurt resale value, so the replacement might make more sense from a resale standpoint, as you can always put the original stock back on.

Out in NH I got to handle a 336 Trapper with a synthetic "youth" stock, which combined with the 16" barrel made it really light and fast-handling; a great mountain woods rifle.
Get a vintage thin butt plate to replace rubber recoil pad

Going with an older buttplate won't shorten the stock by more than 1/8". Hardly noticeable, and not worth the effort. Cutting down a stock is not hard and would not hurt resale value much at all. It is not like this is a rare rifle where only a few were made.

Shortening the barrel is a bit more complicated on levers. The mag tube has to also be shortened and almost all would want the front sight replaced. This could cost at least 1/2 the value of the gun, and I'd only do it if I wanted a true custom rifle. There are afew Marlins that have been made over the years, but the 16" ans 18.5" versions are not common, and bring a premium.
There are afew Marlins that have been made over the years, but the 16" and 18.5" versions are not common, and bring a premium.

You had me going on this, had to take out my 336C to measure (19.5 inches).

Does that sound right?
Not unless you measured from the muzzle to the front of the receiver.

I think if you stick a cleaning rod down the barrel, mark it, and then measure it.
It will be 20" or very very close to that.

Not unless you measured from the muzzle to the front of the receiver.

Yep, that is what I did. Wouldn't 20 inches make it a rifle and not a carbine?

Not that familar with lever actions.


Traditionally rifles were 22", 24", or 26".

Carbines were 16" - 20".

But the defining thing is how the forearm & mag tube is attached, not barrel length.

Rifles had a steel mag tube hanger / and a steel forearm cap.
Carbines had a barrel band or two holding things together.

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