Never been around an older Marlin much before I got mine, my new one (a year ago last spring) wouldn't feed, wouldn't eject and had headspace issues. Sent it back twice for repairs and they kept screwing it up worse, scratches, gouges, crooked sights, hidious wood... the whole bit. The third time it went back I got a check.
My $100 Mosin-Nagant has far better fuction and after I realised what a good Marlin was supposed to look like fit as well. IMO that is very sad for a brand new $500 rifle. I might pick up an older used one some day, it will be a real Marlin though. I spent way too much time and stress trying to get a huge company to polish a turd.
It wasn't me being biased at all, it was me making the mistake of buying a POS gun.
How do you get so big making guns of this kind?
I still can't bring myself to even buy Remington ammunition yet..
Last edited by 85_Ranger4x4; 01-05-2013 at 12:05 AM.
Marlin 336C 30WCF Remlemon - Refunded
H&R Sidekick .50cal Blackpowder
Well I thought by older we would get a comparison between a really older gun and a new one, not that it would be fair. The smoothest slickest marlin I own is an 1894 made in 1984-- that said, I use it for CAS so its had all the internals polished, aftermarket springs, firing pin and wild west trigger and its been shot lots and lots.
Next would be the 336 Waffle top that was Dad's and is almost as smooth from the factory as a reworked cowboy gun. Dad probably only shot about 80 rounds of ammo through this as he liked to carry a 760 in 30-06 (1st year manufacture) and later a remington 600 in .308 because it was so light.
Point is there is a big difference from a 40's or 50's gun and those made today. I know the 70's - 80's guns are head and shoulders above todays--- but the 40's- 50's guns were better yet in my humble opinion.
"That wasn't shootin, that was killin" -- Rafe Covington
Well you had to draggg this out of me didn't you!
I purchased a Marlin 39AS on Gunbroker.com back in 1999-2000 era which was listed "as new".
I liked it because;
1) I already had that model and
2) I especially wanted this one because at the time Marlin was transitioning from the white-line pistol grip and butt spacers to black - and I wanted another white-line spacer version.
Anyway, the rifle looked FANTASTIC as far as wood goes, as well as the actual wood to metal fit... it was (and is) SUPERB! Now, just try to chamber a round smoothly, much less eject it smoothly (by working the lever) - HA! No it didn't work as designed.
It turned out that the chamber was a "wee bit" undersized, however after a bit chamber of polishing (on my behalf) everything works fine - bit it DID take a little work, so yes, this one didn't come from Marlin - even while it was in CT without flaws. BTW it was a 1995 manufactured model.
Now, after a bit of love and attention... She is indeed SWEET.
I must also add that NONE of my other 15+ Marlins from .22 to .44 cal. (all pre-1999) have ever had any problems and MOST were purchased new at a gun shop.
After those minor problems, and what I have seen and heard about the newer models - would I buy a new one?
EDIT: Just to Clarify, the chamber had some minor burrs and was slightly undersized - it was not due to powder residue - so I would say the rifle was "as new".
Last edited by LeverGunLover; 01-12-2013 at 02:23 AM. Reason: Clarification of description.
All My Guns Shoot Straight Without Aiming...
but hitting the target is another matter all together!
I am a relatively new Marlin owner having relied for many years on various .303 British bolt actions. I bought two new Marlins recently, one a JM 30/30 XLR which needed a dissassembly and 600 grade sanding of most major components to make it work smoothly without jamming, now its fine. The REM .338 MXLR has had this treatment twice and this time he played with the dog that lifts the carrier. Turns out the carrier was dropping way way too soon, then the round jammed instead of finding the breech properly; the gunsmith reckoned it was a carrier and dog design out of the .45/70. He built up some bit with nickel silver and now it seems to feed and eject flawlessly. There is a rumour in Australia that the .338 MXLR has been discontinued but I don't know that is true. Perhaps they need to simply redesign the dog and carrier properly. The gun packs a real punch for sure. I also have problems loading the advertised 5 rounds in the tube magazine, in fact, physically impossible without a hammer maybe. Looking forward to trying out my modified MXLR .338 as soon as possible on some wild hogs up in the hills here.
I always looked at my Marlins the way I look at my Rugers - kit guns.
Marlin and Ruger delivered evrything you needed to make a great firearm - provided you had the time and patience to carefully commit to the project...
The fella at my LGS would tell me when he got in 2-3 of a particular item - so I could get the "tightest" or "best" of the lot.
From what I've seen lately - the same approach will reward you with a high level of satisfaction - hell, it's been a looooong time since I paid $125 for my first new 336!!
Agreed, current Marlins are similar to many Ruger and Savage arms, the starting point of a great rifle, just add TLC and your good to go. Its a sad commentary, but when you look at the cost of fine firearms, $1250-$2500, for $500 you basically get a kit gun.
"old age and trickery will beat youth and strength"
"Murphy's Law, what can go wrong will go wrong"
NRA Life Member
Team Old Pharts #117
Team 60 #123