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Thread: 44-40 in a rifle....



  1. #1
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    44-40 in a rifle....

    I have a 2 part question for you experts. First, what do you think about a lever rifle in 44-40? I'm not a cowboy shooter, so that's not a reason to get it, but other than that, what do you think? The second part, what are your thoughts on a Winchester 94 trails end in this caliber with a 20" barrel? I have mixed feelings about Winchester lever guns: I have a superb 9422 and just got rid of a lousy 94 in 30-30. Is it something to pick up or just wait for yet another marlin? ( I do handload so ammo is not an issue)

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    cgcollins, I am not an expert, but you will find lots of help here on MO from 30wcf, 44-40 willy, RCR and 45beargun+. Plus others that have help me. I have really gotten to love the 44-40 in rifles. I have been reloading for it for about two years and have intensified my research and shooting of this caliber over the last six months. I find it pleasant to shoot all day and not the pounding I get from the 45-70. The loads can be tailored to suit your needs from 900 fps to in excess of 1800 fps based on your intentions. Open sights and accuracy to 100 yards or so. I find the 44-40 easy to load and a fun project. All will be determined by what gun you get and how that gun measures up to the average 44-40. Advice will range, bullet diameters, recommended powders ect, ect and tons of variables. I find this a very useful cartridge for hunting, fun, target shooting and conversations.

    David

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    cgcollins, As for you second question. I have a Winchester model 94 with the cross-bolt safety in 45 colt. I prefer the Winchester model 94 in 32 ws, 30-30. As far as the 45 colt, 44-40, 32-20 I like them better in the Winchester or Rossi model 92. If I was looking to buy a 44-40 I would look at Winchesters 1873 original if I could find one, or a Italian copy. The Marlin 1894 in 44-40 would also be a good choice. The Winchester 94 in 44-40 would be alright, just not my first choice. As far as function the 45 colt in my model 94 with a 24" barrel cycles and shoots fine. You will hear people complain about the short round (45 colt, 44-40) not cycling well in the Winchester 94's but I have not had this problem.

    David
    Last edited by dhansen; 08-23-2012 at 08:05 PM. Reason: spelling
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    I have a Marlin 44-40 and love it.The rounds shoots cleaner with mild loads than straight wall cases.You have to be a little more careful loading,but its not too bad.It is very accurate.It can be loaded up pretty potent too.I mostly use it for CAS in Black powder class.Other than the Win 71,I've never cared for Winnys much.Sold off all except for the 71.
    Tom
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    Just a after thought.If you like Winnys the 1873 replicas are nice and can be modified to be very fast and smooth,but you cant load the ammo up too strongly as the 73 has a weak toggle link action.
    Tom
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    My hesitation is 1) what would I do with it ( but 30+ calibers later I guess I don't have to answer that) 2) will it shoot better than the worthless 94 I previously owned 3) should I just wait for another marlin 4) will I be stuck with it if I don't like it. I'm struggling....

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    The trails end your looking at I am assuming it to be angle eject, push button safety. I think they started making them in 1997 or so and I do not know how long they continued making them. I know until 2004 or so. If it is 20" barrel, then to me it is not as desirable as a 16.25" or at 24" but that is just me (those were trappers, wranglers and rangers). I like the idea of a 45 colt or 44-40, but just not in a Winchester Model 94 from the late 1990's. Unless the price is great, like under $500.00 or so I'd rather spend the money on a Marlin 1894 in 44-40, 45 colt or 44 rem mag. What year is the trails end? How clean and how much? What year was your 94 30-30 and what did you dis like about it.

    David
    Last edited by dhansen; 08-23-2012 at 11:42 PM.

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    It's a late 90's gun, AE, crossbolt safety, in 100% condition for 550. My 94 was a 1994 model. Accuracy was terrible with every load I tried, the action was sloppy, the wood plain and a strange red color, and the angle eject hit the scope and dropped empties back in the action often. That gun alone turned me into a true marlin fan. But, my very early 9422 is exceptional in every way, so I was considering trying again.

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    I am surprised that more people have not responded to this thread, normally the 44-40 attracts lots of attention and opinions. I agree with you that the 9422 is a great rifle and well built. The Model 94 from Winchester has lots of options available. I like the older pre 50's era model 94 and even have one from 1966 with the stamped steel cartridge elevator/ramp which was supposed to be so bad. It has not posed any problem for me. I would say you could get a bad rifle in any brand or configuration. At $550.00 its a tough decision. I think I would pass on it, but that's just me. I would be more for it if it was 44-40 with a 16.25" barrel (trapper). It would be nice to hear from someone who has one of these and get their opinion on how well it shoots. It seems the price on Winchesters has doubled in the last 3 years, I think a lot of them are over priced. Again just an opinion.

    David

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    I love my Marlin 1894S in 44-40. It's pretty much replaced my 1894C in 357 as the pickup rifle.

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