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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all! I've got my dad's old 336 SC in .35 Rem and I'd like to get it ready to hunt for deer season. This rifle has a long story that I'll get into later, but for now it suffices to say that the action, barrel, and furniture are in excellent shape but there is some work to be done to get it ready to go for November. To wit:
  1. The (plastic) butt plate is cracked
  2. The white liners for both the butt plate and the grip cap are both kind of shrunken and discolored
  3. I really, really dislike the buckhorn sights
Now, the first two issues I could live with for the time being, but I've got about three weeks between now and the first outing so I'd like to tackle all of them. As I see it, I've got two good options for the sights: a Skinner aperture sight (which would necessitate a new front sight to replace the infamous globe which is probably too low for use with aftermarket peeps), or a low fixed power scope (something like a Leupold FX-II 4x33 on Talley extra low mounts - I think I'd need to get a hammer extension too if I went this route, since my '62 lacks one). I'm leaning towards the former option because it's less expensive and the aesthetics are better in my opinion.

With regards to the cracked butt plate, I'm a bit lost. I'd kind of like to put on a rubber butt pad in order to increase the length of pull a bit (I'm a few inches taller than my dad was), but I have no idea what options exist, and whether anything can be fitted without access to a belt sander.

With regards to the white liners/spacers, what are my options? Is there a factory replacement part that will drop-in or will I have to do some fitting with a sanding block?

Also, I'm thinking of getting a side saddle. What good options are there?

Finally, I'm considering touching up the finish on the furniture (especially if I have to sand a butt pad or butt pad spacer to fit) - nothing crazy, I would just cut some new low-gloss oil finish a bit with mineral spirits or something and blend it with the existing finish. Is the original finish on this furniture tung oil, linseed oil, or something else?

Thanks fellow Marlin owners!
 

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Congrats on the 336SC... I've got my SC (also in 35 REM) setup for deer hunting, and here's what I've done so far.

For sights, I'd look and see what I'd have on hand, or can order quickly & easily.

My SC (a waffletop) has a williams FP peep, and I pulled the aperture since most of my hunting is within 50 yards or so. I had to install a new front sight because the bead didn't cut it for me -- a XS front sight went in its place.

If you have a low power scope handy (4x or less) I would just install it & call it good for this season until you can really put it thru its paces for next year.


Buttplate...
I'm 6'7" & arms to match... I still have the original pad, but do check the measurements (esp screw spacing) when you select a new pad. I really like Limbsavers.. have them on other rifles. On the older rifles, you'll likely have to custom grind to fit vs. the pre-fit pads -- the screw spacing is the big issue with a pre-fit for a 336.


Finish...
not sure on your rifle, but BLO is what I used. I also use a mix called gunny's paste (1 part each - beeswax, BLO, turpentine) to help waterproof my rifle. I hunt in the wet side of the Cascades in Oregon, so your needs may vary.


Good luck & enjoy!!!


Hello all! I've got my dad's old 336 SC in .35 Rem and I'd like to get it ready to hunt for deer season. This rifle has a long story that I'll get into later, but for now it suffices to say that the action, barrel, and furniture are in excellent shape but there is some work to be done to get it ready to go for November.
...
sights: a Skinner aperture sight
a low fixed power scope
...
With regards to the cracked butt plate, I'm a bit lost. I'd kind of like to put on a rubber butt pad in order to increase the length of pull a bit (I'm a few inches taller than my dad was), but I have no idea what options exist, and whether anything can be fitted without access to a belt sander.
...
With regards to the white liners/spacers, what are my options? Is there a factory replacement part that will drop-in or will I have to do some fitting with a sanding block?
...
Also, I'm thinking of getting a side saddle. What good options are there?
...
Finally, I'm considering touching up the finish on the furniture (especially if I have to sand a butt pad or butt pad spacer to fit) - nothing crazy, I would just cut some new low-gloss oil finish a bit with mineral spirits or something and blend it with the existing finish. Is the original finish on this furniture tung oil, linseed oil, or something else?
 

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I too would go the low power scope route (fixed 3x, 4x or 1-5 or 2-7 variable) but that's mainly due to my eyesight. You can get a vintage Weaver 3x or 4x off fleabay for under $100 easily and under $75 if you shop a bit. I like the auctions where the description is thorough, the seller posts pic's looking through the scope and where the outside condition appears excellent. I've got them on several of my Marlins and like them a lot. I would suggest looking for the duplex reticle versions if hunting moving critters in the brush. The old fine "crosshairs" work well but are just a tad slow to pick up in some situations. I've always wanted to try one of the old Weavers with the post and crosswire reticle but have not bought one yet. There are also brand new options of good quality for under $200. I'd shy away from most of the scopes like Simmons, Tasco etc.

For iron sights, the Skinner is nice but I prefer the adjustability of a traditional side mounted peep. I believe the Williams is the most economical version available new. If you find a vintage Redfield or Lyman that is all steel for any reasonable price (under $100-150), I'd jump all over it.
 

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I Love the peep sights and have a set of Skinners on a new Remlin 1894 because the new Remlin does not have the holes for the side receiver mounted peeps. All my others including the 336 have either Lyman and or Williams FP. I really prefer the Lyman's over all of them but the Williams are really just as good and like as well really. They are easily adjusted and put on, front sight can be used with no problems and they are solid. Can't go wrong with any of the peeps. The only thing that I do like about the Skinner is I put the sight rail system on mine with the peep and scope rail combo. I use the peep but I can also use a scope if I want to.
Good Luck on you're Father 336, but one thing you must do is post pictures, especially after it is done.
 

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I had custody of my late father in laws .22 rifle for a while. It had a walnut stock that was scratched up but not bad, no gouges just marks in the finish. I took the short route just wiping it down with a damp cloth and applying a coat of TruOil. While not bringing it back to original condition it did help it out a lot. When I turned it over to my Bro in Law (original owners son) he was tickled with it.

Its amazing what sentimental value inherited guns have to sons.
 

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On the white plastic spacers, shrinkage is normal. A replacement spacer can be easily made from a piece of white plastic bucket.

On the cracked but plate, if no pieces are missing, I'd just wick some runny super glue into the cracks and wipe of the excess. Possible you might need to do some very fine sanding.
 

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I would agree with waiting until after hunting season for the refinish. The white bucket has been used by many and if you want to extend the length of pull, try a slip-on Decelerator or Limbsaver pad.
Easy on-easy off, just don't leave em on after you are done or they get wet. My 1894 44 mag had a decelerator slip-on that discolored the finish for a time as it was left on all the time. I have several of the older and newer Weaver's with the straight tube, K-1.5, K-2.5 and K-3. They work pretty darn good for most hunting with lever actions. DP
 
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If I ever replace the white spacers I'm going to look into using the "pick guard" material they use for guitars.......
 

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Speaking of using something besides white... someone here posted pics awhile back where they put red spacers in and it didn't look too bad.
 

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Good luck with your SC! I've got the trifecta in 336SC, a 30-30, 2 .32 Win Specials, and a .35 Remington. I searched 34 years for the .35 Remington and bought the first on I came across.
The white spacer on the .35 at the butt plate just crumbled out like dust when I removed the butt plate. I just put the butt plate back on until I get the motivation to make or buy another one. I just love the looks of a 336SC!

Bob
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thank you all for your very helpful responses! I've decided to go with the Skinner peeps for the time being (my eyesight's pretty good, I'm only 26 :biggrin:). I ordered a set yesterday and they shipped today. Hopefully that package will get here in time for the weekend. I also ordered a new mag follower from Midway to ensure the proper feeding of the Hornady 200 grain Leverevolution rounds that I'm planning to sight in with and use this year. Based on the sound advice I received here, I'm not going to do anything besides install and zero with the new sights, replace the follower and do a quick repair of the butt plate (remove, superglue, put back on) before the season starts. No reason to take chances and get stuck with a half-finished stock on opening day!

I'm thinking I'll zero so that I'm an inch high at 50 yards and dead on at 125 yards - making some reasonable assumptions and plugging the numbers into Hornady's ballistic calculator, that puts me about an inch and three quarters low at 150 yards, with 150 or 175 yards being the longest shot I'd take.

After the season's over, I'm going to do a more extensive refurbishment, namely
  • Confirm the butt plate and grip cap dimensions and screw spacing
  • Pick a color for the spacers (the red I saw on 35REMSHOOTER's rifle earlier in the thread looks great btw!) and order spacer blanks from Tombstone Grips per another thread in this forum
  • Order a new grind-to-fit rubber butt pad (Limbsaver?)
  • Mask the stock and sand the butt pad and liners to fit flush
  • Clean up the furniture with Murphy's oil soap
  • Hand rub in a new coat of low-gloss Tung oil finish or Tru-Oil (haven't decided which yet - I've used Tung oil finish before when refinishing a Mosin-Nagant and it turned out well, but I think Tru-Oil seals the grain better and still avoids looking varnish-y)
I'll certainly post before and after pics when that's all done.

Now earlier I mentioned that this rifle had a long story and that I'd get into it later. The story is this: my dad bought it in 1962 shortly after he finished his four year hitch in the Marine Corps, moved upstate (he was born in Brooklyn) and settled down. I never heard explicitly why he went with the SC model nor why he got it in .35, but I suspect it's just that good taste runs in the family :biggrin:. He used it for years, and took quite a few deer with it. I was born relatively late in my dad's life, and he died when I was nine years old (heart attack after shooting and starting to field dress a white deer during a lottery hunt at the old Seneca Falls Army Depot). I'd gone out with him before after ducks but never deer, and really had been looking forward to bagging my first whitetail. After he died I didn't have anyone to take me big game hunting, but I did learn to shoot through the Boy Scouts and wound up taking up NRA smallbore and highpower three-position shooting and recreational wingshooting, and going out for small game with friends. My brother in law, who used to hunt with my dad, kept my dad's guns in his gun cabinet for safe keeping until I came of age. Once I was old enough, there never seemed to be any time and neither I nor my brother in law and my nephew (who is less than a year younger than I) had access to any land suitable for hunting within a reasonable distance. I finished college a couple of years ago and started working, and I got married to a wonderful lady last summer (we were blessed with a son a few months ago!), and her grandfather offered to take me and my nephew hunting on his land this year (and to teach us how to field dress large game, a Rather Important Detail). I have a few rifles that I've picked up over the years that would probably be suitable for deer, but I knew my first whitetail had to be taken with my father's old levergun.
 

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Great story, thanks for sharing that.
 
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With long-range plans well established it might not be worth the effort, but that butt plate can be repaired beautifully by using Acraglas with its black dye added. I did that with a 1920s era shotgun butt plate that was broken into five pieces and the old cracks cannot be found.

Bless you for keeping your father's memory alive through rejuvenation of his rifle and putting it back into service. He sounds like he was indeed a special person very worthy of your attention. I hope your son grows up to appreciate receiving that rifle in due time and carries on the tradition. Thumbs up to you, young man.
 
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Discussion Starter #17
Quick update: the package with the sights came in the mail yesterday. The package I ordered from Midway with the magazine follower and a bunch of other gear (was out of CLP and didn't have a .35 patch jag, etc) was reported by UPS tracking as delivered and left at my front door at 6:30 tonight, but it's not there (I was even home at the time!). No idea why Midway tells UPS to ship without a signature required. Hope it's a mix-up and one of my neighbors picked it up by mistake but I suspect it was delivered to entirely the wrong address. Blarg. I called UPS and they said they can't check up until Monday. I was planning to install the follower, clean the rifle and then install the sights tomorrow but I guess that plan is shot.

In other news, I found two brick and mortar stores about an hour and fifteen minutes away that have .35 Rem ammo in stock, so I'll probably scoot out that way tomorrow morning and buy some. One store quoted me at $35/box and the other at $37/box, yowsers!
 

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Yes, we get to enjoy the additional markup ammo companies assign to "low volume sales items." It could be worse. I have seen little bitty .218 Bee amo bumping $100 a box.

Get two boxes. Once you are sighted in, you may not need more than a round or two per year. For fun shooting, use something cheaper or hand load. Even at today's prices, .22 are less than a dime a pop, not almost $2 as is the .35.

Good story!
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
Took a little road trip this morning to one of the stores that had .35 Rem in stock. They actually had a pretty fair bit (maybe thirty or forty boxes), and they had both Hornady and Remington. I bought two boxes of Hornady LeverEvolution 200 grainers and one box of regular Remington Core Lokt (the latter in case my rifle doesn't like the Hornady LEs, which I've heard is a crapshoot with .35s). $34.99 apiece before tax (ouch!). I grabbed a can of Rem-Oil w/ teflon too since the Midway shipment with the CLP got lost.

In the afternoon, I got around to field-repairing the cracked butt plate (I used cyanoacrylate superglue) and installing the Skinner peep sights. The rear sight went in very easily, the old semi-buckhorn rear sight drifted out without issue, the old front sight and hood came out without too much of a struggle, the new front sight post was simple but took a while since I filed away at its dovetail very slowly. The end result was this:

sights_installed.jpg

Nb. the buttstock has great quasi-tigerstripe figuring that is obscured by the poor lighting in my kitchen and my poor photography skills.


Should be able to sight in soon, then it's off to chase a buck! I just hope I don't get the dreaded buck fever ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I got a chance to go sight in on Saturday. The Hornady LE ammo feeds and shoots pretty well in my rifle (the last round fed fine even with the original old-style follower in the mag), thankfully, and the Skinner sights give a very nice sight picture. I was also very pleased with the trigger on this old 336 - light and very crisp! The 200 grain rounds zipping out at an estimated 2100 fps from a 7 lb. unscoped rifle have a bit more pop than I remembered (likely exacerbated by the fact that my field-repaired plastic buttplate has a chunk missing near the top left), but nothing that would batter me or induce a flinch. Getting the windage adjusted was pretty easy, but elevation was a little trickier - in retrospect I should have gone with a taller front sight (I got a .500", should have gone with .550" or so) to shoot this stuff, as with the Skinner rear sight at it's lowest position, I was zeroed for 125 yards. This isn't a bad zero, though:

125_yd_zero.PNG

I am unlikely to encounter a situation much past 75 yards in the woods where I plan to hunt, but on the off chance I get a long sight line down a trail the rifle and ammo should do the job nicely.

After I had my zero, I unscrewed the rear aperture in the Skinner sight leaving me with a ghost-ring aperture conducive to field use and I shot a couple groups from the sitting unsupported position to check my practical accuracy with the rifle. The groups were 4 and 5 MOA respectively, which leaves me pretty confident that I can make a 175 yard shot without a rest if need be. I fired both groups relatively quickly and both had two hits very close to zero and one further off, so if I had gone more slowly I may have done a little better.

I'm scheduled to go out and hunt with some family next weekend and the weekend after. I've got an antlered deer tag and a bear tag. I hope I can fill the former! Even if I can't though, it will be nice to be in the quiet woods for a while.
 
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