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Discussion Starter #1
I have to admit, I've always thought that the 1894CL, with its half-magazine, looks pretty darned nice, but before I add one to my "dream list", I have to ask: Is there anything that the 25-20 or 32-20 will do that a 357 (with appropriate handloads) won't do? I'm curious, because I have an 1894CS and don't really need to spend time lusting after something that pretty much duplicates what I've already got. I don't have enough guns for that!!!
 

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I just sold my CL 218 bee and the ammo is painfully expensive if you like to shoot.

I hope you handload and even cast your own boolits.
 

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bsman said:
Is there anything that the 25-20 or 32-20 will do that a 357 (with appropriate handloads) won't do?
No. 8)

The 357 is pretty hard to beat in terms of versatility.

Both the 32/20 and the 25/20 are fun cartridges to play with, but asking for more ballistic poop out of smaller cartridges (firing lighter bullets) only leads to frustration. They fill a niche, but can't compete with the 357 on ANY kind of power level. The little hyphenated guys operate at lower pressures and even in modern guns, you can only ask so much of what were originally designed as blackpowder cartridges.

Where the dash-20's shine is in their efficiency. Three or four grains of powder and a properly-sized cast bullet can provide impressive accuracy and excellent performance on small game for a dime a shot! Even the smallest version, the 218 Bee, is an early model of efficiency, well ahead of the legendary 22 Hornet.

I'm also partial to the looks of the half-mag design, and admit that while it hampers ammo capacity, it doesn't matter much with short little cartridges. These guns aren't made for all-out blasting, they're better suited to the guy who likes walking the woods and taking his time.........and makes his shots carefully. Any of the three calibers available in the CL (when you can find them) make a delightful, mild-mannered woods companion, easy on powder, lead, and recoil. Whether or not they go on your "Dream List", they're always worth watching for at the gun shows and classified ads.

 

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My .32-20 will shoot tighter groups any day than my .357.
In my opinion, the little bottleneck cases of the .32-20 will feed smoother than the straight cased .357.
If you are thinking about buying a CL, start looking for brass now! It is hard to find.
M.
 

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Ditto to both posters. Hard to beat the 357 power, but the accuracy does beat the 357 by a long, long way. My 218 has a nearly 2800fps load as well. The 25-20 is my favorite. Shoot the gnat off the grits accurate.
 

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^^^^
What they all said:

More expensive
Almost as powerful.
More accurate.
Feeds smoother.
Quieter

"a delightful, mild-mannered woods companion, easy on powder, lead, and recoil" quote from Papa John

If you like a 22lr, but feel under-gunned with it....I roam with the 32-20... it's like an "adult 22"


32-20 Winchester, the cartridge that won't die.
 

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I bought the .32-20 back when they first came out, I like .32s. Only thing better would have been if it'd been in .32 Mag. Haven't seen another one since.

Ammo is expensive if you don't reload, .32-20 is fairly rare in these parts. Even empty brass isn't cheap. You can load a lot of different power levels down to almost .22 ballistics. Once you have brass, it's a cheap reload if you stick to cast bullets. You're slinging less lead than a .357, good in some circumstances. It's not going to be as versatile as a .357. It's a better small game cartridge than the .357.

Stan S.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Darn! I thought the collective wisdom was going to diminish my ardor, but...

I've got to admit, though, it's mainly an appearance thing. I can't really see any advantage to the little cartridges, but love the look of the half-mag...
 

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If you love the look of a half mag but don't want to go smaller, all ya gotta do is look into one of the old 336a's, a 336sc or an 1895ss. Pretty much pic from 30-30, 32, 35 & 45-70. they'll all give more power than a 357 but you ay not be looking that direction. I'd dearly love to have a 1950's 336sc in 35 Remington but until I find one in person that I can afford or I stumble across a significant windfall to pay off my existing bills.....well, gonna be a while.

This one would do nicely.
http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.aspx?Item=245471471

Here's one more.
http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.aspx?Item=245242248

Just sayin, there's options. Of course, they aren't straight grip rifles either.
 

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bsman said:
Darn! I thought the collective wisdom was going to diminish my ardor, but...

I've got to admit, though, it's mainly an appearance thing. I can't really see any advantage to the little cartridges, but love the look of the half-mag...
BSMAN you have Marlinitis at it's best! I have 3 CLs and a CCL in those teeny calibers and love all 4! If you don't want to buy one then DON'T EVER pick one up. That was my mistake. I picked up a CL in 25-20 to fondle it and several thousand bucks later I have 4 of them! Oh and all the "other" reasons given are valaid too.

T-o-m who is well hypo-nated
 

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bsman said:
I've got to admit, though, it's mainly an appearance thing. I can't really see any advantage to the little cartridges, but love the look of the half-mag...
Then maybe you need something bigger, like a 45/70 or a 375! :D

 

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Discussion Starter #13
Alright guys -- cut that out!!! ;D

Anyway -- I will be writing a big check to Occidental College in a few days (daughter's jr. year...) so I'll be protected for at least a while from being able to treat my Marlin-itis by abject penury!!!

In the meantime, I'm going to satisfy myself by buying a peep-sight for the 1894CS. Perhaps I'll be able to pretend it's a new gun!!! :p


Although there is that Remington 30-06 700BDL w/Leupold 3x9 scope that's been sitting in the gunsafe for years without being taken out. Wonder if I could trade it straight-up for a Marlin??? 8)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Mine's a tack-driver with reloads, but somewhat choosy with the pre-rolled stuff. It seems to like cast bullets a lot.
 

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I only recently joined the ranks of the 32-20 owners and I wish I hadn't waited all these years.

WARNING - powder quantities mentioned are for information purposes only and not recommended for anybody else's use.
I've only been to the range once with it and the only loads I had were a few I made up with 115gr rnfp and 3.8gr Trailboss and a few with 12.3gr of 2205, the pseudo_standard load among other guys at my club are 4.5 gr Trailboss and 13 gr 2205. Both did under 2" at 50 yards and were a real pleasure to shoot. I expect much better accuracy when I develop the right handloads for this rifle but at 2" it's already as good as my 1894CB with its best cast bullet handloads.

Like everyone else said, it is more accurate but the 357 has more power, but what good is a powerful miss.
 

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gundownunder said:
..........it is more accurate but the 357 has more power, but what good is a powerful miss.
I don't own a 32/20 or a 25/20, but I've never seen a 357 Marlin that wouldn't shoot. Even my first one, purchased used, would shoot either cheap 122-grain cast bullets or most commercial 125/158 grain bullets into an inch and a half at 50 yards all day long. My latest 1894C will go as low as 3/4 inch for five shots at fifty yards with its preferred loads, and it's not a once-a-year group, it will do it nearly ANY time I do my part. Just sayin'. :)



My CL in 218 Bee might not be a tackdriver yet, but I'm still playing with loads. Five shots in an inch at 50 yards is good enough for now.

 

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That's too bad, PJ. My .357 shoots 'em all into one hole. ;D

I haven't finished working up my .25-20 loads but am looking forward to the experiment. Also looking forward to channelling some frontiersman in coyote thwappin'.

Jon
 

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With groups like those PJ, you should NEED to send them in to Big Medicines Postal match.
The match will close on Aug. 31, 2011.

We need some more participation and Rowdy & Big Medicine need the competition!

Ed
 
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