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Hey Marlin Owners!

Like it says in the title, I've never owned any type of gun before but I'm invested in picking up a Marlin 1895 CB. It would be used for big game hunting, particularly bear, ideally between 100 and 200 yards. Any 1895 owners care to weigh in on how good of a first gun that would be? My father would prefer I pick up a pump action .308 for the same purpose.
 

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Welcome from Alabama...

200 yards is a stretch for a new shooter with a 45-70... Normally a 50 to 125 yard shot is prefered for this caliber... That said, it is an awesome first rifle. I mean who wouldn't want a T-rex whacker for a first rifle...

If your willing to put in the practice time it would of course be possible to take it out to 200 yards and you had the money for the ammo...

I love mine...

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If your out to shoot a bear at 200 yards, that's not hunting that's just killing or more than likely wounding.
As was mentioned in the ealier response the 45-70 1895 is a good cartridge for under 200 yards. Many black bear hunters like the 336 in .35 Remington with a 200+ grain bullet. The caliber is also very suitable for game from deer to elk and even moose.
As far as your dads choice, it's not at all bad, but I think a lever action is much easier to work, especially in the woods and brush.
Andrew
 

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Welcome from Olympia, WA; in the Great Pacific Northwest - "The "Original 444 Marlin®" Country!
 
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Here is my long range rifle. It is a 308MX and with a Redfield Revolution 3x9x40 I can ring dingers at 300 yards...

Caveat: I wouldn't hunt with it at 300 yards. My max comfortable hunting range is 200 yards for deer and 150 for bear and I'd REALLY prefer 100 yards max for both... That is an accuracy limitation for deer and an energy delivered limitation I impose on myself as I'm not comfortable with the energy delivered being under 1800 ft/lb for bear...

String instrument Shooting sport Musical instrument Recreation Shooting
 

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I agree with the previous response - lever instead of pump - now, the 45-70 CB is a great pic it is likely to hold its value and even increase ....your pop has a good idea on the.308 cal...its versatile, suitable for any knd of hunting and distances you encounter....marlin makes a .308 lever and a 338 as well....IMHO...one of those would be a better choice for a first rifle...even the 35R would be good (a fav of mine) but it takes a lot of practice with the rifle and accurate judging of distance to make it a 200+yd shooter....

I will vote for the 308 MX as a first rifle for a first hunter...cant go wrong with that one...what ever you choose...spend some time at the range shooting it until it just feels good to you...that will happen much faster with the MX than it will with the long barreled 45-70...

thought I'd better clarify....the marlin 308MX is NOT a standard 308...it is a marlin caliber....
 

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Welcome aboard from Delaware. If you're looking for something new, I might consider the 336C in .35 Rem, if hunting is primarily Black Bear, but would go with a .45-70 if I might encounter some Brown/Griz. I would probably stalk to > 150yds though. No problem with the .308 here, in fact I have one on my wish list; a Ruger M77 RSI(or similar).
 

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With a .45/70 recoil can substantial, especially if you're trying to stretch it out for longer shots on something like bear. You have said this would be your first firearm, but have you done some shooting? I wouldn't want to see a "newbie" turned off by recoil as the .45/70 could be an "interesting" choice for a first gun. Having said that I love mine, and have dropped deer as far away as 163 yards using a 400-grain JSP with a measured MV of 1,800 fps. But then, I've been shooting for over 50 years and I'm a big boy at 6'2" and 250 lbs.,
 

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Lever or pump should not make much of a difference unless you are addicted to lever guns. Who here is anyhow? :) - we all are! 45-70 is not a plinking caliber by any means unless you plan on reloading for it. Oh by the way, reloading is another addiction.

+ 1 here for the 35 Remington.

Welcome to MO from Midcoast Maine.
 

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Welcome from Central NY ! I love lever actions rifles, but for a new shooter looking for a big game rifle I would go for a bolt action. Your dad mentioned a 308 Winchester which is a great choice although there are many that would meet your requirements.
 

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Hello and welcome to MO.
As others have said here, a 45-70 has substantial recoil and likely would not
be the best choice for a first firearm.
However, I agree with your choice of a lever:biggrin:.
May I suggest a Savage 99 in 308 as an idea for a great compromise?
I have one and it is likely the finest hunting rifle I own.

Here is a great article on the '99-
https://gundigest.com/more/classic-guns/savage-99-unique-man-made


If I was going to go with the 45-70, I would read-up on it, and
try to shoot one before buying.
Nobody here can honestly deny it is capable.
Its drawbacks are it's quick loss of "altitude" past 100-150 yds
and its recoil. Hornady LVR ammo has for the most part adressed
the former...but I'd still want to do a lot of shooting at 200yds
before I went on a bear hunt.
Here is a good article on the classic 45-70
The .45-70 Government: Bone-Crushing Performance From An Old School Lever-Action | Big Game Hunting Blog
 
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