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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello and greetings from the old country.

Short version:
I have a Marlin 338MX in (surprise) .338 Marlin Express - after firing the action locks and it takes some strength to open the lever. Just to clarify: I'm not talking about a stiff action but I'll have to use force to open it. It's not possible to pull the lever while keeping the gun shouldered.

I found no burrs that might catch on something while disassembling it. Someone knowlegable suggested that the firing pin is to long and it was in fact really long so I felt comfortable with shortening it a little bit (and polished it, of course) but the problem still remains. The firing pin ist *still* rather long so I could shorten it further but as I don't know if it might really solve the problem I wanted to check if there are other possible solution to this problem.

Additional information: The gun seems to be quite new - considering that chambering another round is a pita I'm not surprised that the previous owner did'nt fire it much :D
The ammunition used is Hornady LeverEvolution. I received Remington SP but haven't tested them yet.
The problem occurs only after firing a live round. Dry firing on an empty chamber or on an empty cartridge and working the action, empty or loaded, without firing does not lead to this problem.

I searched the forums and found nothing - maybe I overlooked it or used the wrong key words.
Also I hope I posted in the right forum.

Thank you, in advance, for your help!
 

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Do you have a picture of the fired brass? It may be a headspace issue
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I took a picture of some fired and unfired cases. Will post it later today.
On the first glance I didn't spot anything out of the ordinary but then again I don't know my way around lever actions :D
 

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If it were me i would have the headspace checked. The bolt is being thrust back into the rear locking lug and it causes the bolt to bind.
 

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First up, welcome to Marlin Owners.

What you're experiencing is a known problem with some 338ME rifles. Fortunately, my 2008 338MX didn't have the sticky extraction problem.

The cause is known and the remedy is simple and easy. Read through this thread and you'll gain all you need to know:
Extremely difficult extraction
Jack
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Brass Ammunition Metal Bullet Copper
There are some marks near the base but on first glance nothing special. On closer inspection there are some long faint scratches on the fired cases. The chamber has some machining marks on the first cm / half inch that match the marks on the cartridges. So that seems to be the problem.

Technology Electronic device
The locking block looks ok. Well... not ok as I wouldn't call that a "finish" but nevermind :D
There's no deformation on the block so I guess that's not the problem.

So I'll polish the chamber a bit and get rid of these marks (I have no picture but they look just as in the thread JACKTW posted).
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Anyway, I'm off to eat some humble pie as I never thought of checking the chamber. I was just so fixated on the issue beeing a problem with the action that the thought never crossed my mind. Ah well.
That also explains why I haven't found the thread JACKTW posted.

@ JACKTW: Thank you!

@ bryan alder: Thank you, too! I ruled out a headspace issue early on because the brass looks ok (inside and outside). There's no bulge near the base and no "thinning" of the brass.

I'll keep you up to date regarding the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Small update:
I polished the chamber and the problem seems to be gone. "Seems to be" because the range was closed last week but I was able to fire a round in my hunting ground (It's allowed to test fire your hunting rifle in your hunting ground but not to fire a rifle on your own property even with a backstop). I'll take the rifle to the range this weekend to test fire and zero it and hopefully the problem really is gone.
 

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tiredWeasel....that is the value of belonging to the MO forum. Tens of thousands of lever action folks with some experience you can draw from. Welcome and congrats on joining and your rifle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
So I went to the range yesterday - the action worked flawlessly. Well... as flawless as a new Marlin will run, anyway. But no trouble with feeding or ejecting.
And in the evening, or more precise in the very early morning, I downed a boar. Gun and ammunition performed as expected.

So, thank you all for your help!

Recreation Soil Hunting Boar Hunting dog


Next step: installing a silencer.
 

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Small update:
I polished the chamber and the problem seems to be gone. "Seems to be" because the range was closed last week but I was able to fire a round in my hunting ground (It's allowed to test fire your hunting rifle in your hunting ground but not to fire a rifle on your own property even with a backstop). I'll take the rifle to the range this weekend to test fire and zero it and hopefully the problem really is gone.
As you found out the chamber was a bit rough. I had the same problem with mine. Also, the Factory Hornady ammo is loaded a bit hot which adds to the issue. There were also extractor problems with these rifles. Glad you got it solved.
 
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