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Many on this forum trust their lives on a Marlin in bear country.

I have a 1895, but I have much more experience with bolt actions, especially Mauser 98-type actions.

A properly finished M98 is utterly reliable, in that it will feed in almost any position (though not really upside-down), and with that big extractor and the leverage of the bolt lugs, it will extract cases that are almost stuck and wouldn't come out with a different system.

That's why it is still the preferred action for dangerous game in most places.

Now, my question is: in your experience, how reliable is the Marlin action?

Feed-fire-extract-eject, fast reloading and firing, contorted positions, some sand , mud or grit in it, shrubs, bushes and branches around the hammer, hot weather, etc?

Absolutely not trying to start a debate, but only to get the opinions of those who've been there.

Thanks!
 

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I don't hunt dangerous game so I am not really qualified to comment .. But, I will offer this.. I have never had a Marlin jam while shooting , even rapidfire as fast as I could throw lead downrange.. But then again.. I am only using medium bores.. 30-30.. I would trust my life to that rifle ,, just like I do Ruger handguns..
 

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If i have to pick one form or gun in each category to defend my life it would be as follows:
Remington 870-scattergun
Ruger anything-handgun
Marlin levergun or any form-rifle

Minus .22 shorts in my 39-A on occasion, I've never had a Marlin levergun jam or fail on me and one day I hope to be able to hunt Africa for Cape Buffalo definately and some other species and I *WILL* be carrying a Marlin 1895.
 

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I trust some guns regardless of specific features.

I trust a specific Remington bolt action, though not most.

I trust some M94 Winchesters, but not all.

I trust my Marlin 1895 - 45-70.

That said, it isn't the rifle alone which is my only concern. In addition to a well tuned and trusted rifle (or other weapon), the ammo must be absolutely trustworthy. Nothing pushing the envelope pressure-wise and properly sized ammo is a must. The ammo must fit the rifle's chamber easily with neither too much nor too little headspace. The bullet's nose must be one which adapts itself well to the feed mechanisms involved.

Ideally, the rifle should work just as reliably and smoothly when operated "normally" as when run hard and fast - and that must be tested, known, and practiced. It should also be known to work in the conditions of expected need, whether that involves wet, silt, sand, ice or whatever.
 

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Either one when trusted, I've had both and still have a 1903 - A3 which for all intents is a M98 clone. When you have a repeater of any kind it must be clean to operate, with that in mind I would trust the positive feed of the bolt gun over any but a double rifle.
 

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Kano,
I see you are fairly new, so a big welcome to the forum.
As far as the lever vs bolt debate, I am somewhat biased. I am left handed. I have several bolt guns and for those long shots that I can more or less take my time on, they are wonderful. Don't much like those friggin Remington spring steel extractors.
But for the most part, the 98's have served me well. All except the one I grenaded - don't ask. But know it can be done.
I guess short cycling is the issue I seem to have, especially on the long actions like the Weatherby's.
The lever guns on the other hand, once broken in, have served me well without fail for many thousands of rounds in a variety of rifles. My favorite big bores are on the 1886 action, of which I have a few in 45-70 and 45-90. Marlins are fine big bores too!
Just last fall I was staring down the sights of my Browning SRC at a disgruntled black bear. He was a good one and shaking his head from side to side. A few feet closer and I could have singed his face as I lit him up. I cannot think of another gun I would have preferred at that moment. None of my bolt guns with their fine scopes would have been any better.
I would consider one of the big bore bolts, but don't ask me to put any kind of a scope on it. I have been eyeing the new Ruger 375, but the first thing I would do is hack off the stock and install a cushy recoil pad. Then there's the Alaskan stainless with synthetic stock. I could work with that!
Back to reality, I have most anyting I could need, and I just like the 45-70. I really trust it. That's just me.....
Regards
Bestboss
 
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