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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I asked a very similiar question on cowboy rifles. Marlins are basicly for woods hunting where shots are under 175 yards. The more I think about this, the more I think Marlins should be scope free. You don't really need a scope to keep the bullet in the kill zone (usually a 12 inch circle for the average whitetail deer and black bear, larger for elk) with a peep sight or standard dove tail sight. Scopes add weight, bulk and are an eye sore on a lever action rifle. If you have good eye sight, do you think a Marlin rifle should have a scope? By the way, I am not trying to pass a law, I just want to know if you use a scope.
 

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Taylor,
This isn't real helpful but on this issue I tend to go both ways. I hunt in places where even the close shots are aided by a scope, sometimes. In FL you must have 5" of antler above the hair line. So it is safer to get a better look if you can. Occasionally a scope will help you pick a shot between trees that open sights would not allow. One of mine wears a scope it is small a fixed 4x and personally I can get on target quicker with it than standard sights.

That said it is an ugly combination and I feel almost guilty about optics on a lever but I made up for it with a self imposed two to one ratio of iron sighted to scoped leverguns. :lol:
 

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Taylor, I generally put a scope on my 336CB for deer season. I leave the 94CB .357 with peep and firesight combo. If you look at the guns side by side the one with the peep looks nicer and will do the job. Now as far as looks and ease of carry and weight are concerned. The 336CB is a 38-55 loaded with 8rds weighs in fairly hefty but I sit in a blind and don't walk with it. Far as looks are concerned with a scope, the scope I put on it is a 2.5 intermediate eye relief made for shotguns and black powder. It does not have the big objective bell and is very compact. It comes up fast and I have it mounted as far forward as the standard mounts allow, with it that way I don't need a hammer spur. The combonation suits the gun and in my humble opinion looks well.
 

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Taylor,
my marlins both wear scopes. I guess 175 yards seems like a long way without a scope. However, I keep the scopes set at 2x or 3x. It just seems like it is easier to put the crosshairs where they need to go when you are talking about a longer (175 yard) shot.

Now I know that many dont think 175 is all that far. I think for the average rifleman it is a long way. I've shoot bowling pins with a gost ring at 100 yards (AR15). Talk about challenging.

Pb
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
175 yards is a long way. Most of my Marlins wear scopes. But the few that do not wear scopes carry better, look better and are more fun to shoot. I hunt tickets. My shots are usually 80 yards or less. I am thinking of taking off the Marlin scopes and getting a long range rifle (with scope). Problem is, I just checked my bank account. After I pay the bills and payments, I have $2.00 left to start the long range rifle fund. Until I can get a long range rifle, at least one Marlin will have to wear a scope.
 

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I have shot way more deer without a scope. About 10 years ago I was hunting with a guy that had a 270 scoped. I had never looked through one before. I have been scoping ever since. I have quick release mounts to fall back on regular iron sights, but the advantages of a scope are numerous here in the midwest and they help a great deal at dawn and dusk. I can hit them running just as easily with one. Being able to handle long distances and precisely work up an accurate load are important to me. I like my scopes, but unfortunately have gotten kind of dependant on them. I am shooting a lot more without them to stay in practice. The only levers I have that are not scoped are my 22 and my 357.
 

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I prefer the lever action without a scope for the most part, preferring peeps on my levers. That said, I have the very small Ultra Dot 1 inch nonmagnifying sight on one of my .35s mounted as low as possible, just to see if dawn/dusk use is better served with an illuminated dot. If they made scopes this small in 2.5-4X, with good light gathering capability, then I would prefer one of those to the red dot, but alas, they do not. The red dot sight weighs around 4 ounces, much lighter than a scope, and is considerably shorter as well. The problem with the red dot is that it is impossible to see if you are canting the rifle-there is no vertical crosswire to give an index of alignment. This isn't a handicap as long as I'm not shooting very far, and with a levergun, I usually don't.

It's a free country, and people can put whatever scopes on a lever that they wish, but some people's choices are so inappropriate that I wonder if they know anything about stock dimensions, scope eye relief, and gun fit. Like those fellows that mount 4-12X or 6-18X scopes with 40mm or larger objectives. These need high rings to clear the objective lens over the barrel, and yet the Marlin is stocked for iron sight use, or at most a very low scope. You've got to stick your head up like a turkey, losing the firm cheek contact with the stock, to see through the scope. Who needs 12X or 16X on a gun that runs out of range at 200 yards? I guess they must figure they do, since they bought it. Trouble is, they've now turned a lively, quick handling and pointing rifle into a top heavy 2X4 with poor balance and slow sighting. Even worse are see through mounts used with scopes. Rant over.

Call me an aesthete, I guess. I figure compact, quick handling rifles need compact sights. If I ever scope a levergun, it will be with a 2.5 or 4X scope with no objective bell, mounted as low as possible. That will only be when my eyesight no longer allows the use of iron sights (peeps). Or possibly on a .25-20 small game rifle, if I ever locate one or Marlin starts producing them again.

Overall, I agree with Bman's comment that leverguns look horrible with scopes on them.
 

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My GG wears a AO Scout Mount/Leupold Scout Scope and also a AO Ghost Ring and HiViz front.............I'm leaving the scope off this year. At real hunting ranges around here, I just don't need it.
 

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I like the look of the lever gun with out a scope on it.But 2 of my marlins are scoped.5 of them I use the factory sights on, and one of them has peep sights on it.I have a 1895G on lay-a-way I plan on puting AO ghost ring sights on.As you can see I am just so confused :? ..But like Dr.A said I have shot way more deer with open sights.Where I hunt there is really no need for a scoped gun.One of the guns I have scoped is a 1895 and it is topped with a shot gun scope. Because the factory sights were worthless unless I was shooting at something the size of a house.The other one I have scoped is a 336 I had rechambered to a 307 win. the rest have open sights of some kind.And they just seem to carry and handle better than the scoped ones.And I like the way they look better to. :wink:
 

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My 25-06 MR7 wears a high powered scope, most but not all of my levers have iron sights, I have a ghost ring on my 450 that is great and I have a few with low power scopes. Most of all I love Marlins.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
What got this started is my 357 Marlin rifle. I go to gun shows and purchase whatever bullets I can find that are cheap, then reload them. Sometimes, they are 125 grain jacketed, 158 grain jacketed or hard cast gas check bullets. Some I load hot and some low power. The 357 wears a Williams peep sight. It is a lot of fun to shoot. It is so much simpler and easy to handle without a scope. I am a great believer in "keep it simple". I have ordered a Williams peep sight for my 35 Marlin. I have a soft load (200 grain bullet at 2015 ft/sec) that should work well. The rifle will be about 1 pound lighter without the scope, rings, and base. The soft load should not kick hard.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
What got this started is my 357 Marlin rifle. I go to gun shows and purchase whatever bullets I can find that are cheap, then reload them. Sometimes, they are 125 grain jacketed, 158 grain jacketed or hard cast gas check bullets. Some I load hot and some low power. The 357 wears a Williams peep sight. It is a lot of fun to shoot. It is so much simpler and easy to handle without a scope. I am a great believer in "keep it simple". I have ordered a Williams peep sight for my 35 Marlin. I have a soft load (200 grain bullet at 2015 ft/sec) that should work well. The rifle will be about 1 pound lighter without the scope, rings, and base. The soft load should not kick hard.
 

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So it seems the consensus is basically you don't need a scope.

Ok.

But for devils advocat purposes; If a person would be silly enough to have a scope, can we reach some consensus on what should one look for?

Here is my reason for asking. I hunt in a quality deer management area. I must have at least 3 points on one antler to shoot. While I know a pair of binoculars will also work. I hunt in thick cover and the deer doesn't have to take too many steps and they are out of site! I want to pull up a gun and make my determination with minimum movement/noise. Not put up a pair of binocs. then slowly set down then slowly bring the gun up. By that time another hunter 1/2 mile away might have a chance to shoot it. Also in low light conditions counting points via eyball is nearly impossible at 50 to 100 yrds!

I'm thinking at this point. one of those compact scopes with vari power say 2X-7X. with I think around a 33mm lens. Is this a reasonable choice?

What length of eye relief or focal length would be apprporiate to keep the hammer out of the way?

Are the shotgun scopes better for some reason? What the heck is the difference between a shotgun scope and a rifle scope anyhow? They both magnify and both have cross hairs don't they?

Also the choice for mounts would be helpful.

Thanks,
 

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This is a great subject as I just posted a thread on BB Forum asking what peep sight to get. I love my Marlins without scopes but have always had at least one with. This year I am going to change as I just purchased a Williams Peep sight for my 444ss the same one as DD444 recommended. My only worries are if my aging eyes can do it and the big question...HOW MUCH TIME AT THE BEGINNING AND END OF THE DAY DO YOU LOSE BY NOT USING A SCOPE...Any ideas? :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
The basic difference is eye relief length and parallelex length. Shotgun & muzzler loader scopes usually have longer eye relief of about 5 inches. And, shotgun scopes and 22 scopes usually have a shorter parallelex.
 

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Well I would say it's up to the user. I like scopes, and I like iron sights. If the Marlin is a newer one designed to have a scope mounted, then why not put one on if it helps you hit your target. I'd rather see a scope on a Marlin, than wounded game.
I only have a couple scoped Marlins, and way too many unscoped Marlins, but that's because my collection is old Marlins, without scope mounting holes. The one's with a scope either had one on already, or were new enough to have holes.
 

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I've got 'em with and without....however, I prefer the scout scope set-up....both eyes open for close shooting...just enough precision for long shots(which in Fl usually run about 100yds!).
Having said that.....one of my 44maggies has ghost rings and I love it the way it is.....

Ok, now I just confused myself.....damn....going to have to buy another levergun to try to figure this out!

Frank
 

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I've got 'em with and without....however, I prefer the scout scope set-up....both eyes open for close shooting...just enough precision for long shots(which in Fl usually run about 100yds!).
Having said that.....one of my 44maggies has ghost rings and I love it the way it is.....

Ok, now I just confused myself.....damn....going to have to buy another levergun to try to figure this out!

Frank
 
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We have 3 Marlins 1895SS, 1895G, 336Y and a Winchester 94 Ranger all using Kwik Site See Thru mounts with a Bushnell 4X mounted ( 1895SS wears a Leupold). You then have the option of using the open sights or the scope. This has proven itself numerous times in the field for all of us (ages 10 t0 54).
 
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I have quite a few Marlin's and a little under half are scoped ! I don't care for scopes on the new Cowboy models ,but I do like scopes on the Guide Gun types and of course I have older ones that are not drilled and tapped .
 
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