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Discussion Starter #1
New to Marlin and new to using tubular magazines.

What are (any) concerns regarding the shape of the cartridge in the tubular mag (i.e. butting tip of one to the primer of another) ?

For example: Is there a preferred cartridge shape or characteristic that optimizes safety and feeding (have read a lot about feed issues).

I am not reloading or hunting. The 1894 is primarily for target shooting and potentially home defense.

I am seeking specific input regarding ammo mfgr and related specs (weight, bullet shape, casing type, etc).

Any suggestions appreciated.
 

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Honestly, I don't know of any common .357 or .38 bullet shape that is pointed enough to cause me any worry about accidental discharge in the tube.

As far as good feeding ammo goes, I've fed .357 JHP, SJHP, and JSP in my CSS with no problems. (Specifically, CCI Blazer 158gr JHP, Remington 125gr SJHP, Fiocchi 125gr JSP, Remington 125gr JSP, Winchester 125gr JSP, American Eagle 158gr JSP) Also, I've fed 38 special JSP and FMJ with minor problems, sometimes having to double clutch to get it in the chamber. I don't know how your rifle will do, but I would recommend sticking to .357's. Also, I haven't had any experience with wadcutters or semi-wadcutters, but I would think they would be more prone to feeding issues than anything with a rounder profile.

As far as accuracy goes, my rifle loves the heavier weight bullets. I can get sub 2 inch groups with open sights at 75 yards regularly with the Blazer 158 gr JHPs and the American Eagle 158 gr JSPs. However, the Blazers are obviously downloaded and feel more like a 38 special load than a .357.
 

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First thing, Welcome, any hollow point,flat point or smiwad cutter will be fine. Mine seems to like hornady 180 xtp's the best [re-loaded] but shoots 158's pretty good also.
 

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Welcome to the site and the world of Marlin Leverguns. I load my own with 158 gr cast rnfp that feed really well.
You might want to think about a reloading set-up, as fun as the 1894's are to shoot you'll definitely go through some ammo and nothing is easier to load for than the .38/.357 cartridge. It's a great cartridge to learn on, it's very forgiving and there's a ton of data and components available.
GH1 :)
 

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I’ve been lucky – my 1984c has never refused to load anything I’ve found to put into it.

I like Fiocchi 142gr. FMJ-TC (“truncated-cone”) for plinking at the range (like you, I’m not hunting). I bought them originally because they were cheap – around $15/box last year – but they’ve been hard to find lately. The last place I found them was here for about $17/box, but it always pays to shop around: http://www.palmettostatearmory.com/383.php

They are pointy-ish, but I’ve certainly had no problems with them, and can find no reports of others having issues with these in a tube magazine. The profile seems to load especially easily in my 1984c. I also like them because they (very) roughly approximate the performance of the Hornady 140gr. FTX LEVERevolution cartridges that are by far the most accurate in my rifle.

I keep a couple boxes of the Hornady FTX around just in case I ever need to use the rifle for home defense purposes, or if I’m ever bitten by the hunting bug. For maximum punch, you can try Buffalo Bore’s 158gr. JHC.

If I’m out of the Fiocchi FMJ-TC, I buy whatever 158gr. SJSP is available in .357 at a reasonable price (Federal/American Eagle, Sellier & Bellot, etc.).

.38spl ammo is another (less expensive) alternative for recreational range/plinking purposes. I like Fiocchi 125gr. SJSP or Sellier & Bellot 158gr. SJSP.

Once you’ve tried a box or two of cartridges and found what you like best, just be prepared to start buying ammo by the case – the 1894c is so much fun that ammo just seems to disappear! :)
 

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I've found that a 1894C in 357 that's working correctly will feed about any 357 ammo except wadcutters.
 

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I have a newer 1894C that (odd as it seems) loves 158gr SWC, and 158gr RNFP, I've tried some 125gr and 130gr RNFP, but have to double rack the lever most times with the lighted weight RNFP.
But it eats .38 125 and 130 RNFP just fine, it seems to be more picky with the .357 ammo than with the .38.
I suppose not every gun is the same, you'll have to determine what your gun likes through trial and error.
Nothing beats going through a few hundred rounds of various ammo at the range trying different brands and style ammo to see what works best.
Have fun shooting and once you determine what it likes you'd better stock up.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Gents,

Many thanks for your comments and suggestions

This will be my first ever lever gun Have only just ordered the 1894C SS rifle and - not yet picked it up (can't wait).

Glad I signed up for this site as i am confident I will be back for more of your ideas and input as I start using the gun

Emale
 
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