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Hi folks,

New to the forum. I have been looking at getting a Marlin 1894c in 357 for about 15 years, but it is always the gun I put off to buy another pistol or build another AR. Now that I am finally going to buy one it looks like everyone is out. Ozark has what looks like an 1895 cowboy with a 18.5 inch barrel, big loop lever, and laminated stock for a great price.....so good that I may get it. The only problem is I know nothing about the 45-70. How does this gun handle and what type of kick and I to expect. Largest lever action I have fired was a Henry 44 mag.

Thanks!
 

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Wow, John Boy! That's a loaded (pun intended) question. Go over the gun carefully. It certainly sounds like it has been modified (especially the barrel cut). May end up being an accuracy issue if it hasn't been done right. See how it shoots. I get 1/2 inch groups w/factory Rem. 300gr bullets on my 18 1/2" Guide Gun - if I do my part. Factory loads just aren't too bad, that is standard rounds, in the recoil department. It can be very stout with some of the boutique loads. I mean like even nasty. Have to work up to them. But, that's the beauty of a .45-70. The versatility. It is a do-it-all round. The main question is, what do you wish to do with the gun? My Guide Gun is very balanced not light, but not heavy. Are you going to hunt with the gun? Or is it for CB action shooting? W/standard rounds, not too much more rcoil than a .44. Definitely a bit more than a .357. Are you very recoil sensitive? Normal factory rounds aren't too bad in the kick dept. Of course, .357 is the mildest, and lightest. But what are you looking to get out of it? Unfortunately, here you are asking a question of people that are addicts, with no chance of recovery. We love our .45-70's, and if you seriously start shooting Marlins in .45-70 you'll be hooked, too. Can't say anything about the 1894. Not much experience other than a friend's .44. I liked it, but I love my 1895's. Good luck with your decision, and welcom to Marlinitis.
 

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I have the Marlin 94 Cowboy in .357 and a 95 45/70. For the most fun the 94 is my go to rifle. I always have it with me when I am out and about driving in the country. I also have a S&W 686 .357 that compliments it so I killed 2 birds with one stone with the 94. Also don't forget the 38 spl. are alot of fun out of the 94. But.....I also love shooting my 45/70. You can load it as heavy as you like or stand. I have loaded pretty hot loads in it and it does rattle you around a bit so I stick with the medium loads which are enough for any big game animal here in Idaho. I have shot nothing but my own cast bullets through them both. Neither have ever felt copper. In fact I just bought some Black Powder that I am going to try to load in the 45/70 just because that is what they were originally made for.
It sounds as if you have been waiting for the 94 for awhile. If that is what you want I would wait and get that first and then get the 45/70. That is basically what I did. I stumbled onto the 94 by accident and picked it up right then and there. The 45/70 I bid on at Gun Broker and won the bid, much to my surprise. I thought that I would never get it at the price I bid but surprise, surprise, I learned that I was a new owner of a 45/70. Glad I did now. Life is good if these are kind of the decisions we have to make..count your blessings.Hope this helps...good luck. ;D
 

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jonboy, WELCOME to MO!!!

You will LOVE that .45-70! Do not hesitate. Buy it.
Look at the barrel and see if that 1895CB has a "Limited" stamped into the barrel. I think that barrel/length would be/could be a "Limited III".
Someone else, more versed in the Cowboy Rifles will be along shortly and either verify or correct me.

I've owned both an 1895G and an 1895CB for several years, and until recently, neither have been fired.
That has changed, though.
My .45-70s are my absolute favorite rifles!!!!! An M1A; an M1 Garand; an AR-HBAR, plus a couple of bolt guns just sit in the safe and watch the lever guns go outside and 'play'.

There's just 'something' about pushing a big, fat hunk of lead down the bore of those rifles.

"Addictive" is a great description!!

(If you do get the 1894, be sure to get the 1894CB, and get it in .44 Magnum!!! The "lead factor" applies to them, too!) ;D
 

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Jonboy, I think that cowboy sounds like a unique rifle and would snatch it up if it's in good shape.I have an 1895 gs and you will love that 18.5 inch barrel.As far as recoil most factory rounds are loaded mild to deal with trapdoor pressures.Don't make the same mistake I did,years ago I wanted a raging bull in .454 casull but boughjt the .44 magnum because the salesman said recoil was severe and was like holding a pistol out and having someone hit it upwards with a baseball bat.I still love the .44 but have shot a .500 s&w 440 hardcast at 1600 fps one handed,back to the point get what gun you want and don't worry about recoil.If you get that cowboy I'd like to see a pic. Dave
 

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If most of your hunting is deer/hogs, then the 1894 in .45 colt is your huckleberry. Easy to handload for, and in that carbine, the Buffalo Bore 320+ hardcast will go over 1700 in a carbine. That's faster than the original load in the old 45-90 Express load! Not bad on recoil either. Problem: finding a 45 colt 94CB is difficult and they cost more than a 45-70! If you can't wait, go to the 45-70, put a peep on it, and have at it!
 

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Hello and welcome, the 1895 you are describing sounds like a GBL. If it doesn't have the octagon barrel it isn't a cowboy. I think for all around plinking and general use you will be happier if you keep searching for the 1894 in .357. The 45-70 is a lot of fun, but normally once any of us sets our mind on a firearm nothing else will really do. Good luck.
 

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Given a choice between a 45-70 and a 357 (neither give me warm fuzzies for a lever gun), I'd definitely take the 45-70. At least with that caliber you can kill critters larger than chipmunks ans opossums. I had the 1894C, and hated it. It was a gun that sounded like a great idea...shoots 357 mags, and 38 specials, can be used as a companion to my 357 revolver, etc. But the truth of the matter is it's a bastid caliber in a rifle. Too big for small game, and too small for big game.

I owned mine for only 9 months and sold it. Luckily so many people want them because I made money off the deal. I'd get the 45-70 and have a gun I could at least use for hunting.
 

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BR549 said:
Hello and welcome, the 1895 you are describing sounds like a GBL. If it doesn't have the octagon barrel it isn't a cowboy. I think for all around plinking and general use you will be happier if you keep searching for the 1894 in .357. The 45-70 is a lot of fun, but normally once any of us sets our mind on a firearm nothing else will really do. Good luck.
+1,

The GBL is what I envisioned while reading jonboy's description.....not a cowboy.



Jonboy,
Welcome to MO's...... .357 for plinking / .45-70 for hunting.

The .45-70 can be loaded from mild to wild.....if you don't reload, most factory ammo is pretty mild as far as recoil goes IMO.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the replies everyone.......I am still conflicted. I am planning on making this a plinking gun right now so that leads me towards the 1894 in 357, however I love the looks of the 1895 that they have. I may have to get both....I just love the grey laminate stock on the 1895, and it is a cowboy, it has the octo barrel.
 

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Johnny, I have them both and like them both but I would choose the 45/70 any day over the 357. Besides, I noticed that you didn't pose this question on the 1894 forum but on the 45/70 forum. That shows me that you're pretty much leaning towards an 1895. Get it and you won't be disappointed. :) :)
 

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jonboy20 said:
....I just love the grey laminate stock on the 1895, and it is a cowboy, it has the octo barrel.
A gray laminate on a Cowboy? That just sounds messed up. I'm a fan of the laminates and stainless ,but on a Cowboy, I just can't picture it.

Post a pic of it.
 

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That doesn't look like an octagon barrel......also the cowboys have Marbles sights and the rifle pictured doesn't. That looks like a 1895ABL to me......
 

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jonboy20 says he is talking about plinking. Many seem to miss this point. So in that regard the .38/357 Mag would serve better for doing such things. Mainly for ease of re loading and cost.

Even though many very much like the 45-70 and I would also be one of the nuts that pushes the 45-70 over the pistol rounds.
 

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YEP - get the .45/70 first - everybody needs one :D

also, it is perfect for 'plinking'..... it'll knock steel plates over with authority. ;)

and easy to reload for.
 

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six_gunz said:
That doesn't look like an octagon barrel......also the cowboys have Marbles sights and the rifle pictured doesn't. That looks like a 1895ABL to me......
Agreed. That picture looks like an ABL. If it does indeed have an octagonal barrel then it is a modified gun of some sort. That surely doesn't make it bad by any means but it would not be a factory produced configuration.

The 45-70 might one of the most versatile rounds in existence, lever gun or not, but you'll need to reload to take advantage of it and to be able to shoot it often. Factory ammo can run $35+/box. As six_gunz said though, the factory stuff is very mild.

Have you considered a 30-30? The 336BL sounds like it would float your boat pretty well and the 30-30 is an excellent round. I can still get factory ammo for $11/box and you can find it pretty much anywhere.
 

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GreenMachine said:
jonboy20 says he is talking about plinking. Many seem to miss this point. So in that regard the .38/357 Mag would serve better for doing such things. Mainly for ease of re loading and cost.

Even though many very much like the 45-70 and I would also be one of the nuts that pushes the 45-70 over the pistol rounds.
+1 on the plinking, just because .357 is cheaper any way you cut it to plink with. I love plinking with my 1895 but I can do more of it longer with my 1894 (.44 mag). As for hunting, the .357 may be light for elk but there's plenty of evidence it's just fine for deer with the usual caveat of using it within it's range, which always sounds a bit condescending 'cause you do that with any rifle anyway. ;D

Whichever way you go, it's gonna be fun! So have at and let us know how things ended up.

I'm votin' that you'll get both eventually! ;)
 
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