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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I live 240 miles from the nearest Cabela's, but I just happened to be going by one Friday. Decided I was going to buy a 1894 45 Colt if they still had some. Had one on the shelf, priced at $549. The wood to metal fit was not good at the forend and it was scratched. They had 8 more in the back room so he started bringing them out one at a time. The 2nd one looked good other than some bluing issues. The 3rd had terrible wood to metal fit at the forend and was scratched. I told them to forget it. They said they would go through the other 6 until we found a good one.

My thinking was this. I really did not have the money to spend and was going to pay for it with overtime I am working in the next few weeks. I was standing there looking at a Benelli on the rack that I am also wanting and they were dragging these guns out of the back room. I thought why should I pay this much money for gun that we are searching through a pile looking to find a decent one. I will put my money with another company and hopefully get a well made product.

Maybe wood to metal fit should not bother me, but the wood is cut on a machine and so is the receiver. Either the wood and metal is loaded wrong or the machines are junk but if they are cut square they should butt together when assembled. If the exterior cosmetics are this bad, whose knows about the internals. One of the last 3 I bought in the last 7 years have had internal problems.

Anyway I decided to keep my money for now and the only real reason was because of quality, that is really sad. I really wanted a 45 Colt too, it would have been a good gun to have unless they ever catalog them again. Oh well, at least I did not need it, I just wanted it.
 

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Yeah, I'm a sucker for good wood to metal fit, too, Bullseye, and would've done the same. All the recently made ones I've seen have had terrible fit compared to the older ones. Seems like it was since around the time that word got out that Remington came in and started requiring them to be built in less than around two minutes or so that I started seeing them have poor wood to metal fit. I guess they didn't have time to do a good job of handfitting the stocks after that change. My 2008/2009 (I can never remember which it is, it's in the safe right now and staying there for the moment) 336 has perfect wood to metal fitment, if I'm remembering right it was one of the last ones to come off the line before that change was made.

A buddy of mine has bought two 336s (one .30-30 and one .35 Rem) in the past couple months that were made in the 70's. I had the pleasure of detail stripping both and helping him clean them up, and smooth up the actions and making sure the triggers were adjusted right. Both had perfect wood to metal fit. The .45 1894 I used to own ('99, if I'm remembering right) also had perfect wood to metal fit. My 2001 1895 also has excellent wood to metal fit.

Granted it's not usually functionally critical...and can sometimes be corrected with a little know-how and patience.
 

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I haven't bought any of the recent Marlins, but I have looked them over to see what the complaints are about. I will admit, that they are dropping the ball and letting work do out the door that should not.
It is easy to say what you or I would do if it were our company, but it is not. We are the consumer and our rantings will call their hand only to a point.
Compare their products with others of this time period. Who is sucessful? Look at Savage or Mossberg. But don't look too close. They are the kind of a gun that you could paddle your canoe home with and no one would care. I have done it. And I didn't care. And for price vs value, very popular.
How about the new Winchesters? They have a nice wood to metal fit, but they have priced themselves out of the common man's market and are living on a name that once meant something.
I have some Browning renditions, in lever and bolt guns, which rival the quality we all think we want, but no one wants to pay for.
The older Weatherby MKV's sit in their own corner of the world. The fit and finish is an attempt to pacify the most demanding of our breed. I could go on, but you get the drift.
So let's go back to a popular brand called Remington. They have found a way to make guns with what I call an express finish and most get mounted in a synthetic stock. The guns are functional and the owners seem to have some pride of ownership. Guns for shooters, we will call them. They are better than the birch or pine stocked firearms of many. The model 60 of our beloved Marlin is a prime example. I know they have sold millions of them and I feel sorry for those who demand no more of their gun manufacturer than this example offers. Or are we using a double standard.
We are headed toward a synthetic stock world and the finishes will be a sprayed and/or baked on finish. And when it comes, I will hate it for the rest of my life and my children will embrace them as being more useful than our wood and blued guns. It's called change and we cannot stop it. Buy now.......
Bestboss
 

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Well said Bestboss!
 

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I purchased 1 of these in October. I'm glad I bought it also. Feed's, fire's fine. Wood is a little underwhelming but wood to metal fit is fine for me. I also picked thru the rifles they had at Cabelas (6 I believe). You're not going to get fitting and hand work like in the old day's unless you pay for it (most people don't want to) I have a Miroku (Win 92) in .44 mag that is a beautiful rifle but it cost more then 549 dollers, I believe their 1200.00 currently. If Marlin make's a rifle that catches my eye I'll still buy it and hope it is a good one.
Karl
 

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I wonder how receptive folks would be to paying some additional money (maybe $150 - $200/gun) to get one that is assembled better than what we are seeing. I'm assuming that most of the work being done now is done by machine, and we have lost the final fit and finish that we used to get say back in the 70's. That's going to make the Marlins higher priced, say $600 - $900. But ultimately would it be worth it? Most centerfire rifles are priced at $800+ today, and many of them have plastic stocks. So the price wouldn't be out of line. And I see those new Winchesters priced in the $1200 range.

I like the fact that Marlin has kept their prices low, but it's akin to what some of the food companies are doing. Keep the price the same but sell a smaller quantity. I think with the move, it's time to get back to assembling a better product. But we are going to have to be willing to pay for it.
 

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well, you could just buy a new marlin and send it to Turnbull Restoration to have it made 'perfect'. Don't forget your checkbook!
 

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Should have got it. Your not going to find a nice older used one that anyone is willing to part with without a premium price. I would have looked at all 8 of them and picked the best one. Being from a chain store, LAYAWAY is a nice option!
 

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Bullseye I see your point, but I still would have taken the time to look at all they had to offer. I, like you, want my rifles to be look nice & perfect but always can not afford the "want". I want a Deluxe 30-30, but I bought a nice used 336C instead. If you really want a perfect rifle, maybe you should save your money and get a Deluxe or a Cowboy model which cost more, but look really nice. I am an Old Cowboy at heart and like to get what I pay for, but for now it is what it is. So until Remington makes Marlin's like they used to save your money. Because when they get it right, and they will, Marlin's will not be cheap.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I do not agree with the theory of what do you expect for the price. In my opinion, $550 is not super cheap for a rifle. I also think that it is not super expensive. A Remington Express is cheap and looks it, but they are about $250.

And yes, I would be willing to pay more for a good quality, good looking gun. Maybe they should have two lines in two price ranges, after all Remington does that with their original line like the Wingmaster vs Express, etc. The majority of my guns are above this price range, so I would be willing to pay for a quality gun.

This kinds of reminds me of the fact that I drove Chevy's for 30 years until I started having them go into the shop 9-10 times under warranty. Decided it was time to change. Guns are the same way, there are other companies making good products. Problem is, there are not many other lever gun manufacturers to choose from like there are car companies.

I have looked at a few Cowboys before and would be willing to pay the price for one. But guess what, they left something to be desired also.

Bottom line is I work hard for my money and I do not care if I am buying a $50, $500 or $1000 item, I plan on getting a quality product with it and I am not sure that the Marlin 1894 I wanted so badly filled that requirement. That is just plain sad whether it is a Marlin or a Widget, it just so happens it was a Marlin this time.

I am surprised nobody asks, but according to the proof marks the one on the shelf was made in North Haven and the two brought out from the backroom were New York guns. The one New York gun was the best of the three.
 

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horsesoldier03 said:
Should have got it. Your not going to find a nice older used one that anyone is willing to part with without a premium price. I would have looked at all 8 of them and picked the best one. Being from a chain store, LAYAWAY is a nice option!
I would have done the same thing and bless the saleman's heart to put up with a customer (meaning me) to go through the 8 rifles, let me finger them and pick out the nicest. The price quoted is what they go for and is not a real bad price.

It can be disapponting when the salesman says "nope, that's the only one we got".
 
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