Lever Action Advice

Bolt action rifles, lever action, pump action, self loading rifles and other miscellaneous longarms.

Lever Action Advice

Post by MJW380 » 09 Feb 2019, 9:14 am

Hey all, so I’ve decided that I want a lever action for my next rifle, specifically in .357 magnum, and was after opinions/suggestions on makes and models from people that have them. Would just be for plinking, bit of fun gun.
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by SCJ429 » 09 Feb 2019, 9:44 am

In my experience the 45/70 is a fun plinking round and is available in lever actions. It can be loaded to mild velocities if you like.
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by groundhog » 09 Feb 2019, 9:58 am

I have a Marlin 1894c in 357, pre-remington great rifle. Smooth slick action and trigger - after a little bit of work.
I also have a Browning B-92 in 357 which is another great rifle slick and smooth but in a much more positive mechanical way than the marlin.
I have owned a Rossi 357 stainless carbine and it was a tack driver but internally too rough and it had a way of damaging cases on ejecting them.
I also owned a S/S Marlin 1894c for a time that was one of the early remington takeover rifles and I can unequivocally state do not get a marlin from this period.

Some people like 94 marlins some 92 winchesters both will shoot, as I said rossi wasn't bad but I have seen troublesome rifles from all manufacturers. I will say however that a lot of the more troublesome rifles have been tuned by amateurs which doesn't help.
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by marksman » 09 Feb 2019, 10:18 am

MJW380 wrote:Hey all, so I’ve decided that I want a lever action for my next rifle, specifically in .357 magnum, and was after opinions/suggestions on makes and models from people that have them. Would just be for plinking, bit of fun gun.


I'm sure you would be very happy with a winchester lever .357 for plinking fun :drinks:

a 44-40 would be as good for fun :thumbsup: www.usedguns.com.au/Product.aspx?p=140346
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by No1_49er » 09 Feb 2019, 10:27 am

May be a bit exy, but here's a 2006 JM Marlin, described as excellent cond., looks like an octagon barrel. They're out there, and often a bit cheaper than this. Condition/supply/demand.
https://www.usedguns.com.au/Product.aspx?p=143622

No, it's not mine. I have enough of them already :D
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by pomemax » 09 Feb 2019, 11:56 am

All leavers are " bit of fun gun" .
I have 3, .22 Uberti , 30/30 Marlin, 38 s/357 Rossi as most will tell you they all needed some slicking up hardly ever use the Uberti bit of a pain to load in forward feed tube mag the marlin was a lot more work to get to wear I needed/wanted it but not hard a project both of these I found I needed a scope on ( 63 year old eyes ) but not hard to fit.
The Rossi was a tack driver out of the box just a bit clunky I fitted a Lyman peep sight to it next will be a 45/70 or 44/40 not sure yet what brand that Winchester is tempting .
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by Blr243 » 09 Feb 2019, 1:13 pm

I have owned the Rossi in 357 and the marlin in 44 mag I could never really get into the 44 but I carried the 357 a lot unscoped for pigs. Extremely light to carry I’m chasing to buy one again My main rifle now is the browning lever in 243. But I never really feel like it’s a close range light handy rifle It’s more of a scoped long range flat shooting accurate rifle
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by in2anity » 09 Feb 2019, 1:15 pm

Mate what’s your budget? Also will you handload for it?
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by MJW380 » 09 Feb 2019, 2:01 pm

Hi, was hopeing to get it done for around a neat $1000, had my heart set on a Winchester but they seem a bit thin on the ground, toyed with the idea of buying a new Rossi a few years ago, maybe I should have, they seem to have gone up a bit in price. Also I’ve been looking at the new Marlin 1894’s, their around $1300 new, which I would do, but then have seen Henry and Chiappa’s about too. There’s a Chiappa new on used guns for around $1500, looks like a real nice piece of timber in it, colour case hardened, just haven’t seen one in person. Yeah I would reload for it, although I haven’t reloaded pistol rounds yet, just rifle.
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by in2anity » 09 Feb 2019, 3:27 pm

Reloading pistol is a cinch - just be sure to get carbide dies and clean them regularly. Don't bother lubing and only clean your brass when you run into cycling issues (well that's what I do, but I'm lazy :P ). The link that No1_49r posted (https://www.usedguns.com.au/Product.aspx?p=143622) is really probably the best option - the heavier barreled CBs are very accurate, and Marlins are easily scoped. Plus the older JM marlins are noticeably better quality than the new remlin ones, so chances are the fit, finish, function and trigger on that rifle will be second to none. I'd suck it up and be jumping on that ASAP if you can afford it - the CBs don't come around all that often, and that one isn't priced too badly considering its apparent condition.
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by bladeracer » 09 Feb 2019, 6:23 pm

MJW380 wrote:Hey all, so I’ve decided that I want a lever action for my next rifle, specifically in .357 magnum, and was after opinions/suggestions on makes and models from people that have them. Would just be for plinking, bit of fun gun.


I have a Marlin 1894 in .44 Magnum and an Uberti 1866 Yellowboy in .38 Special. Both are fun to shoot. I would lean toward the .44 Mag though, you can load it down to subsonic loads with light bullets for plinking fun, but also load it up to near .45-70 levels for hunting and Metallic Silhouette. I would recommend that if you want to be able to shoot cast bullets though, you don't get a Marlin with a MicroGroove barrel - get the cut-rifling model instead.

If you think you might want to mount a scope at some point, keep in mind than most top-eject actions can make scope mounting difficult.

I like the Rossi Puma 16" myself, and I want to get a pair in .357 and .44 Magnums eventually. These are top-eject but scope mounts are available to mount an offset scope, or a Scout scope on the barrel.

I was looking at a Winchester 94 last week in .30-30 that I might grab as well.
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by cracker » 09 Feb 2019, 7:31 pm

bladeracer wrote:
MJW380 wrote:Hey all, so I’ve decided that I want a lever action for my next rifle, specifically in .357 magnum, and was after opinions/suggestions on makes and models from people that have them. Would just be for plinking, bit of fun gun.


I have a Marlin 1894 in .44 Magnum and an Uberti 1866 Yellowboy in .38 Special. Both are fun to shoot. I would lean toward the .44 Mag though, you can load it down to subsonic loads with light bullets for plinking fun, but also load it up to near .45-70 levels for hunting and Metallic Silhouette. I would recommend that if you want to be able to shoot cast bullets though, you don't get a Marlin with a MicroGroove barrel - get the cut-rifling model instead.

If you think you might want to mount a scope at some point, keep in mind than most top-eject actions can make scope mounting difficult.

I like the Rossi Puma 16" myself, and I want to get a pair in .357 and .44 Magnums eventually. These are top-eject but scope mounts are available to mount an offset scope, or a Scout scope on the barrel.

I was looking at a Winchester 94 last week in .30-30 that I might grab as well.


cant ever go wrong with a winchester 94 in 30-30.
out of all the stuff iv used seem to always come back to the 94 in 30-30
the 44 mag loaded up vs the 30-30 would be good fun too
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by bladeracer » 09 Feb 2019, 8:23 pm

cracker wrote:
bladeracer wrote:I was looking at a Winchester 94 last week in .30-30 that I might grab as well.


cant ever go wrong with a winchester 94 in 30-30.
out of all the stuff iv used seem to always come back to the 94 in 30-30
the 44 mag loaded up vs the 30-30 would be good fun too


I bought two milsurps off a guy last week. Picked them up yesterday and he tells me he's now decided to sell his No.1Mk3 and the .30-30. More PtA's I think.
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by bigrich » 10 Feb 2019, 6:30 am

groundhog wrote:I have a Marlin 1894c in 357, pre-remington great rifle. Smooth slick action and trigger - after a little bit of work.
I also have a Browning B-92 in 357 which is another great rifle slick and smooth but in a much more positive mechanical way than the marlin.
I have owned a Rossi 357 stainless carbine and it was a tack driver but internally too rough and it had a way of damaging cases on ejecting them.
I also owned a S/S Marlin 1894c for a time that was one of the early remington takeover rifles and I can unequivocally state do not get a marlin from this period.

Some people like 94 marlins some 92 winchesters both will shoot, as I said rossi wasn't bad but I have seen troublesome rifles from all manufacturers. I will say however that a lot of the more troublesome rifles have been tuned by amateurs which doesn't help.


+1 on all this. i had a 357 rossi , which was very accurate and worked reliably, but in some respects a bit rough round the edges with a hard wood stock that cracked . traded it on a new marlin 357 which except for a ho-hum trigger , has been a great rifle . the rossi had a better trigger and was very accurate with the standard sights. i went with the marlin as it's very easy to pull apart to clean , and is well catered for in aftermarket parts. as i need scopes more as i get older ( i let some great old swede mausers go cause i couldn't accurately use iron sights anymore ), i went with the marlin on account of how easy it is to scope mount. i went with a 1-4x20 loopy , and i can get a seriously fast bead on targets with this scope. i seriously considered 44 mag , if i was pig shooting very regularly i would lean that way. the thing i noticed about 44 barrels is how thin the barrel wall is compared to the 357 . this would have to wander more in a rapid fire scenario i would think ? probably not much of a issue in hunting i would imagine . but as a plinker/gallery rifle/ hunting gun , i beleive 357 is more flexiable and a bit cheaper to reload for . that's not to say a good 158gn bullet in lead or a soft point made for rifle speeds like a hornady 158 xtpfp wont do a number on game . i shot a 2" group at 50 of my elbows on the bench yesterday using a max load of lil' gun powder that according to the marlin forum should be pushing around 1900 fps . no preasure signs and it's got some thump. this will be confirmed with a crono at a later date after i fine tune some loads for other rifles . at a later date i plan on exploring lead loads for plinking and hunting . i can honestly say my marlin is "one ton of lever gun fun ! " :lol: this is my experience, i hope someone finds this info useful. cheers


:drinks: :drinks: :thumbsup:
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by pomemax » 10 Feb 2019, 11:18 am

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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by in2anity » 10 Feb 2019, 6:47 pm

If you’re looking to spend up to $1500 I’d steer clear of Chiappa. I had one and it definitely wasn’t worth what I paid for it :(
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by bigrich » 10 Feb 2019, 8:34 pm

in2anity wrote:If you’re looking to spend up to $1500 I’d steer clear of Chiappa. I had one and it definitely wasn’t worth what I paid for it :(


i've heard some negative stuff on these as well . they look nice but :D

:drinks: :drinks: :thumbsup:
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Re: Lever Action Advice

Post by in2anity » 11 Feb 2019, 7:38 am

bigrich wrote: i've heard some negative stuff on these as well . they look nice but :D
:drinks: :drinks: :thumbsup:


Yeah the finish on em are real nice, but in terms of function and durability they are certainly no Winchesters.... don't get me wrong, a well priced one might still be worth it, but I wouldn't say they are worth much more than a Rossi.
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