Marlin 1894 Lever Action Rifle Quality: Old Vs New

Marlin 1894 Lever Action Rifle Quality: Old Vs New

Marlin reputation has suffered since the 2007-2008 takeover by Remington et al, whereupon the quality of the lever actions went drastically downhill. But the question is often asked whether the quality has returned so that other shooters can purchase without the fear of poor quality rifles…Here is a direct comparison…


  1. Jim F on August 21, 2022 at 8:08 pm

    I really love a good blue job.🙂
    Seriously, bad triggers with a lot of creep are a no go for me. Drives me crazy. I do love these guns though, so thanks for pointing it out. I’ll have to take a look around at more models.

  2. Mark Addis on August 21, 2022 at 8:09 pm

    I have an 1894CB in layaway right now. I don’t believe it has sling swivel eyelets. I think there is a pre-drilled hole on the stock but definitely nothing in front of the foregrip. Got a recommendation for anything? Also I like the simplicity of your sling. Where can I get one like it?

  3. sc762 on August 21, 2022 at 8:10 pm

    Always excellent videos, very clear and detailed. Thanks so much. You’re a treasure to the community.

  4. tmaddrummer on August 21, 2022 at 8:12 pm

    Thanks and Blessings! Great video!

  5. Jose Canisales on August 21, 2022 at 8:13 pm

    Thank You Sir, very instructional video.

  6. Rick James on August 21, 2022 at 8:13 pm

    I just bought 2 1894’s today. 1983 models one in .44 magnum and a 357 magnum. JM stamped of course. I already have a 1894ss .44 magnum and a model 444 JM .444. Awesome guns.

  7. Jerry Mont on August 21, 2022 at 8:14 pm

    Nice !

  8. William Clark on August 21, 2022 at 8:15 pm

    I have A 1895 Marlin 45-70 JM! My favorite rifle! 🦅🇺🇸

  9. Shawn Wells on August 21, 2022 at 8:15 pm

    Microgroove is not old fashioned; it was introduced in the late 1950’s as a more ‘modern’ rifling. Regardless, I hate it. I have a 1957 336 RC 30-30 that has a nearly pristine bore and perfect crown, but after a few shots, bullets start keyholing. I’ve slugged the bore and it’s right on spec for dimensions. I’d read that Marlin sometimes roll stamped the lettering on barrels so hard that it pushed the wall inwards, constricting the bore, but slugging ruled that out. Because cleaning the rifle seems to cure the keyholing for a few shots, all I can deduce is that the rifling is so shallow that any amount of fouling causes the bullets to skip the lands. Of course, when that happens, the fouling goes off the chart, and bullets act like they’re being fired out of a smoothbore. Thankfully, my 1895 45-70 from 2007 has Ballard rifling, and thankfully it was produced long before the Remington takeover. The best cure for a crappy trigger is a Wild West Trigger Happy kit – no gunsmithing drop in. Changed the floppy six pound pull on my 1895 to a no flop 2.5 pound let off.

  10. backwoodsbully on August 21, 2022 at 8:17 pm

    Bought A 336 R.C. 30-30 off A friend about 15 years ago for $100. Didn’t know what I had till yesterday. A 1964 in pretty minty condition.

  11. Oldcoinsandstuff1 on August 21, 2022 at 8:17 pm

    Some of the best instructional vids on the net. Yes I do cast bullets because of you…

  12. Nakoa Warrior on August 21, 2022 at 8:18 pm

    The reason you don’t buy those rifles is because of the microgroove rifling,… Ballard rifling is better because you can shoot lead bullets.
    Lead bullets are cheaper to shoot.
    Ballard rifling makes them worth owning.

  13. Newwavepressure on August 21, 2022 at 8:20 pm

    How can u read the year ??? I jus got my first one from a friend

  14. 🇺🇸BoomD0ggy🇺🇸 on August 21, 2022 at 8:21 pm

    You remind me of my Pop who’s uh heaven fishing 🎣
    Salamat Lolo😃

  15. Patman Crowley on August 21, 2022 at 8:21 pm

    Hi FC45LC!, I have paired a Ruger Redhawk in .45 ACP/.45 Colt with a Henry lever action in .45 Colt. This is an excellent pairing. I’ve always appreciated the .45 Colt round and am glad to have these two in my small collection. I’ve got my grandfathers Marlin model 336 in 30-30 cal that he purchased new either in the late 1940’s or early 1950’s (don’t know which). First time here and don’t mind that this video is already 4 years old. Peace, Love and Happiness to you and your family.

  16. Patrick Crowe on August 21, 2022 at 8:22 pm

    buy a henry

  17. guerrierodelgiaguaro on August 21, 2022 at 8:22 pm

    Very good review, dear Collegue 🙂

  18. Burt Vincent on August 21, 2022 at 8:23 pm

    Fortune cookie 45. Nice touch. Glad to see everybody doesn’t get but hurt from referrals to their ancestry. Call me old Mick the Irishman.
    Anyway you did a great job familiarizing me to my Marlin 1894 I just aquired.
    I would like to know if there is a serial number break between Marlin vs Remington builds? Mine says made in North Haven Connecticut so I assume it is pre Remington. Thanks again for good video and needed information. I will be looking ggv for more of your videos.

  19. thelocustemperor on August 21, 2022 at 8:24 pm

    So what are your final thoughts on microgroove rifling, is it good, better or best when compared to the cut/Ballard rifling?

  20. Charles Broadway on August 21, 2022 at 8:27 pm

    Have you ever had a locked open lever problem?
    Bullet jam when opening lever.
    My Marlin is new.

  21. Chris Chiampo on August 21, 2022 at 8:27 pm

    FC Steve I’ve Got a 1949 Vintage Winchester 94 in 30WCF The Barrel Band That Holds The Magazine Tube Tight has Loosened Up Were it Clamps to The Barrel the Screw is Tight is There a Way Other Than Shimming to Tighten it Up 😐 Thanks FC Steve 😀👍🏼

  22. busymountain on August 21, 2022 at 8:27 pm


  23. Monty Crain on August 21, 2022 at 8:30 pm

    To me the BEST are the pre safety models.

  24. Dazed but not Confused on August 21, 2022 at 8:31 pm

    Those are some lucky grand kids. I wish…

  25. smallaxe12 on August 21, 2022 at 8:31 pm

    Enjoyable and informative, thanks !

  26. James on August 21, 2022 at 8:36 pm

    Cross-bolt safety… Ugh. I am always on the look out for pre-safety Marlins.

  27. Mark Norton on August 21, 2022 at 8:36 pm

    Follow you and thanks for all the good information. In this video, you are driving me nuts with your cheap cheazey rifle slings on nice rifles. I do custom leatherwork if you can send me a PM from this I would be happy to make you something that would compliment a good lever gun .

  28. Shane A. Baker on August 21, 2022 at 8:36 pm

    I got myself a Marlin 1894CB in 357/38 last year as a gift for myself, and I absolutely love the little rifle. It’s been nothing but reliable and fun

  29. Mark Hanson on August 21, 2022 at 8:38 pm

    Mine is a 336, serial #r33554. What can ya tell me. Bought it when I was 16

  30. Firesail on August 21, 2022 at 8:39 pm

    I just purchased the 336C (30-30). Very pleased although all of your comments are spot-on. Helpful video, thank you.

  31. VS on August 21, 2022 at 8:41 pm

    I will FINALLY be picking up a JM stamped pre safety 1894 44 mag this friday. I have been wanting one of these as a lightweight brush gun for years. As usual, great video!

  32. Jared White on August 21, 2022 at 8:44 pm

    I’ve always considered Uberti’s junk remakes.

  33. AdirondackBuzzard on August 21, 2022 at 8:46 pm

    When I hear someone mention "older" 1894 Marlins, I think of the ones made from 1894 to 1935, not the guns from 1969 to 2007.

  34. AdirondackBuzzard on August 21, 2022 at 8:47 pm

    I bought a Marlin in 2009, the quality was awful, I own now a Marin 1894 made in 1916, the gun is light years ahead of what Marlin is making now.

  35. Palmetto NDN on August 21, 2022 at 8:47 pm

    FC, you and your channel are a treasure.

  36. crorivpro on August 21, 2022 at 8:47 pm

    Two things I knew one I wanted a lever gun and two in 45LC. I went back and forth between the Henry and the Marlin 1894. I know the Henry’s are good guns but I don’t don;t like loading a large bore rifle like I’m loading a .22. So I got a Marlin 1894 LE. I was surprised to find my rifle looked every bit as nice as the one on their website. This video was very helpful to me showing the Marlin 1894. BTW I love my rifle.

  37. Anthony Newman on August 21, 2022 at 8:49 pm

    That is sweet I like that… grandsons say I can’t help it if my grandfather loves me. 💙 I try to do things like that for my sons. I will buy three if it’s something I know the like or use

  38. Kevin Rollman on August 21, 2022 at 8:51 pm

    Where it is fine and good to seek a perhaps better quality older JM Marlin lever gun, there is a significant drawback to doing such!! The older JM Marlin’s have weaker chambers and cannot use higher pressure, more powerful 45-70 ammo that is available today for lever guns!! While you may appreciate a better wood to metal, and other detailed aspects of an older Marlin the limitation in not being able to shoot the more powerful 45-70 ammo produced today is a drawback!! The new Marlin’s produced within the past few years are excellent in every way fit, finish, function. I can appreciate someone who collects nice rifles to want an older JM Marlin for their collection, but when it comes to being limited to the much lower pressure ammo because of the weaker chambers in the older JM models, there is the compromise!!

  39. Tipi Dan on August 21, 2022 at 8:51 pm

    An extremely useful exposition. Thank you. A lot has been said about the decline in quality of Marlin’s since the sale of the company. I owned three original Marlins, a 336 .30-30, a .45-70, and an 1894 in .38/.357. I much prefer the square bolt 1894 to the round bolt models, and wish I still had my 1894. I want to get another one, so this video is helpful. Perhaps I will try to find a used one with no safety, but the new rifling seems very attractive. They were always fine guns, though the .45-70 can be a knuckle-buster: ridiculous to try to feed a cartridge of that length with the rudimentary action of a Marlin. The .38 special in the 1894 worked like a charm.

  40. Eduardito Gonzales on August 21, 2022 at 8:51 pm

    Always the younger one will have a better blue job and tighter fitting..

  41. Charles J Gartner on August 21, 2022 at 8:54 pm

    How people liking the .357/.38 Marlin??? Thinking about getting one.

  42. Chris Moody on August 21, 2022 at 8:56 pm

    I want a pistol caliber lever gun either 357 or 44. I think I going to shop for something made in 60’s or 70’s instead of the new junk. I’ve heard from others, the older ones lever mechanism is much smoother and better triggers.

  43. mitchel Jackson on August 21, 2022 at 8:56 pm

    I love my henry rifles I have 3 now, 2 maires legs in 44 mag and 45 colt and one all steel 45-70 gov. There slick and super well built, and the newer ones will likely have loading gates so I dont think I’ll be buying any newly manufactured leveractions from anyone but henry.

  44. Frank Webster on August 21, 2022 at 8:56 pm

    I just started watching your videos, they’re fantastic. Thanks.

  45. Vessel of the Auditor on August 21, 2022 at 8:58 pm

    the machining inside the receiver is terrible…i dont see any improvement in quality in anything remlin…

  46. Peter Hill on August 21, 2022 at 8:59 pm

    I do not understand why anyone would put up with a creepy, gritty, 9 lb trigger pull on ANY firearm. As an old bullseye pistol shooter, the first thing I did when I bought my first Marlin 30-30 deer gun in 1998, was to take it to my gunsmith and have him do a trigger job that made the rifle’s trigger feel like a well tuned S & W model 586. Yes, it can be done although he swore and told me to never bring him another one for a trigger job!

  47. Richard Thornton on August 21, 2022 at 8:59 pm

    What is needed is Marlin being bought from Remington and the Original Manufacturing Crew returned to production!! Remington has made a mess of an historical great Brand!!

  48. Lance Horrocks on August 21, 2022 at 9:00 pm

    Dude I love you ar-15 it’s soooo cool

  49. Edward Bright on August 21, 2022 at 9:02 pm

    Choose the OLD… You will come out better with anything OLD …🤠👍🇺🇸

  50. Victor Shults on August 21, 2022 at 9:03 pm

    Looking for 357mag