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pharaoh2 12-02-2004 01:33 PM

O.K. what do I want?
Both choices are Winchester 1894's in pistol calibers. I've owned both Marlin and winchesters, so I know the in's and outs. I can't decide between the trapper with a 16" barrel and 9 shot capacity. Or the trailsend with a 20" pipe and 11 shot capacity. Than between .357 or .44 mags. I like the .357, as Ive owned two revolvers thus chambered. I also think I can fire .38's out of it for cheap plinking. The .44 has a little more pop, I know. But the range will be no more than 100 yards for deer. At that range, both should do the job. Up here, .44 factory ammo runs about $30 for 50 rounds. .357 is about $20, and .38's about $12. I don't really wan't to reload for this, except for black powder. I don't like crimping, so it'll be a factory ammo gun, for the most part. The rest of the time, it'll shoot coyotes, gophers, and targets. When I do go for deer and such, it's usually in thick crap, and I walk alot. That's where the short trapper might be worth it's weight in lead. What do you think?

BareBack Jack 12-02-2004 03:36 PM

RE: O.K. what do I want?
Trapper 44 mag.
Shoot 44 Special cowboy loads for plinking. or you can get Federal American eagle loads for around 20 bucks a box 50 rounds and they kill deer also 240 gr Semi hollow points.

Nomercy 12-02-2004 04:25 PM

RE: O.K. what do I want?
If I'm reading it correctly, you've not had a Winchester in a pistol cartridge before...Yes, having a Win 94 and comparing it to a Marlin 1894 or 336 gives you an idea on relative qualities, but let me warn you, the win 94 .30-30 and the win 94 pistol cartridge guns are TWO very different animals.

The 94 action is NOT made to handle pistol cartridge length rounds...and I've not seen one that came right out of the box and could handle pistol cartridges reliably after any amount of use...especially when trying to load .38spcls in a .357mag (or .44spcls in a .44mag, or .45 scholfields in a .45colt)....the Win 94 Pistol cartridge is incredibly picky about it's COL, and truth be told, finding an ideal COL for your gun is very difficult in this gun. They can be re-worked by a gun smith for a $100 or so, but I'd rather have a gun that didn't need fixing right out of the box.

You might consider Puma if you're not sold on Marlins...I'm a huge fan of Marlin leverguns. Hearing how much you're planning to shoot this rifle, based on my experiences, you'll be much more satisfied with a Marlin or a Puma. If you're going to do ANY plinking with this gun (especially with .38spcls), the Winchester isn't for you.

That said, one of the guns I based my own opinions from was a Win 94 Trapper 9 shot carbine in .357mag. I used it for a few years on deer and various other game much like you've mentioned...I bought it for $100 in almost new condition from a guy who'd only had it for a few months...that should have been my first clue. I've traded for or purchased a few other 94 pistol carbines since, and they've all treated me poorly (DO NOT confuse this with my opinions on the Winchester 94 .30-30's, these are great guns, although I'm still turned off by the fact that the whole belly drops out, I do enjoy shooting them!!).

I reloaded my own hunting ammo most of the time when hunting with these pistol carbines so that I could step up the pressures to approach the maximum power of the RIFLE (Rifles typically handle considerably more pressure than revolvers-Marlins much moreso than Winchesters too, give them a call and find out)...Once I started college, I didn't have time to reload AND hunt, so I went back to factory loads, and found that the cheap Winchester half jacketed white box flat nosed soft points ($15/50 at walmart STILL) worked just as well on game as any of the other stuff out there, premium ammo's a surprisingly good bullet for as cheap as the ammo is. I continue to use this ammo for my general hunting (in .44mag and .45colt) and reserve my reloading time for target rounds and Cowboy action rounds (Why reload 100rnds a year of hunting ammo when I've got to reload more than that each MONTH for CAS and targets?)...When I do reload hunting rounds, I ONLY use Speer Gold Dot bullets, these are outstanding hunting bullets, and very cheap relatively speaking.

As far as which gun to get, the capacity shouldn't matter because I don't know of any states that allow you to load even a levergun to full capacity over 5+1rnds while hunting. Coyotes, yes, deer, no. My thinking is that if you need more than 9rnds before you've got a chance to reload, you're not hunting.

The balance of the gun is what's important. I recently purchased a 94 Ranger Compact in .30-30, it's a 16.5" bbl, 5.25#, VERY compact and handy rifle...handling it compared to a buddies Win 94 Legacy is like Night and Day...4" and a pound and a half make a HUGE difference in balance in a rifle. I suggest try them both on before making any final decisions.

pharaoh2 12-03-2004 09:25 AM

RE: O.K. what do I want?
Thanks guys. I think I do like the trapper thing. I also like the look and feel of the winchesters. They point very well and are nice and trim. I live in Canada. If I had a lever gun that could hold 100 rounds, I would be allowed to do that. I only mention the capacities so folks would know what they were. Your right. For most of my hunting, I use a muzzleloader anyways, so you learn quick to make that one shot count. Thanks again guys.

castman 12-05-2004 08:26 PM

RE: O.K. what do I want?
Marlin definatly, the feeding of the short pistol cartridges is superior. Btw the 2 cartridge choices Id go with the 44 mag. It can be loaded for screwin around or for serious killing. Have you considered a 45 LC? You can get heavier bullets and it too can be a *****cat or a formidable killer dependant on loading.

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