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Marlin 1894 or Ruger 77/44

Old 12-09-2011, 05:22 AM
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Default Marlin 1894 or Ruger 77/44

I am looking into getting a new .44 mag for next deer season. Which one of these would be a better gun? please back up your vote with your reasoning.
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Old 12-09-2011, 08:02 AM
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I personally like the Marlin. They make some very good lever guns. Don't have any experience with the Ruger. If it was me, I'd opt for a .45-70 most likely over the .44mag. More versatile, and much better ballistically. Maybe you have your reason for wanting a .44

Good luck
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Old 12-09-2011, 08:40 AM
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I can speak well of the marlin lever actions 1893, 1894 and 1895 models. I am pleased with ALL the marlin levers that I own. They make a good strong action ( considered one of the strongest for a lever gun ) Every time I take them out to the range or clean them, they are fully functional, smooth, well worked from countless times shooting and has never misfired, jammed or hung up. I own 32-20, 38-40, and the 45-70, I also own two model 336's chambered for 30-30 and I love them all. As far as the Model 77 goes, I own only two of those, one chambered in .270 and one in .308... I like both of these also. I have yet to have issues with these either. In my opinion it is totally up to you and your preference. I feel both are well made firearms. Do you like the idea of a lever gun? if you do, go with the Marlin. If you like a bolt action, get the model 77. I personally would choose another round if I was going to purchase a bolt action rifle. To me, it doesn't make much sense to waste a bolt action's capabilities with the meager performance of the 44 mag. For a lever gun, the 44 mag fits in to the " cowboy action " size rounds that are similar to pistols anyways. 32-20, 32-40, 38-40, 44-40. Very mild, non- high performing rounds. In my own opinion, if ya get that model 77 get one chambered in a round worthy to go into a bolt action.
But then again..... the choice comes down to you, and any added gun to your collection, is a gun worthy for it indeed!
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Old 12-09-2011, 09:28 AM
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Indiana does not currently allow much in the way of factory rifle cartridges. That is why the OP is asking about guns in 44 Mag. My choice would probably be the 1894, but I'd want to fire it to make sure it is accurate. Some guns have accuracy issues relating to poor quality control on bore size.

There are other Rugers in 44 Mag, that are worth a look, like the semi-auto and the '96 lever action. You might find them used.
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Old 12-09-2011, 09:59 AM
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I would go with the Marlin over the Ruger bolt action for use in Indiana for reasons mention in the other post. A bolt vs. the lever in that caliber really doesn't make much sense IMO. As was mentioned, Ruger does have some other good model choices if you want to go with that brand in the 44 mag.
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Old 12-09-2011, 10:02 AM
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Does anyone know of the best .44 on the market? And yes the .44 is about as big as I can go in indiana.
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Old 12-09-2011, 11:43 AM
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[QUOTE=UncleNorby;3887305]Indiana does not currently allow much in the way of factory rifle cartridges. That is why the OP is asking about guns in 44 Mag.


I must apologize as I was not aware of the current firearm laws of Indiana...Which I personally think SUCKS BIG, FAT, FLOPPY, DONKEY D!@KS. I never heard of such a BS law.
So the hunters in Indiana ( If they wish to hunt deer with rifle) Must use a bullet that is .357 " diameter or larger and the measurement of the Casing must be longer than 1.16 inches , but yet it must be shorter than 1.625 inches ?

so you guys can only hunt with .357 Magnum, .357 Maximum, .357 Super Mag, .41 Magnum, 44 Special, 44 Mag, 45 Colt, 454 Casull and .500 Smith and Wesson?

That really sucks because that leaves a whole bunch to be desired as far as what rifles you guys will actually be able to find chambered in those rounds. The .44, .454 Casull, and .500 S&W will probably give you the most power down range for deer. I know a couple guys that shot deer with their 44 Mags at 100 yds. and I have heard of guys getting deer out to about 125 yards with them. I know you can find Lever rifles ( like Marlin and Henry and the Ruger 96) chambered in the .44 Mag, Henry makes one for the.45 colt. I believe Rossi was making a rifle chambered in .454 Casull... ( I don't know if they still are) I cannot vouch personally for Rossi Firearms ( I don't own any )

Again I am sorry for being ill informed about the laws of Indiana. I wish you the best in your search for a deer rifle.
If I was you, I would be looking into the Marlin lever, or the Ruger 96....THEY ARE BOTH GOOD LEVER GUNS chambered in 44 Mag. Don't throw out the idea at looking at the single shot .500 S&W either...I think HR and NEF makes them.
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Old 12-09-2011, 11:55 AM
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For the 2012 season, the allowable case length goes up to 1.8". I'm getting a barrel made for what is essentially a shortened 358 Winchester, for my Savage model 10. Remove the original barrel, install the new one. No other modifications required.

This round, called the 358 Hoosier, will shoot a 200 gr bullet at about 2500 fps. Good enough for me, and a welcome switch from shotguns.

If you already have a "donor" gun, this option is less costly than most new guns. And, I see no reason why the original barrel could not be reinstalled at some later date.
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Old 12-09-2011, 01:11 PM
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I just looked over the Indiana hunting regulations, if I were ever to hunt deer in Indiana I would use a GooD rifled shotgun, with decent sabots, this to me that is the best option. I am sure Indiana has reason for this, I wonder what it is. Doc
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Old 12-09-2011, 02:28 PM
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If you can find one, a Winchester 94AE in 44 magnum.
They are so sweet.
I have one.

My Father had a Marlin 1894 it was sweet to.
But I love my Winchester 94AE better.

But go to the gun shop, and see which one feels right up aganist your sholder.
One gun will feel right to one person, and not another one,
and Vice verse.

You just have to get one in your hands to see.

Last edited by jrbsr; 12-09-2011 at 03:34 PM.
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