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Thread: I want new factory lever gun calibers!

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    Question I want new factory lever gun calibers!

    I wish Marlin would take the 45-70 case and neck it to .35, .375 and .416 caliber. I wish they would do the same thing with the .348 Winchester case even if they had to shorten it a little. For years I have wanted a Marlin chambered for something that would hit hard and not be a .45 caliber. They seem more concerned with trying to see how flat a trajectory they can get out of new lever gun calibers. A heavy jacketed 400 grain .416 caliber bullet at 2100 to 2200 at the muzzle would suit me fine. So would a .300 grain in .375 or .250 grain in .35 caliber. I suspose I will have to hire some gun smith to do it and order heavy jacketed bullets from Hawk or Alaska Bullet Works. Am I the only one who wants something like this?

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    I want a lever gun chambered in 460 S&W mag. myself. There is much that could yet be done in the lever action world.

    Andy

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    I just want the Savage 99 produced again.
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    Quote Originally Posted by .338 mag. View Post
    I wish Marlin would take the 45-70 case and neck it to .35, .375 and .416 caliber. I wish they would do the same thing with the .348 Winchester case even if they had to shorten it a little. For years I have wanted a Marlin chambered for something that would hit hard and not be a .45 caliber. They seem more concerned with trying to see how flat a trajectory they can get out of new lever gun calibers. A heavy jacketed 400 grain .416 caliber bullet at 2100 to 2200 at the muzzle would suit me fine. So would a .300 grain in .375 or .250 grain in .35 caliber. I suspose I will have to hire some gun smith to do it and order heavy jacketed bullets from Hawk or Alaska Bullet Works. Am I the only one who wants something like this?
    i sure like my marlin ss carbine in .35 rem.....using hornady leverevolution ammo i took an elk at 248 laser measured yards last year. one shot, double lung and out. the elk rolled at the shot,ran 40yds and piled up.

    i also load leadheads hard cast bullets. they load and feed like sardines through a meat grinder. this rifle can stand a pressure boost (see all the new calibers) nice caliber and underrated for power.

    happy trails.
    jh

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    Quote Originally Posted by .338 mag. View Post
    I wish Marlin would take the 45-70 case and neck it to .35, .375 and .416 caliber. I wish they would do the same thing with the .348 Winchester case even if they had to shorten it a little. For years I have wanted a Marlin chambered for something that would hit hard and not be a .45 caliber. They seem more concerned with trying to see how flat a trajectory they can get out of new lever gun calibers. A heavy jacketed 400 grain .416 caliber bullet at 2100 to 2200 at the muzzle would suit me fine. So would a .300 grain in .375 or .250 grain in .35 caliber. I suspose I will have to hire some gun smith to do it and order heavy jacketed bullets from Hawk or Alaska Bullet Works. Am I the only one who wants something like this?
    May as well rebarrel. I don't think you're going to see much new in the current economic climate.

    About 5 years ago I went ahead and did just what you're talking about. I surveyed all the bullet possibilities, and settled on necking the 45-70 to .429 due to the wide range of suitable bullets, including 300 grain and heavier. I wasn't happy with the 444 Marlin and heavy bullets, so there you go. It's worked out better than my wildest dreams, and it's a whole lot cheaper shooting pistol bullets for plinking, then switching to the heavily made Hawks for hunting. And I already owned all the cast bullet molds I needed.

    I'm hearing you on the 35, 375 and 416 calibers, but you're going to play all sorts of heck getting the right bullets for the last two and heavuly built hunting bullets with flat noses in 35 caliber, even if you can shoot pistol bullets for messing around.

    If I build another, it's going to be the 45-70 necked to 41 caliber. Lots of pistol bullets there too, including some heavily built ones for hunting.

    And yeah, I agree with Tooth. Best of all would be to bring back the Savage 99!

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    Default 338 marlin

    how about a 338?? new this year from marlin, ballistics are almost identical to the 338 federal, dont know what else a guy could want in a lever gun!

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    Default Try Winchester - 100+ years ago

    Winchester basically did this over a hundred years ago with the 1886 with cartridges including the .33 Winchester, .38-56, and .40-70.

    Remember that the Marlin 336 was designed for the .30-30 class of cartridges and has a small barrel shank and isn't that strong. A Winchester 71 or one of the repro 86s is a better platform for a powerfull lever gun.


    Quote Originally Posted by .338 mag. View Post
    I wish Marlin would take the 45-70 case and neck it to .35, .375 and .416 caliber. I wish they would do the same thing with the .348 Winchester case even if they had to shorten it a little. For years I have wanted a Marlin chambered for something that would hit hard and not be a .45 caliber. They seem more concerned with trying to see how flat a trajectory they can get out of new lever gun calibers. A heavy jacketed 400 grain .416 caliber bullet at 2100 to 2200 at the muzzle would suit me fine. So would a .300 grain in .375 or .250 grain in .35 caliber. I suspose I will have to hire some gun smith to do it and order heavy jacketed bullets from Hawk or Alaska Bullet Works. Am I the only one who wants something like this?
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    Some years ago I had the same thought. I contacted die makers as well as bullet makers preparing to make my cartridge.
    Barnes suggested I simply go with their 416 Wildcat cartridge.
    Simply rebarrel and buy the dies.


    From The Reload Bench at http://reloadbench.com/cartridges/w416barnes.html


    416 Barnes
    Historical Notes:


    The 416 Barnes was the last cartridge design of the late Frank Barnes. In the late 1980's, Frank began to think about various 40 caliber rifle cartridges. He realized that though there were many available, most were designed for use in Africa. Frank felt there would be a strong interest in a 416 designed for American game and hunting conditions rather than the dangerous African species. Additionally, he felt it would be advantageous if it could be adapted to several different rifle actions rather than being limited to a single type. After studying the old 40 caliber cartridges which are too long for today's actions, Frank settled on the final version which uses a 45-70 Government cartridge as its base. By using the 45-70, there are a number of current actions available, which would make easy conversions to the 416 Barnes. Readily available and very reasonably priced in particular was the Marlin 95 lever action. Unfortunately, few commercial bullets in 416 are available in the weight range intended for tubular magazine rifles.

    General Comments:

    The 416 Barnes would be an excellent choice for North American big game. Loading data for this cartridge is limited. Frank recommended using 37 grains of Reloader 7 to push a 400 grain bullet at 1625 fps. IMR 3031 is another good general purpose powder for the 416 Barnes in a lever action rifle. With jacketed bullets, it would most likely give the best accuracy of any of the potential propellants. Frank found an accurate load of 50 grains of IMR 3031 behind a 330 grain bullet. It gave him a velocity of 2045 fps. This cartridge really comes into its own when used with 270 to 330 grain bullets. Though it provides no real advantage for the deer hunter, it would prove to be an excellent elk, moose or brown bar cartridge.

  9. #9

    Default Don't overlook this cartridge.

    I have a model 95 Winchester chambered for the 35 wcf cartridge. It is good for 2200+ fps with 250 gr. bullets. This cartridge should work very well in a model 95 Marlin. Choice of bullets for a tubular mag might be the problem. It is a great caliber.

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    Quote Originally Posted by .338 mag. View Post
    I wish Marlin would take the 45-70 case and neck it to .35, .375 and .416 caliber. I wish they would do the same thing with the .348 Winchester case even if they had to shorten it a little. For years I have wanted a Marlin chambered for something that would hit hard and not be a .45 caliber. They seem more concerned with trying to see how flat a trajectory they can get out of new lever gun calibers. A heavy jacketed 400 grain .416 caliber bullet at 2100 to 2200 at the muzzle would suit me fine. So would a .300 grain in .375 or .250 grain in .35 caliber. I suspose I will have to hire some gun smith to do it and order heavy jacketed bullets from Hawk or Alaska Bullet Works. Am I the only one who wants something like this?
    You just described the "JDJ" line of cartridges. 358, 375, & 416 for the Contender, except they are based on the 444 Marlin. Don't know why someone couldn't chamber them in a Marlin 1895.
    http://www.sskindustries.com/contender.htm
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    I can understand the desire for something more powerful than a 30-30,in a levergun.
    Itís too bad about the 307 Winchester, the 356 Winchester, and the 375 Winchester.

    These cartridges were introduced along with the Winchester 94 Big Bore rifles.

    I would have thought theyíd have been sure winners, but for some reason, they didnít last long at all. I myself, didnít even know about them until AFTER their demise.

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    Default 358 Win

    I don't know if you're willing to try a Browning, but if so, the BLR in 358 Win is a real hammer. The nice thing is that the BLR has a clip instead of a tube load, so you can use any bullet you like. I shoot Hornady 250 gr SP in mine, and have some Hawks on order. It's a lovely little rifle, and almost aims and shoots by itself. The only drawback for me is that it has a thin barrel. Great for weight, but I'm always a little nervous about bumps and bangs. Something to think about...

  13. #13

    Default 338 Marlin Express

    In order to fullfill the desires or lever gun fans Marlin is now produceing the 338 marlin Express. it produced more power than a .348, 450 Marlin, 375 Win, 356 Win,358 win, 35 wcf, 444,45-70; according to Marlin.
    The new ammo is being manufactured by Hornaday of course and is using a "secret" powder which can't be obtained by handloaders, yet.
    As a lever gun round it shows much potential and has long range capabilities.

    http://www.rifleshootermag.com/ammun...8WO/index.html


    If I were in the market for a new lever gun, I would give it severe consideration. I would also purchase reloading dies and brass so I could reload for it if it dies; like most lever guns do.
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    Default A very interesting thread...

    I think there has always been a group of folks who want something between the 30-30 and the 45-70. There was back in the 1870's, 80's and 1890's, anyway and several calibers were very popular back then.

    What I would like to see is the Marlin1895 (336) chambered for the 40-65 and of course the 38-55. This last one was replaced by the 375 Winchester, not enough sold, and Marlin made the 336 rifle in 38-55 for a short run a few years ago then dropped it quickly without notice.

    Marlin and Winchester both made several good mid caliber cartridges but apparently the demand was low. Winchester had the 356 and the 375 Win and Marlin had the 444 and recently the 338 MX. The 444 is still hanging on,the Winchester are few and far between though very good rounds, and we'll see how the 338 MX goes.

    The 38-55 with its smokeless powder loading of 260 grains at 1500 fps was a real deer and black bear caliber but was very mild in recoil and report. I have an original Marlin and really enjoy shooting it. I think one of the problems with the larger than 30-30 caliber is that they are generally loaded now to much higher pressure and recoil can be quite stiff in those carbines and this hunt for velocity and trajectory is counter productive for sales because of this recoil, and has no merit in this lever rifle configuration.

    The 40-65 is becoming more popular today with the BP cartridge shooters and it would be an easy one to chamber and fit in the Marlin 1895. It is simply the 45-70 case necked, or a better word would be squeezed down, as there is no shoulder. A problem from the start with the 40-65 was that it wasn't of standard diameter, nothing was back then. Originally it used .406" bullets. Shiloh makes a lot of forty caliber (this and the 40-70 2 1/2") Sharps 74's and they have standardized at .408" for a groove diameter. That is still not where we would want it today for the there is no quantity of good inexpensive bullets for it. There are many good cast for sale at Buffalo Arms though.

    For a forty caliber rifle to be successful I think we need it to follow the only 20th century success story for the caliber. It really can't be at .416" in a lever gun because those bullets are spitzer and semispitzer designs and won't work in the tube magazine. The 405 WInchester (at .411" diameter) is the way to go. The 41 mag revolver is .410" the 405 Win is .411" and Ruger chambered and Hornady made bullets for the .410" 450/400 N.E. This is the diameter for the lever forty of today. Let's call it .411" groove diameter (actually .001" makes no difference) and we would have all these good cast and jacketed, flat nosed revolver bullets, we'd have the 300 grain FP Hornady JSP. The beyond that we have the 325 and 350 grain Hawks and the 300 and 330 Kodiak protected points (flat nose).

    Until recently I was holding off rebarreling a Marlin to 40-65 (Marlin loaded it differently and called it the 40-60) because of the .406" bullets. I have now found that Kreiger will contour a barrel to fit the original Marlin contour with .410" groove diameter. (Of course they will also make a .406" or anthing from .406" through .411".) It will use 45-70 brass easily squeezed down to 40-65 dimensions, except for the neck, which will accept .410"/.411" bullets. They will look the same, might be a problem for the old 40-65 rifles but with my handloads and my gun, not a problem.

    I think I'm going to try this. A 20" forty caliber barrel on a new model Marlin frame (former 45-70 of 1979 vintage) it will shoot the 300 grain Hornady flatpoint at any velocity between 1500 and 2200 fps (405 Winny specs) and will shoot cast from 265 to 400 grains from the same tube. No Postell designs just the flat noses, but it will do what I want it to do.

    When the factory won't cooperate, roll your own. This will be the forth 40 caliber project I've started in the past two years. There is magic in the forty caliber rifle.
    Last edited by Murphy; 02-16-2009 at 13:45.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    Winchester basically did this over a hundred years ago with the 1886 with cartridges including the .33 Winchester, .38-56, and .40-70.

    Remember that the Marlin 336 was designed for the .30-30 class of cartridges and has a small barrel shank and isn't that strong. A Winchester 71 or one of the repro 86s is a better platform for a powerfull lever gun.

    A couple of points here, specifically the Marlin. When they redesigned the 1895 to re-intorduce it in 1971, they took the 336 action and beefed it up, I guess to within the capabilities of machinery without retooling. So the 1895 of today is really just a beefed up 336 and it is capable of some pretty hefty loads in the 45-70 case. (400 grains at 2100 fps) I think there is adequate room to equal the 405 Win ballistics, but I don't think we can get 400 grains in a 416 caliber to that velocity as 338Mag originally suggested. But anyway we can get some good ballistics from it and this rifle will handle all a 1886 Winchester will handle.

    And I think the forty calibers for the original '86 were the 40-65, 40-70 and the 40-82, the latter two were based on the 45-90 case and these are too long for a Marlin so would need an 1886 action, or a 71. The 40-70 was an established Sharps caliber and took many forms. At least a half dozen different 40-70's were made. I think the 40-72 was one of the original calibers for the 1895, along with the 38-72 and the 30-40. But it is clear that forty caliber guns were at one time popular.

    Larger bore, heavier bullets and lower velocity offer more power for less recoil in these lever guns and somehow seem more appropriate to me than the new high speed numbers.
    Last edited by Murphy; 02-16-2009 at 14:46.
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    Quote Originally Posted by patcharooskie View Post
    I have a model 95 Winchester chambered for the 35 wcf cartridge. It is good for 2200+ fps with 250 gr. bullets. This cartridge should work very well in a model 95 Marlin. Choice of bullets for a tubular mag might be the problem. It is a great caliber.
    You're right the 35 WIN is a good caliber but it is the 405 Win necked down and made for the 1895, I think it is a little too long for the present day 1895 Marlin. The ballistics are duplicated with the 356 Winchester made for the 94AE and the 336 Marlin.

    The 33 WCF is the 45-70 case and it will fit the 1895 easily enough. I lean more towards these old establish cartridges of yesteryear and like the 33 and the 40-65 which are both offspring of the 45-70. The 348 was a great old caliber but Winchester shot itself in the foot with it. Thinking they could corner the market with the only gun that could chamber it then priced it out of reach for most. It was a bolt step with a new diameter with Winchester placing all its big bore lever eggs in one basket....ah, one rifle, as it were.

    We could make a 45-70 based .358" similar to the 38-56. They could and should make a whole collection of calibers on that old case and it would fit the common guns. They could be shouldered like the 416 Barnes or sloped down like the 33WCF and the 40-65 and all would work fine.
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    I think the 338 Marlin is definetly a step in the right direction. Chatted with a guy that said he's getting around 2555fps (he gave exact #s but I don't recall) with the factory 220gr ammo @ 25 degrees ambient air temp from a 22" barrel. Another stated that he was averaging 2584 with temps in the low 60s. That's not too shabby.
    In a year or two when some used ones are out there I'd like to pick up one for the wife.
    I would be surprised if they don't have a 35 on the drawing board.


    For now, I sure enjoy my 450 guide gun.
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  18. #18

    Default Hmmm.......

    I'm with you on the lower velocity "mid calibers" Murphy, as well as the wildcatting possibilities using the 45-70 as a parent case. I hadn't even considered the 40-65 for .411 bullets when pondering a 41 caliber successor to my .429, but it's a good one. The potential cost savings alone, in using a standard reamer and standard reloading dies would really make the project feasible for lots more folks. And with plenty of data for the round, it would save a newcomer to "wildcats" a whole lot of pushups and jumpingjacks in load development.

    Ah man, just when I had been saving nickels for another muzzleloader project........

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    A lot of it is the marketing folks looking back at the list of good and not so good, lever gun cartridges that have come and gone.

    405 Winchester
    35 Winchester
    375 Winchester
    40-65 WCF
    38-55
    348 Winchester

    Just to name a few
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    Available cartridges and their guns:

    Win 1894/Mar 1893-----Win 1886/MAR 1895------1895 WIN
    (WIN 94AE/Mar 336)----45-70 base-45-90 base--405 WCF base

    25-35 (25-36)--------------_______ ___________ _________
    30-30 ---------------------________ __________ --30-40
    32 WS---------------------________ __________ _________
    32-40----------------------33WCF-----348 ----------35 WCF
    38-55----------------------38-56------38-70---------38-72
    ______---------------------40-65--40-70--40-82-----40-72--405 WCF
    ______---------------------45-70------45-90------- _______

    New dsigns;
    307 WIN
    308 MX
    338 MX
    356 WIN
    375 WIN
    444 Marlin
    450 Marlin

    It seems there were a lot of 38' s and 40's in the 1880's and 1890's then at the turn of the century there was a 33, a 35 and a 405 then all were dropped along with the 45-70 and the model 71 was introduced with the 348 WIn in 1936.

    The last two calibers of the 1886 were the 45-70 and the 33WCF.
    The 1895 WIN had a short run of popularity around the turn with the 405 and the 35 WIN but dropped them for the more modern small bores.

    Marlin even dropped their 1895 rifle and the popular 45-70 chambering in 1915. Hard times and modern calibers pushed the big bores out. Then when the dough boys returned from the world war they had discovered how effective the 30 Gov't 1906 rifle was and needed only a 12 gauge, a 22, a plow and grand dad's old left over 30-30 to feed their families.

    It was almost as if all the big shaggy buffalo were gone and no one needed anything bigger than a thirty caliber to hunt the continent. In the Museum in Valdez is a mock up trappers cabin and on the wall is a Marlin lever rifle, an 1881 or 1893 model I don't recall which but it is in caliber 38-55. The very sedate caliber with it's heavy, slow chunk of lead is so much more effective than a 30-30 when up against large game or an occasional grizzly. The 38 and 40 caliber guns from the black powder cartridge era are very effective with smokeless powder and can deliver better than black powder performace at mild pressures. One of my challenges with handloading over the past twenty or so years has been to develop loads for these old BP calibers with modern smokeless powder. These cartridges have been in antique firearms as well as new modern guns. The best thing about all this is that I get to handle and shoot many of the old Winchesters, Marlins and Sharps rifles as well as new rifles from the best makers, namely those folks in Big Timber Montana. The 45's all all lengths are big guns but these 38's and 40's are lighter and softer to shoot and a joy to hunt with. We really need to see them in the lever repeaters once again.
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