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View Poll Results: If you had to pick one Lever Action Rifle, what caliber who you choose?

Voters
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  • .357 Mag / 38 Special

    88 16.60%
  • .44 Mag / 44 Special

    74 13.96%
  • 45 Colt

    35 6.60%
  • .454 Casull

    14 2.64%
  • 444 Marlin

    18 3.40%
  • 45-70

    117 22.08%
  • 44-40

    16 3.02%
  • 450 Marlin

    1 0.19%
  • 30-30

    133 25.09%
  • 35 Remington

    48 9.06%
Multiple Choice Poll.
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Thread: If you had to pick one Lever Action Rifle, what caliber who you choose?

  1. #221
    Boolit Master Good Cheer's Avatar
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    Which cartridge...
    Either a 25-35 or a pre-micro .35.
    While each has its strengths and weaknesses either one is a bunny-squirrel-deer rifle if you develop the loads.
    And for the same reasons and more the 30-30 is the standard.
    If the world suddenly went goofy with supply problems then who knows.

  2. #222
    Boolit Mold
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    After looking at all the responses I'm really surprised that no one has picked my favorite the 338 ME. It will easily take any animal on North America and is an honest 300 yard rifle. Love my Marlin 22, 44 and 45-70 but for hunting Alaska the 338 works the best. Jim

  3. #223
    Boolit Master LAH's Avatar
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    Jim that is one cartridge that never crossed my mind. Guess my mind is closing up with age.
    Joshua 1:9

  4. #224
    Boolit Buddy
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    Ok... not a huge lever gun guy here so excuse my rambling but... first.. this forum seems to be for guys who roll their own.. saying the trinty trinty is cheap and available is not germain.. The 30-30 is expensive.. and if you use jacketed bullets it is expensive to hand roll too.

    Sooo.. the lever gun with open sights.. I am thinking 150 yards useful no matter what caliber. the pistol caliber chambered guns hold more ammo. The appeal of a handgun and a short carbine in the same caliber is... well.. appealing. with the .357... 44 mag... 45 Colt..you are gonna pick up a couple hundred feet per second over and above your handgun and.. for most.. it will be easier to shoot accurately at say 150 yards.

    Soo.. .357? yep.. I have a lot of .357 handguns.. like it fine. The rifle adds accuracy and energy.. for deer or smaller it is probly a great round and... it is cheap to reload for and the recoil is... minimal.

    Sooo.. the 45 Colt? well. if you load em hot.. they will do whatever a 44 mag will do and more than a .357 they are not much more if any. expensive to load for than a .357 or 44.. Problem is.. unless you have a stout handgun or ALL your 45 Colt handguns are stout.. you got to be careful putting those hot loads in the handguns.

    Sooo... 44 mag? There are no weak 44 mag handguns. what works in one works in all and in a lever gun. 44 mag will give you some comfort zone so far as hammer of thor on dangerous game compared to the .357 44mag is cheap and easy to load for. 44 mag will thump your shoulder tho.

    The .357 is almost perfect for plinking and killing coyotes and small deer and raccoons that show up.. it is fun to shoot.. it is cheap to load for and mostly will hit really hard at 150 yards.

    My vote is for the 44 mag tho.... It gives you an edge without prohibitive recoil. Out plinking it is easier to see where those big 44 bullets hit than the .357 ones do.

    I live the 30-30 and the old 88 in .308 but with open sights and for all around plinking to cheap to handload to just plain fun to the range lever guns are intended for?? the 44mag is hard to beat

    lazs

  5. #225
    Boolit Master


    Walter Laich's Avatar
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    at 71 all my rifle work is in cowboy action

    .45 Colt Marlin matches my .45 Colt Vaqueros and I'm a happy camper
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    RVN War Games, 2nd Place

  6. #226
    Boolit Master
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    Many of the better cartridges are omitted from the list.

  7. #227
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwpercle View Post
    What ? 41 Remington magnum doesn't exist . I would get a lever gun, model 92 Winchester or Henry in 41 magnum to go with the model 58 41 mag. in my avatar !

    In your poll I choose ...none of the above...Oh, wait...that's not even an option !

    Yeah....us 41 magnum owners are treated like red headed step children....
    As Rodney Dangerfield would say...We don't get no respect !
    Gary

    ...my feelings exactly....


    Since my favorite revolver round is the .41 Magnum and can take care of most of my hunting, plinking and self-defense needs a Marlin 1894 would be my choice. I've got an "S", CCL and LTD and it would be a hard choice getting rid of two of them...

    Loads can be anything from a 160 cast HP to a 300 grain stomper.

    Also have a 1895 Winchester in .405 that with full loads and a steel butt plate kills on both ends... But put a thin Pachmayer Decellerator pad on with cast bullet loads makes it pleasant to shoot...

    Practically speaking, it is hard to beat a stainless Marlin Guide Gun in .45-70...

    Bob
    Last edited by RJM52; 04-17-2018 at 08:41 AM.

  8. #228
    Boolit Master ammohead's Avatar
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    There was a time back in the mid 80's when I did not own a lever action rifle. About 10 years earlier I hunted with friends and a couple of the older gents had 94 winchester rifles, not carbines. In 1984 winchester produced a 24" barreled model 94 chambered in Ken Waters 7-30 Waters. I had to have one and still do. I ordered it sight unseen and it came with a very select figured buttstock, luck of the draw. It is an excellent performing cartridge for a lever action rifle. Shortly after Winchester in all their wisdom dropped the 24" barrel version and went with a 20" carbine and the cartridge languished into obscurity. My copy will push 139 gr hornadt flatnose 7mms 2550 fps, making it a fine 250 yard mule deer rifle. I also have a 130 gr lfn lbt mould that has taken a mule deer doe. That's my vote. Second is a model 99 Savage in 284 win. Next would be a Browning blr 81 in 257 Roberts, but I haven't found one yet.

  9. #229
    Boolit Bub
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    This is a tough one. Browning 1886 in 45-70 is my favorite big bore lever and got my vote. I love the action, accuracy, look and feel of that rifle. And it can be loaded up or down for almost anything out to 100 yards (the limiting factor is my eyesight). But then again my B92 in .44 mag is a great piece of gear, small, compact, solid performance against most anything out to 75 yards and shares brass (but not bullets) with my wheel guns.
    I was surprised at all the love for the 30-30 but then I don't ever buy ammo for my lever guns. Cast and load all my rounds. If you are buying commercial ammo then 30-30 makes a lot of sense. It's a solid performer and ammo is widely available commercially. It's been enlightening to read all the reply's on this one.

  10. #230
    Boolit Master 6pt-sika's Avatar
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    I only own three at the moment that I don’t plan to resell and all three are for the same cartridge the 444 Marlin .
    Go Manny Pacquiao !!!

    Double's , 6.5mm's , 444 Marlin , Sika Deer and my family in the Philippines

  11. #231
    Boolit Man
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    I already picked it.
    A browning blr ‘81 stainless takedown in 308 Win.
    Good shtf rifle ... light, strong action, accurate, compact, weather resistant, common caliber, 300 yds or more effective range on most game, strong action can handle high pressure military rounds.
    GOA Life Member
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  12. #232
    Boolit Man
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    I guess my answer to the survey would be ‘none of the above’.
    Each of the choices represents a caliber/rifle combination inferior to a blr ‘81 stainless takedown in 308 Win.
    A combo which will do just about anything just about anywhere.
    GOA Life Member
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  13. #233
    Boolit Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pricedo View Post
    I guess my answer to the survey would be ‘none of the above’.
    Each of the choices represents a caliber/rifle combination inferior to a blr ‘81 stainless takedown in 308 Win.
    A combo which will do just about anything just about anywhere.
    Oh please. The BLR can be had in a longer uglier action chambered in rounds that leave the .308 in the dust. A 7-08, .284, or a .358 aren't inferior to a .308, either. I like the .308 but not the BLR so much. I prefer the lines of a Savage 99, Winchester 88, or Sako Finnwolf in a "modern" lever action.
    But this old farmer will keep his pre 64 Win. with receiver sight in the oh so boring 30-30 Winchester. Inferior or not.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk

  14. #234
    Boolit Master
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    TBG there is allot of wisdom in that post. I posted up me of the tacti-cool mossberg a in 30-30 for a truck gun a few years back that darn gun is uglier than all of worse looking things on this earth. But it shoots fantastic loves cast boolits over a goodly dose of Leverevelution is very easy to carry and tough as nails. With the reciever sight it is rugged and easy to shoot it adjusts for my wife's length of pulls in seconds and serves me well.

  15. #235
    Boolit Buddy
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    I think the trinty trinty is a great round. energy wise it is superior (slightly) to a 44 mag and has a LOT less drop at 200 yards. the new polymer tip 44 bullets get em close again tho. But.... and it is a big but... the 44 mag punches above it's (energy) weight class.. it hits really hard. And.. it is really cheap to load and there are dozens of different handguns chambered in it.

    With the Henry big boy you get a tube magazine that like it or not.. you can dump all the rounds easily or load (in my opinion) much faster than a gate. it also has a transfer bar. if you own a lot of firearms it is nice to have a passive safety that you don't have to know a thing about.. it is just.........safe.

    Again tho.. it all depends on what you want the lever gun for.. For me it is plinking mostly. varmints on occasion.. maybe a hog. I shoot 44 mag handguns all the time so this makes the most sense. If I were hunting with open sights I think the old 30-30 would be a great choice.

    lazs

  16. #236
    Boolit Mold
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    One lever action Rifle (for cast) - A 30-30 with a 24" barrel.
    - Low velocity 124 grainers for plinking.
    - 32-20 equivalent loads with a 124 grainer for small game. (non-destructive).
    - 180 grainers at 1900fps plus for larger game.

    Now if you're talking about a lever action carbine then you might think about a pistol cartridge, maybe.....

  17. #237
    Boolit Mold
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    Hard to pick just one, I think there should be at least a choice of three:

    Pistol caliber carbine: 357/38 Special w/ 16" barrel. Bullet weights of 90 to 200 grain.
    "Regular" rifle: 30-30 with 20 to 24" barrel. 110 to 200 grain bullets.
    "Heavy" rifle: 45-70 w/ 22 to 26" barrel. 300 to 500 grain bullets.

    With this trio, you can shoot anything on the planet.

  18. #238
    Boolit Mold
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    And need to add, the 45-70 will shoot 410 2.5" shells no problem. So you could even wing shoot close birds if need be. May not cycle shells well but in a bind you get a shotgun too.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check