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Old 09-27-2007, 11:10 AM
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1894 45 Colt questions?

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I've owned 336's in the past but never an 1894; lately I've been considering a 1894 in 45 Colt.

1st question: On the Marlin website, the 45 Colt is only listed in the Cowboy model, has it been available in the past in the standard model, like the .44 Mag?

2nd question: Marlin currently lists Ballard rifling in the 45 Colt, have all previous 45 Colt 1894's been made with ballard rifling, or did some use micro-groove rifling? Can I tell, from manufacture date or S/N, which rifling it has? (Assuming I can't see the rifle in person and check the rifling.)

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Old 09-27-2007, 01:43 PM
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I used to have an 1894 Marlin. I have never seen the 1894 Marlin in .45 caliber. It used to have microgroove rifling but I think they they changed it to ballard rifling. I could be wrong about the rifling change.
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Old 09-27-2007, 04:48 PM
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If you can afford the cowboy get it, they are a very nice option and once you lever back a cowboy vs a standard 94 you can tell the difference immediatly. Cowboys are made for timed shooting and have a hefty price tag, but in the end I think well worth it. I work on my marlins and have 94s and 336s in both cowboys and regular. I have not tried an XLS but I would presume they are nicer also besides the cosmetic differences. I wish I could afford more cowboys, but I really like taking a pawn shop refugee and reworking it from butt to muzzle. You may find a used 94 in .45 colt but I doubt it will be from an owner that is healthy and living. More likely from an heir or somebody, not able to use it anymore. Get the cowboy, if you can, and the cowboy competition if you want a custom out of the box shooter supreme.
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Old 10-05-2007, 11:48 PM
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Back in the early-to-mid 1980's Marlin made a small run of 1894's in .45 Colt, but it wasn't until a few years later that I decided I wanted one to match my revolver. I could not find one anywhere, so called Marlin to see if they could/would put a .45 Colt barrel on my .44 Mag 1894. They said they had a few .45 barrels left and the cost would be about $120. They did a great job and I still have the rifle. The barrel has Micro-groove rifling and is marked as an 1894-S, although the rifle is actually a pre-safety model.
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Old 10-07-2007, 10:36 PM
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The addition of a rifle barrel and strong action make the .45 Colt much more than most people imagine. With it's 1:20 twist, it handles mild cowboy loads all day long and then you can stuff heavy weight bullets in it and shoot large hogs and deer the rest of the time. When hunting with mine, which also gets about 60 rounds of CB loads through it at every SASS match, I use Buffalo Bore's 325 grain cast bullet as well as their JHP. These are stout loads, but are not more than the 1894 design can handle. I've used the hard cast bullets while shooting hogs; two hogs with one bullet once as well.

You can get an older one in .45 with the round barrel I think, but the octoganal barrel just does it for me. If you can get your hands on a CBII Limited with it's 24 inch barrel then buy it.
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Old 10-22-2007, 10:28 PM
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How hot can one actualy load a .45colt with heavy hunting bullets?
Yes, I know it's cocked, It's got bullets too.

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Old 10-24-2007, 05:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Swamp Rat
How hot can one actualy load a .45colt with heavy hunting bullets?
Swamp Rat; I have shot 265gr Lyman/Keith more than 1800fps and 325 gr 1500. this thru a Win 94 Legacy. in a rifle the Colt comes alive. here is a good article by the owner of Leverguns.
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Old 10-24-2007, 07:09 AM
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Take a look at what Buffalo Bore offers and you can see what's possible out of certain rifles and revolvers.


What you don't want to do is hot load the .45 LC and shoot it through a firearm that just won't handle the pressure.

Buf-Bore now makes standard pressure loads for even the modern Colt clones. (200gr. Speer Gold Dot, 1100 fps M.E. 537 ft. lbs)

Or, for certain large framerevolvers and all model 1892's and all Winchester or Marlin 1894 models;
325 gr. cast bullet (1325 fps /1267 ft. lbs/big game up to 1,000 pds.)
260 gr. J.H.P. (1450 fps / M.E. 1214 ft. lbs./Big game up to 350 lbs.)

Those number were derived from pistols, so you can reasonably add 150-200 fps, maybe more, when using them through a rifle.

Hope this helps, and take a look at the loadswap section too.

Last edited by SFT; 10-24-2007 at 07:18 AM.
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