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Discussion Starter #1
I just loaded and fired my first hardcast in the Marlin Guide Gun today. Was happy to note the lack of barrel leading and accuracy was good. However, the bullets appear to have a compatibility problem with the GG. These bullets (manufacturer's name omitted) have a wide forward driving band, unlike any rifle bullets I've loaded before. They remind me of the driving band on a Keith style SWC. I noted some resistance when chambering these but didn't think much of it until I got home. Here I chambered a few of these outside and noted that the driving band was distorted. This indicates that they are contacting the throat before fully being chambered. OAL of these rounds was set at 2.50 inches and this length happens to coincide with the crimping groove. Bullets are sized at .459. Fortunately the ones I fired were starting loads and didn't damage me or the rifle. The remaining are going to get pulled.

Is this a common problem with this model? Or just an uncommon bullet style.

Thanks.
 

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Bart, I have a 1895 that my gunsmith ported for me by cutting 3 slots on each side of the bbl., he then back bored it to prevent any shaving of lead. Ifin you start to get any leading at the ports, try putting some break free around the ports, this will make it easyer to wipe the lead off. I have been shooting a 305 gr rnfp made by westren bullet co. out of Carson City NV, I also cast a rnfp gc 405gr that is simler to the keith type bullet, but have had no problem with it chambering. Both of these bullets are crimped on the crimp ring. I set my dies to recommended oal of my loading manuals and have had no trouble feeding them. It might just be the bullet you are loading in their. I loaded up some of the 405gr fairly warm (but under redline)and got no leading at all. Hope something in my note helps you.

Gun Runner
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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Bart, if they chamber OK then don't sweat it too much. Many lead bullet loads for rifles recommend seating the bullet to touch the rifling for max accuracy, it helps center the bullet up in the throat.

If it gets difficult to close the lever, then I'd be concerned. In that is the case your best option is probably to reduce the OAL and use a Lee factory crimp die since the crimp groove is no longer in the right spot.

You can also make sure that brass is trimmed to minumum length, and then get the case mouth even with the very top of the crimp groove, to minimize this.

I wouldn't jam jacketed bullets into the rifling, but would not be quite so concerned about lead. Marlins are known to have fairly short throats.
 

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The 1895 LTDV I have had a short throat. I used a 45 cal throating reamer from Brownell's to remove enough to chamber the desired bullet. It is a 425 gr Hammerhead bullet from a Ballisti-cast mould. The round just touches the rifling and is very accurate. There is no need to worry about touching the rifling with cast bullets.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for all the info.

I wouldn't be too worried about this except that the bullets were more than just touching the rifling. It required some effort to jack them in. Maybe that's nothing to worry about either but it bothers me, especially since I'd like to heat them up a bit ultimately. Case lengths are already at min trim-to. By seating them as far into the case as possible (and barely pass the crimp groove) they will chamber, with just a hint of rifling contact. If there's enough of that driving band left to get hold of the factory crimp die should hanlde the rest.

It sounds like the answer is that Marlins can/do have short throats. A reamer might be the way to go. How difficult is it to make this modification yourself, assuming average mechanical ability? Along these same lines, I wonder how much you could increase the max OAL of these rifles by making the usual Marlin carrier/ejector modifications? Marshall detailed this procedure once upon a time and said that the 336 could be made to handle up to 2.60 (I think). The GG is probably no different.
 

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The reamer has a pilot on the end. I have throated four rifles with it and feel it is an easy procedure to do yourself. You will need the reamer, a handle and extension. I removed the bolt, stood the rifle muzzle down, and used Ed's Red cleaning mixture for a lube. If one proceeds slowly it is easy to feel the reamer bite, using only slight pressure. Thoroughly clean the action and barrel, reassemble and test with a dummy round. The last few turns should be with almost no pressure to smooth out the cut.

I don't know if one rifle is worth purchasing a reamer for, I had at least two to do and was inclined to do it myself.
 
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