Review: Marlin 1895 Lever Action .45-70 Government Rifle

Marlin 1885 lever-action rifle by Ruger in .45-70

The Marlin 1895 lever-action rifle, now offered by Ruger, is a major step forward in lever-action rifle construction and performance. While I know it dates me a great deal, the first rifle I ever owned was a Winchester Model 94 chambered in .25-35 Winchester. This was also the rifle that I used to take my first deer. The point being, I have grown up and lived a long life shooting lever-action rifles. To my way of thinking, the lever gun is a real American tradition to the core in shooting sports.

I believe it is only fitting, in the later years of my long association with these action types of rifles, I come into my senior period of gun writing to get the honor of addressing the totally new and very well-dressed Ruger-built Marlin 1895 chambered in the heavy-hitting .45-70 Government cartridge. Save for Browning Arms, and very few others, there are not many big bore caliber offerings in the lever-action rifle. Marlin has always been a leader in holding up the lever rifle as a modern go-to fieldpiece.

Shooting bench with a sandbag, Hornady ammunition and Marlin 1885 lever-action .45-70 rifle
Bear hunters, elk, trophy mule deer, and even southern pig shooters can appreciate the knockdown power associated with the .45-70 rifle cartridge.

New Beginings

Because this Marlin rifle, as built by the old company but now owned and operated by Ruger firearms, has released the Model 1895 big bore rifle, it has made major news. This is largely because Remington, the previous owner of the brand, had not made much in the way of changes to the rifle as offered by the original Marlin firearms company.

Ruger, being known for innovation, flexible adaptation of modern manufacturing, and construction methods, offers state-of-the-art products to sport shooters regarding some very high-grade firearms at very reasonable prices. Now, Ruger has elected to put this rifle into shooters’ hands and it has sure been a good decision.

Being a long-range specialist from western South Dakota, the rifle would seem to be out of my league in terms of any level of range extension. The barrel on this new rifle measures a short carbine-length 19 inches, and as such, pushing the .45-70 chambered bullet to any ultra-high velocity is just not a part of the program.

That stated, being an owner, the .45-70 government has been a mainstay here in the wild west. For the past 20 years, I have been living and writing here. I have hunted buffalo and deer with my Sharps .45-70, which mounts a set of ladder sights, and with an understanding of the rainbow trajectory involved in the .45-70 — it is a matter of knowing where to hold when compensating for the bullets obvious drop.

The advantage of the cartridge is its massive downrange retained velocity. The .45-70 can deliver energy — lots of it — on a target. Bear hunters, elk, trophy mule deer, and even southern pig shooters can appreciate the knockdown power associated with this rifle cartridge. Therefore, it is obvious why Ruger elected to offer this new Marlin in this very old school, but effective, lever-action straight-walled cartridge.

LP Brezny loading the Marlin 1885 lever-action rifle with Hornady LEVERevolution ammunition
Time to load and get going down range. Learning the new lever rifle first hand.

Marlin 1895 Features

In terms of what is different about this rifle — when compared to the rifles built by Marlin under its original ownership of the brand — here are the straight facts. Ruger first reviewed the old model in the 1895, after which a series of very basic design changes were made. This new rifle makes use of not only CNC production methods but additional systems that are able to cut very detailed parts to perfection.

The result is a smooth action and fit, completed under the watchful eye of individual tolerance-checking technicians. This rifle retains detail fit when metal parts are installed, as well as the wood-to-metal fit. The stock has been reconfigured for a slimmer forend, and the checkering is also upgraded along with the laminated gray stock.

In terms of sights, the new rifle makes use of a ghost ring rear sight and an HV-type front ramp sight. I would much rather see an all-metal front sight with a white ramp face. However, these sights seem to be the style of the day on many varied new firearms of late.

100-yard paper and steel targets with the author holding his Marlin 1885 lever-action rifle
The Marlin .45-70 1895 proved its mettle on paper and steel at 100 yards.

Rifle muzzles can be slid into saddle scabbards, slung across the back when climbing trees or getting into high elevated artificial stands. These are just a few things that can be rough on the muzzle of a rifle. This rifle is designed for hard field applications — not resting on a target bench.

The ghost ring is also a slight problem in that it stands rather high and will not allow the use of standard, or in some cases high, scope rings. The new rifle makes use of a long, Weaver-stye rail. The use of a scope is an easy install. However, a move to an AR-style base and rings, or a high tactical base ring setup is required.

I first removed the ghost ring sight when trying to install a scope for testing. However, I found it to be an unsightly option and reinstalled the rear sight. After failing with two earlier ring and base sets — due again to the inability of the mounts to clear the Ghost ring sight — I selected a Leupold one-piece base and ring unit as a final option. That seems to have been a workable solution in this case.

Federal Fusion .45-70 ammunition box with two spent cartridges
Federal Fusion up for testing and it grouped well in terms of a selected big game cartridge.

After a mess with the base arrangement, the good folks at the sporting goods store took over and mounted, aligned, and laser zeroed the new scope mount setup for me. That was a first in my list of new experiences as I have always just done my own work in this area.

In the scope department, I elected to use one of my old T/C 3×9 power units. I decided it would be a good option, being the scope was designed for use on the T/C Contender. The scope makes for a nice, lightweight, short package as applied to this carbine-length rifle. Installing a massive, large bell and extended tube-length scope on this rifle. To my way of thinking, it is way overcooked.

In terms of the lever action itself, the lever is oversized just enough to handle heavy gloves in cold weather and retains a very nice feel coupled with the rifle’s smooth action.

The rifle retains a tube magazine that carries six rounds of .45-70 Government and makes use of the right-side receiver feed tube design. The stainless-steel bolt on the rifle is barber pole cut and very nice in terms of a polished surface treatment. In fact, everything about this rifle’s stainless-steel action is first-rate in terms of attention to detail.

The action retains a push-button cross-bolt style safety as well as a hammer half-cock position. The service manual supplied with the rifle makes a great deal of effort and time detailing how the action works as well as its safety features. Let’s face it, some of the “black gun” boys have never fired a lever-action rifle. Soon, they could very well be getting into this new hunting rifle offering.

The author standing to the side of the shooting bench showing a profile view of the Marlin 1885 scoped rifle
The author while field testing for accuracy. The new Marlin 1895 (offered by Ruger) liked the Hornady .45-70 factory cartridges.

When operating the button safety, the firing pin is blocked even though the hammer will still go to half or full cock. When the safety is pushed to the on (safe red indicator) position, the firing pin block is deactivated. I was trained on the old Model 94 action as offered by Winchester many years ago, but I like this button safety that adds an additional dimension of safe handling characteristics to the rifle. Also added to this rifle is the use of the muzzle cap and threaded muzzle to allow the use of suppressors or other muzzle devices on the rifle. This Marlin 1895 lever gun would sure seem to be a traditional rifle, but with added space-age touches.

Going Down Range

Going hot with the Marlin Model 1895 was in general a slow start-up operation. Getting the test rifle from Ruger in mid-February, I was met by a South Dakota winter that was mild for these parts, but still somewhat of a challenge in terms of staying out in the cold air and high winds that blew straight out of the northwest as it drove its icy core over the Big Horn Mountains.

The first day with live ammunition proved to be nothing but a quick function check of the total package, as the weather crashed in around me early in the day. The second day, however, was also not very nice, but workable as I set up a portable benchrest behind a wind wall on our club range, and also used my truck to redirect the strong 25 to 30 mph gusting winds that retained a full value against the line of my test bullets to the 100-yard target.

Shooting Hornady’s 325-grain LEVERevolution at a muzzle velocity of 2,050 fps, even with the stiff crosswind, I splashed bullets on 12×18-inch steel plate with ease. In terms of an accuracy group check, the test was omitted due to the obvious field conditions. What I did come away with over two days with that rifle was that she liked the Hornady fodder, functioned as smooth a glass regarding the rifle action, and at least for the time being, or until better weather could be utilized, it seemed accurate enough as well.

Marlin 1885 and Hornady .45-70 LEVERevloution big game loads resting on a shooting bag
The Marlin 1895 and Hornady .45-70 LEVERevloution big game loads. The Marlin liked the combination.

The trigger on the rifle cracked off at about three pounds, and it was rock solid and very crisp. Control of the rifle was easy, and I could see good groups coming down the line just by the way this open hammer firing control system performed.

Balance, even when scoped, was dead on at the midpoint just ahead of the trigger guard. The recoil pad, which is generous, allowed me to fire my test rounds one-handed (300-grain Federal jacketed) with the left arm resting across the rear of the bench under the rifle’s pistol grip style stock. I can say that the rifle is much easier and more forgiving to shoot than my Sharps .45-70. According to several friends who shoot the .45-70, the recoil must be much less than what is reported regarding other rifle brands chambered in this cartridge.

In terms of total weight with the scope, sling, and one-piece AR style mounts empty, the 1895 comes in at 8.75 pounds, but feels a whole lot less when brought up to the firing position.

Shooting on the second week as nicer weather came in produced some accurate groups just inside 100 yards. Open range winds were still rough, so, I elected to shoot on a heavily wooded shorter shotgun patterning range that had been extended just a bit. When shooting 300-grain bullets (Federal Fusion), I was able to “walk” my bullet within ½-inch per adjusted shot anyplace on the target. I wanted to zero for 200 yards and as such, make some corrections in terms of what had been achieved, when laser zeroing had been applied.

LP Brezny holding a scoped Marlin .45-70 lever-action rifle standing next to a steel buffalo target
Hornady ammo unloaded on 200-yard steel plates. The Marlin 1895 is zeroed and ready for deer season in a couple of months.

Not being a long-range cartridge at least as applied to this carbine setup I was interested in keeping my shooting ranges on game inside 300 yards. When shooting for zero, my rounds were impacting bullets 2.5 inches high, which put my impact point on the 200-yard target at a bit low at 3.5 inches.

With the move to 300 yards — my max range — I was required to hold over a full 28 inches using Hornady LEVERevolution Bullet drop data. With an 18 to 20-inch-high hold, a bullet would find lungs and heart using a side body shot, and straight head-on shot at a mule deer using the same hold would drop in via a head or chest shot while holding on the animal’s nose. Hunting buffalo and trophy timber whitetail for years by way of my Sharps, I had a good feel for the performance base of this cartridge and paired rifle.

Now, by way of hog and buffalo targets at 200 yards, the results were effective, to say the least. With a sight picture hold at the upper edge of the picture target’s shoulder, the Federal Fusion 300-grain bullets being tested were dropping 11 inches low but would as previously noted take out lungs and heart. Pushing the shot to 300 yards, using Hornady’s published drop table, was difficult. I was able to make general hits on steel, but accuracy group shooting with the sustained winter high winds made that event completely out of the question.

Shooting for basic groups at 100 yards, Hornady 350-grain bullets shot a best three-round print putting two bullets in the same hole, and the third exactly .966 inch alongside the previous pair. What was also special about this group was that the high winds had pushed the bullet group a full 3.5 inches to the left of center.

Marlin 1885 lever-action rifle by Ruger in .45-70
The Marlin 1895, now offered by Ruger, is a major step forward in lever-action rifle construction and performance.

The wind was a full value (right to left in this case) and save for its rainbow trajectory the performance profile of the .45-70 is very predictable in the area of wind drift. About all I can say is Indian fighters and buffalo hunters of old had to know their stuff when pushing the range limits of the .45-70 Government round.

Final Thoughts

In real life, when hunting whitetail in the timber of the Black Hills or buffalo on the Triple U, the control of the cartridge for longer-range shots (200 yards) at times is more difficult than you can imagine. In my opinion, based on the history I have with the Sharps 45-70 and now the new Marlin 1895, which is a rifle that is not going anyplace except my truck, hunters can expect great performance to 200 yards, but things will get a bit dicey beyond that indicated range limit lacking extensive practice.

Average groups at 100 yards measure about 1.75 inches at 200 yards. Under real-world hunter-encountered weather, the groups opened to 3.75 inches. With dead air, warm weather, and a benchrest setup using sandbags, the longer-range groups could, without question, be improved upon. However, this being a hunting rifle and not a benchrest tool, I was very pleased with the performance results generated by the new Ruger engineered Marlin 1895.

Ruger’s Marlin 1895 Lever Action Government has received more than just a minor facelift in terms of manufacturing and fit. And the .45-70 provides plenty of wallop! for hunting medium to big game. What’s your opinion of the .45-70 cartridge? How about the Marlin 1895? Share your answers in the comment section.

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (40)

  1. I love all the price comments, there’s people taking about buying marlins 10 years ago and as far back as the 80’s and then say ruger is overpricing the gun? What did a new truck cost you in the 80’s? What did a new truck cost you 10 years ago? Msrp of my 2019 was 65k thought about buying a new one this year, a 2023, the same truck has a msrp in the 80k mark, it’s not a ruger issue, it’s the people we have in office people, inflation is out of control and probably going to cause the collapse of America soon if not stopped, 4” sch 40 pipe was $1 a foot in 2019, it over $4 a foot now, voting has or not doing so has consequences!

  2. I have a Remington manufactured Marlin 1895 SBL, made in 2016, and I have fired this a lot. It is a superb rifle, with good fit and finish, though I had mine cerakoted in grey as I don’t like the silver look, which shines like a beacon in the field. Last week I handled one of the new Ruger-made 1895 SBLs at my local gunshop and there is little difference in fit and finish between that one and mine. To those who say these rifles are not accurate, I beg to differ. Shooting from a bench, resting the rifle on my pack (no rear bag), using Hornady 325 grain Lever evolution ammo, at 100 yards I can consistently shoot 3 round groups of (on average) about 1.25 MOA. Not just once, on a good day, but CONSISTENTLY. My best group was about 3/4 MOA and my worst was closer to 2 MOA. But on average, about 1.25 MOA, which is easily good enough to hunt white-tailed deer at any practical range over which you’d use this rifle. One thing to watch, the barrel does heat up quickly with use and the POI does shift noticeably with a hot barrel, so to get best consistency at the range I shoot strings of 3 and let the barrel cool between strings. For hunting (which is what I use the rifle for) this isn’t an issue, where 1 shot is generally all that is needed. As for the price, mine cost me a little over $1000 in 2016, so the new ones do seem rather pricey, but this is definitely a rifle to own if you are willing to part with all the $$$!

  3. Big John, I’m not sure a straight-wall, rimless, beltless cartridge such as the 450 Bushmaster will work well in a tubular magazine fed rifle. There are issues with headspace and feeding that would have to be overcome.

  4. I too am a big fan of the lever action rifle, my favorite being my Marlin in .444Marlin. I have taken everything in the mountains of North Idaho with it. Many black bear, whitetail, elk, have fallen to it with one blackbear close to 600lbs dropping from 1 shot. I cannot wait to receive the new Ruger 45-70 “marlin”, but I can’t help but think that the 450Bushmaster would be a nice addition to the lever line up. Happy Hunting 😊

  5. Re South Africa.I had considered immigrating to South Africa or Rhodesia in the early 1970s but was dissuaded by the marxist Mandellas and Mugabe.I hear things are a lot worse these days.The Marlin/ Ruger 1895 feels over priced.I’ve had mixed luck with Ruger over the last 50+ years i.e.quality control; ditto Remington..
    Perhaps you’ll get lucky.

  6. Ruger needs to take a lesson from both the old Marlin company and the Remington controlled Marlin in keeping their rifles to a budget friendly cost. Marlin’s were known for being reliable, well-made working man’s guns which were affordable to the average hunter, typically far under the cost of their biggest competitor, Winchester and their newest competitor Henry. Would love to own a “new” Marlin, but at that $1200-$1300, don’t see that happening. Why Ruger focused on the 1895 rifle first when the best-selling Marlin was the 336 is still a mystery. Thank you for an honest review of the new Ruger Markin 1895.

  7. I would love to own a 45.70 Can you send it to a gunshop in South Africa and then to be cleared through customs What would the cost be all inclusive Thankyou

  8. Don’t get me wrong, I love me a lever gun and I have several Rugers. But with an MSRP of around $1,349, they are to rich for this simple country boy. I think they have missed the boat on this one. And I wish the writers like this would point out the price. I see a lot of them dodge that issue. I wonder why?

    1. Brad,

      The reason we do not point out prices is because prices change over time, but the stories remain on the internet. Then, several years after a story was published, someone reads a story and clicks a link. The price would naturally be different than what was published years earlier and the prospective customer feels slighted. Publishing prices has simply caused too many problems. ~Dave

  9. Believe it or not 25 or so yrs ago maybe more I bought a NEF Handi-Rifle in 45-70 for $200! I personally am not a hunter but firearm collector/enthusiest ( some say gun nut lol) but I got it to loan to friends who hunt and they must give me some of the meat from the kill. I knew all about the cartridge and it wouldn’t destroy meat and such like the 7 mag many ppl use here. Everyone I’ve ever let use it love it meaning the cartridge and how it knocks the game down like getting hit with half a brick going 400 mph. as opposed to shredding stuff up. Anyhow I think I’ll get that Marlin/ Ruger, seems like a great rifle and has the same looking stock as my GunSite Scout in L.H.

  10. I purchased a Marlin 1895 CB in 45-70 about 2 years ago. I’m very happy with the smoothness of the action and overall fitting of the metal to walnut stock and forend. While a bit heavy with the 26″ octagon and full-length tubular magazine, I felt it would be more comfortable to shoot given the recoil of the 45-70 cartridge. I was wrong. Without a recoil pad, the gun was just uncomfortable to shoot. After sighting in my Magnum Research 45-70 revolver, I pulled out the Marlin and prepared to sight it in starting at 50 yards. Using 405 grain ammunition my first shot was slightly low and about an inch left of the bull’s eye. Problem was my shoulder was aching and my pinky was tingling. Figuring I wasn’t tucking it in tight enough I tried another round. My shoulder was now really sore and the pinky numb. Had to be my fault, right? Don’t think so. After the third round I was finished. Just packing up was a chore. Anyway, after icing the discomfort was subsiding, however my shoulder was severely bruised. So, the fix, a Limb Saver to tame the beast and a set of Tru-Glow sights for good measure and this old man was back in business. It’s now as much fun to shoot as the Magnum Research and my T/C Contender in 45-70 and much more accurate.

  11. I am a great fan of the 45/70. I have two built by Henry. The 45/70 cartridge is built for a 22 to 24 inch barrel, Ruger is making a mistake only building this rifle in just short barrel offerings. I talked to them at the NRA convention in Houston and told them the same thing. All the commercial ammo is designed for a 22 inch barrel. If you want the 45/70 to perform, you need a longer barrel!!!!

  12. If ruger would put a 24-26″ barrel on it; i would buy one in a heartbeat! I use a Browning Highwall.

  13. If ruger would put a 24-26″ barrel on it; i would buy one in a heartbeat! I use a Browning Highwall.

  14. I have a Marlin 1895 in 45-70 that I bought about 8 years ago. I put a Skinner Express sight on it and really like it. Not a tack driver by any means but I rarely take a shot over 80 to 100 yards anyway. I prefer actual hunting to just killing at long range.
    I also have a Sharp’s in the same caliber that is a heck of a gun.

  15. I’m reading a fair amount of criticism regarding the Marlin’s barrel being too short for medium and long range hunting. Since dangerous game are only a threat at short distances, the 19″ barrel is quite sufficient to the task and far handier, especially in the brush. I know the 45-70 can be used for ranges well beyond 150 yards, but with so many modern cartridge available today, I see no practical or ethical reason for using this big bore rifle in such a manner anymore.

  16. My comments are pretty parallel to those of “Sarge”. I, too, bought one (the first one sold in Alaska) in 1972. 22″ barrel, Ballard rifling and semi crescent buttplate. All you could find in those days, were the Remington 405’s at .22 LR velocities, so I immediately began experimenting with hand loads. I started with the information in an old Lyman reloading manual and began at the top oof the suggested loads for an 1886 Winchester. That recommended load was 50 grains of 3031 with a 400-405 grain bullet. I shot two rounds of 51 grains, and the empty case simply fell out of the action, so I went to 52, then 53, then 54, then 55, and finally to 56 grains. At 56 grains, the empty case still slipped effortlessly out of the chamber and didn’t show any signs of excess pressure, but the massive recoil was more fun than I could stand, so I backed off to 54 grains and used that load exclusively, as a big game guide, from 1972 to 1978, killing moose, and big bears, none of which staggered more than 10 yards after being hit. Since then, I’ve mounted a Swarovski 1 1/2-6x, 30mm scope to it and hunted all over Africa 6 times with it, as well as New Zealand and Europe. Frankly, to reduce the effectiveness of the cartridge by limiting its barrel length to 19 inches is folly. My collection of .45-70’s now includes a #1 Ruger, #3 Ruger (major recoil!) and 5 other Marlins, with both straight and pistol grips, micro groove (don’t shoot cast bullets in these) and Ballard rifling and barrels ranging from 18″ to the 26″ Cowboy model. I now have an Oehler chronograph and because powder availability is a bit scarce, I’ve experimented with IMR 4198, VV133 and AA2015BR. All loads will group within 1 1/2 ” at 100m and all zip through the clock at between 1,900 and 2,000 fps. These are all hot loads, so work up to them slowly. Oh, yeah, and when hunting, ALWAYS bring a good range finder because the rainbow trajectory of 400’s is such that, between 300 and 400 yards, the bullet drops one foot for every every 25 yards (4 feet at 300, 8 feet at 400). On the positive side, I killed the #2 Fallow Stag in N.Z. about 10 years ago at 397 yards and the bullet still went clean through his boiler room. So, c’mon Ruger, make a 22″ or a 24″ barreled option for us cross-canyon shooters!

  17. Grew up shooting a Marlin 39A that was built in the 1940s. That’s where my love of Marlins started have a Marlin 1895 22” barrel 45-70 and is one of the best rifles I’ve ever shot. Purchased a Marlin 1894 44 Magnum several years ago and the next goal is a 1894 357 magnum. Own a couple Winchester 94s but the Marlins have a much better feel.

  18. Back in 1986 I bought a 1886 Winchester that was built in 1892. It is the rifle version with a 26 inch long octagon barrel. I have effectively hunted up to Elk sized game with this rifle. My favorite hand load is with 330 grain hand cast lead / Lino type gas check hollow points. I have harvested many deer with this rifle including one last fall. I found a period correct Lyman tang mounted peep sight back in 1986 and mounted it on the rifle. All my game taken with this rifle had been with the Lyman tang mounted flip up sight.

  19. I like the Ruger-Marlin, but I’ll have to stick with my Navy Arms Rolling Block, bit on the heavy side , but a good shooter.

  20. I bought my first 45-70 at the ripe old age of 14 in 1984. A Marlin 1895. Been shooting the 45-70 cartridge in various makes of rifles ever since. I only hunt ground hogs. It stops them.


  22. No doubt Mr. Brezny knows his .45-70. I get that. What I am missing is the editors of the blog doing their job by proofreading the writing before posting. No one looks good when a poorly written review gets published by a major gun site.
    Everyone needs a proofreader!

  23. Good article!
    Barrel is too short to burn all that powder! Need 24 or even 26 inch barrel.
    Just my opinion. Would love to see one of those go off after dark!

  24. Missing the boat with that short barrel. The lates Hornady does not reach 2050 except with a 24” barrel. However I had one with a 22” barrel before Hornady backed off on their load. Was a reliable rifle with good accuracy made by Marlin. Still, Ruger should put a bolt action 45 70 on the market. It could handle significantly stiffer loads like my Siamese bolt action 45 70. Hand loading the 45 70 remains the best option since most all factory loads are mild to protect the older and weaker guns.

  25. I bought one in 1972 (new for Marlin that year) for $185. What a sweetheart! Semi crescent butt, walnut, straight grip, standard lever, ballard rifling. Only ammo I could get was Rem. 405 SP, with fps about the same as a .22LR cartridge. Started to handload and settled on a 400 gr. Speer FNSP using 50 grs. IMR 3031. Not a magnum load by any stretch but served just fine in the woods of Vermont.

  26. Want to know , if this comes in a 30-30 model , if so can you send any info , about it . Thank You very much

  27. Being a late 60’s in pretty good shape- I would like to know how much the recoil would be compared to a AK -47’s ?

  28. Im glad someone took over marlin. Always been a fan and i have multiple rifles from 22 to 44mag to the venerable 30-30. These rifle were so popular because they were reliable, accurate and most of all a working mans rifle that was economical. I fear that if ruger keeps the price point where its at the marlin brand will fade aaay once again. Ive seen this exact rifle online between 1600.00 and 1800.00 dollars. This makes this rifle a rich mans weapon. The most expensive marlin i was my 1894 carbine that cost me around 400 bucks at big 5 sporting goods and no its not a remlin. I hope ruger sees the light.

  29. Personally I really like my Marlin 444 SS rite out of the box it was a perfect match for me the 45/70 was about the same in recoil and distance 200 yards however sometimes you pick the gun and other times it picks you love that 444SSbut also love all my MARLINS as well

  30. i have the first model MARLIN no recoil pad and load it pretty heavy according to hornady reload manual. Energy is now approaching that of 458 win mag. I load 45 cal pistol bullets 250 gr for varmint loads and 350 for serious shooting. I try to shoot animals in the head, not in the body, figuring any lick in the brain is a serious hit no matter the distance or caliber. If its a running option or at long distance where i cant be confident in hitting the head, i pass it up. Im zeroed at 200 yds but ive never shot a deer past 65 ft and the closest was at 12 ft. I was hidden well and patient and he never heard me until i shot. I tend to hunt deer trails at the edge of clearings, deer in the open may provide a good shot for me, but they will return to their familiar trail sooner or later and make the shot easier if i just remain hidden and be patient. I probably dont really need sights on my rifle at all, come to think of it! Thanks for your article, different views and experiences are valuable for all of us.

  31. I love Ruger revolvers! I love Rugers commitment to quality and tight tolerances. However, this is pretty much an expensive brush/weather gun and a 200 yard rifle. Nice for dangerous game in short range. They need to step up and put a longer range 45-70 with a 22 to 26 inch barrel with the right twist for hot lead and leverlution type bullets for flatter shooting with maximum velosity and knock down power. Good iron sights and option for a scope if needed. More capacity too.
    I’ve been using a single shot to get what I want in power.
    Be nice to have lever do all.

  32. I am a lifelong fan of the .45-70 government cartridge; both in singles and lever actions. My current lever is a Remington era 1895 Guide Gun, flwlessly fit and finished, and trouble free. I alsolike Rugers, and their version of the 1895, already the best lever design, msy well be the best version yet, from a technical standpoint. BUT- Ruger’s MSRP is outlandish. I will not, would not, EVER consider buying one. My Guide Gun, I paid like $500 for, less thsn 10 years ago.

  33. what about heavy cast bullets i.e.450gr? With the Williams WGRS receiver sight with.150″Twilight aperture,the 1895GS is very fast in the woods.I wish mine[with walnut stock,4 round magazine tube]had the larger loop It does have the Wild West Guns of Alaska improved extractor

  34. Love it except for the oversized lever handle, it sure spoils the looks but in the upper north lands I can appreciate it.
    So.. how about us peons down south in AZ, can the large lever handle be replaced by a normal sized one?

    Keep ’em in the short circle and if you’re a golfer as well keep’em in the short stuff


  35. Great review, thank you for all the data. As the commenter above mentioned, I have been looking at a Henry in
    45-70, now I have better questions to ise to evaluate the Henry. Take care everyone.

  36. As my eyes continue to age I find the hi-viz front sights help for ranges under 100 yards. My only complaint about the Marlin is the cross-bolt safety. I have found the tang safety of late model Winchester 94s and Mossberg 464s to be much more intuitive and ambidextrous. The Henry X has one advantage over the Marlin in that you can unload it by removing the magazine tube insert. I already own a Marlin (not Remlin) 1895, but if Ruger would incorporate these two changes, I would consider buying one.

  37. How many shots did you get a grouping of 1.75 inches at 200 yards? Did I read that correctly? Tight at 100 yards and opened up to 1.75 inches at 200 yards?

  38. My Henry 45-70is a better gun and the 19 : barrel of the Marlin is too short for repeatable accuracy. Henry all the way!

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