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Thread: Marlin 444 - thoughts?

  1. #1

    Marlin 444 - thoughts?

    Anyone out there have any experience of the Marlin 444?



  2. #2
    I love mine, an original model with the 24-inch barrel, bought from a friend who was the original owner. He was from Montana, and worked as a engineer in the big woods of Alaska for a while. It was a bear rifle.

    Recoil is not harsh, as many expect. Shoots well, easy to reload.

    Go search the threads here ... lots of discussion.

  3. #3
    SD Regular
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    East Midlands M1/M69 Junction 21
    Isn't there some sort of microgroove vs standard profile rifling merit? That one shoots lead bullets badly? The old microgroove guns hsving twenty-four (!) narrow and shallow grooves?

    I know our better informed members from US will know. It's all memory of old Guns & Ammo articles that I paid no heed to! But I know there is some merit and de-merit vis-a-vis.

  4. #4
    I have a micro groove .444 which shoots inch grips at 100 m with 265 interlocks .My 444 is my go to rifle for driven boar. recoil is far better than its biger and younger brother in 45/70 and in my opinion quicker to shoot and reload with out the kicking!!!

    My '444 will shoot boolits with out any problems even with copper still on the bore.
    I put about 300 cast through my .444 a year at least just to practice for shooting driven boar.
    The marlin will be my last rifle that I will sell unless I get the chance of a xlr .444
    "a man does good business when he rids himself of a turd"

  5. #5
    I have three at the moment !

    Ones a circa 1967 rifle with the barrel bands monte carlo stock and the stock 24" barrel . Guns been reblued twice since I got it and the woods been refinished as well with Tung Oil applied at the end of eash season . Also have a circa 1966 that started life the same as the 67 rifle except now this one has the barrel bobbed to 19" . I had it cut three or four years ago , I've also reblued this one three times and redone the stock with Tung Oil as well . Both these guns are 1-38" Micro Groove and both of them will shoot cast bullets up to and including 375 grains .

    The third one I have at the moment is circa 2001 and is Ballard rifled 1-20" and the barrels 22" . I restocked this one with some rather decent wood from Macon Gunstocks . This rifle is for cast bullets as well but I stick with 390-450 grainers .

    Over the course of time I've had close to thirty lever action Marlin's that were chambered for the 444 cartridge as well as an H&R Handi Rifle . Can't say I ever had one that shot bad .

    My first 444 was a Marlin 444P that's the one with the English straight grip stock and a 18 3/4" ported barrel . Actually over time I owned a pair of them . The first I used almost exclusively the now defunct Nosler 250 grain Partition Gold bullet in my handloads and it killed well . Also used the Hornady rubber tipped stuff in a 444XLR I had for awhile as well as the Hornady 265 handloaded . Had another standard 22" Ballard rifled gun that was partial to the .270 grain Gold Dot .

    And FWIW I was never a big fan of the 444 until I started shooting home cast bullets . The number of DEAD RIGHT THERE deer and or bear increased dramatically , not that the jacketed stuff didn't do the job effectively . But the cast just seemed to hammer a good bit better .

    To date I've killed I think 40-50 whitetail deer and a pair of black bear with cast bullets in variouse 444's as well as another dozen or so deer with jacketed bullets . And to date I have no qualms with the cartridge as long as it's used within the area it was made for IE 150-200 yards or LESS . I suspect the average for all the 444 deer I've killed is a skoosh less then 45 yards . But then that has a lot to do with the places I usually hunt

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