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Thread: Marlin lever action in 44mag for Deer?

  1. #1

    Marlin lever action in 44mag for Deer?

    Hi guys, I wondered if anybody has a lever action rifle chambered in 44mag and conditioned for use on Chinese water deer and muntjac? 44 magnum will easily make 1000 ftlb out of a rifle barrel so muzzle energy would be ok, the rifle would only be used at short range in woods, up to maybe 100 yards maximum.

    In the states they use the same rifle/calibre combination to take larger deer out to similar distances and class it as a woods/ brush gun. It is often used at close range on wild pigs where the slick lever action system and 10 shot tubular magazine lends itself well to very rapid follow up shots - should the need arise

    I would appreciate your comments

    many thanks.


    Ps - I have the normal range of calibres ( 243. 270 and 308 ) already conditioned for deer stalking.
    Last edited by paultap; 06-03-2014 at 21:27.

  2. #2
    If you haven't already bought something, look at a 30-30 if you want a marlin or just get a Browning BLR in .308... The 44 will work I guess but no matter what it is shot out of it's still a pistol round... For Roe here in Germany you need 1000 joule of energy at 100 meters and the 44 mag doesn't come close.... Just a thought... Just because someone in the States (or anywhere else) does it doesn't make it right...

  3. #3
    If you like the rifles, buy one. The 1894 Cowboy with octagon barrel is especially good looking.

    The fact is that the .44 Magnum, .45 Colt, and .357 Magnum out of a rifle are much more potent than from a handgun, and all three will flatten a deer from a handgun inside 50 yards. The rifles are 100 yard hunting pieces. They will retain a lot of weight and penetrate completely through a very large deer, even elk. ( A lot of elk have fallen to a saddle gun. ) Hornady and Remington load ammo just for the rifles, in 180-gr. I just shoot a 158-gr JSP from the rifles. Fun and cheap to shoot.

    That said, a .30-30 is a lot more power, and it, too, hits much harder than it seems on paper, because of the flat nosed bullets. I would prefer it in my hands for a large, angry pig.

    I have shot a Marlin .30-30 since I was 21, and have two, a carbine and a 24-inch barrel rifle.
    I also shoot a .444 full rifle with 24-inch barrel, a Marlin 39 Deluxe in .22 LR, a Marlin 1894 in .357 and a Winchester 1894 saddle ring carbine in .357. The Rossi 92 is a slick rifle, too.

    The BLR is entirely different, with a modern, rotating bolt, as accurate as most bolt actions.
    A .308 or 7mm-08 in a 20-inch carbine is a serious woods rifle.
    They come in steel receiver with longer barrel, alloy and 20-inch Lightweight, and take down models for traveling. These go back to zero pretty well, and fit in a backpack, luggage, float planes so well.

  4. #4
    One of my neighbors in Canada used it for mule and whitetail deer and wild boar , all 100 yards or less shots but it knocked them over just fine , my advice is buy one and enjoy it
    There are no perfect men in this world ..... Only perfect intentions

  5. #5
    I had a .44mag conditioned for deer but never used it as I wasn't particullarly happy with accuracy the first shot having a habit of going high and left. I read that some Marlins can do this and it because of barrel band tension. After the first shot it shot well but I found this most annoying. Two other Marlins in .357 that I have owned never had this habit.

    You won't have any problems meeting the energy requirements for small deer but achieving 1700ft/lb for larger deer can be a slight problem. I had a 200grn load that peaked just over 2,000fps and this met the magic number.
    Last edited by 8x57; 06-03-2014 at 22:12.
    It's the calibre of the shooter that counts not the calibre of the rifle.

  6. #6
    I already have a marlin 1894 lever action in 44 magnum which I bought for fun shooting , I was just interested to find out if any others have used it as I have mentioned in my thread, there are obviously other rifles and calibres far more suited to the purpose but that is not to discount the fact that this could be a possibility.

    many thanks for the replies.

  7. #7
    The .44 Magnum out of a 20-inch saddle carbine is as powerful as a mild .45-70 load. You will be shocked if you shoot a deer with it, how fast it drops.

    The discontinued Ruger 44 Carbine ( Big Daddy lookalike of the 10/22) is a much sought-after rifle for driven game. If I ran Ruger, they would be building those next week, and tooling up for a .357 Carbine. ( While I'm at it, I would make the M77 Express in .270, .30-06, and 7x64, but that's another fantasy.)

  8. #8
    I have killed deer with a 44 mag handgun at 70 yards. I'm guessing the carbine will be just fine at 100 yards.~Muir

  9. #9
    Yes, indeed. A friend of mine, now deceased, used a Ruger Redhawk .44 with a scope to shoot several deer at pretty long ranges.

    I have killed probably a dozen deer with a .357 handgun, all one shot, dropped on the spot. A friend of mine, the source of my .444 Marlin, killed a large cow elk with his .357 Marlin at 100 yards, by dismounting and walking behind his horse to within range, then kneeling and sending his horse on out of the way. The Remington 158 went completely through the chest, a perfect shot, and she didn't make it 15 yards.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Southern View Post
    Yes, indeed. A friend of mine, now deceased, used a Ruger Redhawk .44 with a scope to shoot several deer at pretty long ranges.

    I have killed probably a dozen deer with a .357 handgun, all one shot, dropped on the spot. A friend of mine, the source of my .444 Marlin, killed a large cow elk with his .357 Marlin at 100 yards, by dismounting and walking behind his horse to within range, then kneeling and sending his horse on out of the way. The Remington 158 went completely through the chest, a perfect shot, and she didn't make it 15 yards.
    I actually like the 357 better than the 44 Mag for deer. I have a Model 27 eight and three-eights that needs blooding next season. ~Muir

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