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Discussion Starter #1
Not sure what forum to put this in.

I just bought a lightly used Marlin 1894 lever gun in .45 Colt.

I have a supply of +P .45 Colt factory cartridges that I bought for my Redhawk for bear country protection. It's a handful when these are touched-off!

Will the Marlin 1894 safely handle the +P pressure?

Thanks in advance...
 

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Personally, I wouldn't shoot +P in any lever action rifle but that's just me. The correct answer is ask Marlin.
 

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Sorry, Bonk, but I don't think Marlin will be much help. Manufacturers make guns to SAAMI specs and only endorse SAAMI spec factory cartridges in their guns. Since there is no SAAMI standard for a 45 Colt +P, Marlin's answer will predictably be they can't endorse it. Same basic reason manufacturers won't endorse the use of reloads.

For what it's worth, I do know Marlin 1894 owners who do shoot 45 Colt +P, up to Ruger only and TC level with no problems. Buffalo Bore also provides data for the Marlin 1894 with their 45 Colt + P ammo and state that they are safe to use in the Marlin 18954, even their dangerous game 45 Colt +P load. Lastly, my Hornady loading manual also states that Ruger only 45 Colt loads are safe to use in the Marlin 1894.

Your call, though. I'm not taking a position, here. Only supplying info. Bonk, if this violates forum protocol, I apologize. Delete or edit as you see fit.
 

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I’ll just add that they make the same gun chambered in .44 magnum.
 

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Sorry, Bonk, but I don't think Marlin will be much help. Manufacturers make guns to SAAMI specs and only endorse SAAMI spec factory cartridges in their guns. Since there is no SAAMI standard for a 45 Colt +P, Marlin's answer will predictably be they can't endorse it. Same basic reason manufacturers won't endorse the use of reloads.

For what it's worth, I do know Marlin 1894 owners who do shoot 45 Colt +P, up to Ruger only and TC level with no problems. Buffalo Bore also provides data for the Marlin 1894 with their 45 Colt + P ammo and state that they are safe to use in the Marlin 18954, even their dangerous game 45 Colt +P load. Lastly, my Hornady loading manual also states that Ruger only 45 Colt loads are safe to use in the Marlin 1894.

Your call, though. I'm not taking a position, here. Only supplying info. Bonk, if this violates forum protocol, I apologize. Delete or edit as you see fit.
No problem at all NCG. Nothing you posted even remotely comes close to a forum violation. Not even maybe. :)

You're correct about SAAMI and +P but some manufacturers will make definitive statements about +P in their guns. I have no idea whether Marlin will or won't but if I was concerned that's where I would start.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I have sent Marlin an email concerning this.

I'll post their reply when I get it.

Thanks fellas...
 

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There's no SAAMI standard for .45 Colt +P, only .38 Special, 9x19mm, .38 ACP (.38 Super), and .45 ACP. SAAMI standard for .45 Colt is 14,000 psi. most "+P" loadings of .45 Colt seem to be in the 20,000+ psi range. That said, the .44 Magnum is a 36,000 psi cartridge, and the Marlin 1894 action handles it just fine.
 

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I had an 1873 clone chambered in 44Mag and never had an issue despite dire warnings from internet experts about how weak the toggle link action is. If a toggle link 1873 can handle 44Mag then a modern 1894 action should handle +P 45 Colt just fine. I still wouldn't do it unless the manufacturer says it's ok but that's just me. I absolutely positively would NOT use Ruger only loads (Buffalo Bore, Underwood, etc). The only pistol caliber carbine I'd use with ROL is a #1. YMMV
 

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Since +P in Colt 45 doesn't exist I suspect Marlin will say no. Only SAAMI approved ammo.
 

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Here's what Buffalo Bore says

Use only in the following firearms:

1. All Ruger large frame revolvers chambered in 45 Colt or 454 Casull. (never use +P ammo in the small frame New Model Vaquero—these revolvers were made from late 2005 and on—do not use in the New Model small frame Flat Top Ruger or ANY small frame Ruger). Please read the following linked technical article to know more about Ruger revolvers and 45 Colt +P ammo.

Ruger Revolvers and 45 Colt +P Ammunition
2. All 1892 Winchesters and all copies of such made after 1920. These loads are safe in all modern Model 1892 lever guns as well as all Winchester & Marlin 1894's. Please read the following linked technical article to know more about 1892s and all variants or copies of the 1892.

1892’s & All Variants/Copies

3. All Winchester and Marlin 1894 models.
4. Any break open action such as the T/C or Handi Rifle.
5. Any falling block action such as the Sharps or Winchester 1895.
6. Any Freedom Arms model 83 or 97.
7. Henry Big Boy .45 Colt
 

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Great details and interesting topic.

Am in the camp of if need a bigger gun, buy a bigger gun. Though did talk to Henry once about 45colt +p in my scout carbine, they said it was fine. No doubt many modern levers are strong guns. Yet if want more 45 lever power, I go with good old 4570.

Personally, am also more comfortable with reducing 454 loads in its beefed up case rather than stretching great 45 colt or any other case to its limits with +p.

In similiar fashion, I like to think of any of these cool guns being a reliable performer for a lifetime and beyond, while getting the most service out of it.
 

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Great details and interesting topic.

Am in the camp of if need a bigger gun, buy a bigger gun. Though did talk to Henry once about 45colt +p in my scout carbine, they said it was fine. No doubt many modern levers are strong guns. Yet if want more 45 lever power, I go with good old 4570.

Personally, am also more comfortable with reducing 454 loads in its beefed up case rather than stretching great 45 colt or any other case to its limits with +p.

In similiar fashion, I like to think of any of these cool guns being a reliable performer for a lifetime and beyond, while getting the most service out of it.
Very good post. I'm not up on the Marlin but in the Rossi 92 if it can handle a 454 I'm sure it could handle 45 ROL but I couldn't say about the Marlin
 

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That dangerous game ammo has mono metal (punch bullets). That is a waste of money unless you are hunting grizzlies, or planning a trip to Africa.
 

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Very good post. I'm not up on the Marlin but in the Rossi 92 if it can handle a 454 I'm sure it could handle 45 ROL but I couldn't say about the Marlin
Have always liked Marlin levers but also the Rossi 92 has always been a strong interest of mine as well!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Range Report, Marlin 1894

I fired the following factory cartridges (see photos) with absolutely no signs of excessive pressure but the Buffalo Bore ammo kicked like a mule! LOL.

Thanks for all the input...
 

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