Looking for a rifle

Would you, dear readers of the shooting persuasion, please help me to locate a rifle?  I’m looking for a Marlin Model 1894 in .45 Colt.  Details are at Marlin’s Web site.  Gallery of Guns lists the current-production model number as 1894CB45-20.

I can’t find a new one online through a quick search (although used models are available through auction sites), and no local dealer appears to have them in stock.  Next time you’re at your local gun shop, would you please see whether they have one in their racks (new, or used in good condition)?  If so, please ask them to hold it for me for a day or so while you send me the information, either in a comment below or via e-mail (my address is in my blog profile, which you’ll find in the margin).

I know these rifles are hard to find, so I’ll consider the 24″ Cowboy version as well:  and I understand there was, at one time, a 16ΒΌ”-barrel limited edition offered through Talo Distributors – I’d really like one of those!  Some earlier models also had round barrels instead of the current-production octagonal ones, but that doesn’t worry me.  Yes, I know either model will be expensive, even used;  there’s a scarcity value.  Still, if you see one, please send me the details.)

Thanks in advance for your help.


EDITED TO ADD:  I found it!


  1. I feel ya. I'm looking for one of those–pre-safety, ideally–in both .45LC and .41 Magnum. Been looking for a long, long time.

  2. would a Henry Golden Boy in either 16 or 20" scratch that itch? Those are not that difficult to find and I know we have two in stock at my local MOD.

  3. Armslist shows one in Knoxville for $1k, which I thought a tad expensive, but then again they *are* gettin' a bit rare these days.

    link: http://www.armslist.com/posts/3569302/knoxville-tennessee-rifles-for-sale–1894-marlin-cowboy-45lc

    To wit, "1894 Marlin Cowboy in 45LC. It has a 24" octagon barrel. This is not a Remington Marlin but a JM Marlin. Slightly used but most of the parts still look new. The stock is in good shape with minor surface scratches."

    It was first listed on the 22nd of last month, so might be still there. There's also a pair of .44 Mag versions for a smidge less, $850 and $589. Have to see if the locals have anything hid back in the back or gathering dust on a rack somewhere. Luck to ye, sir, those are nice little rifles.

  4. Peter,
    The Marlin company was bought out by The Freedom Group a while back. At that time they closed the factory that made the 1894 pistol caliber lever action rifles and laid off all those skilled craftsmen. Since the workers were told ahead of time about the decision I heard that the last few runs of those guns suffered from a severe lack of quality control. I own two, one in .44 and the other in .357 and love them to death, but apparently Marlin under TFG has decided to suspend that line of firearms indefinitely.
    Rossi and Henry do both make lever action carbines in .45 Colt, but I suspect that like me you favor the Marlin action, at least when it's been well put together.
    More information can be found here:

  5. Two places you could call are Carter's Country and Collector's Firearms (713-781-1960), both in Houston, TX. Collectors probably has 3000 firearms in stock at any time, and they really know their stuff.

    I found this on the Collectors site, and had to laugh at the way they described it :

    Don't judge Collectors by this rifle – I'm sure they're horrified by the "improvements" made to it.

  6. Peter,

    You don't want a new one. Marlin's quality went to Hades after the Remington acquisition in 2008. You want to buy a used one, with the JM barrel stamp that shows it was made by the original Marlin company in New Haven, Connecticut. The 1894s are not inexpensive but will be useful and provide shooting enjoyment for centuries with proper care.

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