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Discussion Starter #1
I recently traded my High Standard 1911A1 FS w/ammo for a like new Marlin 1895 45-70. The gun is stock w/a 22" blued barrel and 4 shot mag tube. It has a BSA Deerhunter 1.5 scope on it.

I was wondering what I would need to add/change/customize in order to get it in fighting condition for an eventual Alaska trip my friend and I want to take. I'm talking everything from finding a longer mag tube to sling, butt cuff ammo carrier, replacement sights, ammo, etc.

I'd also like to try it out deer hunting here in TN or boar hunting in TX. Any thoughts on ammo and acessories or mods would be greatly appreciated. I LOVE this rifle and realize that there are different variants, barrel lengths, and such but--for now--this model is what I have to work with (unless someone local wants to do some trading).

I took it camping this past weekend and ran a box of shells through it. It beat the **** out of my shoulder but I loved every second of it (I guess I'm a 5'7" 165lbs masochist). I also have an STG-58 FAL clone that I love to shoot so maybe I just like the bruising that goes along with big caliber rifles?

(to be honest, the 45-70 didn't actually bruise my shoulder...but I did cut my nose on the scope with the first shot, which is what happens when you don't get eye relief that properly respects the recoil!)

Thanks for all your help!
J

PS: I've seen the SBL/STP variants of the 1895 and they look awesome but I don't have the money for them now and have been told that stainless can make aiming difficult in sunlight alongwith alerting your prey to your position.
 

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plus 1 on peep sights or xs sights.limb saver recoil pad etc great rifle i should of never given mine away but i will get another one soon....think about this that was the battle rifle of the 1800's and early 1900's...a true piece of history.
 

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FWIW,I think you made out very well on your trade.

My 1895 is one of my favorites for just about everything and I've yet to feel "undergunned".

I just normally use the woefully underloaded factory 300gr or 405gr. I believe the 300gr is around 1800fps-can't recall ft.lbs. of energy.

When I need to kick 'er up a notch I shoot Buffalo Bore 350gr or larger. Those loads are impressive. That is what I would take to AK. Should still be available from Cabela's or similar.

I have a few boxes of the Hornady LeverEvolution but have yet to try them out. I do hear a lot of good things about it,tho.
 

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Maybe get a bear proof ejector from Wild West Guns in AK. If you like open sights take a look at Brockman arpeture sights. The only people who can break them work for Fed Ex. If you would rather have a low power scope as I do, Get an XS scout scope rail mounted on your rifle and then you can mount a traditional scope just a little farther ahead. (enough not to get scoped) Otherwise you are limited by the scope turrets and the placement of the rings in the pre-drilled holes in the rec. Also load up some 525 grain piledrivers from beartooth bullets. They have a recomended load that will shoot lengthwise through a moose but hold on to your hat.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Awesome! Thank you for the replies!

RiggerBoot: No, I have not tried the Remington 405 SPs. I got a box fo 20 Hornady LeverEvolution 325 FTXs in the deal and had a blast with them but have yet to try anything else.

DirtyDog: I concur that a limbsaver and XS sights are good options. I found them on eBay but may go through a local gunsmith to ensure I get the right kind.

Magilla: Thank you and I agree that I made out well. I made sure the guy was happy with what he got out of it (he wanted an inexpensive 1911 for a truck gun). I love this thing. I want to try Buffalo Bore in the 500 grain and maybe some Black Hills in 405 or 300 where I can find it. If nothing else there's always Hornadys. They're fun. I'm trying to find the best place online. Seems a toss up between Midway USA and Cabelas.

Donner: I haven't heard of a bear proof ejector but thanks for the recommend! I'll check it out. I like the open sights and find a scope to be perhaps superfluous but I don't have enough experience yet to know one way or another. I'd much rather have quality irons on it than quality optics as it seems a 100-200 yrd gun gets more use out of irons. But again, I don't profess to know much. An XS scout scope rail sounds perfect. It has a scope rail on it but I think it's just a traditional one with the two notches for the cross bars of ring scopes (does that make sense?). I'll try to upload a picture tomorrow morning when I get off work and get home. LOL I like the phrase "get scoped"; that's definitely what happened to my nasal bridge! I got better but not without losing field of vision in the scope. Maybe I just need to adjust my form and toughen up?

525 grain piledrivers from beartooth bullets? Never heard of them so thanks again! I'm sure that will put the bruising on my muscle in no time!

So limbsaver butt bad, XS sights, XS scout scope rail...what about a sling, ammo butt cuff, or longer mag tube? Am I SOL on the mag tube? Seems that way from my internet research but I have yet to talk to my gunsmith. And if anyone has an 1895 SBL in the TN area, I'm willing to talk. I don't have a lot of cash but I can save up. I hear they're hard to come by.

What is everyone's opinion on a stainless model 1895 for AK?

And on a lighter note, has anyone named theirs yet? I was thinking Sasquatchalypse for mine. Or maybe Theodore, after the great bespectacled badass President Roosevelt. Seems fitting. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Also, a couple times so far I've had a jam in the action. I'll lever in a fresh round and it will get stuck halfway out of the mag tube (onto the lift plate? I'm not sure what the part is that lifts the cartridge into the chamber). I can fix it by manually pulling the cartridge back until it's out of the mag tube but the hangup confuses me. Any help? Is this common?
 

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Put a set of ghost sights on it. I also have the rail on mine for a scout mount scope. If you are going to Alaska,take a really good scope. Alaska can be hard on equipment ,especially optics.
 

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Also, a couple times so far I've had a jam in the action. I'll lever in a fresh round and it will get stuck halfway out of the mag tube (onto the lift plate? I'm not sure what the part is that lifts the cartridge into the chamber). I can fix it by manually pulling the cartridge back until it's out of the mag tube but the hangup confuses me. Any help? Is this common?
Sounds like operator error. Make sure you are not "short stroking" it. Not sure what is happening here? Is the cartridge hanging up in the tube? If so,something is jamming it. Order a steel spring follower too. Plastic ones suck.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Gotcha. Yeah it may just be me short stroking it. I don't know. I don't think so, it seems like I'm levering out until it won't go anymore but I could be wrong. It's been forever since I operated a lever action gun. I'll keep an eye out more for not going all the way forward. Thank you for the advice. I hadn't thought of that.

It's definitely hanging up in the tube, almost like something in there isn't pulling the cartridge all the way like it should. I'll check out a steel spring follower (I assume I can find that on Brownells?). Also, do you prefer Ghost Ring sights over XS? If so, why? I know next to nothing about either of them.

ONE MORE THING: Cleaning? I have found little info online about cleaning the 1895. I downloaded the manual and have seen a video on field stripping and a website on detailed takedown but I only ran a box of 20 shells through it and the previous owner either cleaned it up to pristine condition or ran very few rounds through it (I think he said he killed one hog with it). So should I run more rounds through it to form the barrel like with handguns or go ahead and clean it? Should I just remove the lever, bolt and ejector then clean from there or go farther with it? And lastly, bore brush or bore snake? I was planning on using CLP, Hoppe's 9, and Ballistol with a bore brush and patches then finishing off with a bore snake. Thoughts? Should I just leave it until I run more rounds through it or will that damage the barrel?

Please forgive me for so many noob questions. I'm new to the 1895 and want to get the lowdown on it as much as possible from owners/lovers of the rifle.
 

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The tougher 350gr bullets seem to be most popular for general big game hunting with the 45/70. Of course if your going toe to toe with them really big bears up there, most people will say the bigger the better. Keep in mind that the old time Buffalo hunters were using 405gr lead at only 1400fps.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
That's depressing, RiggerBoot. I've had good luck with this board in the past. Didn't think I was going too deep with the questions but okay.

30WCF: Thanks for the tip on ammo. I didn't know old hunters were using the 405 gr but that, in the words of Al Swearengen, "has the ring of truth to it." I guess it's good to tote some 500 gr cartridges just in case but knowing I can get the job done with lower power rounds is music to my budget's ears.
 

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I love my 1895 Marlins and have a pair. I like the Brockman sights and put a Leupold 1.5 X 5 scope on the other. I've been shooting mostly 400 gr. cast bullets and have taken deer and bear. They work well if you place the bullet. No meat damage to speak of with a big slow moving bullet like that. I'm like you and just love to shoot them. I also have a pair of Model 71 Winchesters in .348 Winchester that are just a blast to shoot.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Utefan: Are your Marlins the same or do you have different models? If they're different, what are they and do you have a preference? I'll check out the Brockman sights later tonight at work. That BSA Deerhunter scope that came with mine is a 1.5-4.5 x 32 and I like it but I have NO IDEA if that's reliable for AK or if I need to get a higher end optic.

Also, I saw a Kick Killer lace-up recoil pad on Cabela's. Does anyone have an opinion of these? I've read that the limbsavers' rubber can erode the finish on the wood if left on for a while and must be removed after a time. That's not a deal killer but I like the 19th/20th Century look of the rifle and was toying with "Westing" it up with a lace up recoil pad.

Does anyone know if a recoil pad like a limbsaver or that lace up kick killer will interfere with an ammo butt cuff and the sling attachment?
 

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I'd skip the extended mag tube. It just adds weight that you don't really need on a hunting rifle. The factory powder puff loads from Rem. and Win. will do fine for every thing you might hunt in America. The Hornady gummy tips turn up the heat a little. Alaska is a different story to some extent. Moose aren't all the tuff, just big, they take time to blead out, brown bears are tough, however a double lung shot bear with just about anything will surely die. I would rather shoot through both front shoulders is why I mentioned the 525 grain piledrivers. Don't worry about the finish on your gun. You won't ruin it on one trip unless you douse it in sea water.(very likely to happen along the coast).
Put a Pachmayre decelerator pad on it. It's still gonna kick if you stoke it.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Hey, Donner, thanks for the info! If I can skip the extended mag tube that'll save me some cash. I checked out the Pachmayr Decelorator pad and people seem to like it but it doesn't seem to be a proper fit for the 1895. Is there another size or model that will fit or would I need to cut/grind it?

I like the Hornady gummy tips and figure they make good "getting used to the gun" ammo. Your info on the moose and bears is greatly appreciated! I'll have to remember that when the time comes. Not sure if my friend and I were going to plan any coastal trips but he has a Savage .270 and I have an FAL so I guess we can change up if it comes to that.

Also, will a bore snake and Ballistol/CLP do for cleaning? What if I've only run a box of shells through it?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Oh, man, 30WCF, that is a beautiful rig! So it's possible to get an ammo butt cuff and recoil pad on there. Good. Is that a stainless receiver and lever or just the flash? Either way, it's gorgeous! Were I an angry, hungry bear, I'd consider going into hibernation early if I saw that.

I had an offer for a 444 Marlin but passed on it b/c it's a smaller faster bullet and I figured penetration wouldn't be as reliable as the 45-70's slower round (based on what I've read elsewhere). Could you tell me what you like about the 444 in comparison to the 45-70? Also, yours looks like mine: 22" version. Do you like that or the 18" more?
 

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Utefan: Are your Marlins the same or do you have different models? If they're different, what are they and do you have a preference? I'll check out the Brockman sights later tonight at work. That BSA Deerhunter scope that came with mine is a 1.5-4.5 x 32 and I like it but I have NO IDEA if that's reliable for AK or if I need to get a higher end optic.

Also, I saw a Kick Killer lace-up recoil pad on Cabela's. Does anyone have an opinion of these? I've read that the limbsavers' rubber can erode the finish on the wood if left on for a while and must be removed after a time. That's not a deal killer but I like the 19th/20th Century look of the rifle and was toying with "Westing" it up with a lace up recoil pad.

Does anyone know if a recoil pad like a limbsaver or that lace up kick killer will interfere with an ammo butt cuff and the sling attachment?
My hunting Marlins are both the standard 22" models. I really like the Leupold VX-3 Rifle Scope 1.5-5x 20mm with Duplex Reticle on mine. I also use Pachmayr decelerator pads on my two hunting rifles. I also have a 26" Cowboy model with the full tube and octagon barrel. I looked at the Guide models but didn't feel the shorter 18" barrel would make much of a difference for me. They are nice and my brother bought one he likes a lot. 45-70's are a great round. I even loaded up some black powder loads to see what they would do. Same bullet with a card wad and a wax cookie. They were very accurate for me that day shooting about 1.5" to 2" groups at 100 yards while in sitting position since we were just out in the hills having fun. :thumb:
 
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