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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking for a decent deer/black bear gun that can double for medium range (which to me is (120-200 yards) personal protection. I want a gun I can mount optics to, and have good iron sights to use if the optics fail. For anything 85 yards- I have a shotgun that works just fine. Most shots where I live are no more than 100 yards, but there are some farming fields that extend out to 200.

I don't want a Mosin thank you. Also, most modern bolt guns don't have iron sights, at least most in my price range. I also think a lever gun has an advantage in speed over the bolt gun most of the time.

I also want something reliable, small, light, and easy to carry. Ammo has to be reasonable too.I have only about $300-$350 to spend. Sorry, I can't get an AK for That price here in the people's republic of NY. Plus the whole 10 round mag things is kinda depresing owning an AK.

So it comes down to sks and marlin 336. I know, there's been threads like this before. I'm leaning towards getting the 336 with a factory scoped installed for $350 new. This is just about what I will have in my budget perfectly. It fits many utility roles in my life. Don't worry, I'm not getting the wall mart model.

I realize that the SKS ammo is cheaper, but mostly that is steel cased garbage that in my climate rusts like hell outside. I know semi auto can be nice in a high stress combat situation ,but I can also see spraying random bullets a bad thing in a survival situation. No reason to waste shots. Also, where I live 7.62x39 in not common. I know one store in 100 miles that carries it. I can walk into any store here that sells ammo and pick up a box of .30-.30. I also like the idea of being able to use 170 grain bullets in the 336. Also, Leverevolution ammo relives some issues with longer range shots. Plus I can still get 55 grain, or 125 grain loads for the .30-.30. 7.62x39 pretty much is limited to 124 or 154 grain.

The SKS may require cosmo cleaning...which is a pain. I've shot one and am not crazy about the iron sights. I know they can probably be improved. It's also a heavier gun, but has some merit in it's ruggedness. I know optics can be mounted, but I wonder about the effectiveness of this.

I'm leaning towards the 336. It fits allot of what I desire in my price range. I still think the sks is a good gun ,and it may be bought at a later time in my life.

Before I make my purchase however, I thought I'd let a few of you try to change my mind ,or at least weigh in.
 

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Hunter/Farmer
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I agree with your analysis, the Marlin 336 is the better rifle.:thumb:
 

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Aquaholic
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I have both, and if I had to chose would pick the 336 also. Be sure to adjust the iron sights on the Marlin as well. Nothing worse than a broken scope to make the rifle completely inoperable :)
 

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Founder
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Either rifle will serve you well, but I think the Marlin 336 will serve you better.

Also, the SKS is not famous for being accurate - the Marlin 336 in the right hands can be a tack driver (or close to it).

There are 2 models of the 336 - the standard model and the gold trigger model. There is no actual difference besides the decoration on the stocks and the gold trigger. If you looking to save money, get the standard model of the 336.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Certainly these responses have made me feel I had the right idea.


Another thing that swings the Marlin's way is that my survival buddy is getting a 336, and that two out of three of my brothers also own 336's. Ammo and part sharing is always something to consider...
 

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Get the 336 you won't regreat it. You in the long run it will work much better for you.

You can make it as western or as tacticool as any assault rifle. It can be shot much further than 200 yards if on practices. At 500 yards it has the same power as a 9mm+P+ at the muzzel.

If you reload it can do a surprising amount of tasks. Shoot squirral to moose.


If you want to stockpile parts get screws, some firing pins , extractors and mag springs. That should keep you set for life.




Rifleman 336
 

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Sweat more, bleed less!
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If any have read my treads on my SKS they know I’m a huge fan, but simple fact is the SKS is not a long range gun and due to the whole import thing there growing very scarce. It’s really hard to find a decent one period, let alone for a decent price.

The SKS, which you may or may no know, fires the 7.62X39 round which has almost identical ballistic characteristics to the 30-30. My old SKS, with a 17.5'' chopped & crowned barrel, can keep a 3'' group at 150 yards 8/10 times. And thats with a old scope that i had lying around. My New SKS has a 16'' barrel and has a 4" group at 50 yards with a BSA red dot.
As with any gun, the more moving parts, the more potintial for problem. Another big problem is that the corrosive ammo has really taken a toll on any use SKS so the gas system usually needs replaced and the barrel is usualy pitted all to hell.

For a ranch gun and for the activities you present, I’d say get the lever 30-30. Make it into a scout rifle and you’re in business!

If you’re worried about defense save and get something else for that. Although, the 30-30 is more than adequate for the "tall deer", it dosent have the capacity for a extended fight. The ammo is also heavier and more money.

Heres a 336's group @ 100 yards with Hornadys LeverEvolution ammo.
 

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Getting there....
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I'd go with the 336 considering every bait shop and hardware store in the sticks carries .30/.30. and it's cheap ($8.50/box) at Wal*Mart.
 

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Sweat more, bleed less!
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I'd go with the 336 considering every bait shop and hardware store in the sticks carries .30/.30. and it's cheap ($8.50/box) at Wal*Mart.[/QUOTE

For a box of 20? If so I just found my next gun! Well after the Glock 23/S&W M&P...:D:

I've always loved levers, but 30-30 is usualy alot of moolas. but at 8.50, thats only $3.50 more than a box of 7.62x39 wolf military classic!

There light, accurate to 300yrds, ammo is readily aval., durable and reliable, and decent capacity(6 rnds of 30-30).

I've seen them used in new condition fo $400, and some with a scope. To me, thats a deal!
 

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From the standpoint of power, they are about the same. For accuracy, odds are you will get a more accurate Marlin, but there are exceptions in each case. The most important point is that YOU want the Marlin. That means you will be more confident, you will practice more and you will be better with the Marlin.
You already know the right answer…

You should get the Marlin, it's what’s right for YOU!!
 

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I would go with the Marlin 336. I have one and love it. The .30-30 round has more knock down power and more of a bullet selection than the 7.62x39mm round. With the .30-30 round you have more bullet weight available for you to choose from and hence more versatility.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
After some soul searching, I've eliminated an SKS as an option. It would cost me as much or more after shipping and dealer fees to buy one off the net, and people around here are wanting $400. I'm not paying that much for one.

This week the local dicks are running 336's for $330 with a scope. If I can finish the sale of some of my stuff, I might just pick one up this week.

Part of me still thinks I should stock up on .22Lr and 12 gauge before I buy a rifle though. At this point I have to ask which is better...a new rifle, or ammo for what I have?
 

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Deo VIndice
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I own both...and love both. BUT, based on your own statements about ammo availability and how expensive an SKS is in your area, I'd say the marlin is for you. SKS in the pawn shops run 150-225...I've seen a few with dinged stocks, but the barrels were in great shape. The marlins are fewer and far between, but run 200-275. 7.62x39 is as common here as 30-30...but our 30-30 at walmart is just under $11 a box since it went up again
:( Glad I bought extra boxes when it was 8.99!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I live in the peoples republic of NY. Allot of guns that are priced lower other places, are higher here. I wouldn't mind having both if I could afford it right now.


Our wall mart .30-.30 price is $14ish with tax...but that is cheaper compared to what .308, 30-06, .270, etc costs.

Rifled slugs are pretty cheap here at least, always about $3-4 a box for brand name stuff.
 

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11B3P
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I'm looking for a decent deer/black bear gun that can double for medium range (which to me is (120-200 yards) personal protection. I want a gun I can mount optics to, and have good iron sights to use if the optics fail. For anything 85 yards- I have a shotgun that works just fine. Most shots where I live are no more than 100 yards, but there are some farming fields that extend out to 200.

I don't want a Mosin thank you. Also, most modern bolt guns don't have iron sights, at least most in my price range. I also think a lever gun has an advantage in speed over the bolt gun most of the time.

I also want something reliable, small, light, and easy to carry. Ammo has to be reasonable too.I have only about $300-$350 to spend. Sorry, I can't get an AK for That price here in the people's republic of NY. Plus the whole 10 round mag things is kinda depresing owning an AK.

So it comes down to sks and marlin 336. I know, there's been threads like this before. I'm leaning towards getting the 336 with a factory scoped installed for $350 new. This is just about what I will have in my budget perfectly. It fits many utility roles in my life. Don't worry, I'm not getting the wall mart model.

I realize that the SKS ammo is cheaper, but mostly that is steel cased garbage that in my climate rusts like hell outside. I know semi auto can be nice in a high stress combat situation ,but I can also see spraying random bullets a bad thing in a survival situation. No reason to waste shots. Also, where I live 7.62x39 in not common. I know one store in 100 miles that carries it. I can walk into any store here that sells ammo and pick up a box of .30-.30. I also like the idea of being able to use 170 grain bullets in the 336. Also, Leverevolution ammo relives some issues with longer range shots. Plus I can still get 55 grain, or 125 grain loads for the .30-.30. 7.62x39 pretty much is limited to 124 or 154 grain.

The SKS may require cosmo cleaning...which is a pain. I've shot one and am not crazy about the iron sights. I know they can probably be improved. It's also a heavier gun, but has some merit in it's ruggedness. I know optics can be mounted, but I wonder about the effectiveness of this.

I'm leaning towards the 336. It fits allot of what I desire in my price range. I still think the sks is a good gun ,and it may be bought at a later time in my life.

Before I make my purchase however, I thought I'd let a few of you try to change my mind ,or at least weigh in.
First off, you need to move!
If that is not possible then for your needs I would go with the 336 also. I know you can get some used ones at pawn shops etc. They hold up well with age in my experience.
 
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