Rifleman Review: Marlin 1894 In .44 Mag.

posted on November 24, 2021

Last year, American Rifleman staff took a look at Marlin's modern rendition of the classic Model 1894 lever-action rifle before the company's sale to Ruger following Remington Outdoors' bankruptcy. Marlin made a name for itself with its lever-action rifles, and its modern Model 1895 was a top seller in 2020 as well despite the turbulent events that took place for the company. Going for a more traditional aesthetic, the Marlin 1894 follows a classic design scheme despite the inclusion of some more modern features. 

The Marlin 1894 in .44 Mag.

Chambered for .44 Mag., the Marlin 1894 has a 20" barrel with Ballard-style, 6-groove rifling in a 1:38" twist rate. Underneath the barrel is a 10-round tube magazine, which is fed through a loading gate on the left side of the receiver. Despite its mostly steel and wood construction, the Marlin 1894 weighs 6 lbs. 9 oz. unloaded. One of the more modern features of the Marlin 1894 is its solid-top receiver and side ejection, unlike the top-ejecting 1894s of old. This provides a flat mounting point on top of the receiver for optic mounts, for which the Marlin 1894 come drilled and tapped for. The hammer is also rigged for use with optics, as it comes with a side extension installed.

Loading the Marlin 1894 through the side gate.

The iron sights that come on the Marlin 1894 consist of a semi-buckhorn rear sight and a hooded, brass-bead front sight. The rear sight is adjustable for elevation and can fold for use with a scope. On the front sight, the protective hood is enlarged to provide a clearer sight picture. All of the metal components come with a classic blued-style finish. The stock also comes in a classic styling, made of oiled American walnut with checkering at the grips and a rubber pad fitted at the butt. Instead of a saddle ring, the Marlin 1894 uses modern sling studs located at the butt and fore-end. 

Working the Marlin 1894's action on the range.

For controls, the Marlin 1894 has a metal action lever, hammer and cross-bolt safety. The cross-bolt safety is color coded and also acts as a hammer block when engaged, preventing the hammer from being able to touch the firing pin. As an added safety feature, there is also a trigger-lock safety that only disengages when the action lever, and thus the action, is fully closed. The hammer itself has three positions, including a half-cock position where the cross-bolt safety can also be engaged. 

Shooting the Marlin 1894 on the range.

For more information on new Marlin lever-action rifles like the 1894 that are being produced under the ownership and oversight of Ruger, visit marlinfirearms.com.

To watch complete segments of past episodes of American Rifleman TV, go to americanrifleman.org/artv. For all-new episodes of ARTV, tune in Wednesday nights to Outdoor Channel 8:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. EST.


Springfield Armory XD M Elite 10 Mm OSP
Springfield Armory XD M Elite 10 Mm OSP

NRA Gun Of The Week: Springfield Armory XD-M Elite 4.5” OSP In 10 mm Auto

Watch American Rifleman staff on the range to learn about the 10 mm Auto-chambered XD-M Elite 4.5” OSP, one of the latest offerings in Springfield Armory's feature-rich lineup of Croatian-made pistols.

The Armed Citizen® Dec. 2, 2022

Read today's "The Armed Citizen" entry for real stories of law-abiding citizens, past and present, who used their firearms to save lives.

Rifleman Q&A: M1903 vs. M1903A1 Rifles

I’ve seen references to an M1903A1 rifle. I’ve looked around at a bunch of gun shows, and I have not found a rifle marked “M1903A1.” How does that variant differ from a standard M1903 rifle?

PrairieFire Emerges Following Front Sight Chapter 11 Filing

PrairieFire announced this week that the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Nevada confirmed the Chapter 11 plan of reorganization under which it will acquire 100 percent of Front Sight Management’s equity.

5 Common Grip & Stance Mistakes

Even for those who are seasoned and train regularly, sometimes mistakes can persist when it comes to shooting techniques. Here are five of the most common grip and stance mistakes made by shooters.

Windham Weaponry: Makers Of ARs & More

For Richard Dyke, previous owner of Bushmaster, his legacy has evolved under a new banner, Windham Weaponry, which continues to manufacture a number of AR-type rifles and pistols to this day.


Get the best of American Rifleman delivered to your inbox.