CAS TOPICS > The Longbranch

General levergun reliability

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 A comment was made elsewhere regarding someone opinion of lever guns being fragile and prone to break when run hard, and mentioned that CAS shooters had to have work done to make them functional and hold up. I figured this was the place to find out peoples experience with heavily used guns and if modifications were truly required or just desired for performance enhancements, like short throw lever work etc.

 My own experience is largely with Winchester 94s in 30-30 cal, from a 1927 example that was used extremely hard as a ranch gun in Az in the past, through several post-war pre-64s and a number of post-64s, a couple dozen all told. None failed when run fast or hard, but i also wasnt shooting tens of thousands of rounds through them, as some engaged in CAS shooting may have. Ive also had several Marlin 1894 44s, a 357, several 336s, and several 45-70 1895s, as well as a few original Winchester 86s and a couple Browning examples of same, and a Browning 92, not heavily used, but never failed in any way other than a magazine spring that lost its power. The old Navy Arms/Uberti 1866 in 22 cal I shot quite heavily for several years, no issues other than getting dirty ofter several bricks of 22 rounds shot through it. An older Marlin 39 has been very reliable in fairly heavy use over time, Im too new to the Miroku/Winchester 73 in 357 to offer any useful opinion as to reliability or longevity. My experience with all mentioned has mainly been very good, very few problems, the Marlins being the primary share of those.

 If anyone would care to comment, whats the community experience and opinion on general lever action reliability, good or bad, what models, hold up or not, require work or not to be reliable in moderate to heavy use?

 The person that made the comment is well experienced in modern guns, some lever action experience hunting. He was at a class for defensive use of lever actions and said he spent a fair amount of time getting peoples gun functioning when they failed. I dont dismiss his opinion outright, but dont agree with his statements about general fragility and poor reliability of lever actions.

 Thanks for any comments, Im curious to see what folks have to say with more range of experience and heavier use than I have.

My opinion---the only rifle that may be less prone to failure would be a single shot, break open or bolt action.

Baltimore Ed:
Other than the usual uberti out of the box tune up stuff, replacing the too strong springs and too soft screws [when you finally get them out] I haven’t broken anything on my ‘66 or ‘73s. Did have bad toggles on my ‘76 and a bad barrel on a ‘73, defects from the factory. I have shot my old faithful .45 CL 1894 enough that it developed ‘the jam’ but a piece of coping saw blade and jbweld fixed it 20 years ago. They seem to hold up to a lot of hard use being used as cas rifles, a true torture test. I have seen older original guns act up during shoots though. Most of the rifle issues I’ve seen were ammo related.


--- Quote from: Froogal on March 11, 2022, 02:39:01 PM ---My opinion---the only rifle that may be less prone to failure would be a single shot, break open or bolt action.

--- End quote ---

this !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

St. George:
There's a huge difference between hard service in the course of a weapons' life - and being used as a sporting toy in a 'shoot fast' game with often-modified parts.

Originals didn't suffer that indignity.

Scouts Out!



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