Marlin Firearms Co. is a manufacturer of semi-automatic, lever-action and bolt-action rifles. In the past, the company made shotguns, derringers and revolvers based in Madison, North Carolina (formerly based in North Haven, Connecticut). Marlin owned the firearm manufacturer H&R Firearms. In 2007, Remington Arms, part of the Remington Outdoor Company, acquired Marlin Firearms. Remington currently produces Marlin-brand firearms at its Kentucky and New York manufacturing facilities.
|Founder||John Mahlon Marlin|
|Headquarters||Madison, North Carolina, United States|
|Parent||Remington Outdoor Company|
Marlin Firearms was founded in the 1870s by John Marlin. Marlin produced a large assortment of firearms such as lever-action rifles, pump-action shotguns and single shot rifles. Marlin was considered the main competitor to Winchester.
In World War I Marlin became one of the largest machine gun producers in the world for the US and its Allies, building the M1895 Colt–Browning machine gun and a later variant called the "Marlin gun" optimized for aircraft use. In 1917 Marlin Rockwell bought out the Hopkins & Allen Arms Company to promote an expanded line of firearms and restore the image of the Marlin company as makers of "sporting arms".
Marlin Firearms labored for a century as an underdog levergun maker to Winchester (formerly of New Haven). However, in the 1980s and 1990s, Marlin finally began to outpace its old rival. It is currently the dominant seller of lever-action rifles in North America. Its use of side ejection allows for flat-topped firearms, thereby making the mounting of scopes easier than for traditional Winchesters. This helped Marlin capture more market share as American shooters came to rely more and more on optics. Marlins are larger, stronger and heavier than most of the comparable Winchester line, allowing Marlin to use higher powered cartridges such as the .45-70. Marlin's model 1894 lever-action rifles and carbines are available in handgun calibers, including .357 Magnum, .44 Magnum and .41 Magnum, making them suitable companion long guns for revolvers in those calibers.
Major models of Marlin rifles include:
- Marlin No. 20, a .22 caliber pump-action rifle with tubular magazine
- Marlin Model 20, a .22 Short, .22 Long, and .22 Long Rifle bolt-action rifle
- Marlin Model 27 and 27s, Pump action rifles chambered in several smokeless powder cartridges. Early models had octagon barrels.
- Marlin Model 1881, lever action repeater, the first lever action that could handle big bore cartridges such as the .45-70.
- Marlin Model 1893, lever action repeater, precursor of the Model 36 and 336, identifiable by the square flush bolt.
- Marlin Model 1895 Several versions like 1895,G,GBL,GS,M,SBL,CB. All are chambered for the 45/70 caliber except for the "M" (.450) Introduced in the 1970s, based on the Model 336 and named after the original 1895.
- Marlin Model 1895 Square bolt. The original rifle introduced in 1895, based on the 1893 action but scaled up for larger cartridges such as 45-70 and 45-90 to replace the Model 1881.
- Marlin Model 444, produced from 1964 to present date. Variations include (from oldest to newest) 444T, 444S, 444SS, 444P (Outfitter) and 444XLR
- Marlin Model 1897, lever action repeater, precursor of the Model 39 and 39A
- Marlin Model 25M, .22 WMR bolt-action rifle
- Marlin Model 25MG, .22 WMR, smooth bore, bolt-action shotgun. It was designed and marketed as a "Garden Gun"
- Marlin Model 25N, now the Model 925, a .22 Short, .22 Long, and .22 Long Rifle bolt-action rifle
- Marlin Model XT-22 available in long rifle and .22 WMR, There are 15 variations of this rifle available
- Marlin Model Golden 39A, lever action repeater, the longest continuously produced rifle in the world
- Marlin Levermatic, an innovative short-throw lever-action rifle in a variety of small cartridges
- Marlin Model 60, a popular .22 LR caliber rifle
- Marlin Model 1894, lever action carbines in revolver calibers — .357 Magnum (1894C), .41 Magnum (1894FG & 1894S), .44 Magnum (1894SS or plain 1894), and .45 Colt (1894 Cowboy) Based on the original 1894.
- Marlin Model 336, one of the most popular lever action hunting rifles in the world
- Marlin Camp Carbine, a discontinued model
- Marlin Model 70P "Papoose", a lightweight, magazine-fed, .22 LR carbine with a detachable barrel; it is designed to be taken down for easy transport while camping, backpacking, etc.
- Marlin Model 795, a .22 LR semi-automatic rifle.
- Marlin Model 700, a .22 LR semi-automatic rifle, similar to the Model 795, but has a heavy tapered target barrel
- Marlin 780, a bolt-action hunting rifle
- Marlin Model 80 (and subsequents 80C etc) Bolt action .22 rimfire using 7-capacity detachable magazine, introduced circa 1939, predecessor to later versions such as Model 25, etc.
- Marlin Model 7000, a .22 LR semi-automatic rifle, similar to the Model 795, but has a heavy non-tapered target barrel
- Marlin Model 2000, a .22 LR bolt-action rifle, designed for competition target shooting (biathlon version available)
- Marlin Model MR7, a long action center fire bolt-action rifle available in .30-06, .270,and .25-06 manufactured from 1996-1999 A few were offered in .280 Remington in 1999
- Marlin Model XL7, a long action center fire bolt-action rifle available in .30-06, .270, and .25-06
- Marlin Model XS7, a short action center fire bolt-action rifle available in .308, .243 Win, and 7mm-08
- Marlin Model 1881, one of the earliest large caliber lever action repeating rifles
Significant variations of many of these rifles have usually also been manufactured. For example, there are 6 distinctly different variations manufactured for the Marlin Model 60. Marlin has been making lever-action rifles since 1881, and in 2008, they produced their 30 millionth lever-action rifle, which was donated to the National Rifle Association.
Double Barrel Shotguns:
- L.C. Smith Double
Exposed Hammer, Pump-Action Shotguns:
- Marlin 1898
- Marlin Model(s) 16, 17, 19, 21, 24, 26, 30, 42, and 49
Hammerless Pump-Action Shotguns:
- Marlin Model(s) 28, 31, 43, 44, 53, 63, 120
Submachine guns include:
- M2 Hyde, a World War II submachine gun prototype
- United Defense M42, a World War II submachine gun for OSS
- Marlin 1875 Pocket Revolver
In 1953 Marlin Firearms was issued U.S. Patent 3,100,358 for what was named MicroGroove Rifling, which was a departure from the standard "Ballard," or cut rifling. One purpose of Microgroove rifling was to increase the speed of producing rifle barrels. Microgroove rifling is described in the patent as having 5 grooves for every 1/10 of an inch bore diameter, and that the driving side of each land would be "tangentially disposed" to prevent accumulating fouling in use.
Marlin introduced Microgroove rifling in their .22 rimfire barrels in July 1953, with 16 grooves that were .014" wide, and nominally .0015" deep. Ballard rifled barrels have grooves generally in the range of .069–.090" wide, and .0015–.003" deep. This change was marketed in the 1954 Marlin catalog, as having numerous advantages that this new form of rifling had, including better accuracy, ease of cleaning, elimination of gas leakage, higher velocities and lower chamber pressures. The catalog also claimed that Microgroove rifling did not distort the bullet jacket as deeply as Ballard rifling hence improving accuracy with jacketed bullets at standard velocity.
Designed for factory loaded ammunition, Microgroove barrels have a reputation for accuracy problems with centerfire ammunition handloaded with cast lead bullets due to the increased bore diameter generated by the shallow grooves. The use of oversized cast bullets greatly solves this problem, restoring accuracy with cast bullet handloads to levels seen from Ballard rifled barrels. Early Marlin .30-30 microgroove barrels had a twist rate of 1 turn in 10 inches optimized for factory ammunition with jacketed bullets; later Marlin .30-30 microgroove barrels show a twist rate of 1 turn in 10.5 inches which improves accuracy with cartridges loaded to lower velocity than standard.
In November 2000, Marlin purchased the assets of H&R 1871, Inc., a Massachusetts-based manufacturer of shotguns and rifles (New England Firearms branded), founded in 1871, and now located in Gardner, Massachusetts. Marketing its products under the brand names of Harrington & Richardson and New England Firearms, H&R 1871 claimed to be the largest manufacturer of Single-shot shotguns and rifles in the world. In December 2007 Remington Arms Company purchased Marlin. Remington announced in April 2008 that it would close the Gardner manufacturing plant by the end of 2008 affecting 200 workers. In March 2010, Marlin announced that it would close its North Haven plant, and move the work to Remington plants in Ilion, New York, and Mayfield, Kentucky.
- "Remington to Acquire Marlin Firearms". Archived from the original on 2008-07-08.
- S. P. Fjestad. Blue Book of Gun Values, 13th Ed. ISBN 0-9625943-4-2.
- Walter, John (2006), The Guns That Won the West: Firearms on the American Frontier, 1848-1898, pp. 206–207, ISBN 978-1-85367-692-5
- "Marlin Donates 30,000,000th Lever Action Rifle to NRA–ILA". Archived from the original on 2008-07-08.
- Glen E. Fryxell, "Marlin's Microgroove Barrels", Leverguns.com, source cited: William S. Brophy, "Marlin Firearms: A History of the Guns and the Company That Made Them", Stackpole Books, 1989.
- “Gunmaker Remington to buy Marlin Firearms” USA Today, December 27, 2007
- Arms Manufacturer Remington Closing Gardner Plant WBZTV, April 7, 2008
- "Marlin to close North Haven plant; 265 jobs going".
- "Marlin Firearms Closes In North Haven, Ending 141 Years Of Manufacturing In Connecticut".