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I always felt like I’m pretty knowledgeable about guns and stuff. Growing up reading Gun bibles and listening to old men and such. But I can’t seem to find what I’m looking for, maybe it’s a golden egg lol. I love to tote my dads old Model 94 “it’s a 1981 model” but my eyes don’t like the iron sights. I don’t like the Side mount scope stuff, and just to be plain honest, 30-30 isn’t my favorite caliber. But I absolutely love the way that rifle totes and balances. What would be a close second to that rifle in the way it’s built that would come in a short action caliber of some sort. Don’t have to be a lever action by no means, just something that balances like it and is narrow built. I assume a BLR would be close, but not the same. I tote a Rem. Model 7 a lot cause I like the way it handles as well. Just getting yalls opinions on it mainly. And before you start cutting me down on yhe 30-30, it’s a good caliber for what it is, just not my favorite is all. I know your paw paw and his kin killed 7274 deer with em over the years, But still. 😁😁

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And I’m not particularly wanting an older 336 per day either.

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You want a model 94 in .307 Winchester. You'll need your wallet

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Marlin 1894 in 44 mag?

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In a bolt action, maybe a Ruger 77 or Hawkeye RSI with the Mannlicher-style stock.

In a lever action, maybe a Winchester 88, either a carbine or a rifle with the barrel shortened.

In a pump action, the only option would be something from Remington, a 14, 141, or 760 family. The wood on the 14s is slimmer than that on the 141s and it is pretty narrow too.

In a semi-auto, maybe a Winchester 100, either a carbine or a rifle with the barrel shortened.

None will be quite as narrow as a Winchester 94, but what is?

I'm not a Winchester 94 fan, not because they are a useful and iconic design, but because I don't care for long guns without pistol grip style stocks and very few 94s were made with that style of stock. I have Winchester 64s and, from my perspective, they have a very different feel.

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Savage 99 in one of its lighter/shorter barrel versions. A 99F in 300 Savage or .308 Win with a reciever peep sight is a great carry option.

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I’d thought of a 760, looking at one of them pretty hard

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Originally Posted by MikeL2
Savage 99 in one of its lighter/shorter barrel versions. A 99F in 300 Savage or .308 Win with a reciever peep sight is a great carry option.

I’ll look at one of them. Thanks for the replies guys.

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Discontinued Remington pump?

Henry Long Ranger?

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Marlin 93 S/C

Or a glenfield, or a TK

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i sent my m94 to JES Reboring and he did a 35/30-30.

http://35caliber.com/

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Halfway through reading your post I was going to suggest a Remington Model 7. To be honest, I’m not sure there is much else that feels like a 94. Maybe look into a forward mount red dot. I’ve always thought the 7-30 Waters looked like a neat chambering for the 94.

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I am down to 2 lever guns. A Marlin 1894SS in 44 mag and a Browning BLR Lightweight in 358 Winchester. Both have 20" barrels and are on the light side. I owned Winchester levers but don't seem to keep them long. Like you, not a super fan of the 30-30. The 44 mag is certainly not a long range cartridge but I have not shot past 45 yards since 2011.
I am probably going to take the BLR but that is a new to me gun...

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Originally Posted by tdoyka
i sent my m94 to JES Reboring and he did a 35/30-30.

http://35caliber.com/

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Originally Posted by K1500
Halfway through reading your post I was going to suggest a Remington Model 7. To be honest, I’m not sure there is much else that feels like a 94. Maybe look into a forward mount red dot. I’ve always thought the 7-30 Waters looked like a neat chambering for the 94.

There isn't anything else that feels or handles like a 94

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The Mossberg 464s were a fairly lithe little rifle, but QC on them was always questionable. I had one for a bit... shot ok, but not great, and it wasn't very smooth feeding. The tang safety was a nice feature.

It was still better than the couple of 90s FN era 94s I had though... those things were fuggin trash. Calling those a Winchester 94 was a disgrace.

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Originally Posted by Chapoosa
I always felt like I’m pretty knowledgeable about guns and stuff. Growing up reading Gun bibles and listening to old men and such. But I can’t seem to find what I’m looking for, maybe it’s a golden egg lol. I love to tote my dads old Model 94 “it’s a 1981 model” but my eyes don’t like the iron sights. I don’t like the Side mount scope stuff, and just to be plain honest, 30-30 isn’t my favorite caliber. But I absolutely love the way that rifle totes and balances. What would be a close second to that rifle in the way it’s built that would come in a short action caliber of some sort. Don’t have to be a lever action by no means, just something that balances like it and is narrow built. I assume a BLR would be close, but not the same. I tote a Rem. Model 7 a lot cause I like the way it handles as well. Just getting yalls opinions on it mainly. And before you start cutting me down on yhe 30-30, it’s a good caliber for what it is, just not my favorite is all. I know your paw paw and his kin killed 7274 deer with em over the years, But still. 😁😁

What part of the country do you hunt in and what is a typical shot? 50 yds? 100? 200? More?

How do you hunt? Still hunting and tracking in the woods? Sitting in a tree stand in the woods. Sitting in a blind along a field? Hiking and spotting in the western high country?

What would be your ideal cartridge? .308? .243? Without trying to defend the 30-30, I'd be curious what aspect of "more" you're interested in? More range? More accuracy? Flatter trajectory? Faster kills?

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You could go with a red dot. Turnbull Restoration sells the mount. Anything that interferes with carrying a Winchester 94 by the receiver destroys its usefulness in my opinion.

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Originally Posted by zcm82
The Mossberg 464s were a fairly lithe little rifle, but QC on them was always questionable. I had one for a bit... shot ok, but not great, and it wasn't very smooth feeding. The tang safety was a nice feature.

It was still better than the couple of 90s FN era 94s I had though... those things were fuggin trash. Calling those a Winchester 94 was a disgrace.


What was the problem? I had two 90's model 94's and they were fantastic

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Mine were absolutely terrible. I had one in 30-30 and one in 45 Colt. Garbage trigger, garbage feeding, garbage accuracy... two of the worst rifles I've owned in my entire life. Not sure why I was stupid enough to buy a second as bad as the first one was. The 45 Colt was the worse of the two, but that's not any compliment to the 30-30.

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I had two 44 mags. Feeding was fine and accuracy was acceptable. The triggers were stiff though

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I had to send the 45 Colt in... straight out of the box it couldn't consistently hit a paper plate at 50yds.

The 30-30 was around a 5"@100 rifle at its best. My Dad actually has that one as a safe queen. It has a big loop lever and really pretty wood, so he traded me a 357 for it.

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Originally Posted by Pinnah
Originally Posted by Chapoosa
I always felt like I’m pretty knowledgeable about guns and stuff. Growing up reading Gun bibles and listening to old men and such. But I can’t seem to find what I’m looking for, maybe it’s a golden egg lol. I love to tote my dads old Model 94 “it’s a 1981 model” but my eyes don’t like the iron sights. I don’t like the Side mount scope stuff, and just to be plain honest, 30-30 isn’t my favorite caliber. But I absolutely love the way that rifle totes and balances. What would be a close second to that rifle in the way it’s built that would come in a short action caliber of some sort. Don’t have to be a lever action by no means, just something that balances like it and is narrow built. I assume a BLR would be close, but not the same. I tote a Rem. Model 7 a lot cause I like the way it handles as well. Just getting yalls opinions on it mainly. And before you start cutting me down on yhe 30-30, it’s a good caliber for what it is, just not my favorite is all. I know your paw paw and his kin killed 7274 deer with em over the years, But still. 😁😁

What part of the country do you hunt in and what is a typical shot? 50 yds? 100? 200? More?

How do you hunt? Still hunting and tracking in the woods? Sitting in a tree stand in the woods. Sitting in a blind along a field? Hiking and spotting in the western high country?

What would be your ideal cartridge? .308? .243? Without trying to defend the 30-30, I'd be curious what aspect of "more" you're interested in? More range? More accuracy? Flatter trajectory? Faster kills?

East central Alabama. 150 yards and under when I tote the 94. I use my bolt actions o out to 300 plus yards around the farm. I stalk hunt mainly with the model 94. What I’ll probably wind up doing is going to the eye doctor and get some glasses. I need to anyway, and get some fiber optic sights and keep on trucking lol.

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The only thing I found the handles close to the 94 is the Marlin 1895G Guide gun

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Originally Posted by Chapoosa
East central Alabama. 150 yards and under when I tote the 94. I use my bolt actions o out to 300 plus yards around the farm. I stalk hunt mainly with the model 94. What I’ll probably wind up doing is going to the eye doctor and get some glasses. I need to anyway, and get some fiber optic sights and keep on trucking lol.

I think there are three different issues that interrelated but worth thinking about separately.

First, aging eyes suck. Ask me how I know. I've owned a handful of bolt guns and lever guns with iron sights of various sorts. IMO, in increasing order in terms of working with aging eyes:
  • Open sights
  • Receiver mounted peep sights
  • Tang mounted peep sights
  • Red dot sights
  • Scope


I had a Swedish Mauser for a bit. Couldn't see the sights. At. All. Put a no drill scout scope on it and could see again.

I have 2 Win94s (both in 32Wsp). I used to be able to see standard irons on the. But really struggle with them. My grandfather's gun has Lyman No 1 tang sight and I can see great with it. But I wouldn't use it for tracking as it's frail when up and too clumsy for quick shots. I put a Williams FP receiver sight and their FireEye fiber optic front sight. Not as clear in certain light and I need to swap apertures through the day. But a lot more durable. Eventually, my newer 94 will get an XS scout rail for use with a red dot or scout scope. I'll leave the FP/FireEye on as a back up.

I've played with scout scopes on both my Mauser and my 94 and they don't. Wreck the handling as muc as a traditional scope. And while I shoot in offhand matches with normal scopes, I struggle to shoot off hand for tracking hunting with a scope. I'm much better making quick shots with peep sights.

All of this to say, I would suggest thinking about sights and optics for your stalking gun; whether it be a lever or bolt gun.

Second issue is which cartridge. Not defending the the 30-30 (or 32WSP) but I think they're perfectly adequate out to 150 yds. And TBH, that's beyond what I can do off hand making quick shots and well beyond the distance I see deer when stalking. If I had to replace it with a none lever round, I go back to the 6.5 out of old times sake and would only use a .308 if I downloaded it a bit. It's more than I want for a stalking gun.

Third issue is how the different platforms match their cartridges. The 94 started its life as a pistol caliber 92. When JMB shoved that 30-30 into it, that same stock design that comes up to the shoulder so easily also flips up under recoil. I often punch myself in the nose with mine. In this way, I wouldn't want anything more than a 30-30 in a 94.

The only options that I can think of would be a carbine pump or bolt. Personally, I would go with a 6.5x55 or 7mm-08 carbine, but finding them is hard.

Sorry for the stupid long post. Hope something here helps with your search.

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Originally Posted by moosemike
Originally Posted by K1500
Halfway through reading your post I was going to suggest a Remington Model 7. To be honest, I’m not sure there is much else that feels like a 94. Maybe look into a forward mount red dot. I’ve always thought the 7-30 Waters looked like a neat chambering for the 94.

There isn't anything else that feels or handles like a 94
I know it's blasphemy, but I always thought the 94 felt too much like a bb gun. I don't have enormous hands, but it just never felt "solid" the way a 336 or even a m92 does. I know, I know...

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Originally Posted by Pinnah
Originally Posted by Chapoosa
East central Alabama. 150 yards and under when I tote the 94. I use my bolt actions o out to 300 plus yards around the farm. I stalk hunt mainly with the model 94. What I’ll probably wind up doing is going to the eye doctor and get some glasses. I need to anyway, and get some fiber optic sights and keep on trucking lol.

I think there are three different issues that interrelated but worth thinking about separately.

First, aging eyes suck. Ask me how I know. I've owned a handful of bolt guns and lever guns with iron sights of various sorts. IMO, in increasing order in terms of working with aging eyes:
  • Open sights
  • Receiver mounted peep sights
  • Tang mounted peep sights
  • Red dot sights
  • Scope


I had a Swedish Mauser for a bit. Couldn't see the sights. At. All. Put a no drill scout scope on it and could see again.

I have 2 Win94s (both in 32Wsp). I used to be able to see standard irons on the. But really struggle with them. My grandfather's gun has Lyman No 1 tang sight and I can see great with it. But I wouldn't use it for tracking as it's frail when up and too clumsy for quick shots. I put a Williams FP receiver sight and their FireEye fiber optic front sight. Not as clear in certain light and I need to swap apertures through the day. But a lot more durable. Eventually, my newer 94 will get an XS scout rail for use with a red dot or scout scope. I'll leave the FP/FireEye on as a back up.

I've played with scout scopes on both my Mauser and my 94 and they don't. Wreck the handling as muc as a traditional scope. And while I shoot in offhand matches with normal scopes, I struggle to shoot off hand for tracking hunting with a scope. I'm much better making quick shots with peep sights.

All of this to say, I would suggest thinking about sights and optics for your stalking gun; whether it be a lever or bolt gun.

Second issue is which cartridge. Not defending the the 30-30 (or 32WSP) but I think they're perfectly adequate out to 150 yds. And TBH, that's beyond what I can do off hand making quick shots and well beyond the distance I see deer when stalking. If I had to replace it with a none lever round, I go back to the 6.5 out of old times sake and would only use a .308 if I downloaded it a bit. It's more than I want for a stalking gun.

Third issue is how the different platforms match their cartridges. The 94 started its life as a pistol caliber 92. When JMB shoved that 30-30 into it, that same stock design that comes up to the shoulder so easily also flips up under recoil. I often punch myself in the nose with mine. In this way, I wouldn't want anything more than a 30-30 in a 94.

The only options that I can think of would be a carbine pump or bolt. Personally, I would go with a 6.5x55 or 7mm-08 carbine, but finding them is hard.

Sorry for the stupid long post. Hope something here helps with your search.

Thanks for the advice and info. I’ll take heed to it.

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The Winchester 94 remains a classic. Everyone seems to have owned one. I am not a fan of the 30-30 yet when I see them on a rack, I get the urge. The gun has sold the cartridge.
I can't stay away from lever guns. I suspect there is a reason I still have a box of Winchester 170 grain ammo in the safe...

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Just get you a BLR in whatever caliber you want and be done with it. Send it to Neil Jones for a trigger job if you can't live with the factory trigger.

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Originally Posted by Triggernosis
Just get you a BLR in whatever caliber you want and be done with it. Send it to Neil Jones for a trigger job if you can't live with the factory trigger.


If you love the handling and feel of a model 94, you won't like a BLR much

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couple of years ago i gave my son a Browning BLR S.S. 308 WIN. with a 3X9 Leupold ,son loves to carry that rifle with barrel pointed down with sling over his left shoulder and he has that rifle up on his right shoulder very fast when in the woods hunting, plus this BLR is very accurate , we did fix the trigger in it also. these BLR rifles have a magazine / clip so you don`t have to ieect every shell or have the bullet points messed up. son has shot a couple of nice bucks with this handi little rifle .


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Originally Posted by moosemike
Originally Posted by Triggernosis
Just get you a BLR in whatever caliber you want and be done with it. Send it to Neil Jones for a trigger job if you can't live with the factory trigger.


If you love the handling and feel of a model 94, you won't like a BLR much


Got to disagree . Have both and love them both. If I could afford it I would buy a steel 81 BLR in .243 and build a .260 on it to cover any long range hunting in Alabama. My .358 is perfect for the hunting I do in North Alabama and Southern Middle Tennessee . A short Savage 99 would also work very well in one of the lighter models in a caliber with enough reach to suit you.

As far as the Henry's , Ugly and ungainly feeling compared to Winchester , Marlin , Browning or Savages.


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I'm perfectly comfortable with the .30-30 to 200 yards. If I'll be hunting someplace where longer reach may be needed I'll take one of my bolt guns. I don't get the alure of a BLR. It's not really a lever action, more of an ugly, quasi lever operated bolt action with a poor trigger and balance.

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Picking the right gun is a personal thing. All about what feels good in your hand, where you hunt, how you hunt, distances of shots…. Caliber plays into the equation and why you have more than one.. 😉(Like pick the right gulf club for the shot).

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Once you have used an original Smokeless Steel, Marlin Safety 1893 you will leave the '94 Win at home. From 32-40 to 45-70, a slender, light hunters gun, years ahead of Oliver Winchester.


Well this is a fine pickle we're in, should'a listened to Joe McCarthy and George Orwell I guess.
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I put a NECG aperture rear sight on a Ruger No. 1 RSI in 7x57 and carried it up and down all kinds of terrain on a deer/elk hunt about 15 years ago. Never got a shot, but that was the easiest carrying rifle I ever hunted with and reminded me of carrying a 94 since you carry these by the receiver. I later put a 2x7 Leupold VX2 on it and took deer with it. It is still a joy to carry with the scope, but not quite as 94-like. The No. 1A is also sweet to carry and handles fast - one of those with a peep would be similar to the RSI setup I used. I may have to try that myself.

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Well I'll say it as long as no one has. Keep searching gun broker etc for a M94 carbine in 30x30 Angle Eject model put a 1x4 or 1x6 on it or a 3x scope just set and forget trim simple scope if your eyes are bad enough that barrel irons don't work pole vault right into a simple scope there will be a world of improvement. Screw stupid side mounts that offset the scope. You asked and I told you. Mb


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I’ve had a couple pre-64 model 94’s. I can’t say there’s any other rifle that handles as well. I sold both. They didn’t fit my hunting style.
I have a couple Savage 99’s.
I have a few 336’s, a Marlin 1894 and a 1895.
I have a 1886 and a 1892.
I’ve had a BLR.
As to which one is best??? I imagine that depends a lot on what they’re used for.

The BLR was accurate and was chambered for a fine cartridge - 358 Win. It was an early BLR, I could not live with the magazine. That cartridge, in my opinion, was good to go in my opinion, through elk size game. I sold it and barreled a short action 700 for the cartridge.
My 336’s are more accurate than the 94’s I had.
The 99’s makes a lot of sense for me. One is a 250 and the other is a 300. The 300 has killed more game than any other lever gun of mine. Its good to go, I think, for shooting game in open areas and in close in areas. Plenty of power for deer. Maybe elk, though I wouldn’t grab it if I were elk hunting.
I’ve hunted in upper New York State and in the Ozarks in Missouri. I think the 94 or a 336 would be great for deer hunting there, at least where I was hunting.
If I were to grab a lever gun and hunt elk in the mountains the choices I’d go with are: BLR or Henry. If I were to fish the rivers of Alaska and wanted bear protection it would be a 1895 Marlin or maybe a 1886.
If I were hunting rabbits it would be the 1892 or a Marlin 1894. I really like the 1892.

It all depends…

Last edited by Bugger; 01/20/24.

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Originally Posted by flintlocke
Once you have used an original Smokeless Steel, Marlin Safety 1893 you will leave the '94 Win at home. From 32-40 to 45-70, a slender, light hunters gun, years ahead of Oliver Winchester.

I had an 1893 and still preferred the Winchester. And the 1893 never came in 45-70

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Oh, I forgot. I still have a 375 in a 94 and a 348 in 71. I’ll keep them.


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Sorry, brain fade, 38-55.


Well this is a fine pickle we're in, should'a listened to Joe McCarthy and George Orwell I guess.
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The BLR is a very nice rifle. Box mag, many cartridge options, great finish.
I have one in a Lightweight in 358 Win. Recoil is surprisingly good for the cartridge. I recenly picked up a Marlin 444 and think that the BLR might be an extra, or if I get motivated I can sell it. The Marlins have always been a favorite for me.

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The Savage 99 would get my vote. A scope or red dot is easily mounted over the center of the bore, it balances and shoulders quickly.

Barrel lengths and cartridge choices are more vast than the 1894 Winchester.

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