Marlin’s pistol caliber carbine, the 1894, has always been a great seller. It was introduced in 1894, dropped from the lineup many years later, then re-introduced in the 1970s because of popular demand. Back in the day, it was common for a cowboy to have his wheelgun and his rifle chambered in the same cartridge for practical reasons: the revolver offered five quick shots if things got up close and personal, while the rifle offered extended range and increased accuracy. Both could be loaded, without dithering, from the same cartridge belt.
Early 1894 chamberings covered most of the then-popular, but now largely obsolete pistol cartridges. After its reintroduction, Marlin chambered the 1894 mostly in a host of modern magnum handgun cartridges like the .357, .41, and .44 mags. These new, powerful cartridges were wildly popular in the carbine, and were undoubtedly responsible for establishing the 1894 as a legitimate hunting and defensive tool for the 20th century.
But these modern handgun cartridges, like their 19th century counterparts, all have one thing in common: they are rimmed revolver cartridges not suited for use in modern semi-automatic pistols (unless you don’t mind the massive size and expense of the Desert Eagle). If you happen to prefer carrying a semi-auto pistol to a revolver, then you will have had no luck finding a lever action chambered in your preferred round. Not even in the ubiquitous .45 auto, one of the most popular American pistol cartridges for over a century.
This is where Ranger Point Precision comes in. While we're not the first to successfully convert an 1894 to run auto-pistol cartridges (10MM, 40S&W, 45ACP, 357SIG), it would seem that we are one of only a handful of custom shops doing so. Our conversions are not warmed over factory rifles, but are custom-built and married from the action up to your caliber of choice. All critical rifle parts are modified to produce a carbine that runs these shorter semi-auto pistol cartridges faster, smoother, more accurately, and more reliably than a factory 1894.
Faster: Every one of our semi-auto caliber carbines includes a short stroke conversion. This means that you move the lever significantly less to cycle the action, resulting in faster follow up shots.
Smoother: Every one of our conversions includes as standard our full action and trigger treatment, for the lightest, slickest action possible.
Accurate: Our conversions are built with quality Douglas barrel blanks, individually chambered, concentric to the bore, and perfectly head spaced to your chosen cartridge. Because accurate guns are more interesting. In addition, our accurizing services ensure MOA.
Reliable: Because every action part is modified and/or hand tuned, your converted carbine will run flawlessly. No feed glitches, no failures to extract or eject. Just go time. Every time.
This all comes with a price tag of course, and many will deem that price an unnecessary extravagance. That’s ok. Custom rifles are not for everyone. But you will make up at least some of the cost in much cheaper ammo costs. Have you priced magnum revolver ammo lately? And of course, there is the practicality of matching your pistol and rifle calibers. But maybe the best reason to pull the trigger on your Marlin 1894 conversion project is that it’s incredibly cool to own a unique, short stroke lever gun custom tailored to you.
Learn more about our Ranger Point Precision Marlin Rifle Conversions.