03 February 2024

Marlin Is Continuing to Rounding Out Their Models - 336 SBL

 I like to make sure that I try to keep track of new versions of existing models of firearms or when new stuff comes out. I had recently noted that Marlin released a .30-30 version of their Trapper line up. That model is a stainless steel model with a 16 inch barrel. Well, doing what I do and checking back in, Marlin also released a .30-30 version of the SBL. 

The 336 SBL (courtesy of the Marlin website)

I believe the nomenclature on this rifle is Stainless, Big Loop referring to the stainless steel construction and the "big loop" lever. While similar to the Trapper model, these feature a 19.1 inch barrel, also with 5/8x24 threads, and an elongated scope rail. This allows for a variety of sighting options, including the scout scope. The sights and rail are not likely to be from XS sights but they are similar. 

At this point, Marlin is missing a few things. First is a .22 LR lever action. Even if it wasn't a 39A, it could be a derivative. .45 Colt is also completely missing and I would expect we should see something within the next few years on it. 

I would also expect that Marlin will continue with sub-variants like this. They already had the SBL version with the 1895. I'm pretty sure the receiver is the same between the 336 and 1895 so having .30-30 and .45-70 versions of the Trapper, SBL, Dark, etc lines make sense. Now that the 1894 is out and being offered in both .357 Magnum and .44 Magnum under the Classic and Dark series, I would expect to see those models have versions that fall into the SBL and Trapper versions. I don't know if we'd see a Guide Gun version in anything other than .45-70 as guide guns tend to have be large caliber stopping rifles specifically. I could see Marlin bringing back the .444 Marlin cartridge in the Guide Gun but not any time soon.

This is the closest option I have seen yet that matches what I have been looking for from the industry which is a more traditional .30-30 with a threaded barrel. I don't really want the new tacticool versions for the build I have in mind. I will continue to hold my breath for Marlin to make a 336 Classic with a threaded barrel, however, this new 336 SBL could easily be my choice. It has all the needed requirements of a wood stocked rifle and a threaded barrel. I still prefer a 20 inch, however, I won't be so picky between the 19.1 inch and 20 inch barrel. It's near enough that the performance  difference won't matter. 

If I never see a Marlin 336 Classic Threaded, then this is likely the rifle of choice for my big lever action project. It would pair nicely with my 1894 CST should I go this route someday. The sad part is my Smith and Wesson 17-9 wouldn't match so I'll need to pick up a 617 or a Colt Python .22 LR not complete the full concept. Maybe even pair this with the new Smith and Wesson  32 H&R Mag J-frame. Gun nerd problems. 

Long Live the Lever Action.

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