Can't give you the whole story..but my Marlin 336C does very well as a deer rifle with 170 gr..i was up to my neighborhood gun dealer who is a hunter and he said the 170 gr is an overwhelming favorite with his customers, ....most of whom shoot Marlins..
Mine shoots both weights well enough, it's favorite bullet as far as accuracy goes is the 150 grain Hornady RN. Took me a while to find this out as this Marlin puts just about everything under 2 inches.
In my Marlin's with handloads I get better groups with most 170's but like others have said there just shooters. I have shoot some groups under a inch with my Marlins on a regular bases. An it don't cost much to find out wihat factory load they like I seen a box of some WSSM ammo marked at 46.00 a box of 20 and next to them was some 30 30 for under 10 box
RR, the original load that came out in the 1890's was a 160gr bullet. I assume both the winchesters and marlins used that load. I don't know when the current 150 & 170 gr bullets started being used. It looks like we have come full circle with the new hornady leverlution 160gr load. Regards, Byron
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