Five Long Arms I Wish I Still Owned
by Greg Ritchie
Marlin 336c, 35 Remington
The Marlin 336 chambered in 35 Remington was the first rifle I purchased for myself. It was also one of the least used Rifles I have ever owned. I was convinced it was going to be the best rifle one could own for hunting deer in the southern hardwoods where I grew up. It had to be, the hole in the barrel was bigger than that 30-30! It probably would of been too, except there were not many deer in the woods near home at that time, and the county I hunted that had some deer required the use of shotguns. I sold the rifle less than a year after I bought it to fund a shotgun for my deer hunting endeavors.
Ithaca Model 37 Featherweight Deerslayer, 12 gauge
This was the firearm that replaced my Marlin 336. It was bored specifically to shoot rifled slugs, and shoot them well it did. It was milk carton accurate at 75 yards. Many a deer fell to the Ithaca and Winchester slugs. Speaking of Winchester slugs, the Ithaca had a fallacy, it would not shoot any shells with ribs on the cases. Smooth shells were ok, it did not matter if they were plastic or paper, but ribbed shells would stick in the chamber. Therefore, it ate a steady diet of Winchester. This shotgun only had only had a single action bar and one day the action bar seperated from the slide. It was taken to a gunsmith who silver soldered it back together, whereupon it promptly broke again. Disgusted, I traded it off for a fishing boat.
Remington Model 11, 12 gauge
This shotgun was given to me by the wife a deceased neighbor who had purchased it back in the 1930’s. It was another shotgun that was used extensively for deer. It threw a load of buckshot as well as any shotgun I have seen. It was also a favorite for rabbits and quail. The barrel was marked FULL but was X’ed out and IMP CYL was stamped under the X’ed out FULL indicating it had been modified from the original at least once in its life. This shotgun was lost in a house fire in 1999.
SAVAGE Model 110, 30-06 Springfield
This was the second rifle I purchased for myself, and the firearm I started my handloading hobby with. I bought the rifle along with one of the Lee Classic Loader kits. I chose IMR 3031 powder from the list that was included with the kit, the Hornady 150 grain spire point bullet and proceeded to pound together some loads that the rifle would put into a jagged one hole group at 100 yards! I had just acquired a deer lease in the mountains and the Savage 30-06 was more than up to the task of my "mountain rifle". This rifle was pawned in order to pay for some of life’s unexpected expenses and unfortunately I was not able to pay the loan off in time.
WINCHESTER RANGER Model 94 ANGLE EJECT, 30-30 Winchester
This rifle was a replacement for the 30-06. I no longer has the mountain deer lease and deer had populated the woods near the house where the quick handling 30-30 excelled. This was undoubtedly one of my favorite rifles ever. Light and quick handling, the angle eject let me mount a little 3 power scope centered over the bore and it did not have the cross bolt safety that ruined the classic looks of the lever action rifle. This rifle unfortunately was also lost in the 1999 house fire.