The Freedom Group of Cerberus bought them under the Remington name in 2009...they shut the North Haven Conn. factory down in 2010 putting a load of folks out of work...any Marlin you buy that has a ser.# beginning with 91XXXX is most likely junk..they are coming with mixed and matched parts assembled by morons who know nothing about how a Marlin is supposed to be built...you would do well to wait for a while until the junk has cleared the system...go on Marlinowners.com and read the horror stories with pictures...some guns were built and shipped with barrels drooping down several degrees from being straight inline with the receivers..wood wobbly and fit horribly..scope base holes drilled crooked...If you don't want to wait then you'd be smart to convert a guide gun model with a big loop lever
I must be lucky. I have a 45-70 1895CB (cowboy)in the 91xxxxxx range that I purchased at Cabelas last year; good blueing, plain uncheckered wood ('sposed to be - after all it's a cowboy gun, not a trap gun!) that fits the metal well. It will cloverleaf 5 shots at 100 yards and dropped a feral hog at 50 yards like it had been lightning-struck. A 300gr hp bullet at 1850 fps has a lot of punch!
Like Elmer Keith said, " A heavy, slow moving bullet lets a lot of air in and a lot of blood out."
The 1894CB in 45 Colt that I also own is in the 94IVxxxx range, but also looks nice and shoots almost - but not quite - as good as the 45/70. A 250 gr bullet traveling at 1500 fps is not something I'd want to be on the receiving end of!
glad you lucked into a good one Kiv, no doubt one of the last made in connecticut...I hope they eventually get back to making a good piece of equipment...the ones you really need to look over thoroughly is a # of 91 or lower..a 91 is 2009...a 90 is 2010..best advise is to not buy anygun mailorder or off the web that you cant personally inspect with your own eyes or it may be one you end up packing right up to send back for repair...hate for that to happen to any of my TS.com buddies
After checking with a friend and former Marlin employee...I was advised nearly all the new big loops are in the serial# range of guns assembled AFTER Remington started infusing their people into the factory ...so even buying a used one isn't going to lessen the odds of you getting a horrific mess of a rifle...hope you don't get stuck with one of their abortions Bill...but definantly please be kind enough to let us know if you do,..whether its new or used