If you want a 'project gun' to tinker with, get the Ruger. There are untold aftermarket parts for it. You can buy the more expensive Ruger, then put another $300 in a barrel and misc parts to make it more accurate than the stock Marlin. If you want an out of the box accurate gun, go with the Marlin 60.
I have been down on Freedom Group/Remington QC in many posts, but my new Marlin 60 runs great and is very accurate.