View Full Version : Another Marlin XL7 and Stevens 200 Question

December 18, 2009, 06:56 PM
I had settled on .308 as the caliber of my first rifle because of it availability of really cheap ammo (Besides hunting, I may want to do a little "just blasting" while I'm out camping). I aslo have heard that it's kick is not as bad as the 30-06.

So the shop can order me a Stevens 200 for $367 but nobody can find any of the Marlins in .308. But the Marlin is available in 30-06 for $329. The guys at the shop think that the Marlin is the nicer rifle, by far. They also say that I shouldn't use that cheap 308 ammo anyway; they say it will shoot out barrels very quickly, even if its advertised as having non-corrosive primers.

Since I plan on doing some "just blasting," would the Stevens' free floating barrel maintain accuracy longer than the Marlin's non-floated barrel?

What do you all think? Marlin or Stevens?


December 18, 2009, 07:35 PM
I have handled all of the lower end stuff.

My choice would be the Marlin. It does seem to be built better, with better finishing. (My wife even stuffed one under the Christmas tree for me. :))

Free-float vs pressure point vs non-bedded vs full-bedded is a debate you probably don't want to start. No clear cut information will come out of the fire storm.

It really depends on how hot you plan to get your barrel. (Not a good idea, anyway.)

December 18, 2009, 08:05 PM
I've handled both and give the Marlin the edge.

December 18, 2009, 08:16 PM
Here's a deal that's hard to beat. Not a .308 however, but you sure can buy a bunch of ammo for what you save on the rifle price.



December 18, 2009, 09:18 PM
Fisherman, I live in California, and everone charges about $130 to do a mail-order transfer around here. It makes most internet and mail-order firemarms more expensive in the long run.

December 18, 2009, 09:20 PM
All you had to say was "California". My condolances.:)

December 19, 2009, 12:30 AM
Fivefeezy, I have a Marlin XL7 in 25-06. About your comment of the XL Marlin barrel not being freefloated. Except for 2 small pressure points in the barrel channel near the muzzle end of the the stock, the rest of the Marlin barrel is free floated. It is very easy to remove the pressure points by hand sanding them down. I've read posts elsewhere of XL owners doing this and improving the accuracy of their rifle. I've done it to my XL and it did seem to shoot better groups for me.

December 19, 2009, 01:00 AM
My advice (FWIW): Is to handle them both, preferably side by side, and see which one "feels" better to you. Shoot both before buying if you can (which can be hard to do sometimes).

Personally, I don't have any experience with Stevens, but I've heard/read that it's pretty much a low-end Savage without the Accutrigger. I've also read that they're relatively accurate out of the box. I do, however, own a Marlin XL7, and I am very happy with it! It shoulders perfectly (for me) and seems to be built well. She'll shoot sub-moa all day and for the $300 I got it for, I feel I got a great rifle. Just my opinion, take it for what it's worth.

December 19, 2009, 08:42 AM
Marlin makes a short action XS7. Either rifle will serve your needs well. I have shot the XL7 and the Stevens 200. For the price I have no complaints on either.

December 19, 2009, 11:50 PM
Do those prices seem high to anyone else? I see people say you should be able to get that Stevens 200 for right around $300 or slightly under. The Marlin XL-7 I've also heard you should be able to get for around $300 and I've personally seen them for not much more at a higher priced gun shop in this area.

If I was you I think I'd find a gun shop that isn't that high on the price. Those transfer prices are crazy high too. There has to be a shop somewhere that isn't a rip off.

December 20, 2009, 02:35 AM
I paid a little over 340 for the Stevens here in FL a couple of months ago. I've heard of lower prices. It's a good rifle.

December 20, 2009, 02:38 AM
Around here, regular price on the Marlin XL7 is $299 (Haven't seen an XS7 in stock). I think the Stevens was around $399, and cheap Savage $460ish.

December 20, 2009, 05:53 AM
Walmart here sells the Stevens 200 for around $320.

December 20, 2009, 12:06 PM
I've not handled the marlin, but I used to have a stevens 200 that shot very well.

As far as the cheap .308 burning out barrels.. never heard that one. 30-06 will eat up barrels comparitively quickly though, and will cost a lot more to send lots of rounds down range. The -06 will also rip up your shoulder after a full afternoon of sending the lead flying. You don't want to get the barrels real hot in either caliber or either gun.

My vote would be on the stevens 200, in .308. I would shoot prvi partisan (several buddies shoot it with good results, and its cheap), or pick up reloading. I reload all my .308's for about 50 cents a shot, and they all shoot sub 1/2".