Marlin 308MXLR vs. Browning BLR

Marlin 308MXLR vs. Browning BLR

This is a discussion on Marlin 308MXLR vs. Browning BLR within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Marlin 308MXLR vs. Browning BLR I am hoping to get some feedback on these two rifles from somebody who has seen/used both. There are some ...

Results 1 to 13 of 13

Thread: Marlin 308MXLR vs. Browning BLR

  1. #1
    Member Array BlackJack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006

    Marlin 308MXLR vs. Browning BLR

    Marlin 308MXLR vs. Browning BLR

    I am hoping to get some feedback on these two rifles from somebody who has seen/used both.

    There are some things that I like about each...

    1. Price. This is just a little more than ½ the cost of the BLR.
    2. Cleaning. The lever and bolt are removed and the rifle is cleaned from the breach end.
    3. Loading. With the side loading gate you can load additional rounds “as you go” if needed.
    4. Esthetics. I do like the looks of the 308MXLR better, but this is a minor point and will not really factor into my decision too much.

    1. Ammunition. This rifle uses a box magazine. This means that, although you can not reload it “as you go”, you are not limited to the Leverevolution ammunition – you can use any .308 Win ammunition that you like. *** this is a big selling point for me.
    2. See #1.

    There are a couple of things that I do not like about each of them.

    1. Ammunition. You are limited to the Leverevolution ammunition which means that ammunition availability might be limited and you can not use the same ammo you would use in your bolt or semi-auto rifle.
    2. 24” barrel. I wish it had an option for a 20” barrel.

    1. Cleaning. You must clean it from the muzzle, increasing the chance of damaging the muzzle crown and impacting your accuracy.
    2. $$. The BLR is almost twice as expensive as the 308MXLR.

    I was hoping that I could get some feedback on these two rifles based on real life experience. Also, if anybody is familiar with the Takedown version of the BLR, that would off set the cleaning issue as you could just “break it down” and then clean it from the breach end.

    Any feedback, good or bad, is welcome.


  2. #2
    Senior Moderator
    Array gasmitty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Gilbert, AZ
    I can't offer hands-on experience (other than with my 336 in .30-30), but just a couple of things to consider.

    As much as I admire Marlin for advancing the design of their lever gun to handle more powerful rounds, for me at least the relative scarcity of the proprietary .308 Marlin round is a deal breaker. I've seen enough LeveRevolution ammo around in stores, always in .30-30 and .45-70, but the Marlin round far less so. If I was a handloader, that might change my viewpoint.

    Beyond the ammo issue, the BLR is about a half pound lighter, so you might see which rifle mounts faster for you. As far as your concern about cleaning, as you noted you can now get a BLR takedown model with obvious access to the breech end, OR you could simply get a Bore Snake for 85% of your cleaning needs and a bore guide for the rest.

    Also, unless you're married to the stainless model, the basic blue steel Marlin has a shorter barrel at 22", and that model is just a half-inch longer than the BLR.
    AZCDL Life Member
    NRA Patron Member
    NROI Chief Range Officer

  3. #3
    Distinguished Member
    Array ks kid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    I had a BLR and sold it. It was fairly accurate and it was fun to shoot, but I used it for hunting. The stroke was long when compared to a 30-30. The big downer for me was the finish and the ammo box. I was always worried about hurting the finish in the field and the ammo box would click if it was bumped. The click cost me a very nice deer and I sold it that year.

  4. #4
    Distinguished Member Array Rexster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    SE Texas
    Well, I have not used both, so cannot offer a comparison, though I have Marlins chambered in .357 Mag. I do have several BLRs in .308, and notably, the short-action BLRs' levers seem to work like lightning in comparison to the long-action models.

    The Takedown BLR can indeed be cleaned from the breech end, a big reason I bought one recently.

    Noisy box magazine? How about some adhesive-backed neoprene, if that is a concern. I would not sell off a system I favored without trying to mitigate such a minor issue, first.

  5. #5
    New Member Array UpstateNYer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Upstate NY
    I own two Marlin 1894s in .44Mag, but not the 308MXLR. Also own a BLR in .308. Both makes are quality firearms, although I would give the edge to Browning in quality of construction. The big issue, as identified in these posts, is the need for the Express ammo in the Marlin. Short term there seems to be enough of it around, however how many new bullet designs have come and gone over the years? Basic .308 ammo will be around forever. I'd go with the BLR.

  6. #6
    VIP Member
    Array ccw9mm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    BLR, of those two.

    It would come down to the calibration for me, too, and the smoothness. Having limited ammo choices for .308 Mar doesn't seem the best choice, when given .308 Win as the competing round. I've had a few Marlin lever-action rifles but I would opt for a BLR for these reasons. In terms of the action, I think the average BLR's smoothness is hands-down above that of the average Marlin lever-action that I have had. The take-down option's nice. Plus, the mere fact of .308 Win along with the box magazine allows all sorts of ammunition choices, instead of only what will work in a tube magazine. And, as others have suggested, .308 Win will likely outlive us all.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
    Reason over Force: Why the Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos).

  7. #7
    Distinguished Member Array USPnTX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Dallas, TX
    My vote definitely goes to the BLR as well. I have two friends that own the BLR and I've shot them both. One I shot at the range and the other I used while hunting (both chambered in 325WSM) pigs in S Texas. They were both very accurate. The one that I shot while hunting was great for follow-up shots and was smooth mechanically.

    The only downside IMHO is the finish on the Browning. They just look too dang pretty. Whenever I take a Browning out in the field I am always worried about messing it up. However, I think that is a downside you could probably live with.
    "Do not fear those who disagree with you; fear those that do and are too cowardly to admit it" - Napoleon

  8. #8
    Senior Member Array paul45's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    SML, VA
    I have had my BLR .308 since the late 80's. It is my favorite level gun. Short lever throw, handy barrel length and accurate. I have 3 other Winchesters and 2 Marlins but love the BLR for it's removable mag and it's over all fit & finish.
    "Being PARANOID is just plain smart thinking when they are really out to get you!"

  9. #9
    jyo is offline
    Member Array jyo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    I have a BLR-81 in .308 from the mid-80s---the store I worked for had a large stash of these new in box, so I pick out the one with the best wood---really nice! I fitted it out the the new at the time Warne quick-release lever rings and a Leupold 1.5-5x scope---now I could use the scope or remove it and use the previously zeroed iron sights---state of the art at the time and still very usable today. My favorite hunting rifle and uses the same ammo as my FAL 50.00---what could be better?

  10. #10
    Member Array fknipfer1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    I have a .308 BLR, a 32 win Special, a 30/30 Marlin, a 35 Rem. Marlin, a .358 BLR, a 45-70 Marlin, a .356 Winchester 94AE. I want to use them all, I'm confused their like kids. I sure wish I had a breakdown of one of the Brownings.


  11. #11
    Array atctimmy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    The BLR is the better choice .
    I American and I Ameriwill!

  12. #12
    New Member Array pfryejr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Louisville, KY
    FWIW. I have a BLR in .308. Yes the flexibility of ammo is a big plus. Allow you to customize ammo to the target. Browning are great rifles and you can't really go wrong with one.

  13. #13
    Member Array Fishshavers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    West Virginia

Sponsored Links

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts

Similar Threads

  1. Marlin 9mm?
    By ArmyCop in forum Defensive Carry Guns
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: October 9th, 2010, 04:28 PM
  2. Marlin 60
    By tdd78 in forum General Firearm Discussion
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: September 25th, 2009, 12:12 AM
  3. Marlin 336 FTE
    By buckeye .45 in forum Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: January 9th, 2007, 10:27 PM
  4. Marlin 60W
    By A1C Lickey in forum General Firearm Discussion
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: February 26th, 2006, 02:16 PM

Search tags for this page

blr vs marlin
browning blr .308

browning blr 308

browning blr 308 price
browning blr vs marlin
browning blr vs marlin 336

marlin 308mxlr

marlin 308mxlr price
marlin vs browning lever action
model 308mxlr
model 308mxlr price
Click on a term to search for related topics.