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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have given thoughts as to adding a lever action rifle to my little mix this year. I have a .22 Henry, and a Marlin 30/30 lever action currently...well I also have a 357/38 Ranch hand, but that's not a real rifle.

Anyway adding a 357/38 caliber rifle makes sense do to already having a few revolvers that are of the same caliber. Now the question is, other than long distance range accuracy does the 20' barrel length offer any further benefits over that of the 16" barrel?

Which would be your choice of the two and why if you don't mind sharing. Any preference between blued vs stainless?

Thanks ahead of time for sharing. And if you don't share or have any thing to share, I hope you learn something here from those who do.
 

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I have been wanting one for a while but the latest scare has likely put that on hold.I would say for weight,handling,and ease of shooting I will likely get a 16" barrel.I prefer stainless cause I like em purty.I won't be doing any long range shooting(or very seldom anyway)so another reason for the shorter barrel.
 

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I doubt you would gain any added velocity with the longer barrel, nor do I think you would lose any with the shorter barrel.

I haven't compared the two in .357 mag, although I have in .44 mag and they are the same. I really like the look of the longer barrel in the Big Boy Henry.

When I was a very small boy, back in the late 1,890's, they didn't make lever actions in stainless and I'm somewhat of a purist when it comes to period style firearms, so I would prefer a combination of case hardened and blued and an octagon barrel.

The lever action I am describing is fine if you are riding around on a mule (4 wheel drive) or a horse, both with the rifle in a scabbard while I rode around my ranch instead of walking around it, as they do get heavy with the longer and octagon barrel.

I haven't looked for one in a while, however, I imagine the lever actions have become harder to come by and are more $$$ just like everything else in the past 30-60 days. Although Lever actions do not for the most part have detachable magazines, they were pretty much the first assault rifle and folks who think like I do would want one as they won't be banned until the big ban comes along.
 
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The difference in barrel length won't make much difference except how many rounds it will hold. Now that will matter if you are doing any kind of SASS or NCOWS (cowboy action) shooting as they usually require 10 rounds max. With the 16" only holding about 8 are loaded then the last two are loaded on the clock which counts against your time.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I appreciate the feedback. And based on what I gathered so far, I did a BIN on a Rossi r92 16" stainless 357mag/38spl lever action. The price difference between the stainless and blued was not that great so I went for the bling. Plus my Marlin 30/30 is blued so I'm covered.

R92-56018 16ss Rossi r92c 357 mag r92 carbine : Lever Action Rifles at GunBroker.com

I think I will go a head and list my SKS rifles over on TGT. I have one with the wood stock and all numbers matching, one with the folding poly tactical stock which I still have the wood stock to go with it all numbers matching and almost 600 rounds of ammo, that should more than cover what I just paid for the pretty Rossi I think.
 

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A quick check of Ballistics by the Inch suggests that 16 inches is the optimal length for 357 magnum cartridges. And that's the thing about pistol cartridges - they generally have a faster burning powder than rifle cartridges, and you can rapidly reach the point where the bullet is slowing down rather than accelerating while still in the barrel. When it starts to slow down the extra barrel length is doing more harm than good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
A quick check of Ballistics by the Inch suggests that 16 inches is the optimal length for 357 magnum cartridges. And that's the thing about pistol cartridges - they generally have a faster burning powder than rifle cartridges, and you can rapidly reach the point where the cartridge is slowing down rather than accelerating while still in the barrel. When it starts to slow down the extra barrel length is doing more harm than good.
Great information....I learned something new...and apparently did something right.
 

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Here's some more info - if you take the fastest round showing on BBI for 16" of barrel and do a little math, this is what you come up with. A .358" 125 grain projectile doing 2119 fps at the muzzle will develop a muzzle energy of 1,246 foot pounds and an efficacy of 125. A .224" 55 grain 5.56 nato projectile doing 3240 fps from a 20" barrel develops a muzzle energy of 1282 foot pounds but an efficacy of only 51. Efficacy is a calculation that takes the diameter of the bullet into account, and some folks believe it's the most reliable predictor of actual bullet performance in a live target. You can see by the numbers that you're going to have a pretty potent little shooter on your hands.
 
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