It’s been a long, hard rode for Marlin rifle lovers. After the brand was acquired by the Cerberus bean counters who cobbled together the monstrosity that was once known as the Freedom Group and combined the brand with Remington, the new owners had some, uh, problems with production and quality. Those were eventually ironed out over time, but not without much schmerz, sturm und drang.
When Remington Outdoor finally collapsed into Chapter 7 bankruptcy and the parts were sold off, many in the gun community were thrilled to see a respected company like Ruger get its hands on the venerable Marlin brand. Virtually no one doubted that Ruger would do right by the Marlin name and tradition and turn out lever guns that no one would ever have to doubt in terms of quality.
The fact that it’s taken Ruger this long since the acquisition to get to a place where they’re comfortable shipping Marlin lever action rifles should probably tell you something about the condition of the assets they purchased out of Remington’s dissolution. And the extent of the work Ruger’s done to ensure the rifles they ship under the Marlin brand are worthy of the name.
But, now, finally, the good news is Marlin’s back. Here’s Ruger’s press release announcing the welcome event . . .
Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc. (NYSE: RGR) is pleased to announce the initial production and shipment of Ruger-made, Marlin lever-action rifles. Just over a year after acquiring the assets associated with the Marlin brand, Ruger is shipping the first Marlin model, the 1895 SBL chambered in .45-70 Govt.
“We are excited to officially flip the switch and let our customers know that Marlin is back,” said Ruger President and CEO, Chris Killoy. “Since the move of over 100 truckloads of equipment and inventory back in November 2020, our engineering team took the 1895 through a complete design and production review focused on achieving the highest quality, accuracy, and performance standards. The end result is a quality rifle, produced using modern manufacturing methods, that consumers will be sure to enjoy and proud to own.”
This first model is just the beginning of the reintroduction of the Marlin brand and illustrates the improved manufacturing processes that deliver reliable, attractive firearms. These processes will result in the introduction of additional Marlin models, calibers and variations over the coming years.
“Being a long-time Marlin fan, I knew that we needed to take our time and make sure that our reintroduction was nothing short of perfect,” continued Killoy. “From the quality of the firearm, to clear ways for consumers to differentiate Ruger-made Marlins, we focused on getting every detail right.”
Ruger-made, Marlin 1895 SBL rifles are marked with “Mayodan, NC,” bear an “RM” or Ruger-Made serial number prefix, have the Marlin Horse and Rider logo laser engraved on their grip, and also feature a red and white “bullseye” on the buttstock.
Additional models are scheduled for release throughout the coming year; specifically, other variations of the Model 1895, as well as the reintroduction of the Model 336 and Model 1894. Due to the anticipated strong demand and the limited quantity of Ruger-made Marlin lever-action rifles, Ruger encourages retailers to contact their distributors for availability and advises consumers not to leave deposits with retailers that do not have confirmed shipments.