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I was at a gun show way back in the day (1986?) and a dealer had the new Marlin Camp Carbine 9mm on display. I said to him, "If Marlin would make that in .45 and use 1911 magazines, I'd buy one in a second!" The dealer replied, "Look at the bore. Your second is up." I leaned in and saw the gaping .45 caliber muzzle. I switched my stare to the magazine and saw the familiar outline of a 1911 base, but it was stainless and had the Marlin script logo proudly displayed. Out came my wallet and my four digit serial number Camp Carbine was purchased!

I've always loved the short little carbine. I've thought of it as an inexpensive Thompson. It's amazingly accurate and a real thumper with .45 hardball and it also has so little recoil (being a handgun cartridge fired in a rifle). My stock did crack but Marlin replaced it early on under warranty. Then it sat in my safe for years and years and years.

After the ridiculous assault weapons ban sunsetted, I bought a Choate folding stock and a ProMag 40 round drum. Without worry of the new plastic stock cracking, I set about to shoot this neat gun again. I bought a red dot reflex sight and went to the range to sight it in.

But after just a few shots, the plastic recoil buffer shattered. It was old and dry. I bought a new one from E-Gunparts and tried again. Apparently some tiny pieces from the broken one had worked their way into the firing pin area and froze the firing pin. Without the firing pin moving, the Marlin's hammer hit it hard and snapped the hammer in half. Ugh.

I did a little research on the Marlin forum and when I ordered a new hammer, I also ordered a black resin recoil buffer and a 21 pound recoil spring. Then I had serious problems trying to get the hammer installed in the crazy trigger mechanism. Despite terrific attempts at help from the folks on the Marlin board, I was unable to use my limited gunsmithing skills to reassemble my trigger group. I called Marlin and they said to send it in (since it's not serial numbered, it's not a "gun" so it's pretty cheap to send in). They called me and said it would be $20 and $8 return shipping to get it back together again. That's cheaper than any gunsmith would have charged and the ones I did talk to were very leery of the Camp Carbine, having little knowledge of them.

My Marlin Camp Carbine Model 45 is now back on track. I fired it extensively at the range yesterday and it was perfect! No jams of any kind. Boy does it throw the brass forward and to the right, at a 45 degree angle...about 30-35 feet! That 21 pound recoil spring works great! Ed Brown 8-Pack mags are really good too. As cool as the 40 round drum looks, it is not 100% reliable. I would not suggest buying one for serious use. It sure does look cool though.

So here's my set up for if it really hits the fan. I have my Colt Combat Elite Bobtail in an El Paso Saddlery field hip holster with a pair of extra mags to match up to my Marlin. I also have a Tactical Tailor single point sling on the way (maybe in the mail today if I'm lucky) to clip onto the sling swiwel located at the rear of the receiver on the Choate folding stock. The Colt on my hip, the Marlin slung straight down from my chest, and a "go bag" with extra 1911 mags that work in both guns and I think it's one heck of a set up!















-Steve
 

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Looks good. I had one of them for a time, but got sick and tired of chasing brass the 40 feet that it would pitch them! Sold it for about double what I thought it was worth! Man, those things are worth a small fortune these days!! :shock:
 
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