The 3 Best Scopes for Marlin 336 Rifles — Reviews 2023

best scope for marlin 336 review

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With over six million rifles sold since 1948, the Marlin 336 is one of the most popular rifles in America. Made in a variety of calibers, stock and magazine configurations and finish options, the Marlin 336 is a rifle found almost anywhere you might look. Because of itis fame and popularity, the Marlin 336 is quite commonly scoped. Most commonly used for hunting, the Marlin 336 benefits from the addition of even the most basic scope. While featuring more than adequate iron sights, and often capable of being fitted with a peep sight, the true ability of the Marlin 336 shines when you fit it with a quality rifle scope, especially if your target is under 300 yards.

Unlike other lever action rifles which eject and load from the top of the receiver, the Marlin 336 has a solid top receiver, and loads and ejects from the side of the action. This makes it extremely easy to scope, and since the mid 1950’s, the Marlin 336 has been shipping already factory drilled and tapped for scope mounting bases. More modern Marlin 336 rifles come from the factory with scope bases already installed, and simply need your choice of quality optics to mount on it. More recently, some people have even taken to fitting Picatinny scope rails to the top of their Marlin 336, which allows them to take advantage of the huge number of scopes and accessories fitted for that rail system. But no matter which mounting system you choose for optics, there are a great many out there. Let’s look at the best scopes for Marlin 336 rifles:

A Scope as Rugged as The Rifle It’s Mounted On

There is no questioning the fact that the Marlin 336 is a top quality rifle. Given that, you should consider putting a top quality scope on it, such as the Leupold Rifleman. Perhaps one of the best choices on the market today, the Leupold Rifleman (see full specs) allows you to pair a scope with your Marlin that creates an heirloom quality rifle you’ll be proud to pass on to future generations. With its fully coated optics, 4-12x magnification, generous 40mm objective lens, waterproof and fogproof construction and of course the famous lifetime Leupold warranty, you’ll be hard pressed to find a better contender for the best scope for Marlin 336 rifles than this world famous product.

M4 Carbine: New Scope; Leupold Rifleman 4-12x40mm

Nikon Quality, Wallet Saving Pricing

The Nikon ProStaff is a top notch compact scope that delivers high end performance and a substantial cost savings. Featuring 2-7x magnification, a wide 32mm objective lens, fully coated optics, nitrogen purged and O ring sealed for fog and waterproofing, and a quick focus eyepiece, this is a scope you could take anywhere. Its compact size (see full specs) makes it ideal for brush guns or for hunters who are seeking weight and size reduction on their optics. As the Marlin 336 is a classic carbine sized rifle, a compact rifle scope is right at home on top of it, and will preserve the crisp, clean lines the Marlin is known for.

Simmons Quality, Simmons Pricing

Simmons gets a lot of bad rap from gear junkies who buy optics based on a name, and what the trendy gun magazines are promoting that week. For those of us not interested in keeping up with the Jonses, Simmons offers some fantastic scopes at insanely affordable prices. I’ve always like the Simmons 8 point, and currently have one mounted on a sporterized Krag Jorgenson rifle, and if I ever get another Marlin 336, I will seriously consider mounting one on it as well.

Like any modern scope, it has fully coated optics, is fog, water and recoil proof. Featuring 3-9 power magnification, a 40mm objective lens, and costing about the same price as a decent box of hunting ammo, the Simmons 8 Point Trueplex is a serious budget scope packing big money features and is, bar none, one of the best scopes for Marlin 336 rifles.

Simmons 8-Point Truplex Reticle 3-9x50mm range test

An Often Overlooked Accessory

Sure, you’ve got a scope on your Marlin 336, but now you have an optic right over your hammer, and are having a harder time reaching it than before you scoped it. Enter the Uncle Mike’s Hammer Extension. Designed to be used left or right handed, the Uncle Mikes’s Hammer Extension allows you to easily cock your hammer when using a low profile scope, buy providing an offset extension to quickly grasp and pull down on. This eliminates the need to fumble under your scope to try and grasp the hammer and cock it. An often overlooked convenience, but well worth adding to your scoped Marlin 336.

Why You Should Scope Your Marlin 336

The Marlin 336 is most commonly found in the popular 30-30 cartridge. An American favorite for hunting since the early 1890’s, and famous for being the first commercial smokeless powder round offered to the public, the 30-30 is a hard hitting round that can benefit from being fired from a scoped rifle so, in actuality, the best scope for Marlin 336 is oftentimes the best scope for Marlin 30 30.

The Marlin 336 is a trusted hunting rifle used to harvest countless deer, elk, black bear, and it is said, is even popular among the crack shots of the Eskimo for hunting polar bear. I’m not so sure I’d want to face a polar bear with anything short of a small cannon, but this does demonstrate the wide uses and popularity of the Marlin 336. Given the wide range of optics available, hunters are constantly choosing to scope their Marlin 336’s in order to take longer, cleaner, and easier shots. A scoped rifle can make for a more humane kill, can extend the distance you hunt at, or can make the difference between a difficult shot and one you can easily take.

Whatever your reason, if you have one of the most trusted hunting rifles in America, you owe it to yourself and your sport to scope it, and achieve the optimal performance from a top performing rifle.

  • Owner of, Boyd Smith is a major handgun enthusiast, and although he owns Glocks, he prefers the revolving wheel type. His go-to guns are a Smith & Wesson 642 Performance Center for carry and a Ruger GP100 in the nightstand biometric safe (he has kids). He loads both revolvers with old-school 148-grain Federal Gold Medal .38 wadcutters. It’s OK if you think he’s a wimp. Email him.

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One response

  1. Excellant article ! Just wanted to say that I have mounted a 3x9x40 Nikon Prostaff on my Marlin 336 . I used the Leopold 1-piece base with front ring base being a dovetail and rear ring held in place by windage screws on each side . I have medium height rings on this setup which allows for a perfect cheek weld . This system is rock solid ( Leopold even precoats the screws with BLUE LOCTITE ) . It looks good and I have never had these rings shift or lose zero !

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