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Marlin 795

Marlin 795

In the UK we mainly perceive Marlin as a name associated with lever-action rifles and of these it’s the pistol-calibre 1894 that we know best. However, this company also offers centrefire bolt-actions and the full range of rimfire options. This month I have their Model 795 semi-auto to play with courtesy of the new importers Edgar Brothers Ltd.

Not a Fan

I have to admit that I am not a fan of 22 semis for hunting. Yes I admire their fire and forget action, which does allow for fast back up shots and multiple targets. But for me reliability is all and I have had more problems with most 22 semis I’ve taken into the field over the years to make me favour a bolt-action. However, let’s not pre-judge the Marlin.

The 795 is very typical of the genre with a straight, blow-back action and 10-shot, single column box magazine. The receiver is alloy and shows an integral, ½” base for scope mounting. The stock is a black synthetic with cast-in panels of chequering. The pistol grip angles back easily into a low butt with a slight, ambidextrous comb. The forend is rounded and long enough to offer a good hold, QD sling suds are fitted as standard.

The barrel is 18” long and of a medium/heavy build and comes fitted with iron sights, the weight of this tube for a 22 rimfire is certainly going to aid performance. Up front is a fixed blade with a U-notch, elevator wedge at the back. Basic yes, but good enough for 50-yards or so! Edgars have the muzzle threaded 1/2x20 UNF at factory and a screw-off collar is included.

Look Deeper

Though apparently basic the 795 shows a level of sophistication not found on all other semis of this type. Controls consists of a well sized and shaped cocking handle on the right that reciprocates with the action. The safety is your standard, cross-bolt type in the rear of the trigger guard; it pushes right to left for FIRE where it shows a red band.

The mag catch is a simple, pull back lever at the rear of the well, which does require two hands to operate as we shall see. The magazine is nickel-plated, well made and reliable, it shows an orange follower and witness holes to check capacity, plus offers an automatic last round hold open facility.

This is further augmented by a manual bolt release/lock catch (right/front) on the trigger guard housing. Marked OPEN (push up) to allow the action to be held back without a mag in, or pushed down (CLOSE) to trip the bolt and chamber the first round. This is a nice feature and one not normally seen on rifles of this nature. My personal views on 22 semis aside this is a neat and well designed general use rimfire.

Ammo Up

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I must admit to having to really search to try and find some ½” rings as they are not what I use, but managed to dig out a set. Into these went the new Vortex Diamondback 3.5-10x50 from Marchwood, which was on my testing list anyway. Ammo was kept in house with Remington sub-sonics and their high velocity hollow point, two very standard and representative loadings for the sort of work this gun would be put to. Up front went an SAK moddy from Jackson Rifles.

I’m no small guy, but in the shoulder I found the 13 ¾” length of pull more than acceptable. Likewise the pistol grip was hand filling enough to give a decent hold and the small comb gave a good eye/scope position too.

Starting off with sub-sonics the 795 chewed through 50-rounds without any problems, likewise switching to the faster high velocity showed identical characteristics. The single column magazine and generous feed ramp doubtless aided reliability too. Typically the bolt face showed twin extractors, which I have found aids function in this area.

I did however find the mag change awkward as you have to support the rifle in your right hand and at the same time operate the catch then use your left to pull out the clip. Conversely the last round hold open and auto bolt release really do aid the reload or unload. The 795 comes with one magazine as standard, though spares are under £15 (inc VAT) and I’d definitely invest in one if not two more.

Off The Bag

With feel and function established, accuracy was my next concern. Prone off a range bag the Marlin was printing ¾-1” groups at 50-yards, so very much on the money. Likewise with about 4” of drop compensation you could easily be hitting the mark at 100-yards too. The trigger was average to useable though a little clunky and I reckon a bit of tweaking would turn this into a near ½” gun.

I don’t think you will ever convince me that a rimfire semi-auto is as reliable as a bolt-action for bunny busting, so I’ll stick with what I know and trust. However, I took the Marlin out and had no problems thinning down the local rabbit population a little. The rifle points and mounts well, is accurate enough and proved 100% reliable. Price wise it’s a steal at under £240, which is a pleasant surprise these days. To be honest I cannot fault this gun and have to say if you are looking for a semi-auto then the 795 is worth serious consideration…

We Reckon:

It’s a real shooter

Brilliant price

Good semi-auto choice

SPARE MAG: £14.50

  • Marlin 795 - image {image:count}

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  • Marlin 795 - image {image:count}

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  • Marlin 795 - image {image:count}

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  • Marlin 795 - image {image:count}

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  • Marlin 795 - image {image:count}

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  • Marlin 795 - image {image:count}

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  • Marlin 795 - image {image:count}

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  • Name: Marlin 795
  • Calibre: 22 Long Rifle
  • Capacity: 10 (DM)
  • Action: blow-back semi-auto
  • Barrel: 18”
  • Threaded: ½ x 20 UNF
  • Stock: black synthetic
  • Sights: Y
  • Integral: ½” dovetail


  • Better than a Ruger 10/22? I’ve had one for 25 years and have been looking at this Marlin for a replacement for a plinker/rabbit gun. I’ve had many replacement rotary mags and it struggles with sub-sonics - although it’s probably been worn out by now!

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    Anthony Bateman
    26 Feb 2021 at 09:34 AM
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    04 May 2020 at 12:02 PM
  • Thanks so much for your great review.

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    16 Nov 2018 at 07:56 AM
  • The Marlin 795 is a really excellent .22 rimfire rifle. I have used this little carbine in some demanding shooting competitions and it has never let me down.  It seems to digest any brand of .22 ammunition from good quality to bad and shoot good groups with all types! I found the trigger pull to be satisfactory right out of the box. I said satisfactory, not good. It’s okay.
    A bargain-price gem!

    Default profile image
    19 Oct 2018 at 02:11 AM
  • Bud's Gun Shop, Cheaper Than Dirt and others have the 10 rd, 25 rd. mags for the 795. You can go to Ammo Seek and click mags, then put in your model and it will give you the prices from several stores, but the shipping cost is different for each one so you have to decide which one would be cheaper w/shipping.

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    Charles R
    24 Apr 2016 at 04:19 PM
  • im hoping to buy a marlin 795 but im not sure how fast is the pellet and what pellet i should use could somebody help plz thanks:)

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    jeff long
    27 Jul 2012 at 07:50 PM
  • I found the trigger pull to be heavy. I found and installed a trigger kit (found on gunbroker.com). Now it's smooth as butter with an easy, clean break. I can hit standing 2x4 pieces all day on my 80-yard range. I really enjoy the rifle.

    Default profile image
    19 Feb 2012 at 02:44 AM
  • I picked one up today as a present for my son. I got home and shot the gun 6 times. Before the trigger mechanism failed! 6 shots! I couldn't even unload a full clip. So far I am not impressed. We'll see how it shoots when it gets back from the factory, since I had to send it back the same day as I bought it. Needless to say, but right now marlin is not a first choice name brand to me.

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    Jeff l
    08 Nov 2011 at 01:01 AM
  • It just goes to show that even cost effective 22 semis can do the job...

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    pete moore
    04 Nov 2011 at 04:28 PM
  • In reply to Dobans13, who was looking for an inexpensive .22 semi auto. Living in the US he can buy the Mossberg 7022 plinkster (CBC/Magtech in UK) for around $100, or less on discount. I have posted a couple of reviews of this rifle, which is still filling the freezer with rabbits. The secret is to regularly strip and clean the action. This can be done in minutes. (See YouTube) I use Ely subs and don't get jams. The accuracy is on par with the Marlin and with use, 80 - 90 yard kills are on.

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    Ken J
    04 Nov 2011 at 02:53 PM
  • I am thinking of getting one. I live in the us and can get one for about 175$. Does anyone know of a .22 that is equally or less priced that would be as good. I'm 13 and this will be my first gun, besides air guns. I have shot .22 before.

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    10 Mar 2011 at 06:11 AM
  • Try the new importers Edgar Brothers Ltd, 01625 613177


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    peter moore
    24 Feb 2011 at 06:59 PM
  • I've got a 795 but where can I get spare mags?

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    24 Feb 2011 at 01:12 PM