Howdy, its well known that rounds headstamped W.R.A.Co 32-20 are for Marlin rifles ,but how about WESTERN 32-20 , U.M.C. 32-20 , PETERS 32-20 , and ELEY 32-20 none of these have WCF or CFW on the headstamp are these also Marlin loads ? thanks Randy
The 32-20 WCF was designed originally for the Winchester Model 1873 RIfle. I believe that all 32-20 cartridges are created equal, dimensionally-wise. The same for the 25-20 even though they are headstamped both WCF and MARLIN. There are loads with different bullet weights and/or higher velocities but they will chamber in any rifle or revolver so marked. The high velocity cartridges should not be used in revolvers but I’m sure that thousands of them have, with both good and bad results.
The major difference, other than perhaps the headstamp, will be smaller primers on the Marlin cartridges. Marlin had to depend on the major ammunition makers to produce its ammunition, and had certain specifications they were expected to follow in producing the Marlin ammo, the smaller primer being one of these. At one point in the early 1900s, Marlin accused Winchester of producing ammunition for them with the primers seated too low, which resulted in misfires. Marlin believed that Winchester intentionally produced this ammunition to give the shooting public the perception that Marlin’s firearms were poor quality.