Though some would have you believe it, this is not a true “Cooper” scout rifle. It is however one of my favorite rifles. It started life as a Marlin 1894 in .32 H&R but it was too long and too heavy for anything other than playing dress up at the range. I sent it off to Jim Brockman at Brockman’s Custom Rifles and he shortened the barrel, added a big loop lever and his sights, and opened the chamber up to accept the .327 Federal Magnum cartridge.
I worked with the rifle is that configuration for about two years and then had an idea. I called Jim and asked if he was good enough to machine Talley scope bases right into the octagonal barrel. Jim said, “I recon so.” so I sent the rifle back out to Idaho. (Funny thing, several other gunsmiths acted like I’d asked them to sacrifice their first born when I proposed my idea. They said it was just too difficult.) Jim machined the bases perfectly and even smoothed the edges so they were not sharp to the touch when the rifle was being carried without the scope.
Mike Barranti crafted a slick looking butt cuff to carry ammo and this rifle has seen a lot of time in the field. 100 grain Federal JSP loads will break 2150 fps from this rifle and my favorite .32 H&R Magnum handload of a 90 grain Sierra JHP ahead of 11.0 grains of Lil’ Gun will do 1750, and knock the cents off a quarter at 50 yards. This rifle is now – thanks to Jim Brockman and Mike Barranti – a dream and I call her “My Precious.” Its one of the few guns I have that is not for sale.
To read more about this rifle and the .327 Federal Magnum cartridge, check out an upcoming issue of Gun Digest magazine.