My brother in law picked one up in 30-06 a couple years ago for a brush gun. I got a Savage 111 the same year in the same caliber for the same reason. Both guns have been impressive based on their performance to price ratio. If you are looking for a good brush gun / let your nephew borrow gun ether of those is perfect. I even left the cheap scope on my 111. It shoots good and if it gets dropped I figure my nephew can mow enough lawns to replace it.
Resurrecting a very old thread! Looks like the X7 Marlins have been discontinued, but you can still find them for sale on a few websites. I'm considering picking one up.
I'm a big Marlin fan, but I know they've had some pretty severe quality control issues in recent years. Would it be worth the risk to order one? Apparently the good ones are really good rifles for the price - I saw a heavy barrel model in the store and was impressed with the action and the quality (keeping in mind it's a budget rifle).
I do not think you can go wrong with one for the price! I bought an XS/7 ? I think.. Stainless version and it does in fact shoot very well. Without a barrel break in I sighted it in and was shooting prairie dogs out to 300 yrds with a Ziess Terra 3-9X40 scope on it during the same day. They are a darn good budget rifle.