Henry mare's leg for kids?


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Ishoot1st
February 10, 2012, 02:05 PM
My daughter started shooting a .22 cricket when she was 6. This little rifle was great to teach her to shoot on, gun safety, and hunting. She could safely load and fire this before even a bb gun. She has always been small for her age and could not safely cock a red ryder. She is 9 now and ready for a .22 repeater. We looked at the henry lever action youth models, but they were too long and heavy for the hiking/shooting/huntig/camping that we do. She could hold them up and get a shot placement, but not for long before her little arms got tired.

None of my local dealers have any henry mares leg, i was able to handle a rossi ranch hand .357 though. I handed it to my daughter and it was like they cut that rifle down just to fit her. Its about the same size, little heavier, than her crickett. Its like a legal SBR for kids! So i am just about sold on the Henry Mare's Leg .22. Only drawback is the price! $300-350. I didn't spend that much on my .22 plinker with a descent scope. So before i drop that much coin on a rifle for my daughter i wanted to ask your opinions or experience good or bad with henry lever actions. Could you suggest a comparible, lightweight, short length, REPEATING, .22?

I have read tons of info and great advise on THR for years. It has helped me with lots of my firearm questions, thanks to everyone for making this a great site! I am excited to join in the discussion now that i have a little bit of experience and hope to gain lots more knowledge.

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dmazur
February 10, 2012, 03:05 PM
I am not a lawyer, but there are some technicalities involving juvenile possession of handguns (from 18 USC 922) -

(x)...(2) It shall be unlawful for any person who is a juvenile to
knowingly possess -
(A) a handgun; or
(B) ammunition that is suitable for use only in a handgun.
(3) This subsection does not apply to -
(A) a temporary transfer of a handgun or ammunition to a
juvenile or to the possession or use of a handgun or ammunition
by a juvenile if the handgun and ammunition are possessed and
used by the juvenile -
(i) in the course of employment, in the course of ranching or
farming related to activities at the residence of the juvenile
(or on property used for ranching or farming at which the
juvenile, with the permission of the property owner or lessee,
is performing activities related to the operation of the farm
or ranch), target practice, hunting, or a course of instruction
in the safe and lawful use of a handgun;


There's a lot more, naming written permission, transporting unloaded in a locked container to a place where the above activity will occur, etc.

So, as long as you supervise her use of the Ranch Hand, there are probably no problems. However, if she sticks with shooting, and wants to do it on her own when she's older, you should remember that the Ranch Hand is just a handgun and there are restrictions on possession by juveniles. A .22 rifle has no such restrictions.

I don't know of anything like the Ranch Hand that is both light and inexpensive.

I would suggest a Browning SA-22 as a very light semi-auto .22, as I shot one when I was a little kid and didn't have any trouble with the weight (around 4.5 lbs) or the controls. But it is around double the price of the Ranch Hand... :)

Ishoot1st
February 10, 2012, 03:25 PM
<deleted> the legality of my daughter being able to shoot it won't effect us unless we go to the range. I have drilled gun safety into her for a few years now and feel confident she is ready. The mares leg is the same overall length of her crickett, nothing new except its a repeater. She has also shot my naa black widow, and gsg5-pk, with me directly behind her to make sure all safety precautions are taken. These guns just aren't that accurate for her to hunt with. I do understand your point about minors using pistols though...kind of a grey area for me, my dad let me shoot any of his guns i was able to, including several .22 pistols at the same age as my daughter. Could anyone help me understand the laws a little better about minors shooting pistols? I am pretty sure there is a youth competition pistol shooting at my range.

dmazur
February 10, 2012, 03:44 PM
Again, I'm not an expert in this area. The law I referenced was federal. NH state law may be different, but I believe federal law "wins" if there is a conflict.

Summarizing the quote, to the best of my ability -

Juveniles can possess handguns for several reasons. Activities related to farming is listed, and so is target practice, hunting, or handgun training. With adult supervision, the "temporary transfer" is simply letting them shoot the handgun, but you retain possession of it for transportation and storage and you remain the legal owner.

The way I understand it, if they possess the handgun "on their own" for one of the exempted activities, they have to transport it unloaded, in a container to & from such activity. And they have to have written permission from the owner (you) to possess the handgun.

So, IMO, you should be able to negotiate this easily and comply with the law by just writing a letter of permission for her to keep with her when she is using your Ranch Hand for hunting, if she is not with you.

There may be hunter safety requirements that affect juvenile hunting, without supervision. I believe this varies from state to state, and you would need to check NH regs to find out what, if any, requirements would apply.

Best wishes in your endeavors. I wish I had had a Ranch Hand when I was a kid!

Ishoot1st
February 10, 2012, 03:56 PM
Thanks, that helps clear it up a bit. My daughter woulnd't be shooting or hunting with anyone else anyways. So what would be different about a rifle? Are minors allowed to legaly own rifles? Or transport them loaded? Or without the owners permission? I am thinking of setting up a trust to own the rest of my firearms so that all of my family can be trustees and have legal access to all of firearms. So would this allow my kids (as minors) to use and posses firearms, pistol or rifle? Just wondering...

TexasPatriot.308
February 10, 2012, 04:00 PM
I got my hands on a friends new mares leg a few days ago, I really could not see a practical use for one. cant really aim it like a rifle, might as well go with a handgun in a revolver.

Ishoot1st
February 10, 2012, 04:03 PM
On a side note dmazur, i used to live in Washougal, WA. At the mouth of the columbia river gorge, beautiful country out there.... for about 3 months. Great fishin and huntin up there. Its a bit colder here, but lots more sunshine!

Ishoot1st
February 10, 2012, 04:07 PM
I agree...there is no practical purpose for this pistol, unless i am 4 feet tall and have 16inch arms! Refer to original post!

Quoheleth
February 10, 2012, 04:11 PM
Look into a Browning BL-22. Those are about the shortest, lightest .22 leveractions I've ever held.

What about a Marlin Papoose or the Armalite Survival rifle?

FWIW,
Q

Clipper
February 10, 2012, 04:49 PM
Browning BL-22 also comes in a youth size w/12" LOP and 16" barrel. Since the 20" rifle weighs just 5 LBs, this should be real light, but it's spendy, but worth it.

Ishoot1st
February 10, 2012, 06:28 PM
Thanks for the suggestions, i have always wanted a breakdown Survival rifle. We have tried a few other .22 rifles, lots of friends and family that shoot. But nothing else is as comfortable and accurate for her as the small cricket, it has a pull of 12", and 31" overall length. Only drawback is that its a single shot, she spends so much time reloading, she is losing interest. All the other rifles you listed are too long a pull. She is small for her age, but a darn good shot.

Gunnerboy
February 10, 2012, 06:37 PM
At 17 the sheriff caught me packing a pistol after a brief discussion he chuckled handed me my pistol and told me to get home and put it away next time he wouldnt be so generous, If i had been 18 i would of been legal in the state of washington due to the fact i was on private land i had permission to be on and hunt and i was in the act of returning from a hunt, so differant states differant laws best to call down to your local department and find out.

Ishoot1st
February 10, 2012, 06:44 PM
That bl-22 youth is nice, just what i'm looking for. But $450 for a .22 plinker is a little steep! Especialy since i know sooner or later it will get dropped, its a kids rifle after all. I thought $300 for the mares leg was pushing it. I bought my first .22, a marlin bolt, brand new for $150, plus sling, mounts and scope for $225. That was 7 years ago and it still shoots great!

Ramone
February 10, 2012, 07:02 PM
How about one of these:

http://www.fleetfarm.com/catalog/product_detail/hunting/firearms/rifles/henry-u-s-survival-ar-7?utm_source=googleps&utm_medium=shopping%2Bsearch&utm_campaign=google%2Bproduct%20search

with one of these:

http://ar7.imoutdoorshosting.com/store/product50.html

?

bigfatdave
February 10, 2012, 07:17 PM
Henry youth lever gun:
Length 33"
Pull Length 13"
Barrel Length 16.125"
Have you considered calling Henry and asking if they have a spare stock to cut down for your kid? It would come out a bit front-heavy, but then you'd avoid all this (malum prohibitum) nonsense about "minors and handguns" ... AND you'd have something for either you or your daughter when she gets bigger.

Actually, do it with a lever carbine, then you'd have a cut-down kid's stock at the minimum NFA length of 26" overall (dummy check me on that one, I'm going from memory) and an adult stock to go with a youth-sized barrel/action. I have the lever carbine, and it is a great gun. I also have the mare's leg, and I've wondered if it would work as a small kids' gun, too ... but only for a limited time and it would be awkward to have the lever so far back, I think. If you were near me, I'd offer up a pile-o-guns for her to try ... look for someone nearby that can offer demo guns.

A Henry USSR (AR7 clone that actually works) might be nice, but I'd suspect that the rear of the stock would be too wide, you'd need an aftermarket stock. A Papoose might work, but you might want to trim down the stock, and at that point, why not a Marlin 795 or 60 trimmed down?

SGW42
February 10, 2012, 07:59 PM
The Mare's Leg fits her now, but how fast do kids grow up?

A BL22 might cost a little more, but she'll grow into it and be able to use it much longer.

dmazur
February 10, 2012, 08:11 PM
Are minors allowed to legaly own rifles? Or transport them loaded? Or without the owners permission?

Don't know. I know the referenced 18 USC 922 covers juvenile possession of handguns. I don't think there is any federal regulation of long arm possession.

I believe juvenile possession of rifles/shotguns varies from state to state, and is generally more permissive. Also, there can be somewhat troublesome fish and game regulations that can make it illegal to possess a rifle/shotgun because it is assumed you are hunting out of season, even if you think you are just shooting cans.

For example, you can't transport a loaded rifle in a motor vehicle in Washington State without violating Fish & Wildlife regulations, but I believe it is OK to walk down the road with one slung on your shoulder. Someone told me it was not intended to inhibit self-defense, but to make it easier for officers to enforce "no shooting from motor vehicles".

However, if you had a CPL, you could have a loaded pistol in that motor vehicle. But, until recently, you couldn't have it with you when archery hunting, because the State figured you were using it (illegally) for hunting instead of for self-defense. (This was finally fixed.)

And, while it is legal to shoot grouse in Washington State with a deer rifle, you can't have a deer rifle in the woods outside of deer / elk seasons (and you have to have a tag) or the State assumes you are poaching. A .22 or a shotgun are OK, however.

I believe the key thing about a handgun is that it isn't legal for the juvenile to own it. They can possess it with the owner's written permission, and there are restrictions on transporting it loaded. And (I'm guessing) this is all to permit farm kids to use dad's pistol without throwing the door wide open to juvenile possession of handguns in urban areas.

As someone else said, you should check with local authorities. If you're lucky, they will know something about NH firearms laws.

Ishoot1st
February 10, 2012, 09:26 PM
Thanks for all the input. I wish we could try out a couple leverguns, see what fits her best after shooting some rounds, but my range has none for rent. I have a 4 year old that will be joining us shooting soon,when he is six also. He can start on the crickett, then the mares leg my daughter may soon have. I will give her my marlin, then daddy gets to buy a new toy. I have been eye balling the s&w 15-22....druell....but i can't afford another $500 plinker. I have a gsg5-pk that the kids will learn to shoot also, lots of fun with the right ammo. Besides...truth be told, who wouldn't want a completely impractical .22 mares leg for the collection? Plus Looks really awesome in a leg holster!

x_wrench
February 11, 2012, 08:36 AM
as much as i like guns, both hand and long, i really can not figure out why anyone would want one of those monstrosities. other than a wall hanger conversation piece, i can not see any practical use for one.

bigfatdave
February 11, 2012, 08:51 AM
i can not see any practical use for oneFUN!
It doesn't need a practical use. If I must provide one, after the fall of civilization, I intend to put my ML action and barrel on a rifle stock and have a trapper. With zombies roaming the streets, the BATFEIEIO won't care about my SBR, and I imagine that it will be about perfectly balanced and nicely lightweight.

Tommygunn
February 11, 2012, 10:39 AM
as much as i like guns, both hand and long, i really can not figure out why anyone would want one of those monstrosities. other than a wall hanger conversation piece, i can not see any practical use for one.

Well, I hate to admit this, but:
A.) You're right they have absolutly no real practical value; they're NOT practical guns.
B.) I have one. Yea, they're NOT PRACTICAL---but they ARE COOL!!!!!!

Ishoot1st
February 11, 2012, 07:20 PM
I can't stand it when people have to make a post just to say they don't like it. Then FINE, don't buy it! If you don't have a constructive opinion, good or bad, with reviews or experience, then don't post just to say you don't like it, or don't understand why someone else would want it. Its not adding any input to the OP or the discussion at hand.

I don't like glocks, i think there the ugliest damn gun around. But i don't go on glock threads just to post "i don't like glocks".

Ishoot1st
February 14, 2012, 04:41 PM
I finally got a chance to compare the henry lever action youth, and the mares leg side by side. The mares leg fits her great, but the lever is a little too far back. The youth is a little big for her now...but hopefully she grows into it soon, cause i just bought one for her. We'll see how much a bigger bulkier gun affects her aim, especially after carrying it for a couple miles. We'll go to the range first to try it out. Thanks for all the advice

bigfatdave
February 14, 2012, 07:41 PM
I hope you BOTH enjoy that little H001Y, Ishoot1st

Don't forget a box of CB shorts for maximum fun on the range. And remember that HRA is awesome at helping out customers, and that rimfirecentral has a dedicated henry subforum with some real experts.

ChopperKen
February 15, 2012, 10:44 AM
I also had this problem with my oldest daughter.
I built her a 10-22 with a cutdown and slimmed stock,
butler creek carbon fiber 16" barrel, and some trigger work.
Length of pull around 10.5"(from butt to trigger) 31.5"
Overall length.
She loves it. I gave it to her when she was 7 She is now 12.
I have pictures of the build but can't seem to post them
From my phone.
This was my answer and the 10-22 will grow with her and
be legal. :D

CraigC
February 15, 2012, 11:00 AM
Sad when you can't even discuss shooting with your own kids without the armchair police getting all frothy. Nobody said anything about turning a 9yr old girl loose with a handgun. If the child is supervised, which we should all assume she would be, the legalities are all irrelevant.

tdstout
February 15, 2012, 12:24 PM
What the heck does BATFEIEIO mean?

It's good that she's shooting, no matter if it's a mare's leg or anything else. My Dad used to let me take his pistol out and shoot cans with it when I was around nine, and I turned out pretty good, lol. But, then again, we were on private property and didn't know that you weren't supposed to.

Ishoot1st
February 15, 2012, 01:04 PM
Yeah i know Craig...i started out my daughter on a .22 cricket at age 6. The discussions i would have with people about having my daughter target shoot or hunt with me often got heated. OF COURSE safety was discussed, practiced, and drilled into her, but a lot of people think its wrong still? I think that early introduction of firearms, and most importantly firearm safety, are the key to keeping kids from being curious and careless around guns.

CraigC
February 15, 2012, 01:12 PM
Me too! What the armchair litigation team needs to realize is that standing at the range and handing a child a firearm does not constitute "possession" by a minor.

ChopperKen
February 15, 2012, 01:41 PM
My daughter has been shooting my handguns
since she was 5 (Ruger single six & 22-45)
I think kids should learn early myself.
If you hunt with your kids you won't be hunting for them.

bigfatdave
February 15, 2012, 02:09 PM
What the heck does BATFEIEIO mean? when the ATF started adding letters and became the BATFE, I helped.

Ishoot1st
April 16, 2012, 08:45 PM
I ended up buying a henry mares leg for my daughter for her birthday. She used the youth model on 3 different outings and everytime she complained about the weight and bulk of the rifle. We usually have at least a mile to hike into our shooting spot. I think that the tube magazine loaded, is too much weight in the front of the gun for her to hold it up and get good shot placements. Plus she wants to put the scope from her cricket on the youth model, but couldn't bear any extra weight or bulk on it. So....dad had to grab her a new gun and get her excited about shooting this summer, we will pick up her new mares leg on friday. Plus the wife likes to shoot the youth rifle, so i really didn't lose at all. With a little scope and a sling, that mares leg is gonna be a kids dream gun, great for hiking and camping. Plus it holds 15 .22 shorts, thats my daughters favorite ammo, she is more accurate and flinches less than .22lr. I'll post back after we try it out.

CZguy
April 17, 2012, 05:09 AM
I teach shooting to many young people. After they master the basics with a bolt action, they transition to the S&W 15/22. The multi position stock fits darn near everyone.

paintballdude902
April 17, 2012, 05:27 PM
i dont understand where this whole federal law thing is coming from. i read nothinh about her owning it or her trying to cc a mares leg.

Ishoot1st
April 17, 2012, 08:26 PM
I love the S&W 15/22. I have been drooling over that one since it came out, and it has got mostly great reviews so far. That could be dads new toy before my daughter gets it. We handled one and she won't be comfortable carrying and shooting it for a couple years. When we go out, she has to carry her own water, snacks, ammo, and rifle. So if she has a rifle that is too big and heavy, then i usually end up carrying it. The couple times i let her shoot my marlin 60, she got in the habit of dumping rounds quick. Hopefully the lever action will slow her down and make her concentrate more. We both like to dump rounds with my gsg5 pk though 

CZguy
April 17, 2012, 11:33 PM
I love the S&W 15/22. I have been drooling over that one since it came out, and it has got mostly great reviews so far. That could be dads new toy before my daughter gets it. We handled one and she won't be comfortable carrying and shooting it for a couple years. When we go out, she has to carry her own water, snacks, ammo, and rifle. So if she has a rifle that is too big and heavy, then i usually end up carrying it. The couple times i let her shoot my marlin 60, she got in the habit of dumping rounds quick. Hopefully the lever action will slow her down and make her concentrate more. We both like to dump rounds with my gsg5 pk though



I include partially loaded mags in my training. And occasionally let them shoot Remington bulk pac, in order to introduce jams so that they can learn to clear jams and change mags.

I use Federal bulk pac so that it runs right.

Only at the end of the session do I let each one do a mag dump.

doc2rn
April 18, 2012, 02:32 AM
My uncle had one of those henry survival rifles (AR-7) for over 30 yrs. He used it weekly to keep the varmits out of his barn (he was phobic about bats). That thing weighs in the 2 lb range and was descently accurate. They even make an aftermarket 25 rnd magazine for them.

Carl N. Brown
May 9, 2012, 10:42 PM
bigfatdave

Quote: What the heck does BATFEIEIO mean?

when the ATF started adding letters and became the BATFE, I helped.

An answer I wanted to know to a question I was reluctant to ask.

♪ ♫Old MacDonald had an agency, BATF-E-I-E-I-O♪ ♫

ADDED to get back to Opening Post:

As a youth gun the AR7 would not be my choice; the weight is good, but my Armalite AR7 buttstock is bulky for an adult and IIRC the Henry AR7 Survival Rifle I handled was not smaller at all, it felt slightly bulkier. The stock is too large for a child.

If the full sized Henry carbine is too much for the father's six year old camper, and the Henry Mare's Leg is a good fit, hey that's the father's choice.

Personally, I think the social engineers who write crap like the 1968 Gun Control Act looked at the demographic of the typical gun American owner (introduced to shooting as a child by father/mother aunt/uncle or grandparent) and decided that laws restricting youth and guns would break the cycle of the gun culture.

For the shooter who has everything, the mare's leg is a cool gun.
The .22 Henry Mare's Leg has low recoil and can be shot like a rifle with the abbreviated butt to the cheek. It is actually more practical in my book than the centerfire mare's leg versions offered by other manufacturers which can be shot as a pistol, but best with both hands. I do remember a quote from Steve McQueen that his mare's leg in Wanted: Dead or Alive (.44-40) was a pain to learn to shoot well.

Although I am tempted by the ..2 henry Mare's Leg at the LGS, I think I would be better off opting for the Henry Carbine, but I already have a Marlin 39A Mountie, so I end up at Square One.

According to http://www.henryrepeating.com/

The Henry Lever .22 Carbine has a barrel length of 16 1/8 inches, overall of 34 inches, and weighs 4.5 lbs.

The Henry Mare's Leg .22 Carbine has a barrel length of 12 3/4 inches, overall of 25 inches, and weighs a fraction less than the Henry Carbine (4.45 lbs? Must be a heavy saddle ring added to the Mare's Leg!).

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