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Henry .357 Lever Action

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by 460Shooter, Sep 30, 2013.

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  1. 460Shooter

    460Shooter Well-Known Member

    Greetings friends and neighbors,

    Say, I've been thinking about a lever action in .357 for awhile, and I really like the look of the Henry Big Boy lever guns. I was out shoping around the other day, and happened to come across one.

    I like that it is affordable to shoot, affordable to own, and chambered in a cartridge that you could easily plug a deer with.

    I'm also really infatuated with the fine wood stock, and especially the brass reciever and butt plate. My question is for Henry owners.

    How durable is the finish on the brass recievers? Is it easy to damage. Does it hold up to regular range sessions? I typically lean towards stainless steel for the look and durability.

    If you own one, do you have any regrets? Would you buy one?

    I have 3 .357 revolvers so I like the notion.
  2. Schwing

    Schwing Well-Known Member

    I almost ended up with a Henry. I had my local dealer on the lookout for a .357 lever action for a long time and he could never get a Henry in. One day, he got a Rossi 92 and I, very half-heartedly took a look at it. I had no experience with them and had heard some negative posts.

    It was stainless with a walnut stock and won me over right away. I have since handled some Henrys. I think the action is somewhat smoother out of the box but, after a couple of hundred rounds, the Rossi smoothed right up. I had some minor issues with the feed tube coming lose initially but they were easily resolved.

    I would do it again.
  3. scotjute

    scotjute Well-Known Member

    I have one. The finish of the brass receiver seems to have held up fine. I've only shot around 30 rounds thru it, so not exactly a heavy duty range session.
    I wish the gun was about 1-2 lbs. lighter.
    Thought their .22 WMR version was a near perfect rifle.
  4. mefitz

    mefitz Well-Known Member

    I have had mine for about 3 years now and absolutely love it. Taken to range dozens of times, finish holds up really well. I'm not especially hard on my guns, but dont baby them either.
    The action is like butter! So smooth and reliable. They weigh about eight pounds so your loads can be stout with reasonable recoil. They do like a certain bullet and OAL combinations like most lever actions. Mine happens to like a 158gr semi-wad cutter at a certain OAL.
    Would I buy another? yes! any regrets? No! Simple as that. In fact, I bought the .22 Golden Boy not long after. Do yourself a favor and pick one up!
  5. Geno

    Geno Well-Known Member

    Henry advertises the brass receiver to have the same strength as the steel receivers.

  6. jakk280rem

    jakk280rem Well-Known Member

    Is it a brass "finish" or brass? Is it like their painted receiver 22's with a plated steel receiver? I thought it was solid brass in which case it should hold up nicely.
  7. scotjute

    scotjute Well-Known Member

    It is a solid brass receiver.
  8. Panzercat

    Panzercat Well-Known Member

    No sidegate :(
  9. Eb1

    Eb1 Well-Known Member

    Not being able to side load is a downfall. Same with the .44 Magnum version. :(
  10. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Well-Known Member

    I own a Marlin 1894C in .357 Magnum and a Henry in .22LR. The Henry has an extremely smooth lever and it's very accurate. The Marlin in .357 Magnum is one of the most fun guns I have. I like carrying it in the woods along with either a Ruger SA revolver or a S&W DA revolver in the same caliber.
  11. Carl N. Brown

    Carl N. Brown Well-Known Member

    To some people, loading a tube magazine through a port in the tube implies ".22" and "cheap" (much like bolt actions w/o a seperate bolt stop -- just open the bolt pull the trigger and slide the bolt out -- implies ".22" and "cheap".

    We expect a centerfire leveraction to have a side gate for loading, then we complain about shaved bullets, thumbs and fingers from pushing cartridges through the side gate, and how difficult it is to clean the magazine tube after a few years of oxidized oil, bullet shaving, bullet lube, powder residue.

    All gun designs are trade-offs. Some people grow to like the Henry loading system, or are used to the same system in the .22s they grew up with.

    And on the weight of a Henry: I sold my Rossi Puma .357 to my son, and he gave it back to me be cause light carbine + 158gr .357 was too much felt recoil: he'd rather shoot his .308 or .30-30. Weight reduces felt recoil because increased mass reduces velocity of recoil: in the e = m v[sup]2[/sup] equation for kinetic energy, reduction in velocity reduces impact energy much more than the increase in mass that reduces the velocity incleases the impact. Heavier guns kick less with the same round.
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2013
  12. 460Shooter

    460Shooter Well-Known Member

    I would prefer a sidegate, but it certainly isn't a deal breaker to me.

    The weight doesn't bother me. I'm a bigger guy and am pretty strong. I don't see it being a problem.
  13. goon

    goon Well-Known Member

    When I handled the Henry in .357, I noticed that it had a stock that fit me pretty well. The Golden Boy .22's have too much drop but the bigger version lined up perfectly for me. I wish they'd make a more subdued color case hardened version, but I think if I was in the market and couldn't find a good used Marlin, I'd probably buy the Henry.
  14. KYamateur

    KYamateur Well-Known Member

    I bought a Marlin and like it fine, but my shooting buddy bought the Henry and I like his a little better. It is actually easier to load from the tube. I don't know if one is better than the other, the Henry is just prettier. Neither of us have ever had any problems. We have both probably shot 800-1000 rounds out of the rifles. We bought them at the same time. No wear issues on either gun. Just hold them and see what ou like the best.
  15. skeptical_in_Ohio

    skeptical_in_Ohio Well-Known Member

    While on the topic of .357, please offer your opinions

    Hi all-

    I have been sort of casting about for a centerfire lever-action rifle. From what I've heard I think Marlin (if one can find an older one) or Henry would make me happy. Rossi's are OK, there has been documentation of some variance in feeding, and that doggone safety switch on the bolt is a real turn-off for me. At any rate, those are getting rare and prices are generally in the low to mid $500 range.

    I'd like something in .357, but I guess .44 would be OK too (I have something else in both calibers). When looking at Henry or Marlin, what I am finding is that 30/30 (at least Marlins and Winchesters) can be gotten in a lot of places (indeed, saw a Marlin at WalMart today for under $400); the .44's I've seen tend to be in the high $600 range, and the .357 more in the mid $700. The 30/30 Henry's are priced a lot like the .357 Henry's. I don't have anything else in 30/30, but it would meet the nominal requirement of centerfire, so I'm open to that idea.

    My question. Are these prices normal, or is something going on that I'm missing? Would a Henry (used, but looks really great) in .357 be a good buy at a bit under $700, or should I wait until things get a bit more reasonable, or is this about as reasonable as things get? There's no fire - it'd just something I'd like that would be fun to shoot.

    Please advise.

    Last edited: Nov 21, 2013
  16. Nighteyes

    Nighteyes Well-Known Member

  17. Nighteyes

    Nighteyes Well-Known Member

    Then, just perhaps, one has never handled/fired an original 1860 Henry rifle, or any of the modern 1860 Henry reproductions. (Trust me on this, a "Henry Big Boy" is by no means a reproduction of the original Henry rifle.)

    I'm just sayin'...

    -- Nighteyes
  18. jakk280rem

    jakk280rem Well-Known Member

    Prices are pretty normal. The 1894 has been out of production for several years. That is why the prices are increasing. An expanding demand and shrinking supply drive the price up. Is an almost $700 Marlin in 357 worth it? I don't know, is it? If you plan on keeping forever then what's it matter what you pay? 20 years from now will you even remember? I own a pre Remington 1894C with Ballard rifling and a checkered Walnut stock of some figure. I happily paid $400 about 4 years ago. Would I pay $700 today for the same gun? I might. It really is a fine rifle.

    The other problem with waiting for Remlin to start up production again is the fact it has taken several years for the New Yorkers to learn to turn out a decent lever action. They've had some practice on the 336 and 1895, but it might take a few more to get the 1894 right. The good news is, once 1894 production is up to speed, older Marlin will slowly drop in price. If you want a 357 lever rifle, my advise is patience. Look for an older Marlin or Winchester that is in the condition you want at a price you are happy with and then buy it. If this takes a few years then so be it. By then Marlington will have the 1894 mostly sorted out and you can just buy a new one.
  19. CaliCoastie

    CaliCoastie Well-Known Member

    my biggest beef is that Henry call reference to the original Henry rifle(even though Winchester has more reason). as such, i personaly won't own one, i like what i hear about them, a friend of mines Henry 22 shots right in line with my Malin mountie.
    i based on my opinions would look toward rossi.
  20. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Well-Known Member

    I have no connection with the Henry company and I only currently own one of their rifles.

    The current Henry Repeating Arms company can trace it's linage back to the original Henry plant in New Haven, CT. They are a family owned company who makes their guns in America with American parts. They donate to the NRA, Boy Scouts of America, The Fisher House and many many others. They raise funds for Breast Cancer research, the Boy Scouts, Teen Shooting Clubs, Farmers, Storm Victims, Ronald McDonald House and a whole lot more! IMO not supporting a good company like Henry over some perceived problem of connecting to the original 1860 rifle is not a good thing. (again, IMO)

    I will support an American company who supports America before I will spend my money with any other company who sends their profits elsewhere. (in this case Brazil) I have nothing against Rossi but if I had to choose I would buy a Henry.
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