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Should I buy a lever rifle?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by TacticalSpeed, Oct 26, 2021.

  1. TacticalSpeed

    TacticalSpeed member

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    I've always wanted one just because they look cool & never enough toys, right? :D

    I have never fired one, though. It would just be a range toy for me & I'd be looking on the lower end of the cost scale at a Henry (Open to other manufacturers) 22LR rifle. However, I want to stick with 22LR.

    Should I skip it or will I actually enjoy it?

    I passed on a Henry 22LR lever rifle at a local shop recently. Obviously, not because I don't want it, but because clearly not a need & with so many other builds in the pipeline, the money would be better spent elsewhere. ;)
     
  2. 0ne3

    0ne3 Member

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    I, am 74, had many .22's over the years. I, now have a Henry Golden Boy. I put a tang sight on it. With these old eyes, it shoots well. My hunting days are mostly over, to hard to get around in the woods. Now, I, just go to the range. I, do enjoy shooting this lever.
     
  3. Ethan Verity

    Ethan Verity Member

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    Only you can answer that question.

    Me personally, I love lever actions. They are gorgeous, and running the lever between shots is very satisfying on the range.

    My Henry 30-30 shoots as good as it looks!
    Henry 30-30 fancy stock pic1 crop.jpg
     
  4. Deus Machina

    Deus Machina Member

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    I had a basic Henry for a while. I can confirm it shoots nicely.
    Plus, it handled any of the heeled-bullet .22 rimfires. Toss 20 shorts in it, and it had about the report of a pellet rifle. Ever want to be able to hear a can dance?
     
    gotboostvr likes this.
  5. Alaskan Ironworker

    Alaskan Ironworker Member

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    A used marlin 336 30-30 would be a good place to start. Levers are very satisfying to operate regardless of what make/caliber. If you are hesitant, just watch a few john wayne movies or the “Rifleman” series.
     
    Catpop likes this.
  6. Jeff62

    Jeff62 Member

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    I have hunted since the 1960’s and reloaded since the 1980’s. I bought my first ever lever gun, a Henry brass 45/70, two years ago and have since added a Winchester 94 30/30. I put two plow puller does in the freezer with the Henry. I love lever guns
    I am seriously thinking about a squirrel shwacker 22magnum, probably a Henry, with a Leupold on top.
    The first sentence of your post pretty much nails it.
     
  7. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    From a practical perspective they are not the best hunting tools. I've owned, and still own a bunch of levers just for nostalgic reasons but rarely hunt with one. I'd keep my eyes open for an older Marlin of Winchester 30-30. By older I mean something from the 1970's through the 1990's. That's about 3 decades worth of guns and probably the height of quality for Marlin. The 1980's through about 2006 will get you a decent Winchester.

    A 22 will be cheaper to feed, but both Winchester and Marlin have stopped producing those and prices have gone through the roof on used ones. The Henry lever guns are accurate, pretty, reliable guns. But they just don't do anything for me. The 22's cut too many corners and are just too cheap looking. The centerfires are overweight and overpriced. With Winchester out of production except for the high end Japanese made guns and with the recent Marlin issues Henry has filled a niche and I understand the appeal.

    But for me, rather than settle for a copy, it is worth the trouble to find an older gun that is the real thing.
     
  8. .455_Hunter

    .455_Hunter Member

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    Other than the "Original 1860" replica, most of Henry's products look to me like they belong in the Gift Bar area of Sportsman's or Cabela's right next to the cap guns and raccoon hats- especially the "brassy" ones. Sorry, the styling just puts me off. I had a basic Henry lever .22 for awhile, but had to get rid of it since I was always wanting it to become a 9422 in my hands.
     
  9. Tentwing

    Tentwing Member

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    Tactical speed, If I read your post right. You are 1. Looking for a range toy, ( not necessarily an heirloom) and 2.”wanting to stick to a 22( cheaper fun) ? A Henry 001 is a good place to start. They are inexpensive. I saw on the shelf at Walmart in McMinnville TN. About three weeks ago $289 plus tax. They are light weight, and fairly accurate. They have a fairly smooth action, and usually nice walnut furniture. A Golden Boy will run you $100+ more, and your grandchildren will likely talk you out of it, but if it throws them off the scent of your 39’s, your 9422’s, and your grade1 Browning;)
    I personally love lever action rifles.Working the lever and making a DrPepper can dance around the back pasture is to me just plain fun. Be warned. Entry level Lever guns often lead to higher quality taste in levers.This always leads to more expensive lever actions.
    My first lever was a Marlin 39a. They are no longer made , and the prices for a good used one?? Well don’t get me started…… I would avoid the Chiapas and Rossi entry level 22 levers after handling them , but that is just my opinion…
     
  10. greyling22

    greyling22 Member

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    Just handle one before you buy. I found the golden boy to have a lot more drop to the stock than most guns, and I couldn't get comfortable on it
     
  11. hawg

    hawg Member

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    The Golden Boy does have a lot of drop in the stock but it's easier/faster to get a good sight picture with it. Plus the action is slicker than snot on a porcelain doorknob. I had a Marlin 39A and I wish I still had it but I wouldn't trade my Golden Boy for one. The Brownings lever throw is way too short for my liking. If the Henry doesn't appeal to you try to find an old Winchester.
     
    Steve Milbocker likes this.
  12. Catpop

    Catpop Member

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    Early Marlin 22 levers are MY preference. Last one I bought new was in 80s. As said above, I’d look for a used 39A.
     
  13. sota

    sota Member

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    No.
    You should buy several. :D
    At least one should be capable of having a suppressor mounted on it.
    At least one in .22LR. After that, pick your bigger cartridge of choice.

    Oh, and get a Henry. So far all of mine are.
     
    kidneyboy likes this.
  14. Seedy Character

    Seedy Character Member

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    Go for it, levers are fast and fun.

    Henry makes a blue one, if the silver or golden boy turn you off.
    Browning makes an excellent rifle in their BL-22
    Grade I or II
    Winchester or Marlin will be pricey, but great guns.
    Since you just want a range toy, Rossi may scratch your it. The centerfires seem decent, .22s are questionable, in my book.
     
    chicharrones likes this.
  15. Meeks36

    Meeks36 Member

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    Love my sons Henry 22lr. Accurate and haven’t had it jam up. Think I paid $260 at Wally for it. Best $260 I’ve spent in a while.
     
    hawg likes this.
  16. Bronco72

    Bronco72 Member

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    Everybody should have at least one lever gun :thumbup:
     
  17. dh1633pm

    dh1633pm Contributing Member

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    Yes, yes you should. In my younger days, I couldn't get the popularity of the lever gun. Until I used one my dad owned. Now I own four.
     
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  18. kidneyboy

    kidneyboy Member

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    Yes. Can't go wrong with a Henry H001. While you're at it get a 22 revolver like a Ruger Wrangler or Heritage Rough Rider.
     
    22250Rem, bannockburn and courtgreene like this.
  19. doubleh

    doubleh Member

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    It appears to me as if you have already answered your question.
     
  20. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    Yes, they are classic. Fast pointing, quick cycling, and accurate.
     
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  21. Bayou52

    Bayou52 Member

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    Lever actions are loads of fun to target shoot and/or hunt with.

    My most accurate 22 is a 1961 vintage Marlin Model 39A Golden Mountie:

    IMG-20170918-180935.jpg

    Other than this Marlin, my only other lever action is a 1947 Win Model 94 in 32 Win Special that I purchased from an elderly neighbor. He received it as a 14th birthday present from his Dad in 1947. It is also a great shooter, and I am now ready to start casting and powder coating projectiles for this rifle as soon as I can find a mould:

    IMG-20170918-181403.jpg

    Bayou52
     
  22. Tentwing

    Tentwing Member

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    8FC2B3C0-C6C3-4CD3-ADC5-0011C8D7793C.jpeg
     
  23. JCooperfan1911

    JCooperfan1911 Member

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    A Henry .22 is not only a hoot, but a holler as well.

    You won't regret it.
     
  24. MedWheeler

    MedWheeler Member

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    This thread takes up too much bandwidth. It should be as follows:

    Post 1: "Should I buy a lever rifle?"

    Post 2: "Yes."

    Post 3 (by moderator): "Asked and answered."

    :D
     
    Beck, J-Bar, Dain Bramage and 3 others like this.
  25. AK Hunter

    AK Hunter Member

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    Of course you should by a lever action everyone should own at least one.
    I've been looking for a 30.30 in lever action but the price has always stopped me.
    I don.t understand why they are so expensive.
     
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