A friend bought a used Uberti 1860 Henry in .45 Colt. His has the casehardened steel receiver. Looks great.
Keep in mind that you will deal with some issues if you choose the Henry. It's very heavy. It doesn't have a loading gate on the receiver (that feature was introduced on the 1866 Winchester). It doesn't have a flippin' forend. You have to hold it by the barrel (which gets hot) or the receiver.
Did I mention that it's heavy?
The Uberti 1860 Henry with the brass receiver is real brass. Real brass is real heavy by the way. I have a Uberti 1873 rifle and a Uberti 1866 rifle; the latter has a brass receiver and its noticeably heavier than the steel framed '73.
I love the Uberti reproductions but I think a '66 or '73 is much more practical. That said, it's your money and if a Henry floats your boat, go for it.
The 1860 Henrys (along with the '66s and '73s) are available in .45 Colt, .44-40 and also .38 Special ('66) and .357 ('73). I think Uberti now offers the '73 in .44 Magnum but I don't think I'd be crazy about that high pressure round in a "toggle link" action.
There were no .45 Colt-chambered rifles in the Old West. That's a recent development. The 1860 Henry and the Winchester '66 were chambered in a now-obsolete .44 rimfire cartridge.
The 1873 Winchester (the "gun that won the West") was developed for, and introduced in, the brand new .44 WCF centerfire cartridge, also called .44-40 (because the cartridge featured a .44 caliber bullet over a 40 grain charge of black powder).
The .44-40 features a slightly bottlenecked case. In some rifles (with some loads) the .45 Colt suffers from a condition called "blowby" where gas flows around the case back thought the action when the round is fired. The .44-40 cases tend to seal the chamber better and avoid this problem. It is obviously more difficult to find .44-40 factory loads but if you handload you are good to go and you would be shooting a "period correct" cartridge if that means anything.
The lever rifles are a lot of fun to shoot and they don't seem to frighten people like the "evil black rifles" do.
I don't know there is much difference between the different Uberti importers so go with the one that has what you want in stock.
Post a reply or report and let us know what you decide.