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Old January 10, 2019, 04:32 PM   #1
stagpanther
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New Henry 45-70

45-70 has been on my list for decades, but never got around to it because of other 458 alternative I have. But--of all places--my local Wally World started carrying Henry--and I saw it and thought hmmmm. But I always thought when I got one it would be a marlin trapper, from what I've heard they are producing excellent ones these days, but at my other LGS they cost just as much as the Henry, so that was a bit of a strike against that in my book. The first Henry lever I bought was one of their first runs of 41 mag--and that experience didn't go very well, so I've shied away from Henry for quite a while--but decided I'd give em a second try to see if I have better luck--this is the 22" octagonal barrel big boy. I would have preferred something else than a brass receiver--who knows maybe this and my blr will make a glamorous couple.

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Old January 10, 2019, 04:44 PM   #2
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I don't own any Henry's, but I know a lot of people who do. My observations from shooting theirs, and watching them shoot theirs, is that they are very accurate and function flawlessly. I've heard of a few people having to send them back for a few different reasons, but the feedback was that Henry was 100% customer focused and took care of everything every time. I've never heard of any bad reports about customer service. I've been considering getting a .22lr and a .22wmr lever gun and I'd seriously consider getting a Henry. I think you'll be happy with yours. By the way, the 45-70 is a terrific cartridge. I own and have owned about a dozen different guns in that cartridge. It's the easiest cartridge I've ever loaded for. It seems to like everything.
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Old January 10, 2019, 05:08 PM   #3
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Thanks--I'm sure I'll be fine--though the brass buttplate does give me pause for thought when loading up the hot charges. I think the title of king of easiest to reload cartridge for a lever has to be the 44 mag--but it's nice to hear this one should be a breeze also.
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Old January 10, 2019, 07:22 PM   #4
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Cleaned up and polished--ready to go. Like other new levers are sometimes prone to do, the lever tends to lock pretty hard and takes a bit to unlock--hopefully that will smooth off with some use--so I'm going to spend some time watching a movie while pretending I'm riding in to the rescue with John Wayne.

Two big pluses I noticed right off the bat--the longer sight radius between the rear and front irons due to the 22" I can actually see with my worn out old half-blind eyes and hopefully use--my other levers with shorter barrels I can't see. The trigger breaks crisply and consistently right at 4 lbs--perfect for hunting IMO.
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Old January 10, 2019, 07:34 PM   #5
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Don't polish or over-clean the brass on this gun. It's a brass plating and has a clear coat on it. Once it's "worn through" it will tarnish quickly. No need to shoot heavy loads out of the gun. I shoot 400g bullets at around 1300-1450fps and still haven't recovered a single bullet from a deer. You can shoot 300g at the same speeds and not beat yourself up.
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Old January 10, 2019, 07:37 PM   #6
stagpanther
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Quote:
Don't polish or over-clean the brass on this gun. It's a brass plating and has a clear coat on it. Once it's "worn through" it will tarnish quickly. No need to shoot heavy loads out of the gun. I shoot 400g bullets at around 1300-1450fps and still haven't recovered a single bullet from a deer. You can shoot 300g at the same speeds and not beat yourself up.
Thanks for that.

Looking at the receiver--looks like solid machined brass to me--but I'm not sure.
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Old January 10, 2019, 07:42 PM   #7
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Looking at the receiver--looks like solid machined brass to me
It is-and it's a very good-looking rifle for sure.
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Old January 10, 2019, 08:12 PM   #8
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It is-and it's a very good-looking rifle for sure.
thanks--Looks like that to me.
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Old January 10, 2019, 08:12 PM   #9
Backwoods Bastard
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Nice purchase! I've been eyeing a Henry in 45-70 as well lately.

I like my JM Marlin 1895G, but really want to get a hold of the All Weather that Henry is offering.
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Old January 10, 2019, 08:18 PM   #10
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Nice purchase! I've been eyeing a Henry in 45-70 as well lately.

I like my JM Marlin 1895G, but really want to get a hold of the All Weather that Henry is offering.
That makes sense--I hunt and shoot in Maine--and that often means rain and snow.
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Old January 10, 2019, 08:36 PM   #11
Backwoods Bastard
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The nice feature on the All Weather is that it's hard chromed finish & not just stainless like most other rifles.
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Old January 11, 2019, 02:45 AM   #12
DPris
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The brass alloy on ALL of the Henry brass centerfire receivers is solid through & through.
It is not plated.
And it will tarnish & develop a patina eventually through use.
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Old January 11, 2019, 06:50 AM   #13
stagpanther
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And it will tarnish & develop a patina eventually through use.
I don't necessarily see that as a bad thing--in fact I was wondering about accelerating that.
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Old January 11, 2019, 09:25 AM   #14
NoSecondBest
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Quote:
The brass alloy on ALL of the Henry brass centerfire receivers is solid through & through.
It is not plated.
I stand corrected. The rimfire guns have a thin cover over the action that's plated. I was thinking that the 45-70 had the same finish. It's a brass alloy. It still has a clear coat though and will develop the "patina" if the finish is removed. I was in a Gander Mountain store a few years back and was thinking about buying one. Everyone in their latest shipment had a finish problem and they looked "spotty". They sent those back to be replaced. It might look good/better if uniform, but it didn't look all that nice with large spots on the finish.
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Old January 11, 2019, 09:56 AM   #15
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I've always used the 300mJHP .factory loads. Accurate, low recoil, effective. at close range. for me under 50yds it has too much expansion.sso I switched to premium 300s ! Those work well for the 300s at least to 100 yds.
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Old January 11, 2019, 10:13 AM   #16
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I bought the brass Henry 45-70, as I already had a blued 45-70. Even though my other 45-70 has an additional butt pad, I found the brass plate not to be that bad, even with heavier loads. But then I haven't shot any 500 Buffalo "whatever" loads. 300s to 405s.


Left the semi-buckhorn sight as is. My other rifles have third party sights. I'm older, but eyes aren't bad, considering. I like this rifle.
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Old January 11, 2019, 02:22 PM   #17
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I'd personally prefer a patina over the bright brass on the centerfires.

The "brass" rimfire leverguns are Zamak 5 as the base material, plated with nickel, highly polished, then that "gold" finish is applied.

That much I can get from the Wisconsin plant manager, but the exact composition of the gold coating is proprietary & they don't give it out.

You will not wear through any "clearcoat" on those "brass" rimfires.
There isn't one.
And that gold coating is extremely durable, will not tarnish with handling.

I couldn't wear ANY of it off the receiver during the 28,000-round endurance run on my Golden Boy, through a LOTTA handling, both with bare hand and a glove.

The brass alloy used on the brass centerfires is solid, and it's not a traditional brass mixture. It's a metals formulation designed for much greater strength.
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Old January 11, 2019, 02:48 PM   #18
NoSecondBest
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Quote:
You will not wear through any "clearcoat" on those "brass" rimfires.
There isn't one.
Quote:
The barrel band and the receiver cover are made of Brasslite, which is a durable, proprietary, brass-plated alloy treated with a clear coating to preserve its lustrous shine.
Wonder who's right about this? I kind of lean toward the manufacturer.
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Old January 11, 2019, 04:05 PM   #19
DPris
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In this case, there's no need to wonder- I'm right.

Brasslite is an advertising term that Henry came up with long ago to use for the rimfires.
There is no "brass" in the receiver.
And Brasslite is meaningless, since there's no such thing.

The info I gave you came directly from the manager of the Wisconsin Henry plant.
Today, Henry's a little more open about their processes.

The coating that goes over the nickel plating derives its shine from the high polish on that nickel plating shining through.
What's in the coating to provide the "gold" tone, they don't give out.
Since the coating technically is "clear" enough to let that nickel shine through the gold coloring, I suppose you MIGHT call it a clear coat, but it isn't really clear as we use the term.

The "silver" versions use the exact same Zamak 5 diecast receiver & cover, and the same nickel plating, highly polished.
They just omit the gold-colored coat.

I have a raw upper & lower rimfire receiver set here, as they come straight out of the "oven". They are both a dull grey, similar to lead.

I've published photos of them, as a part of an article on how Henry makes those receiver parts.
They were sent to me by Henry, for publication.

The information used in that article, with the full knowledge & contribution of Andy Wickstrom, manager, Wisconsin plant, was what I gave you here.


And I'll repeat- whatever the composition of that gold coating is, it's EXTREMELY durable.
If you do somehow manage to scrape on down through it, as I accidentally did on the barrel band in one spot from extended abrasion with steel during one transport, you'll get down to the silver plating and/or the base Zamak 5 under it all.

You can't wear the coating off & then get any type of "brass" patina, since there's no brass under that coating.
Denis


Edited To Add: This was all written up in Guns Of The Old West Magazine, Issue # 93, if you want to dig it up.

Last edited by DPris; January 11, 2019 at 06:15 PM.
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