Henry Repeating Arms is not as well known compared to Sig Sauer, Glock, Springfield Armory, etc. But I consider them to be one of those hidden gems that deserve a little more recognition in the gun world. If you are unfamiliar with this manufacturer, then allow me to fill you in a bit.
Henry Repeating Arms got the name from the inventory Benjamin Tyler Henry who patented the first repeating rifle back in 1860. It is known as the Henry rifle. However, even though the New Haven Arms Company sold the Henry rifle from 1862-1864, there is no affiliation or lineage to them nor Benjamin Tyler Henry himself. Then, in 1996, Anthony Imperato secured the trademark to the name.
Nowadays, Henry remains an all-American company and is well-respected in the firearms industry. The company has been around since the Civil War to the modern era. They have been keeping up with the time as well in terms of innovation and romanticism to keep up with the demands of modern shooters and hunters.
With that little tidbit of history lesson out of the way, let us look at why Henry Repeating Arms makes some of the best guns on the planet.
Table of Contents
1. It’s an American Gun
You can find a video on Henry’s website. It shows a guy chucking out everything in his house that is not American and he did not end up with many possessions left. Other than the fact that it is a bit funny, what Henry wants to tell us is that they are full-on American if their slogan “Made in America, or not made at all” is not clear enough. Their headquarter is in Bayonne, New Jersey and they have manufacturing facilities in Rice Lake, Wisconsin. If you want a gun that is truly American, this is it.
2. Customer Support
What keeps people coming back to Henry Repeating Arms is the customer service. Any business that can get its customer support right will retain their customer for a very long time. I would say that the quality of customer service ranks even higher than the quality of the product itself in terms of the company’s success. It is a stressful part of the interaction and the company would go very far if they manage to smoothen it out and make the experience pleasant, or at least hassle-free.
For Henry Repeating Arms, they are all about providing excellent customer support. If you don’t believe me, try sending an email to Henry and chances are you will get a response from the President, Anthony Imperato, himself. He has a habit of reading emails and seeing how people view his company and oftentimes responds to them. Don’t want to wait for an email? That’s right. Try calling them. You will get to talk to a human instead of hearing automated responses and having to press multiple 1s or 2s before you can even begin to explain the problem.
Evidently, the company is committed to ensuring customer satisfaction. If your rifle has any issues at all, they will send you a box and a return label. When they receive your rifle, they will make whatever repair or adjustment that is needed and then return it to you as soon as possible.
Henry Repeating Arms makes reliable, durable, and accurate rifles in various chamberings. This is pretty important during an ammo shortage. It does not matter much what kind of cartridge you are planning to shoot. .45 Colt, .357 Magnum? You might find one from Henry. Want to shoot a 6.5 Creedmoor? The Long Ranger is for you.
It does not matter what you are planning to use your rifle for. Plinking? Hunting? Target shooting? Some cowboy action shooting? Defending your home against the bad guys? Henry has a rifle for that. But the versatility extends beyond the rifle itself. There are plenty of accessories that you can get directly from Henry such as scope mounts, sights, large loop level, gun cases, and sling swivels that allow you to make the most out of your purchase.
Henry offers their rimfire rifles in various chamberings including .17, .22 and .22 Magnum, and their centerfire models are chambered in .357, .44.45, .30-30, and .45-70. They have bolt-action, semi-autos, pump-actions, and lever-actions. You can also get a Mare’s Leg model which is a pistol by legal definition but has that hybrid lever-action pistol/rifle combination.
But your options are not limited to the specs. You have some wiggle room in terms of aesthetics as well. You can have your Henry rifle with a black receiver, brass, or silver. Some of the most popular rifles from Henry also have youth models as well. Some are made as a tribute such as the Firefighter or American Farmer series.
As you can see, Henry rifles offer a virtually limitless number of customization and they keep coming up with new ones all the time.
Just like butter, the action is smooth and fast. With a bit of practice, you can operate the action with just a finger and you might surprise a lot of people with how fast you can work this thing. Put in some hours behind the barrel and you can run around and hit one bullseye after another like a well-oiled machine.
6. Dead Accurate
Henry rifles are very accurate. Take a Henry rifle chambered in .44 Magnum and at 100 yards, you can hit a 3-inch bullseye quite reliably. If you have something to support your arms, maybe some learning support, then you can guarantee to hit the bullseye with this gun. It is that accurate. The best part? It drives tack accurately straight out of the box.
7. Simple Safety
There is no manual or half cock safety on any Henry rifle. There is nothing wrong with them, of course. It is just that they are not necessary on a lever-action rifle that is intended to be handled carefully. That said, there is a different safety system on the Henry rifle.
You get a firing pin block safety that stops the hammer from hitting the firing pin, at least until the trigger is fully depressed. Although this idea would not fly, it is impressive how Henry managed to get this past the lawyers. So, now we have rifles with very clean lines, a simple operation, and an overall common sense approach to their design.
8. Low Recoil
Recoil is very much manageable on the Henry rifle. All of this is thanks to the heavy octagon barrel, wide buttstock, as well as forward weight balance. They reduce felt recoil even when you are firing full power .44 Magnum rounds.
9. Easy to Maintain
Cleaning the Henry rifle is a breeze. All you need to do is to remove a single screw from the lever and you would have access to the breach to clean. The bolt can also be removed easily if you need to clean it as well. If needed, you can just apply some products into the action and you are good to go. You only need to check after firing off around a hundred rounds or so. It takes less than 10 minutes to clean.
10. Retains Value
Henry rifles are not rare nor are they antique. They are still in production to this day, so you can get yourself one at a reasonable price. However, while Henry is churning out rifles as fast as they could, they are uncompromising in terms of quality and would rather slow things down rather than push out a rushed and flawed rifle. There can still be some backlog sometimes and most dealers will tell you to wait a bit before your rifle arrives.
Many people have a hobby of collecting Henry Repeating Arms rifles. Some of them hold onto their collection dearly and would not part with any of their Henry rifles for anything because they are rare on the used market. For example, an All-Weather model is a rare gem because it is very durable thanks to the corrosion-resistant finish.
An original Henry rifle can fetch quite a high price but that does not mean a newly manufactured rifle will lose value quickly. They do hold onto their value well. Used rifles usually are worth about as much as the new price and the only thing that could bring the price down is the excessive cosmetic damage.
And there you have it, folks. These are some reasons why I think Henry rifles are the best. It is both the company and the guns they make that I think make them a great company and I highly recommend you try out their products. Trust me, you will not be disappointed. Even if you are and you cannot get a refund for some reason, you can still turn around and sell your Henry rifle on the used market and someone will come around to buy it off of you for nearly full price, so I cannot say that you are losing much from giving them a chance here.