By Major Van Harl
Henry All Weather 45/70 Rifle Review
United States -(AmmoLand.com)- How good of a performer do you think you will be when you are hit 143 years old? Are you still going to be able to stay on target? Do you think you will manage to be a fairly flat shooter or will your efforts perhaps, be described like that of a rainbow effect?
If you are like the venerable 45/70 Government rifle cartridge that started serving our nation’s military in 1873 and is still capable of stopping anything in North American, you will do just fine.
There were a few short lived, self-contained cartridges that were used by the US military, but when the 45/70 came on line it ruled the plains of the west, well into the late 1890s. It is an old black powder cartridge designed for a very weak single shot rifle.
However, with today’s modern steel and smokeless rifle powders, there is nothing on earth (dry land of course) that you cannot successfully hunt with a current production Henry All Weather 45/70 Rifle chambered in 45/70 and some updated ammunition.
Henry Repeating Arms has have been manufacturing 45/70 lever action rifles since 2012, but with the situation of inclement weather raising its rusty head, damaging a great field rifle continues to be an industry concern. Perhaps you are in a scenario that allows after a day of hunting, to hike back to a hard-sided cabin to a hot meal, and a dry place to service your rifle. However having spent seven years in Alaska I know there are many hunting locations where you are lucky to have a cold, wet tent to return to at day’s end. With limited space or opportunity to clean and oil your firearms on a remote hunting trip, sometimes the rifle gets neglected.
What is the old saying “the only two enemies a firearm has are politicians and rust?”
Henry Repeating Arms has taken its H010 steel lever action 45/70 rifle (www.henryrifles.com/rifles/45-70-lever-action/) and the women and men at Henry Wisconsin, in Rice Lake, Wisconsin have turned this extremely powerful rifle, into the Henry H010AW, or Henry All Weather 45/70 Rifle (www.henryrifles.com/rifles/all-weather-lever-action/).
Henry Wisconsin manufacturing uses a hard chrome process that protects all the external parts of the rifle. So when you are standing in a driving rain on Montague Island, off the mainland of Alaska, trying to take “that” shot, you do not have to worry whether that weather is permanently damaging your rifle.
Mr. Anthony Imperato, the President of Henry Repeating Arms does not like plastic stocks on his lever guns. So, besides the rain and snow potentially damaging the metal surface, he needed to consider protecting the wooden stocks. Mr. Andy Wickstrom, the general manager for Henry, would not tell me exactly what they use to protect and seal the wood on All Weather Henry rifles. He suggested I consider what would be used to finish a custom hard wood floor in a very upscale home. That floor has to be beautiful and it has to make a statement to whoever sees it. It has to be able take the pounding of everyday usage and continue to look great.
Abrasive resistance and water resistance was the foremost goal of Henry Wisconsin when it developed and produced the Henry All Weather 45/70 Rifle.
The original 45/70 cartridge was a very low pressure black power round. With modern smokeless powders the performance can to greatly enhanced, but the pressure must and will go up. Mr. Tim Sundles owner of Buffalo Bore Ammunition (www.buffalobore.com) has made great use of the modern 45/70 rifles. Henry’s All Weather 45/70 Rifle is unquestionably built for strength.
Mr. Sundles says his standard pressure 45/70 ammo that will stop anything in the Americas, Europe and most of the Asian countries. His 45/70 Gvt magnum cartridge will stop anything, of any size, real or mythical that walks or flies on earth. If you encounter a Cape buffalo, or in today’s world of the “other” perhaps a dragon, Buffalo Bore ammo will stop them. Now, in reality, you the hunter have to be able to put that very large, heavy 45 caliber bullet in the right place to stop the Cape buffalo before it gores you. If you only shoot the dragon in the foot, you had better make sure the quick second round that the Henry All Weather rifle will deliver for you, is in fact on target.
Buffalo Bore Ammunition 8A, 45/70 Magnum Ammo
Mr. Sundles developed his 8H, 45/70 load originally for his wife. He wanted his 105 pound wife to carry a 45/70 rifle into the mountains of Idaho and Montana for protection from brown bear, but his 45/70 magnum ammo was just a bit too much for his Mrs. The 8H, 45/70 is a full power, standard pressure, but lower recoil round.Mrs. Sundles carried and shot the special, personally made 8H ammo for over five years before Tim Sundles offered it to the shooting public. His 8A, 45/70 magnum ammo, uses the same 430 gr hard cast bullet, but moves that bullet out of the Henry rifle at 1925 FPS, where the 8H moves that bullet down the barrel at 1550 FPS. Buffalo Bore does the same thing with the 8B, 45/70 magnum–the 405 gr. JFN bullet is moving at 2000 FPS, while the same bullet in the 8I, 45/70 is moving at 1625 FPS.
Mr. Sundles has sold over 10 million rounds of Buffalo Bore 45/70 ammo in the past sixteen years. Throw in all the other 45/70 ammo manufactures and you quickly realize that this very elderly cartridge is not only not dying, but opening up to new markets and new shooters.
I will be real honest. I am 6 foot tall and I am not going to stand on the range and shoot Buffalo Bore 45/70 magnum rounds all day. When you pull that Henry trigger, that magnum round will teach you the meaning of the word manly. If you, however, find yourself in the alder thickets of Alaska with a Henry All Weather 45/70 in your hands, and you meet Mr. Brown Bear or worst yet Mrs. Brown Bear, you will never remember the recoil of Mr. Sundles’ 45/70 magnum ammo going off – you will however appreciate it.
Have you ever noticed in Hollywood that whenever they are fighting dragons it is always raining. Dragons seem to perform their worst in bad weather. Henry All Weather lever action rifles in both 45/70 and in 30/30 will perform their best in the worst of situations.
If you hunt in bad weather or hunt in salt water areas, the Henry All Weather 45/70 Rifle should be the first choice of the inclement weather shooter and the rifle carrying boating community. Those who may have to deal with “walkers” and what disgusting bio-matter that group can slop onto your rifle, or for the few who always forget to clean their firearm after deer season, they will appreciate a Henry All Weather.
Now we have our own versions of bad weather hunting issues here in Wisconsin. You are likely to get your rifle snowed on, rained on, stepped on, or driven into the mud on opening day in the Badger State. A good hunter never deliberately abuses his/her rifle but sometimes it just happens. Henry Wisconsin has made this rifle to take the hard knocks, keep functioning and to come out looking good at the end of the hunt.
Not to worry, any of you folks who live outside the State of Wisconsin, Mr. Wickstrom will be happy to ship Henry All Weather rifles to any State, Canadian Province, to the lever action loving rifle shooters of Australia, and the rest of the Henry Rifle fans world-wide.
Henry All Weather rifles, they may be “Made in American or Not Made at All”, but they will perform at any longitude or latitude and in any weather.
Pick your dragons wisely and never shoot them in the foot. ~ Major Van Harl USAF Ret. / [email protected]
About Major Van Harl USAF Ret.:
Major Van E. Harl USAF Ret., a career Police Officer in the U.S. Air Force was born in Burlington, Iowa, USA, in 1955. He was the Deputy Chief of police at two Air Force Bases and the Commander of Law Enforcement Operations at another. He is a graduate of the U.S. Army Infantry School. A retired Colorado Ranger and currently is an Auxiliary Police Officer with the Cudahy PD in Milwaukee County, WI. His efforts now are directed at church campus safely and security training. He believes “evil hates organization.” [email protected]