Friday, September 23, 2016

New toy on test

An interesting delivery arrived this morning.  The box contained a Henry Model H010 .45-70 lever-action rifle, with 18½" barrel - that company's equivalent to the well-known Marlin Model 1895 Guide Gun.  (Image courtesy of Oleg Volk - click it for a larger view.)

Unfortunately, I didn't get all that lovely ammunition with it - I'll have to provide my own!  I've ordered some Hornady 325 gr FTX LEVERevolution cartridges, which should be here shortly.

Also included was a Riton Mod 5 1.5-6x42IR scope.  It should be perfect for the short to medium ranges over which the .45-70 round excels, and the illuminated reticle should be very helpful during early morning or late-in-the-day hunting, when the light is low.

I'm going to have the pleasure of wringing out the combination over the next three months, with range time for myself and a number of friends at our Blogorado get-together next month, plus at least one (possibly two) hunts.

I've ordered an EGW Picatinny rail to fit the Henry receiver, and a couple of extended scope rings to mount the (rather long) scope as far forward as possible, so as to provide a usable eye relief.  I'll fit them when they arrive.  I'm looking forward to trying the combination on hog and deer later this year.  Miss D. and I are already eating down the freezer, and she's making suggestive noises about what she hopes to see in it before long - so I'd better not miss!

I must admit, I have a weakness for a well-crafted lever-action rifle.  They're just so darn neat, and there's a lot of history in the design.  I have half a dozen in my safe already.  If all goes well, I suspect this combination will make a worthy addition to my collection.



Anonymous said...

I had one of the Marlins. Loved it. 45-70 is definitely the boss.
I saw a huge difference in impact point of the LeverEvolution compared to traditional cartridges.
LeverEvolutions turn my 30-30 into an accurate 200-yard rifle, but I didn't really care for them in the 45-70.
My favorite in the 45-70 was the yellow and green Remington 405s.
I'd like to get one of the octagon-barreled Henry 45-70s.
- Charlie

John said...

I still have my .45-70 Marlin, it does not get shot a lot, but it is huge fun to shoot. I added a slip on recoil pad and it helps a good bit.
Have fun.

Unknown said...

If only Henry could get there models to load properly.

Anonymous said...

I will be interested to see how the rifle does.
I have a Marlin Guide Gun in .45-70 and it is a fine rifle.
It has ghost ring peep sights on it and a rail that will
take a Scout Scope.

Inconsiderate Bastard said...

Jim West at Wild West Guns in Anchorage has superb ghost ring sights for lever rifles. Don't know about fitment with the Henrys, but they're drop-ons for the Marlins.

Factory .45-70 ammunition is weak, since it's designed to not damage very early .45-70s of questionable metallurgy. Outfits like Buffalo Bore have the cure, in several bullet weights. My solution was a rather stout load of IMR 3031 under a 400 grain Speer soft nose, which turned out to be extremely effective on deer, and shot as flat as a heavy bullet .45-70 load can; it would be a lousy combination in the flatlands, but in the South's deep woods and hollers it's the bees knees. Recoil is commensurate with bullet mass and velocity, so be warned; loads like that are not for those with soft shoulders.

Uncle Lar said...

The Marlin Guide Gun in stainless is apparently the hot ticket with Alaskan and Canadian guides escorting big game hunters. They need something light, durable, and with the authority to drop a charging brown or polar bear.
Only thing I've never cared for with Marlin or Winchester lever guns is the open sights. My .357 has a ghost ring peep that I installed and I mounted a red dot on the .44 magnum.
For reloaders there are three levels with the .45-70. Weakest, and what most commercial rounds are loaded to, is for old guns such as the Trapdoor Springfield intended for low pressure black powder. The intermediate level would be intended for modern guns such as your Henry or the Marlin equivalent. And the top tier is loads intended for bank vault solid actions such as the Ruger #1. Those can come very close to approximating the ballistics of the .458 Winchester magnum and have been used to take African elephants.