Welcome to Northwest Firearms
Join our community, sign up for free today!
Sign Up

.41 Mag fans - Henry Big Boy Steel

gmerkt

Messages
593
Reactions
1,178
I'm a long-time .41 Mag fan, only recently interested in Henry rifles. The Henry company hasn't been around all that long, only since about 1996. We've all seen their brass-framed rifles, pretty but I wasn't interested in what I considered cowboy replicas, maybe a step above Italian black powder guns. So I kinda had this bias against Henry. Until I watched a video tour of their factories. They have two, one in New Jersey, another in Wisconsin. Nice, new, spacious, clean, modern places. Lots of new manufacturing equipment including electronics. Lots of quality control procedures and tools. I was impressed. As a result, I decided to take a look at their products at their online site. That's how I discovered they make several models with steel frames and round barrels. One such was a lever action in .41 Magnum.

I've wanted a rifle in .41 Mag for some time as I've got two Smith & Wesson Model 57's. Marlins have gotten to be hard to find and costly when found. When I saw the pictures of the Henry Big Boy Steel, I got interested. Next, I went to a couple of retail stores to look at Henry products. As might be expected, they didn't have one in .41, only .357 and .44. The .41's don't get called for all that often for a stocking dealer to keep one on hand. Using those on hand, I was able to see that the Henry Big Boy Steel was a quality firearm. Next, I went on Gunbroker and found an in-state dealer who would order me one at a discounted price and that's what I bought.

The Henry BBS has definite Marlin influences. What it doesn't have is a side loading gate. It loads through the side of the tube near the opening. The cartridges are held under tension from a spring in the removable magazine tube insert. Which is also like a Marlin - some of their .22 rimfire designs. Some people might not like this design, but I find it easier on older, fumbly, arthritic fingers. As I've gotten older, I find side loading gates to be pinchy and a bit difficult.

TUCi139.jpg


040cju3.jpg


hmDIJlF.jpg


kk0GHyi.jpg


Gqwy5Uz.jpg


hHd7TSh.jpg


On the way home after I'd picked the rifle up, I was able to stop by the Plantation Gun Range in Whatcom Co. I tried the new Henry out and wasn't disappointed in the 20 rounds of soft-ball ammo that I keep on hand for the revolvers. I'm going to load up some ammo to higher velocity with jacketed bullets for this rifle.

The Henry rifle in .41 Mag has been made for about two and a half years. The serial number of mine is 3,5XX, which reflects that they don't make all that many of these. I've read that most of the .41's sold go to Texas. Mine has a 20 inch bbl., you can get them with a 16-1/2 inch bbl. that has a larger lever loop.
 
Messages
38
Reactions
67
I like it! I have been interested in the .41 mag for a long time because it makes a pretty good handgun / rifle combo, to carry just one type of ammo. From a rifle, the .41 mag has more energy than a 5.56.

I would really enjoy seeing any accuracy info you achieve.

D
 
Messages
7,216
Reactions
10,488
Some people might not like this design, but I find it easier on older, fumbly, arthritic fingers. As I've gotten older, I find side loading gates to be pinchy and a bit difficult.
I often mention there is a definite advantage to a tube load system with pistol length cartridges over a loading gate system - but the gate does favor the longer, rifle length rounds.
The gate can be a finger pincher with the shorter rounds and I speak from experience having owned a Winchester Trapper in .357 - and now a Brass Henry in .357.
The Henry design is a great rifle and not intended to be a 'replica' of anything in particular but more of a 'Renaissance' of a typically American design of the lever action rifle.
They are a bit 'quirky' but overall a quality rifle with a smooth action and a great trigger out of the box.
However......
I hate to be the bearer of bad news and I HOPE it is not a 'sign of things to come' but recently Henry has had some manufacturing issues lately and there are some rifles leaving the factory with some problems that SHOULD have been caught during QC or whatever inspection process they have.
Rough barrels with chatter marks near the crown have been reported by more than a few owners and SHOULD have been noticed by the prospective owner when they were looking it over at their LGS before buying.
My YOM 2015 Henry was EXCELLENT at the time of purchase although it did get an nearly 45 minute look over and barrel cleaning before I bought it.
I would still highly recommend a Henry as their customer service is beyond reproach and they have (and do) go above and beyond to take care of any problems with owners well after the sale.
Like anything a good inspection prior to purchase will go a long way to ensuring owner satisfaction!
 
  • Like
Reactions: wp4
OP
gmerkt

gmerkt

Messages
593
Reactions
1,178
When I bought the .41 Henry, I had to take a chance on what I was getting. The rifle had to come from warehouse stock because of the caliber. However, I've given it a very good looking over, plus testing it at the range and I'm satisfied. The barrel in it looks okay. I'm familiar with the rifling chatter marks on some newly-made firearms (Colt, take heed).

Old eyes go along with old fingers, so I'm thinking about one of the aftermarket aperture sights for this rifle. Skinner is one design but there are others.
 
  • Like
Reactions: wp4
OP
gmerkt

gmerkt

Messages
593
Reactions
1,178
I see you have the brass receiver. I wonder if the Williams will mount the same on a BBS. If so, I'm for it. The Williams is multiples less expensive than Skinner, et al.
 
Messages
7,216
Reactions
10,488
I believe the steel has the same screw configuration with the two rear on 1/2" centers.
Never used or owned one but I don't really care for the Skinner sights. Pretty speedy for what they are and I don't like the way they adjust. I prefer the economy and practicality of the Williams sights and have them on other rifles.
 

284guy

Messages
1,141
Reactions
1,244
Looks like you might have got a good one, congrats. Henry quality these days is so hit or miss I’m not sure I’d buy without looking one over first. I had a marlin in 41 back in the 90’s. Kick myself for Srlling it now
 
Messages
50
Reactions
115
Nice I have the Henry big boy Steel 44mag carbine length 16 inch barrel I love it it has been a great rifle for me I want to get the RPP Cloverleaf peep sights for it they're worth checking out there pretty cool

2019-05-18 18.29.34.jpg
2019-05-18 18.02.43.jpg
20190518_173736.jpg
 
OP
gmerkt

gmerkt

Messages
593
Reactions
1,178
I've since mounted the Williams 336 WGRS aperture sight on my .41, reversed as shown in post #5, above. It changed vertical/elevation point of impact, so I needed to adjust it downward. Since the sight base is reversed and the aperture is screwed in from the opposite side, it didn't have enough clearance. So I had to carefully grind a bit off the bottom edge of the aperture ring. It worked out fine. I don't mind a little grinding on a $40 part.

Accuracy in my .41 is about like Magnumjohn's .44 at the same range. At least with me shooting it. My last experiment with it was shooting solid zinc bullet loads, shot fine.
 

LATEST REVIEWS

  • Klickitat County Firearms Training Facility
    4.00 star(s)
    Not really a range guy, as in I am 53 years old and today is the very first time I have been to an actual managed shooting range. Also, not a WA...
    • CRBMoA
  • Supporting Vendor Oregon Arms & Ammunition
    5.00 star(s)
    I've made several purchases here over the past few years and I've had a great experience every time. Prices are good, their staff is helpful, and...
    • Joe Link
  • Big Iron Armory
    5.00 star(s)
    It's great to have an LGS inside Portland Metro. Walt and Noah have put care into setting good prices and acquiring quality firearms and...
    • kr0ptkin
  • Supporting Vendor Lucky Sporting Goods
    5.00 star(s)
    Well I finally got around to taking pics of the Cerakoting work that Jeremy of Lucky Sports did for my wife and me about 3 weeks ago. We couldn't...
    • jg rider
  • Supporting Vendor Lucky Sporting Goods
    5.00 star(s)
    Here's more work that Jeremy did for me The first 3 pics are of an RIA frame that I had Cerakoted years back by an outfit in Molino. I had Jeremy...
    • jg rider

Staff online

  • Kruel J
    Moderator of the Coriolis effect