Gratuitous Gun Pic: Henry Long Ranger (.308 Win)

A little while ago we were talking here about deep-woods lever rifles, and somebody expressed a wish for a lever rifle that could be loaded with a pointed boolet (i.e. magazine-fed as opposed to the traditional tube).

How about Henry’s Long Ranger in .308 Win?

For me, this one ticks all the boxes except that it doesn’t appear to be drilled and tapped for scope mounts — not that this is a deal-breaker in a setting which seldom requires a shot further than 200 yards (and usualy, much less).

Also, it looks weird without the tube under the barrel, but that’s just a cosmetic and personal thing — if you’ve got a magazine, no tube necessary, of course.

Collectors has one on sale for just under a grand, so if you’re interested… go there and look at the other pics.  And don’t come crying to me if in your perusal, you get sidetracked into the Collectors Matrix.

I have to tell you all:  that is a sweet little rifle.  I’ve had good experience with Henry rifles in the past;  their quality is excellent (hence the premium price), their triggers require no gunsmithing, and their lever actions are a lot smoother than new WinMar rifles.

Want.

13 comments

  1. Reading this post made me realize how strange our ideas about what is or isn’t appropriate really are. I see .308 in a lever gun and I instantly recoil and think it’s inappropriate. But tell me it’s in 30-30, 45-70, or .44 and I’m all smiles. And I have no rational reason or justification for my position whatsoever. The human mind is weird.

    1. That’s not an unrealistic take. I remember selling a Savage 99 in .308 Win because it kicked the hell out of my shoulder; but the .300 Savage (sorta like the .30-30) was a pussycat by comparison.

      I also got rid of a Marlin .44 Magnum because I ended up shooting more .44 Special than Magnum, for the same reason. But a .357 Mag Marlin was a joy to shoot; it’s still on my Gun Bucket List.

      1. I was lucky enough to find my rifle holy grail in .357 a couple of years back: IMI Timber Wolf. Pump action, tube fed, ugly as hell, but good for small game with light 38, and deer and bad guys with hot .357. There’s something about lever/pump guns that just do it for me.

    1. I have one of these in .223. This isn’t a brush gun, it’s really more a lever-action sniper rifle: floating barrel, box mag, rotating bolt. There are versions both with or without sights, but all are drilled & tapped. Fun little machine!

      (I apparently commented to the inner thread by mistake)

  2. I haven’t visited Collector’s since they moved to their new digs.
    I need to remedy that.

  3. A good choice, Henry makes very good guns.

    But…..Browning makes bascially the same thing – The BLR (Browning Lever Rifle) in the usual calibers in a take-down. Which fits very well, thank you, in a flat 2-slot padded take-down gun case L.L. Bean used to offer that’s easily mistaken for a pool cue carrier (should have bought several more before Bean went all sooper-fancy semi-hard case that’s 2-3X the price and screams “fancy gun case so it must have a fancy gun inside.”

    The BLR-TD comes with the receiver already drilled for a scope, and Browning has an accessory picatinny rail just for mounting a scope in Scout position (which, unfortunately, requires ditching the rear sight, but there’s also a Picatinny rail made for the receiver, so there’s that). Now if Leupold just hadn’t discontinued their tiny, very compact 4X scope of years past, it would be a hard-to-beat combination. Nothing against Henry, like I said, they’re great, have a couple, but a take-down has extra value.

  4. It’s beauty is in its oddity. The missing tube automatically draws your eye to the action and…wait a minute where’s the bolt? Followed by the realization that it’s a lever action but then where’s the tube? The picture doesn’t do it justice. It’s a circular enigma that will only be solved by ownership and enjoyment. You won’t get an appreciation for this gun until you realize you have a lever action you can easily pop the magazine out of and leave it in the truck.

  5. I think it may have been me that posed the question and yes, it’s an interesting rifle. Of course, I know the Savage very well (my late father normally hunted with a .308 Savage 99 and my brother has one as well.)

    So is the action of the Henry based on some other rifle or is it all original? I had thought of Henry as a company that makes replicas or copies of guns designed by others that had long been out of production (like their series of lever action guns in pistol calibers.)

    As for the .308/7.62 NATO, it seems like it never caught on in the civilian market after it replaced the venerable .30-06 for military use. I know that at most of the smaller gas station/fishing tackle/ammo stores here in the West, it’s hit-or-miss if they have .308 in stock, but they’ll ALWAYS have .30-06 and .30-30.

    1. I always thought the modern Henry action was based on the traditional Henry action, but I could be wrong. Anyone else have info on this?

  6. Hmmm…also available in .223. What I find tempting about that is that due to the popularity of the AR platform, .223 ammo is widely available and cheap. It’s probably too much to expect them to offer a 7.62×39 version (which would, in essence, be my “blasphemous” take on the Winchester 94) but I like the idea of a .223 lever gun.

    With regard to the nature of the action, looking on their web site it says rotary bolt. I don’t know what the “traditional” Henry rifle had, in my mind I associate rotary bolts with Post WW1 firearm technology.

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