The Most American Rifle? Henry .45-70 All-Weather Lever Action: Reviewed

Henry Rifles’ reputation precedes them. Known for producing some of the highest quality and most attractive lever-action rifles on the market, Henry offers one of my now favorite .45-70 rifles in an All-Weather offering. This rifle was designed for the hunter, farmer, rancher and working man (or woman) in general, as it is designed to take the abuse that everyday life can throw at it. Whether it be long rides in the truck, rainy days out in the field or a trek in a salty horse scabbard, the hard chrome plating and specially formulated industrial wood finish will keep this rifle rust and scratch-free. Coming in with an MSRP of $1050.00 and street price of around $850.00, the All-Weather is one of the toughest guns for the money.

The Henry All-Weather .45-70 Lever Action is as beautiful as it is functional and purpose-designed. It is made to be used and abused as any hunter or rancher would.

Focusing on the Details

Starting at the front and working our way back, the Henry .45-70 All-Weather has beautifully constructed and functional parts. The bead sight near the muzzle is crafted with anti-glare ridges and a brass bead to quickly draw the eye. It is held in place with a sturdy dovetail cut into the barrel. Just below it, the magazine tube’s end cap is outfitted with appropriately aggressive knurling which definitely helped me with its manipulation. With a quick twist, the magazine tube unlocks with a satisfying click thanks to the tight tolerances and a rubber O-ring to keep the fit snug. The brass tube itself, of course, slides in and out of the magazine tube easily due to its self-lubricating properties.

Notice the level of detail on this rifle: the brass bead front sight, anti-glare sight post, knurled magazine tube cap, etc…

Moving back, Henry was kind enough to include a sling swivel stud on the forend and a mirroring one on the buttstock of the rifle. As those of you who use them know, this is a small, valuable detail if you are wanting to carry a rifle like this for any distance in the hand. Being one of the two wooden parts on the gun, the forend is a dyed hardwood with an industrial-grade finish that Henry designed. Unlike most wooden rifle furniture, this design has proven itself to be incredibly tough, resisting scratches, moisture, and dings. And of course, the forend fits snugly in place, leaving no gaps between it and the barrel or receiver.

The attached sling swivel studs make carrying this rifle rather convenient when the sling is installed.

The rear sight is adjustable for both elevation and windage with very little effort. It is held firmly in place with spring pressure against the barrel and its sturdy dovetail mount is locked with a set screw, ensuring that it doesn’t go anywhere. The rear sight has an attractive and functional semi-buckhorn with diamond insert.

The iron sights on this rifle are made to be precise as well as quick to draw the eye and allow a large field of view. For most applications of a gun like this, quick shooting and well-placed shots are mandatory during tense situations that hunting can present.

On to the Receiver: this part of the gun seems fairly simple, but peering through the ejection port into the belly of the beast, you can see that there are a lot of moving parts perfectly synchronized within. Like the rest of the gun, the receiver itself is steel in construction with a hard chrome plate finish. On the top, it is drilled and tapped so that you can install an optic. This rifle accepts a Weaver 63B rail. Contributing to the All-Weather construction, all of the parts inside and bolts visible on the outside seem to be stainless steel.

The All-Weather Lever Action is drilled and tapped to receive a scope rail.

Moving further back, the lever locks tightly into place with no wiggle or play, showing just how solid this rifle is built. The .45-70 model’s buttstock is crafted with a pistol grip wrist profile which is ergonomic in the hands. And the butt pad on the rifle is a ventilated rubber style. This pad has some give to it, but this will not make the hard-hitting .47-70 cartridge easy to shoot by any means. I can promise this after shooting the rifle 50+ times in one sitting while accuracy testing.

The finish on the All-Weather is not only made to handle whatever you can throw at it but appealing to the eye as well.

Accuracy Testing

Because I wanted more precision than iron sights have to offer, I installed an optic rail on the rifle and slapped my favorite available optic on top. The Leupold MK5 5-25×56 is definitely not an appropriate match with the gun, but it is an exceptional optic and it worked extremely well for my purpose.

Yes, I realize that this is a ridiculous pairing as far as optics and guns go, but this scope will not stay on and was only used for accuracy testing. However, someone could do this if they wanted… it is America.

Please forgive me here because there was some flinching going on while shooting the Henry .45-70 All-Weather. By no means is this gun a light hitter. I trashed several groups because I knew I messed them up with shooter error, but the following below are ones that I feel confident in. The ammunition used in each is specified in the text box on the picture and all groups were shot at 100 yards.

I admit that the outlier in this picture was all my fault. I definitely pulled the shot as I predicted the trigger break.

In the end, the Winchester and Hornady ammunition seemed to be liked by this rifle a tad more than the Remington bullets, but this may vary rifle to rifle.

Specifications

  • Model number: H010AW
  • caliber: .45-70 (All-Weather is also available in .30-30
  • 4 round capacity
  • 18.43″ barrel
  • hard chrome-plated steel 1:20 twist barrel
  • 37.5″ overall length
  • 7.08 pounds
  • fully adjustable semi-buckhorn w/ diamond insert rear sight
  • brass bead front sight
  • accepts weaver 63B scope rail
  • stained hardwood stock
  • black rubber ventilated recoil pad
  • 14″ length of pull
  • transfer bar safety
  • swivel studs in forend and buttstock
  • MSRP $1050.00
  • Street price of around $850.00
The design of the feed tube was well thought out and precisely machined. Everything clicked into place and stayed snug when closed due to the rubber O-ring.

Final Thoughts

I had a blast shooting the Henry .45-70 All-Weather because the stout recoil coupled with a fine firearm made it a thrilling and pleasing experience. I carried this rifle for miles and miles on horseback in a sweat-soaked salty leather saddle-scabbard while bear hunting in the spring this year and it was not harmed in the slightest. If you need a gun for a similar purpose that needs to be bulletproof to the elements and abuse, this is the one.

The gun is just short enough to be mobile and convenient in a pack and in the bush, but long enough to utilize the energy of full power .45-70 loads. At 7 pounds, carrying the All-Weather was a simple task. In the end, this is a rifle that I would trust my life to while hunting dangerous game and it would be among my first picks in a bad situation as well as an easy-going hunt.

Man’s best friend pairs well with this man’s best rifle.

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About the author: Riley Baxter is an avid and experienced hunter, shooter, outdoorsman, and he’s worked in the backcountry guiding for an outfitter. He also get’s a lot of enjoyment out of building or customizing his firearms and equipment. Check out Riley’s Instagram @Shooter300

{ 22 comments… add one }
  • Neil C. Anderson December 16, 2019, 1:50 pm

    yes, I’d love to add this to my saddle weapon’s. I really enjoy my 41mag henry & 41mag single action ruger Blackhawk.
    Andy

  • Charles Valenzuela December 16, 2019, 10:12 am

    To me, “All Weather” means NO WOOD. Get rid of it. Polymer or glass reinforced plastic would actually BE all weather.

  • Bayou Ogre December 16, 2019, 9:58 am

    I can’t form a complete opinion on this rifle, not having it in hand to eyeball, I do like the concept. But, while I like the front sight, I am concern with quality control. As I do not like seeing daylight between the bottom of the sight and the barrel. You can see that the sight is cocked forward. And being tall for a front sight, its going to catch anything that it can grab. Just my two pence, feel free to disagree.

  • Michael October 29, 2019, 3:21 pm

    I would like to see Henry take the time to make a 22 mag in the A7 survival rifle. I would have more use for that than another lever action gun. Let alone a 45-70. I want to eat what I kill. I have plenty of big bore calibers to put a monstrous hole into anything. I would like it to have optics & silencer. And everything to fit in the butt of the gun w/ some ammo. I spoke to a sales rep at a shot show & said they were working on one. I seem to think he was blowing smoke up my @ss. That was 2 years ago. With a good placed shot it would drop anything AROUND HERE. Sorry for the rant & change of subject. Just venting & wanting one so bad.

    • Charles Valenzuela December 16, 2019, 10:08 am

      Yes. I agree completely. 22WMR on an AR-7 platform is something I have been waiting for since about 1971. I’d buy 2 immediately, one for each of my vehicles. But, they have singing the same song all along, and continue to blow smoke whee it don’t belong. . . . .

  • Greg Jacquart October 29, 2019, 1:39 am

    Picked up my first ever Henry rifle today. Tomorrow it gets sited in. Pretty excited. Holding this all weather 45-70 is a thrill.

  • Sherman Vogel October 28, 2019, 8:50 pm

    I have several Henry’s and if I can get this one at street price its mine

  • john grover October 28, 2019, 3:43 pm

    I want one….Never owned a Henry

  • KB October 28, 2019, 12:37 pm

    I need another rifle like I need another hole in my head, but I would love to have a Henry lever gun, just in 30-30. They make great rifles, and I salivate every time I see one.

  • Shmelticon October 28, 2019, 10:01 am

    Henry makes the best lever actions in the business! I love my Henry Big Boy and I’d consider getting one of these next year.

  • William Edmondson October 28, 2019, 9:49 am

    Beautiful Gun. One of these days i will have one.

  • Eric L Hosfelt October 28, 2019, 9:20 am

    Henry s are nice rifles I like the looks of this new 45/70, however I won’t be buying one until it is available in a side gate loading model. I just don’t have enough confidence in an open tube loading system. YMMV

    • Rob October 28, 2019, 10:17 pm

      Yup, I own a Henry 45-70 and love everything about the rifle except the tube magazine. My next lever action is gonna be a bighorn armory model 89 S&W 500, (to go with my revolver).

  • Charles Jennings October 28, 2019, 8:15 am

    Bought mine when they first came out, haven’t looked back. I put half inch wide strips of Talon grip tape to the fore grip, and rear saddle grip area, as this has no checkering, and when it gets wet it gets quite slick to hold on to. This rifle has two personalities, shooting standard loads its a snarling mountain lion,but shooting something like Garret 570gr Hammerheads,it’s a raging African in your face male lion, and will drop anything on land.

    • Alan1018 October 28, 2019, 9:20 am

      I like plinking with the 400 grain cowboy loads. And the Lehigh defense loads drop hogs right now.

  • Hill Creekmore October 28, 2019, 8:07 am

    How many times did he mention the tube

  • James Vicks October 28, 2019, 7:39 am

    I got to tell you, my 45-70 lever gun is a Marlin 1895. I have been shooting it for 20 years or better. Recently my home state of Iowa has made rifle hunting for deer legal with straight walled cartridges and I am excited as all get out to kill my first rifle shot white tail with my trusty 45-70. I have killed many Texas hogs with it, but finally, I am able to shoot a deer right here at home with it ! Cant wait. Henry makes a fine lever rifle and my next purchase will be a Henry, I just have to decide model and caliber. Thank you for your insight ! Jim Vicks

  • Mike Cornett October 28, 2019, 6:25 am

    The 45/70 is an old classic. Years ago there was 45/90’s……45/100…& 45/120 (Black Powder)
    I sold my Marlin Mod 1895-SBL, 45/70 Stainless Steel, 18 1/2″ barrel
    Remember when you buy 45/70 ammo off the shelf, it will not give you a lot of punch for safety reasons.
    Reason: Many people still shoot their Vintage Rolling Block or Trapdoor. We don’t want them to blow up.
    I used the money to buy a Remington Mod 673 Guide Rifle in 350 Rem Mag. An amazing Rifle.
    Remington no longer mfg’s the ammo, but you will find it at auctions…etc.
    Nosler Custom Partition is the only current mfg @ $65.00 bx/20…. Elk, Moos & Bear look out.
    It has had some history of being used in Africa on Med-Size-Big-Game, but many African countries
    require you shoot nothing less than a 40 cal…ie 416, 458, 460….etc
    I’m one of the luck guys. I have never been bothered by a harsh recoil.
    I just concentrate on the target. The ‘kick’ will take care of itself…..lol
    ALWAYS REMEMBER…..SAFETY FIRST…PERFECT RIFLE FOR A FIRST TIME SHOOTER IS A SINGLE SHOT 22

    • Mark N. November 4, 2019, 1:10 am

      There was also 50-110 WCF, the most powerful lever action cartridge ever made.

  • Phillip Halfhide October 28, 2019, 6:01 am

    Isn’t it a side loader also? I thought Henry started to make their rifles side lowers.

    • Blake R Manley October 28, 2019, 8:36 am

      Not on this model…They have 3 New models that all have side gate loaders on them. I have the 30-30 win. and she hits like a bull. The other 2 are 38-55 win and .35 rem. All a great addition to anyone’s gun collection.

    • Clint October 28, 2019, 8:40 am

      They currently have one side loader model chambered in .30-30, .35 Rem, and .38-55.

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