Henry Pump Action Octagon .22 rifle, Model H003T
This little gun brings back so many memories that are both happy and sad. Sad, because the iconic days of the American Shooting Galleries has passed into the dust of time. But, happy because I actually was alive to spend time at the carnivals that featured the galleries.
At the end of the 1800s and early 1900s, the public was intrigued with sport/fun shooting. Winchester introduced their Model 62A slide action .22 and the fun began. Across Europe and the USA, shooting galleries sprang up, most frequently at carnivals. For a few cents you could try your luck with the fast shooting Winchester against moving metal targets, spinning bulls-eyes and wooden blocks.
Remington and Marlin entered the scene with their guns and shooting galleries flourished, But, alas, by the mid-1960s, the end was in sight. The anti-gunner folks, zoning law changes and the availability of inexpensive “shoot-em-up” video games lead to the demise of this most wonderful piece of Americana. By the 1980s, the carnival galleries were gone as was Winchester's slide action pump gun. The trend was now for fast-shooting semi-automatic and precision bolt guns.
For several decades there was no American manufacturer producing a pump action 22 rifle... until Henry Firearms decided to “resurrect” the American-made .22 pump gun in 2010. It was believed by the folks at Henry that the .22 slide- action pump rifle was a traditional American rifle that needed to be available for those who wanted to remember the past as well as have a superb shooting gun.
The Henry Pump Action Octagon .22 rifle is cleaner and more aesthetically pleasing than the Winchester Model 62A. That is what one would expect with over a hundred years to make some subtle improvements.
The rifle features a grooved receiver for mounting a scope, and a Marbles semi-buckhorn fully adjustable rear sight. And of course, the furniture is American Walnut, a Henry trademark. If you need to extract an unfired cartridge from the chamber, there is a grooved release lever on the right front of the trigger guard. When pressed, the lever unlocks the forend allowing it to be retracted to eject the unfired round.
Before heading to the range to determine the accuracy of the H003T, we mounted a Vortex Diamondback 4-12x40mm scope. Instead of a bag, we used a Caldwell FCX front rest for stability. Our targets were set at 50 yards. We determined that 10-shot groups would be a fair and reasonable test of the rifle's accuracy.
After burning through 250 rounds of .22 LR ammo, we measured our groups. The smallest measured 0.90”, the largest was 1.80” for an average spread of 1.25”. It really didn't seem to matter the brand of ammunition that we fired. The gun cycled flawlessly with all brands (Aquila, Winchester, CCI, Remington, Federal). Bottom line – this gun is reliable, accurate and fun to shoot.
The specifications for the Henry Pump-Action Rifle:
Model Number: H003T
Action Type: Pump action
Caliber: .22 S/L/LR
Capacity: 16 LR or 21 S
Barrel Length: 20"
Barrel Type: Octagon Blued Steel
Rate of Twist: 1:16
Overall Length: 38.5"
Weight: 6.00 lbs.
Receiver Finish: Black
Rear Sight: Fully Adj. Semi-Buckhorn w/ Diamond Insert
Front Sight: Brass Bead
Scopeability: 3/8" Grooved Receiver
Scope Mount Type: Ring mounts for 3/8" Groove
Stock Material: American Walnut
Trigger Pull: 3.1 lbs
Length of Pull : 14"
Safety: 1/4 Cock
It you are looking for a piece of Americana as well as a rifle that you can pass along to the next generation, this is it. A Henry, “Made in America or Not Made At All”.
We kept this one for our grand daughter.