Why We're Excited About Henry's .45-70 and .410 Side Gates
Henry’s Side Gate models are now chambered in both .45-70 centerfire rifle and 410 shotgun. (Photo: Kristin Alberts/Guns.com)
Every red-blooded American hunter and shooter needs a lever-action rifle and Henry Repeating Arms’ new Side Gate models are as desirable as they come. Polished brass, throwback calibers, dual-loading ports, unmatched customer service, and a Made-in-USA guarantee. The only way life can get any better is with more calibers and options.
Henry has already answered that plea with two new additions to their initial lineup. We’re digging the .45-70 Side Gate, but the .410 shotgun is slick too with both built on the same frame. Here’s why we’re excited about running the levers on these new babies.
The business end of our .45-70 Side Gate. It can be fed through the tube port or the receiver loading gate. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)
As far as we’re concerned, Henry’s H024 Side Gate Model marks the greatest lever gun innovation of our generation. It’s not because of the side gate itself, as that’s been around for generations on Marlins, Winchesters, and others. The thriller here is that Henry has engineered a way to add the side loading gate to its existing tubular loading magazine so that shooters can utilize both options on the same rifle. Want to load up for the day or unload quickly without cycling the action–use the tube port. Need to top off with a quick round or two — feed those babies into the side gate and you’re back in battery.
A close-up of Henry’s H024 Side Gate shows the attention to detail. Check out that sweet scrollwork and American Walnut nicely mated to the brass receiver and topped with semi-Buckhorn sights. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)
Throwback calibers are all the rage and we love that. While the Side Gate’s initial offerings were .30-30 Win, .35 Rem, and .38-55 Win—and those are some fine chamberings—hunters and historical cartridge fans clamored for the venerable .45-70 Govt. The wait was not a long one. The .45-70 chambering was added less than six months after the initial launch.
“We put a lot of focus into listening to what our fans and customers want from the next Henry,” Henry Repeating Arms President and Owner Anthony Imperato said in a news release. “Real feedback and product suggestions from people that are out there using our rifles and shotguns carry a lot of weight and it’s what drives a lot of our product development. Our release of the Side Gate Lever Action earlier this year, and these new calibers are a great example of that.”
Side Gate Features
Brass and American Walnut are a sweet combination on the Henry Side Gate firearms. Both the .45-70 and 410 are dressed the same. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)
The Side Gates, including the .45-70, all wear 20-inch round steel barrels. Metalwork is blued and mated to the recognizable polished brass receiver. The Side Gate’s appearance stands out from previous models with the specially adorned American walnut stocks with intricate checkering of floral scrollwork and the Henry brand wording. It’s the addition of the side loading gate, though, that sets this new model apart from all competition.
The new Henry Side Gates, including the .45-70 Govt, are SASS approved. For those not in the cowboy action shooting know, SASS is the Single Action Shooting Society, an international membership organization that preserves and promotes Cowboy Action Shooting. While lever-action rifles naturally define such things, topping off tubular loaded Henrys was not a speedy affair. Now, with the addition of a Side Gate, quick reloads are a shooter’s dream come true.
Side Gate Shotgunning
The top of the receiver is drilled and tapped for easy optics mounting, though the rifle looks darn good with just the iron sights. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)
Launched at the same time as the .45-70 Govt centerfire rifle addition, Henry also answered calls for a subsequent shotgunners Side Gate model. To that end, the Side Gate 410 has also debuted on the same brass frame with the fancy stock engraving. The scattergun chambers 2 ½- inch .410 shells, with the tube magazine holding five rounds. The 20-inch round barrel ends in a fixed cylinder choke.
Our .45-70 Govt Henry Side Gate rifle loves the new Federal Premium HammerDown ammunition that was designed in conjunction with Henry. (Photo: Kristin Alberts/Guns.com)
Like every other Henry Repeating Arms piece of equipment, these Side Gate rifles are part of the tagline: Made in America or Not Made at All. Every piece on the firearms, right down to the American Walnut is true red, white, and blue.