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Notes from the Range: Henry’s Big Boy X Model .44 Mag

It’s already been four years since Henry Repeating Arms introduced the Big Boy X Model line of rifles. Being an admirer of carbine length guns, I recently got my hands on the .44 magnum version of the Big Boy X Model series. I must say the carbine did not disappoint.

With a matte-blued finish this rifle comes standard with black synthetic furniture. Additionally, two M-LOK accessory slots on both sides of the forend, two sling swivel studs for mounting a standard two-point sling, a solid rubber recoil pad, and a four-slot Picatinny rail just beneath the barrel at the front of the forend. The gun is rounded out with Henry’s well-known stock-to-metal fit.

Sporting a carbine-length 17.4-inch barrel that provides highly visible fiber-optic sights with contrasting red rear and green front for easier alignment. The muzzle end is threaded 5/8×24-inch to accept a suppressor and comes with a screw-on thread protector to ensure your muzzle threads stay in good shape.

The over-sized loop and side gate loading port

I found the action to be silky smooth with zero rattling or looseness common in some lever action rifles. The gun weighs 7.3 pounds empty and has a crisp trigger that breaks around 4.5 pounds. You will appreciate the oversized loop that is a relatively short throw, allowing for quick follow-up shots.

Henry’s Big Boy X Model .44 Mag/.44 Special utilizes a removable 7-round tube magazine for convenient unloading, along with a side loading gate allowing for the magazine to be kept topped off without needing to remove the tube or suppressor if using one.

Key features/specifications of the Big Boy X Model include:

  • Henry Big Boy X Specs
  • Caliber: .44 Mag./.44 Special (tested); .45 Colt; .357/.38 Special
  • Capacity: 7 Rounds
  • Barrel Length: 17.4 inches
  • Barrel Type: Round Blued Steel
  • Rate of Twist: 1:20
  • Overall Length: 36.3 inches
  • Overall Weight: 7.3 pounds
  • Receiver Finish: Blued Steel
  • Rear Sight: Fully Adjustable Fiber Optic
  • Front Sight: Fiber Optic
  • Stock Material: Black Synthetic
  • Buttplate/Pad: Black Solid Rubber Recoil Pad
  • Length of Pull: 14 inches
  • Safety: Transfer Bar

On the range with the Henry X Model, we tested three varieties of .44 ammo to include:

  • Sig Sauer V-Crown, 240gr JHP, .44 Mag
  • Sig Sauer V-Crown, 200gr JHP, .44 Special
  • Hornady Lever, 225gr FTX, .44 Mag

Five Shot Groupings with Hornady 225gr FTX

All shot acceptably well with the Hornady 225gr FTX edging out the Sig Ammo from a 50-yard supported rest. Five shot grouping with the Hornady was approximately 2.5 inches with the Sig .44 Special a close second coming in at just under a 3-inch group. The Sig .44 Mag also very close to a 3-inch grouping.

There is little doubt that mounting an optic, red dot or magnified, atop this little carbine would increase accuracy making it a very viable option for hunting. Even with iron sights the Model X is ready perform in the hunting or defensive realm.

Bottom line if you’re looking for a new era carbine lever gun that is a bit more tactical looking, the Big Boy X Model is it. As mentioned, other handgun calibers offered aside from .44 special/.44 magnum include, .45 Colt, and .38 Special/.357 Mag.

Additionally, X Models are offered in .45-70 and .410 Shotgun as well, however not in carbine length barrels and are listed as large frame rifles on Henrys web site.

In 2023 Henry added to the X Model line with the new .360 Buckhammer, and the .30-30 Winchester, both also listed as large frame rifles.

All Henry X Models, carbine or rifle length are currently listed at an MSRP of $1124 on Lipsey’s website.

Without any doubt, I continue to enjoy my so called “evil black guns,” but quite appreciate a short-barreled lever gun. Just food for thought…you may well find one of these lever carbines on your retailer’s shelf long after the AR and AK platform guns have all but disappeared!

To locate a dealer near you visit www.lipseys.com/dealerfinder

About the Author:

TERRY NELSON – is a 30-year veteran of law enforcement with police and sheriff agencies, including SWAT and sniper roles, and has served as a state game warden. Nelson also served seven years with New Mexico State Guard. A lifelong hunter, guide, tracker and firearms enthusiast, Terry is sought for training in multiple disciplines by both civilian and police-serving agencies and companies. Nelson also holds a Basic Tac Med instructor certification from Federal Law Enforcement Training Center.