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As Goodsteel stated above, I have a Henry Golden Boy in .357. From day 1, it would shoot almost anything into 2″ or less at 50 yds, but shooting at 100 was like the difference between going to the moon and going to Mars. I tried countless load and bullet combinations. Every time something looked like it showed promise, the next group would blow out to 8″ or more. Non-linear dispersion and consistently inconsistent.
Again, as Goodsteel already mentioned, I slugged the bore, removing the rod and marking the barrel every time I found a constriction. I found a total of 5. When I stood back and looked at the barrel and my marks, the reasons became largely apparent. One under the front sight dovetail, one over the front mag tube ring dovetail, one over the relief cut for the fore end screw, one under the rear sight dovetail, and one out in the middle of nowhere for no readily apparent reason.
Now, I DID NOT contact Henry. I looked at the evidence, considered what they would likely do, and decided that their likely solution would not be acceptable to me. Would they have corrected the problem? All I can say for certain is I did not give them the chance.
So, I lapped the barrel. It will one-hole at 50 yds and hold an honest 4″ 10 shot group at 100 now. Still not stellar, but WAY better than where it was. I may lap it again in the future, but I have another pet project I’m working on at this time, so the Henry is good enough for now.
I did all my accuracy evaluations off a fixed, solid shooting bench from bags with a 3x9x40 scope on the rifle. I would submit to those reading this that the conditions the OP mentioned are not what I would consider adequate for evaluating a rifle’s accuracy. Just a good time foolin’ around with a new rifle, sounds to me like.
This is not meant as a bad review of Henry. It is merely MY experience with one particular rifle. I am very happy with the fit, finish and materials used to build this rifle, but extremely disappointed with the on-range results. Would I buy another? Man, . . . . . I’d have to think long and hard about it.