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Starting over with a handi?

1029 Views 13 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  DanielWGriggs
After a 5 year break from shooting and hunting I'm starting to get back into it. I'm basically starting from scratch. My beloved Browning BPS was killed in a fire, my 'deer rifle' lives at deer camp 800 miles away and all my other guns weren't ever really mine, I just borrowed my dad's. So I'm in the position of starting over.
Im thinking of putting together a handi system that will get me covered for everything from mice to moose, rifle, shotgun and muzzloader with an extra rimfire gun thrown in so that every gun I own feels and operates the same. No more guessing where the safety is depending on whether I'm hunting birds or bunnes or bears. No more yanking on the forearm of my deer rifle to try and pump another shell into my bolt action.
Problem is that my only experience with a handi was about 7 or 8 years ago with a 20ga slug gun. It shot great but the action was so coarse that opening it was a chore and a very unpleasant one at that. I never shot it enough for it to loosen up and I always wondered if it would ever get the feel of an old .410 Iver Johnson that I learned to shoot on when I was 10 or 11. That gun was so smooth to open and close that I can't even describe it. Do handi's ever break in to that extent?
Accuracy is very important. Beauty not at all. But feel is what makes or breaks it for me. Unfortunatly wally world doesn't have any in stock so I'd have to order one to handle it.
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Is a Handi right for you?

I think you have wisely come to the exact place you need to be.Welcome to the world of Handi Rifles!
Welcome aboard!! :D Have a look around and ask all the questions you like!!!


Welcome to GBO site :D Enjoy have fun, Marv,
So does the action smooth up over time by itself? Could you speed things along with a bit of polishing? I've found the info about cleaning with brake cleaner and considering how sticky the ejector was on the one that I've shot I can see how that might make things work easier right there. Does anybody have a buttery smooth gun?
I have a little experience with handi's and a ton with shotguns and I've never experienced the ultra stiff action problem. I've never had ejector problems either so I guess I'm just lucky. I would imagine a miriad of things could cause this but the first thing I'd check is the alignment of the forearm spacer. Has anyone else had this problem? If I had no other guns and was starting from scratch the guns are the sensible way to go.
:D , Welcome aboard familyman. Markus is right on about the forearm spacer. If your gun opened stiffly correcting it could have been very easy, to do so simply remove the forearm by first removing the forearm retaining screw and pulling down on the forearm. Then try to open and close the action being careful not to allow the barrel to open to far or drop off the action. If the gun now opens and closes more easily and smoother it's simply a problem of an overly thick forearm spacer, a no-brainer to remedy. This place will answer most of not all your questions about H&R/NEF's. Come often and stay late, your among friends here....<><.... :grin:
The forearm spacer would absolutely make sense. We never thought of it. Reading through about 40 pages of threads on this board has convinced me that almost no matter what goes wrong with a handi you guys have see it, can explain it, and know how to fix it. Probably at home, in 10 minutes with simple tools. With customer support like you have here it's easy to feel confident in a product.
Here's what I think I'm going to do. Either this afternoon or early next week I'm going to wander down to wally world and order a youth 22lr. This will get me a nice light hopefully good shooting 22 that I can use now and my kids can use in the futre. $108 plus tax spent according to wally's web site. Then in the fall I'll get a stainless in 30-06 ($250) and immediately send it off to HR for some wood, a vented 12 ga barrel and a .410 barrel. With the Vented barrel, the stainless reciever and some wood I'll have recreated the look of the Topper which is the most attractive of the guns by far. Between the 22, the .410, the 12ga and the 06 I'll have everythin that I could possibly shoot covered and I'll still be in the general cost of replacing the BPS.
The best part about this is that ever gun will fee and operate the same and I can present this as a logical business case to my wife. Can't argue agianst logic now can you. Excited to get shooting agian.
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Welcome aboard. Pull up a chair, kick up your feet and stay awhile. If you have any problems i'm sure there are a bunch of people her to help you out. So if there are any questions just post them. Remember there are no stupid questions just unasked ones.
welcome aboard --- now as for the wife , don't count on logic - it's not in there dna :-D :-D :-D :-D
Just got back from ordering the 22lr youth gun. It should be here the middle of next week. :)
Congratulations familyman, if you decide later that you should have gotten an adult size the buttstocks all interchange with just a phillips screwdriver and a 9/16ths socket (2 extensions). That is the only difference beyween the 2 guns and you can always pick up an extra buttstock here or from H&R....<><.... :grin:
That's the plan. Then next gun will be a full sized stainless most likely. I'll put the stock from that on the 22 and get some wood for the stainless gun. I love wood and stainless together, great look. Then I'll always have the youth stock around for when the kids get older and it's time to teach them. Pretty excited about all this. Hopefully I'll be over in the rimfire section with a range report after next weekend. :)
Check the stiky for barrel break in procedures or just plan to shoot a brick of ammo through it for break in purposes. clean it before going to the range. Usuallly gunk in the receiver that didn't get flushed at the factory. Buy some winchester dynapoints at K-Mart if Wal mart doesn't have them. also pick up a couple of boxes of other ammo types and get to shooting. with the light recoil of the .22 get a medium priced scope just to get ya shooting. I bought a cheap one and have to rezero each time I go to the range. A Mueller will be next. maybe a Swift options are open.Enjoy and welcome.
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