First Look: Henry 12 Gauge Turkey Shotgun

By Randy Wakeman

The Henry single-shot Turkey 12 gauge is going to be a very sweet breath of fresh air to many people. I weighed the Henry Turkey Shotgun at 7 lbs., with the supplied, extended turkey choke installed. This is the high quality solution to cumbersome, excessively long turkey guns that many have waited for.

The Henry Turkey gun is a 12 gauge with a 3-1/2 inch chamber, with a 24 inch barrel threaded for Rem-Chokes. Many common repeating shotguns are clumsy to use in a cramped spring turkey blind. Not so with the Henry, which is astonishingly compact compared to common 26 and 28 inch semi-autos with a similar length of pull. As you can see from the image below, the Henry makes typical repeating shotguns look ridiculously long... only because they are ridiculously long, particularly inside a blind. The overall length of the Henry is 39-1/2 inches.

The Henry, third from the left, has a 28 inch barrel semi-auto to its left, a 26 inch semi-auto to its right.

The Henry has superb trigger, breaking at a very crisp 2 lbs., 15 ounces, that puts most field shotgun triggers to shame. Many of us are used to cheap, noisy, hollow, plastic stocks on camo shotguns, but Henry has taken a higher quality approach, coating a quiet, rigid walnut stock set with Mossy Oak Obsession camo. The entire guns feels strong, beefy, and solid.

As supplied, the Henry Turkey Shotgun is ready to hunt, with an adjustable fiber optic rifle sight set. For those who wish to add optics, they easily can do just that as the Henry is drilled and tapped for a Weaver #82 base. Although the Henry accepts up to 3-1/2 inch unfolded length 12 gauge shells, I have no intention of using them. Apex, for example, makes a 1 oz. 12 gauge load with Tungsten Super Shot (7.5, 8, or #9). One ounce of #8 TSS is far more than needed at 45 yards and in shooting ranges. Personally, I've never needed to take a spring turkey beyond 35 yards. It is all one shot and make it a good one, and soft-shooting 1 oz. TSS loads are the way to go.

I used my Skeets bore gage to measure the Henry's bore at .729 inches, with the exit diameter of the Henry extended turkey choke at .664 inches: an aggressive 65 thousandths of constriction. Some use even more aggressive constrictions of .080 or even .090 inch, contingent on the load. The next step is hitting the patterning board, and I'll do a video on this Henry at the same time.

Like all Henry product, the Henry Turkey Shotgun is made in the USA, and has a lifetime satisfaction guarantee. This particular model is made at Henry's Rice Lake, Wisconsin facility. As always, your Henry dealer sets the price, but street price appears to be in the $600 arena.

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Copyright 2022 by Randy Wakeman. All rights reserved.