Henry Repeating Arms .30/30 lever gun (courtesy henryrepeating.com)

Last November TTAG reported that Hurricane Sandy hammered Henry Repeating Arms’ New Jersey factory; the natural disaster ripped the roof off their Garden State digs and flooded their factory floor. The following April, TTAG reported that Henry was back in a big way. Production returned to normal. Guns were going out the door in record numbers. Even as Henry recovered its economic equilibrium, lever gun impresario Anthony Imperato shared his resolve to build guns in Rice Lake, Wisconsin. Et voila! jsonline.com reports that Henry’s ready to start production in the Eat Cheese or Die State come the New Year . . .

Henry has added “several million dollars of new computerized machining equipment” to its Wisconsin facility to support the manufacturing of .30-30 and .45-70 caliber rifles as well as to increase the volume of parts produced for its rifles, the company said in a statement announcing the changes.

Henry Repeating Arms purchased the 138,000-square-foot Rice Lake facility in 2006 from Wright Products, a subsidiary of FKI Industries, which manufactured storm door hardware. Wright ceased manufacturing due to price pressure in the hardware industry.

Today, the plant employs more than 100 people and continues to hire to support its continued growth, Henry said in the statement.

“I am proud of what we’ve accomplished in Wisconsin by saving jobs, adding jobs, and creating a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility,” Anthony Imperato, president and owner of the company said in the statement. “I decided to expand our operations here because of the outstanding job our employees do to help us meet increased demand.”

And New Jersey’s high taxes, regulatory burden, union stranglehold and anti-gun gestalt. Henry’s strategy is nothing new for gunmakers behind enemy lines. Beretta, Smith & Wesson and other large companies are ramping-up new production from northeastern climes to gun-friendly tax-break bonanza giving right-to-work states.

Make no mistake: if things get too bad in the gun averse states even the big ‘uns will follow American Tactical Imports’ lead and blow town. In fact, what’s the bet that they’re making contingency plans right now; that Colt, The Freedom Group (including Remington) and others have explored alternative locations? Why wouldn’t they?

43 Responses to Henry Shuns NJ for WI, ATI Leaves NY for SC

    • I was just going to say the same thing…

      People that don’t live here can’t understand how vile our legislators really are. While attending a gun related NJ Senate hearing earlier this year, I just felt dirty even being in the same building as those individuals.

      Somehow the loss of business will “prove” that the state is safer without these evil guns.

    • “…New Jersey Pols will trumpet this move as a good thing for the residents.”

      …while they move the State of NJ ever closer to socialist, statist Armageddon.

      Great move by Henry, and what better place for repeating rifles than the midwest.

    • An “unrelated” story on the page next to it will discuss that revenue to fund welfare etc. has dropped off inexplicably.

    • Yes, the children of NJ will be that much safer once these merchants of death are purged from the state. Pro gun control groups estimate 1 to 2.5 MILLION NJ tykes will now be able become serfs, er productive citizens without fear of a death by rifle toting wing nuts (the leading cause of infant mortality according to MDA), except in cases of martial law, LEO check points and home invasions. And the best part is fewer guns will lower AHC premiums!

      We now return you to your regular programing.

  1. I hope that Gov Walker and Gov Haley have sent flowers and fruit basket thank you’s to Chris Christie and Mario Cuomo. Maybe Gov O’Malley can get a chocolate basket, too?

      • maybe we could take up a donation from TTAG and send donuts to the gun grabber governors? Man – imagine Fox News crew coverage of a semi truck pulling up with cases of Krispy Kremes. . . . .

    • Mr. Diggler,

      I believe you meant Andy “You don’t need 10 bullet to kill, a deer” Cuomo. Though to poop usually falls on the same pile.

      Have a nice day.

  2. El Paso could really good jobs. Willing plentiful work force, major freeway and railway access, easy for BATF to give guns to Mexican drug gangs, mostly Zetas in Juarez. What’s not to like?

  3. For the record, Henry is not leaving New Jersey, they’re just expanding into Wisconsin. At the present time, their NJ facilities (and HQ) aren’t going anywhere.

    • Also WI is not a right-to-work state, so not all gun makers are flocking to such digs. Also I understand this site advocates gun rights and therefore slants conservative but why the anti-union bend? I don’t get it.

      • Because conservatries hate unions, they view them as commies just trying to be lazy while fattening their paychecks at the expense of society, which is sadly partly true at least in more recent times. However without the unions ALL workers would be back in the dark ages, slaving away 12 hours a day for a bowl of cabbage soup like in China. This what some conservatries want for us sadly, they think workers have it too good in this country. They’d rather have weak labor laws and regulation that allow rampant pollution, child labor, dangerous working conditions, long work days, unsanitary food products, and slave wages to exist just like in third world countries. Unions they are a necessary evil, as long as big business buys influence so must unions.

        IMHO, I think both parties suck, both want to screw you over, just in different ways.

        Everything in NJ is corrupt, big companies are corrupt, unions are corrupt, state government is corrupt, county goverments are corrupt, towns are corrupt, police are corrupt, etc. Any company based in NJ is going to be corrupt, even Hennery.

        • I grew up in the fifties in a family that regarded the AFL-CIO, the UAW, and the Democratic Party as slightly more important than the Church. If not for the union, I would not have received the education I value more highly than anything except my wife. I still support the unions, but what has happened to “the party of the working man” is enough to bring tears to my eyes.

        • However without the unions ALL workers would be back in the dark ages, slaving away 12 hours a day for a bowl of cabbage soup like in China.

          I’m pretty sure OSHA and other laws that have made unions somewhat obsolete would have issues with that.

          Remember when there weren’t workplace protections? Remember when the income tax was only supposed to target the rich? Remember when car dealerships were split off from manufacturers since there were only 3 big automakers who colluded to abuse postwar consumers? How much of this is relevant in today’s economy?

        • If you feel that way and believe all that garbage, then move to China, Cuba, or Iran.
          Good luck !

      • As a conservative I resemble that remark!

        Seriously, though, conservatives do not hate unions per se. What we have a problem with is unions demanding that if you want to work you MUST join their union. This is hardly the essence of liberty and personal freedom this country was based on. At the time unions became strong in this country there was a significant need for some sort of representation to protect them from the corporations that were being protected by the politicians who were in the corporations’ pockets. That is historical fact. The current fact is that the politicians are STILL in the union leadership’s pockets and that leadership routinely and wholeheartedly supports liberal politicians and liberal causes and uses those connections to line their own pockets. Take a look at what happened in Detroit a few years ago when the major auto companies SHOULD have been allowed to declare bankruptcy and liberal politicians from BHO on down blocked it to save the unions and then gave union representatives seats on the boards.

        Unions in America today represent approximately 11% of the work force and I do not see this country falling into wage-labor slavery. As an independent trucker I had plenty of opportunities to interact with Teamsters and while individually they may (or may not) be nice guys, as a group they are a bunch of overbearing and over-paid thugs who will do just about anything to protect their union monopolies.

        So it’s not the unions (as a concept) that we hate, it’s what the unions as pseudo-gangsters have turned themselves into.

        • This country is already falling into wage-labor slavery, it is slow but it’s happening. From 1947 until 1980 income grew for all income groups (quintiles) at about the same rate. However in 1980 and forward income has grown much more rapidly at the top quintile, so wage inequality has increased. The top quintile’s income has grown 60% from 1980 to 2005 while the other quintiles have rose 3%. Most of this inequality is among highly educated workers. It’s why we are heading into a new gilded age and sadly many conservatives are in full support of it. Though Libs probably do not mind it either.

    • Just wait until the WI plant is spun up, a slow move west will begin. First a few employees will move there to train and decide to stay. Then new products or service will relocate there. Finally after consultation a date will be set for departure.
      Game.Set.Match
      Companies move overseas this way all the time, this isn’t much different.

    • Hey, Matt, cool it with the facts, okay? I’m trying to justify buying another gun here, and you’re raining on my parade! 🙂

  4. I just plopped down some green for a Henry 30-30.
    I had heard that Henry had incurred some damage in Sandy and, afterwards, restarted with some new machinery/tooling.
    It struck me that this may present some issues in production:
    New tooling needs break-in time and fine tuning of calibration. I know Henry takes pride in their work but as in other guns following the rush to catch up to recent demand, would there be issues with function?
    How affected were pre-Sandy components if used in post-Sandy productuion?

    I looked at two guns in two separate LGSes.

    The first gun had an inspection tag dated post-Sandy. There were small blemishes on both sided of the brass receiver – just in front of the receiver. At first I thought the receiver may have been held too tightly in a vice, but on closer inspection it seemed there was some small pitting in those affected spots. The guy behind the counter of this venerable gun store suggested it may be “a plating problem”.
    I noticed similar but larger area of pitting on what I think was either part of the extractor or some sort of cover.

    I decided to go to another LGS and the guy at the first one said he’d either sell or send back the one I’d looked at.

    The second gun had no dated inspection tag and, while it’s box was beat up, the gun’s cosmetics were pristine.

    I suppose I could call Henry and find out the production date based on the serial number.

    I am curious, though, if others have seen issues with post-Sandy Henry rifles or if I am making Marlin-shaped mountain out of a molehill.

    • I just bought an octagon barrel .22 without the faux brass trim. I’m assuming it is post Sandy since my LGS had to wait a while for it and couldn’t get one earlier. It came direct from Henry. The .22 is immaculate. I’m a Henry fan and would be surprised if they were intentionally letting anything flawed go out. But I see your point. If I buy a Henry I want it to be perfect–that’s why I buy them 🙂

    • I suspect there might be a few glitches to work out of the new machinery (and new factory in Wisconsin), but the nice thing about buying a Henry is, you can be sure they’ll make it right if you somehow get a substandard rifle. Best customer service in the business.

  5. Henry employees a total of 300 people, some in New Jersey and some in Wisconsin. The loss of any or all of these jobs can’t even be differentiated from the background noise in New Jersey. I only mention this to point out that very few tears will be shed over these developments. Ditto for Kahr, PTR, ATI, and all the rest. As others have pointed out, the “people” living in these states will be glad to see them go.

    They are still wise to move away from these places, as I myself have done, for compelling business reasons.

    Of more importance to me is that Henry will be producing a (very expensive) replica of the original 1860 rifle, made in USA, like everything else they make. Now that’s cool!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *