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Thread: H&R: What the heck happened?

  1. #21
    Boolit Master
    Bent Ramrod's Avatar
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    A lot of space in the Biz Mags of the time was taken up by tales of the success of IBM’s “mentoring program” and Massey-Ferguson’s “mentoring program,” and so on.

    The bitter Manager notwithstanding, a lot of these degreed kids were in full possession of the American work ethic, and their academic knowledge represented a huge potential benefit. But they did need someone who’d been around the works for years to show them where their abilities would do well, or not. Just plunking them down in a seat and telling them to save the Company generally resulted in the purchase of a giant mainframe computer and the necessity of getting everybody trained on it for “efficiency,” when a close look at product line processes and a few tweaks would have been much more beneficial in the short run.

    It can actually be the stuff of workplace sitcoms sometimes. A friend started in the QA Department of a large auto manufacturer and is now a grey eminence in Engineering. How, one might ask, does a guy with a BA in Chemistry become an automobile engineer? A kid will come in with a fantastic new design for a Water Pump. “I’m gonna bolt this right here on the engine casting!” the kid would say, excitedly, pointing to a space on a blueprint.

    The friend says to the kid, “That’s a great design, all right, but you might go to Cubicle 27, Row 16 and talk to Joe Doakes. He has a fabulous design for a Fuel Pump, and he plans to bolt it right there where you want to bolt your Water Pump. On the other hand, there’s plenty of space on the opposite side of the engine casting; why don’t you consult with your colleague and see if one of these Pumps can be moved over there?” Three hours later, both kids are back in the friend’s office, with a revised blueprint with one Pump on one side and the other one the other. “Wow, John; you’re a genius!”

    And I guess, given the circumstances, he is. At least the car didn’t come off the production line with two Pumps in the same place. All it takes is years of experience. People tend not to value that nowadays.

  2. #22
    Boolit Master


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    "In our area, the Lyman Corp. was bought out by something called the Leisure Group. They noticed the tool room in the mould dept was full of cherries that were rarely used. The amortization calculations didn’t pan out, so they tossed them out, just a couple years before the rise of interest in old calibers. Somebody could have noted the increasing popularity of Ken Waters’ column “Loading the Old Ones,” but of course these were busy men, with no time for frivolous hobbies. Those boneheads get full credit for the rise of the custom mould makers whose services we now enjoy."

    I did not know this, but it seems to be a blessing in disguise for we bullet casters. Honestly, NOE and others offer anything you could possibly want, in an easier to cast with mold for about the same cost.

    As for the demise of the H&R singles, is there a correlation between their demise and the introduction of the super cheap and good bolt actions like the Savage Axis and Ruger American line? If I were the casual shooter looking to just deer hunt a few days a year and I could get a repeating bolt action with scope for the same money or less than a break open single shot, it would be a no brainer. Not all of the customer base are hard core gun nuts like most of us on here are. I believe Rossi dropped theirs pretty shortly after the H&Rs went away too.

  3. #23
    Boolit Master
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    Is there any proof that H&R sold a lot of rifles? I don’t know anyone that has one. When asked most of the people I know have never even heard of them. They seemed to have been a niche firearm. Not that they all aren’t to some extent. Single shots fell out of favor a long time ago. I realize my experiences are solely mine and may be different in other areas of the country. It’s just that I’ve never seen them as being a popular item that sells a lot.

  4. #24
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by dragon813gt View Post
    Is there any proof that H&R sold a lot of rifles? I don’t know anyone that has one. When asked most of the people I know have never even heard of them. They seemed to have been a niche firearm. Not that they all aren’t to some extent. Single shots fell out of favor a long time ago. I realize my experiences are solely mine and may be different in other areas of the country. It’s just that I’ve never seen them as being a popular item that sells a lot.
    A "niche" yeah , I'll go with that. Even with that in mind they still did well. I have a couple H&Rs and know a couple guys that have probably a couple dozen combined. My biggest complaint with them is the weight.
    It's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years (Abe Lincoln)

    "A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government.” George Washington

  5. #25
    Boolit Master
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    Greed. Cerberus took over Chyrsler and immediately cut 2 or three models. We are so smart but they had nothing to replace them with. Bad. Plants closed, workers laid off, dark days in Motown.
    Now they brought back the Pacfica to replace the Caravan.
    If you want to read how corporate America works or don"t, read the saga of GE, Under Jack Welch, it was built into a powerhouse of industry. Jeff I, Welch's hand picked successor ran it into the ground in less than ten years.
    Leadmelter
    MI

  6. #26
    Boolit Master
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    I didn't have H&R, but did have two NEF, one 30/30 and one .270. I also had two Ruger #1B rifles, one 30-06 and a 7mm RemMag. Oh. and a Savage Model 12 S/S .308 that I shot 1K yard targets with. I prefer a single shot rifle.
    Tom
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  7. #27
    Boolit Master dbosman's Avatar
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    My hope for inexpensive single shots, is/was the Turkish shotguns (quality varies with actual manufacturer) that Walmart was selling.
    I wonder if those could be sleeved? For straight wall pistol calibers, in particular.

  8. #28
    Boolit Master GhostHawk's Avatar
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    I think H&R/NEF was in part a regional thing.

    Some places they were a popular lower cost option, other places, not so much.

    I guess I got started with them because they offered a pretty good variety of pistol calibers.

    .357 mag, .44mag, .45 colt, as of this writing I have 1 .357, a pair of .44mags and a .45colt.
    Along with a .223, .300bo, 7.62x39, .444marlin just for starters.

    Last fall I had a virtually new combo .30-30 and 20 ga walk in my door. Guy who owns the house next to me (he rents it) got offered 125$ at our local pawn shop. I gave him 300$ cash and we were both tickled.

    Mostly I am not interested in the higher speed calibers that everyone has. .270, .308 .30-06.
    .35 and up shoots great with cast lead and low end loads of Red Dot. Easy to load, easy on the pocket, easy on the shoulder, and on a good day, terrific accuracy.

    Good enough for me.

    Most of mine were in the 2-300$ range, although I have paid up to 400$ for just a barrel, .45 colt. Worth every penny IMO, and shoots like a million bucks.

    Depends on what you like.

  9. #29
    Boolit Master
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    I bought a scoped .223 Rem H&R for my brother to use....he has a ground hog problem. (had?)
    The only reason I purchased it....Gander mountain was going out of business and it was brand new $175/out the door with two boxes of ammo. It is a serviceable fairly accurate rifle and serves the purpose of ridding his place of vermin within 200 yds or so. The price was the key.....for 300 I would have purchased a Savage or Ruger American.

  10. #30
    Boolit Master marlinman93's Avatar
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    A lot of what's been said here is true, but it's nothing new either. Some seem to think this corporate mentality is a new thing, but it's existed since factories existed! Winchester bought numerous companies and then simply closed them down. Had it not been for Marcellus Hartley and the financial backing of UMC, Winchester would have shut down Remington when Winchester and Hartley/UMC purchased Remington out of bankruptcy. Other companies that Winchester purchased without a partner involved were quickly shut down.

  11. #31
    Boolit Mold
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    My memory may fail me, but I remember that prior to acquiring Marlin (and also NEF) Remington was importing Russian made Baikal single shot rifles and shotguns and selling them under their name. Might this have had something to do with them end production of the Handi rifle since they wer importing a competitive product at a much lower cost?

  12. #32
    Boolit Master

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    the H&R buff classic was THE super cheap toe-in-the-door to bpcr/tr - sadly, a spot no longer filled.

  13. #33
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by MFGordon View Post
    My memory may fail me, but I remember that prior to acquiring Marlin (and also NEF) Remington was importing Russian made Baikal single shot rifles and shotguns and selling them under their name. Might this have had something to do with them end production of the Handi rifle since they wer importing a competitive product at a much lower cost?
    The Baikal line of firearms (Spartan) were much higher cost than anything NEF/H&R offered. President Obama stopped the importation, that probably killed that line. No pistol calibers were offered, just conventional calibers and a smattering of metrics. Nostalgia aside, H&R probably didn't sell as many as everyone seems to think. Sure they have a following but if your choices are a Savage Axis/Ruger Ranch or a H&R single shot for the same money, most folks are going for the repeater with the better trigger. If a product isn't making money, why would a company produce it? Tastes change for everything, not just firearms and there will always be someone lamenting the passing of their favorite brand of whatever. My neighbor still complains that Oliver and Studebaker went out of business but in defiance of that fact, he has
    both the tractor and the pickup truck and uses them both. If you like H&R, buy them and enjoy the to the hilt, there are a million on the used market, don't get hung up on the fact they aren't being produced.


    We accumulate our opinions at an age when our understanding is at its weakest. Georg C. Lichtenberg

    At what point, then, is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, If it ever reach us it must spring up amongst us; it cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen we must live through all time, or die by suicide. A. Lincoln

  14. #34
    Boolit Man


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    Well they surely ruined a good thing in the eyes of many consumers...

    I had at one time 34 individual H&R & NEF's. Rimfires, shotguns and rifles. I enjoyed the hell outta them. I have since sold off most and down to just 6-8 of my favorites and customs that likely wont be going anywhere. I swore off Remington's, NEW Remington's many years ago and Dropped Marlin like a Hot potato when they sold and quality went in the crapper with all the damaged machines and parts. I had quite a few Marlins too at one time...

    CW
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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check