Exclusive: Big Horn Armory Model 89 Spike Driver in .500 S&W Magnum

The very name of this gun exudes outrageous power and I’m expecting nothing less at the range. Plus it’s a lever action so there’s a bit of cowboy awesomeness to top it all off. Guns like this may not come around often but when they do, they’ll put a grin on your face and maybe even some swagger in your step. That’s before you shoot it, of course. Afterwards may be a whole ‘nother story. We shall see.

Big Horn Armory’s Model 89 Spike Driver in .500 S&W Magnum specs out like this:

  • Barrel Length: 22”
  • Caliber: .500 S&W
  • Rate of Twist: 1 in 24″
  • Crown: Recessed
  • Buttstock & Forend: American Black Walnut, Laminate
  • Checkering: 20 lpi
  • Barreled Action: 17-4 Stainless Steel
  • Metal Finish: Matte SS / Hunter Black SS / Color Case Hardened
  • Stock Finish: Synthetic Satin
  • Recoil Pad: 1”
  • Sling Swivel Mounts: Integral Front, Stud Rear
  • Sights: Aperture Rear, Blade Front
  • Magazine Capacity: 5
  • Length of Pull: 13 5/8″
  • Overall Length : 41”
  • Weight: 7 lbs. 14 oz.

My favorite specs, so far? The 1” recoil pad — a Pachmayr Decelerator — and the almost 8 lbs. of weight. Here’s to believing in physics and its role in taming the recoil of Hornady’s 300 gr. FTX (shown in my hand next to a .223 for perspective). Loaded as such, this gun is good to a distance of about 200 yards and you can expect 1-1/2” groups at that distance. Personally I’m expecting this gun will impress one group of friends for about 20 minutes of shooting.

The question in my mind, and maybe yours, too, is what is the recoil going to feel like? Big Horn Armory says, “Using the hottest factory loads, recoil is approximately similar to a 12 gauge shotgun using 3” magnum shells. More moderate factory loads are like shooting a 12 gauge shotgun with target loads.”

Proudly made in the USA, nine different Big Horn Armory Model 89 rifles range in price from $2,699 to $4,499. They’re all built specifically for the .500 S&W Magnum cartridge and will likely rank way up there on the “wow” scale.

— Mark Kakkuri

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6 thoughts on “Exclusive: Big Horn Armory Model 89 Spike Driver in .500 S&W Magnum

    1. Mark Kakkuri Post author

      Hi Roger, thanks for your comment. All the barrels are 22″ right now but I’ll drop a note to Big Horn Armory and see if there are any plans for any shorter barrels.

  1. Howard Parker

    Wow, I always loved calibers with heavy bullets . The firearm is awesome it is unfortunately out of my fixed income budget. I imagine the ammo is up there too but a caliber as such you don’t use for plinking or every day target practice. Guess it could be a ” in my dreams rifle “?

    1. Mark Kakkuri Post author

      Thanks for chiming in, John. And we would love to hear your about your experiences with the X-Frame or the BFR… I bet they pack a wallop!


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