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Old June 5th, 2019, 12:41 AM #1
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Henry AR-7 Survival Rifle

Last year I picked up one of these remarkable .22LR rifles and was absolutely captivated by it. Everything packs into the stock except the stock, and the gun is flawlessly reliable. Three loaded 10-round magazines fit into the gun and the only extended magazines that fit it are, sadly, unreliable and, also sadly, not made by Henry. The gun used to be in production by Charter Arms, but happily passed to Henry, which redesigned the rifle and greatly improved its reliability. I recall seeing it produced by Charter Arms back in the 1980s, but never got around to picking one up back then.

If you have one of these survival rifles, which model do you have and is yours as reliable as you had hoped? And do you have an extended magazine that works?

I also have a Ruger 10/22 stainless take-down rifle and a Charger blued version which, unfortunately, is classified by Maryland as a handgun. Are all Chargers considered handguns by all states and commonwealths? (If so, I'm glad I got mine when I did because I don't want to ever have to buy another handgun in this wretched state again. (There's going to be another march for tighter gun controls in Silver Spring next week, in response to the shooting in Virginia Beach. Never mind it was in another state and that Maryland already has some of the tightest gun controls in the universe. Some idiots still want tougher gun controls passed in Annapolis!))

I worry that they'll ban my powerful AR-7. After all, any gun that will knock a helicopter out of the sky and killing one of the pilots at the same time is obviously too powerful to trust to a citizen!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Vlw-NzSvoc&app

So btw, which would you prefer, a Ruger Charger or a Henry AR-7? (I know almost everyone would prefer the take-down 10/22 if it came down to it, even me. But, damn, I sure like that AR-7!
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Old June 5th, 2019, 12:48 AM #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cold Steel View Post

I worry that they'll ban my powerful AR-7. After all, any gun that will knock a helicopter out of the sky and killing one of the pilots at the same time is obviously too powerful to trust to a citizen!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Vlw-NzSvoc&app
It's all in the shot-placement.
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Old June 5th, 2019, 12:56 AM #3
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My buddy has a Charter AR-7 from a long time ago - yeah, we're both old farts - and it's a real POS. Lots of jams. I have the new Henry but haven't gotten it to the range yet. The Charger is just a shortened 10/22, so no surprises there. The stock adapter from Copper Custom was not cheap, but worth the wait.
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Old June 5th, 2019, 02:12 AM #4
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It's all in the shot-placement.
Yep. The guy was thrown back against his seat and the helicopter blew into a zillion pieces. The peep sights on the rifle make for the extreme accuracy. But if'n I'd had that gun and my twenty-five dollar red dot scope, I could have winged 'er down so's they could have saved the 'copter and, of course, the enemy agents who were each carrying mint Browning Hi-Powers!
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Old June 5th, 2019, 02:46 AM #5
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My buddy has a Charter AR-7 from a long time ago - yeah, we're both old farts - and it's a real POS. Lots of jams. I have the new Henry but haven't gotten it to the range yet.
When you get around to shooting the Henry, please drop a range report by here, would you? Plus any personal observations. Did you get any spare magazines? They're so small I reckon you could carry a bunch of them in your pants pockets.

I love the gun in that it fits right in a knapsack, and the magazines make great ways of carrying the ammo. The "kit" is a bit of a rip-off in my view. The case is high quality, but given that the gun can fit into a cheap knapsack, spending a lot of money on a carrying case is a bit of a waste. The kit is about $440. Minus $250 for the gun and that's a lot of money for a case, a few items and a fancy box.
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Old June 5th, 2019, 03:44 AM #6
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I have a Henry AR7. It's a good shooter, although with the sights that come with it 50 yards 1 inch groups is about as accurate as I get with it...The gun is probably capable of much more with a decent rimfire optic...It has a rail but won't fit inside the stock with anything mounted to it.

Nope...have yet to find a high capacity mag that runs properly. ALSO I have yet to find an aftermarket mag that will feed reliably. Even the charter arms mags will not work.

Also, be prepared to try several different brands/types of ammo. it's not picky per se, but some ammo seems to feed and shoot better.
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Old June 5th, 2019, 08:44 AM #7
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It started as an Armalite product (hence the AR designation).

Later, Charter Arms bought the rights and made them. But, from what I have read, they were not the best quality.

The one Henry makes is not an exact duplicate of the Armalite/Charter Arms version. Some parts are not interchangeable.

I remember my Dad looking at buying one of them back in the early 60s. But he did not.

I picked up a Henry version a couple of years ago. I have put 2 rounds through it to see if it worked.
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Old June 5th, 2019, 02:19 PM #8
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It started as an Armalite product (hence the AR designation).
Ah, yes. The worst thing you can do is take a great design and give it to Charter Arms! At least the Charter Arms of the 80s! One of the worst gun companies of all times. Their little .38s and .44s would snap a few times, then bind! It was too bad because I really loved the looks of their .44 Bulldogs. Imagine, a tiny .44 Special you can put in your pocket! But I needed a stainless steel grease that I still have to make it work.

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Later, Charter Arms bought the rights and made them. But, from what I have read, they were not the best quality. The one Henry makes is not an exact duplicate of the Armalite/Charter Arms version. Some parts are not interchangeable.
From what I understand, Henry was not able to get the original design to work properly, but it recognized that it was a great design, per se, so Henry took it and redesigned from the inside out. It found tiny flaws and eliminated them along the way. And when it finished, it looked like an AR-7, but it worked. And though magazine wells appeared to be dead ringers of the old, the tolerances were just a smidgen off. Thus, though the magazines also appeared to be identical, they weren't. Henry also used better steel and better springs, and some of its magazines actually work with the old Charter Arms, but many don't. It just depends on your model.

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I picked up a Henry version a couple of years ago. I have put 2 rounds through it to see if it worked.
So when the living dead pass through your neck of the woods, what are you going to do when it jams on the third shot?

Bang...Bang...Jam.

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhgggggggggghhhhh!
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Old June 5th, 2019, 02:34 PM #9
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I have an original Armalite which is a former Israeli pilot survival gun re-imported by Bricklee Trading Co. It works fine with the original magazines-aftermarket mags are generally unreliable. If the Charter version had issues that Henry "fixed", it makes me wonder if Charter was using old, worn-out tooling or reverse engineered drawings and the tolerances were off.
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Old June 5th, 2019, 04:38 PM #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cold Steel View Post
Yep. The guy was thrown back against his seat and the helicopter blew into a zillion pieces. The peep sights on the rifle make for the extreme accuracy. But if'n I'd had that gun and my twenty-five dollar red dot scope, I could have winged 'er down so's they could have saved the 'copter and, of course, the enemy agents who were each carrying mint Browning Hi-Powers!
If you watch "From Russia With Love" you'll notice at the beginning when Bond is issued the AR-7 the armorer states it ".25 caliber" when they were all .22LR. He wings the helicopter pilot who jerks the joystick and causes the other guy to drop his hand grenade inside the chopper.

Believable? It makes for good entertainment.
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