Click pictures for a larger version.
Henry AR-7 U.S. Survival Rifle with Henry Survival Kit,
Tyler Gun Works "Iroquois Deluxe" Tomahawk, Arno
Bernard knife, and Leatherman tool.
Magazine release (top), manual safety (bottom).
Receiver, magazines, and barrel store in stock.
The year 1959 saw the birth of two legends;
the ArmaLite AR-7 Survival Rifle, and me! Well okay, not me. I
am just passing through this world, but the AR-7 will be here
long after I am gone. The little rifle was invented by a true
legend in the firearms industry: Eugene Stoner, who invented the
AR-10, AR-15, and AR-18 rifles as well. The AR-7 was patterned
after the bolt-action AR-5 22 Hornet rifle that Mr. Stoner had
developed as a survival rifle for fighter pilots, so that in the
event of an emergency landing or bail-out, the pilot would have
a small, lightweight rifle for foraging and such. While the AR-7
was not adopted by the U.S. Air Force, it was adopted by the
Israeli and Argentine militaries, and also was readily received
in the civilian marketplace as a survival rifle that allowed
easy storage for fishermen, backpackers, and other outdoorsmen.
The AR-7 was a lightweight semi-automatic, and fired the 22 Long
Rifle cartridge. It also dissembled easily, without tools, and
the components stored in the plastic buttstock.
The AR-7 has been manufactured by various
companies over the past 58 years, and there is a pretty lively
aftermarket to serve the AR-7 owners with accessories such as
scope mounts and buttstocks. 2017 marks twenty years since the
AR-7 has been in the stable of Henry Repeating Arms, and the
improvements made by Henry make the legendary little rifle
better than ever. Henry redesigned the buttstock internally to
accept the receiver with a magazine installed, along with two
spare magazines, allowing a total of twenty-four rounds stored
in magazines within the floating buttstock. Henry also improved
upon the original plastic buttstock by changing the composition
to ABS, for greater durability. The sixteen-inch steel barrel is
also covered in ABS for corrosion resistance, and the receiver
has a protective coating as well. The top of the receiver is now
grooved for tip-off scope mounts, for those who desire an
The rear sight is a flat piece of stamped
steel, which can be flipped to allow the use of two different
size apertures. Combined with the blaze orange front sight
blade, the little rifle is surprisingly accurate. The front can
be drifted in its dovetail for windage adjustment, and the rear
aperture can be adjusted for elevation correction by loosening
the screw and moving the sight blade up or down as needed. The
AR-7 assembles quickly, without tools, when the receiver and
barrel are removed from the buttstock. The trigger is crisp, but
a bit heavy, releasing with about six pounds of resistance. Keep
in mind that this is not a rifle for benchrest shooting, but a
survival/small game/plinking rifle, and a very light trigger
pull would be undesirable in a survival situation. The trigger
works very well for the intended purpose of this rifle.
The Henry AR-7 weighs three pounds, five
ounces with an empty magazine. The buttstock is capped by a
waterproof plastic cap, and the buttstock is also buoyant,
allowing the rifle to float if dropped into water. The rifle
shown here wears a camouflaged finish, but the rifle is also
available with a matte black finish at a lower price. With all
the parts stowed in the buttstock, the overall length measures
just sixteen and one-half inches.
An item that goes along pretty well with the
Henry AR-7 rifle is a dandy little compact survival kit, also
sold by Henry Repeating Arms. The Survival Kit is a metal box
which contains many things which could prove to be useful and
lifesaving in a survival situation.
The metal box seals up tightly, and is packed with a lot
more stuff than I ever imagined.
Survival Kit contains:
Basic Survival Instruction Sheet
Aloksak Water Tight Bag
Personal Use Fishing Kit
Mini Map Compass
Mini Rescue Flash Signal Mirror
Beeswax Tea Light Survival Candle
Tinder Quick (10)
Type 1A Utility Cord (20 ft.)
Photon Micro Light
Spiral Wire Survival Saw
1 ft flexible latex tubing
Trauma Bandage and Gauze Roll
Adventurer Compact Repair Tape
Adventurer Compact Fire Starter
Rapid Rescue Survival Whistle
Snare Wire (20 ft.)
Adventure All Weather Matches (10)
Utica Kutmaster Mini Multi Tool
Flat Coffee Filter
MicroPur Water Tablets (05)
12 Hour Light Stick
Space Survival Blanket
Compact Signal Panel
Fresnel Lens Fire Starter
Derma Safe Razor Knife
Survival Kit Box
Hard Anodized Aluminum
Size: Appx 7.3" x 4.6" x
2.3" (including clasps)
Weight: 6.2 oz.
accuracy testing, I mounted a Burris six to eighteen power
target scope atop the AR-7 receiver. This is not a scope than a
person would typically mate to the AR-7, but I used it to see
just how accurate the rifle could be, with as little human error
as possible. I rested the rifle in a Target
Shooting, Inc. Model 500 rifle rest, and fired five-shot
groups on paper at fifty yards. The AR-7 proved to be plenty
accurate for its intended purpose, with some ammunition turning
in very respectable groups. The Remington High Velocity 36 grain
truncated cone ammo grouped the best of any tried in this rifle,
turning in the best group of the day, which measured
five-eighths of an inch at fifty yards. Most ammunition would
group under two inches at that distance, with several measuring
closer to an inch. The AR-7 proved to be much more-accurate than
with high velocity ammunition was excellent. I experienced no
failures of any kind, whether using top-tier premium ammo or
bulk high velocity ammunition. Some brands of target ammo were
too weak to reliably cycle the action, but all of the high
velocity stuff, solid and hollowpoint, worked perfectly.
most shooting, I used the aperture sight, as I believe most
shooters will do. The aperture sight allows for very good
accuracy, but for my eyes, both apertures were too small, so I
drilled one out to one-eighth inch, resulting in a ghost-ring
sight picture, which works very well for me. The eye will
naturally center the top of the front post in the aperture, and
makes for quick target acquisition.
really like the little AR-7, both in concept and execution. The
design is proven, and Henry took a good design, and made it
better. I like the little rifle so much that I recently ordered
in eight more, just to have them around here if needed. Placing
one of the U.S. Survival Rifles, along with a box of ammo into
each of my vehicles is a good idea. Along with the spare tire
and jumper cables, it is there if I need it, and not in the way
if I don’t. The little Henry will even fit nicely into a
Harley-Davidson saddlebag. For use against small game and
vermin, it has plenty of accuracy, and could even serve well as
a defensive weapon against human predators, if needed.
U.S. Survival Rifle from Henry Repeating Arms is a lightweight,
reliable, dandy little semi-automatic carbine. It is chambered
for the very popular 22 Long Rifle cartridge, and is an
excellent choice for a compact rifle to stow in a backpack,
plane boat, pickup, RV or ATV to have handy when needed. Like
all Henry firearms, the U.S. Survival Rifle is “Made in
America, Or Not Made at All.”
suggested retail price of the U.S. Survival Rifle, as of the
date of this review, is $290 US for the black rifle and $350 US for
the Mossy Oak Break-Up camouflaged version.
out the extensive line of Henry firearms and accessories online
the location of a Henry dealer near you, click on the DEALER
FINDER at www.lipseys.com.
order the U.S. Survival rifle online, click on the GUN GENIE at www.galleryofguns.com.
order quality 22 Long Rifle ammunition, go to www.midsouthshooterssupply.com
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Click pictures for a larger version.
Jeff likes the AR-7 so much that he recently ordered in
eight more, just to keep handy if needed.
Top of receiver is grooved for tip-off scope rings.
Best accuracy was achieved with Remington Golden
36-grain hollowpoint ammunition.
Henry Survival Kit.
Tyler Gun Works "Iroquois Deluxe" Tomahawk.