Charter Arms AR7 Explorer Survival rifle

Charter Arms AR7 Explorer Survival rifle

This is the Charter Arms AR7 Explorer rifle. It turns out the companies that have owned this AR7 rifle have been sold and bought and finally the current owners are Henry rifle company. So now you can buy the Henry survival rifle. A much better quality rifle. Sadly this rifle has problems with failure to feed, regardless of what magazines I use. So I am running out of ideas on what the problem is. I have tested it on the range and same thing, failure to feed and the 22caliber does not enter the barrell. I have taken it apart down to the springs and have not seen any problems there. So if any of you have any ideas on my problems with this rifle, please leave me some comments and or message me. Here is some info on this rifle. Thanks everyone for watching and I appreciate you clicking on the like button and come on and subscirbe for more interesting and unique videos.

The AR-7 uses a blowback semi-automatic action in .22 Long Rifle but retains the AR-5/MA-1 feature of storing the disassembled parts within the hollow stock, which is filled with plastic foam and capable of floating.[3][4] Like the bolt-action AR-5, the AR-7 was designed as a survival rifle for foraging small game for food. The AR-7 is constructed primarily of aluminum, with plastic for the stock and buttcap. Even the barrel is aluminum (in later production composite material), using a rifled steel barrel liner.[5] The AR-7 measures 35 inches overall when assembled. It disassembles to four sections (barrel, action, stock, and magazine), with three parts storing inside the plastic stock, measuring 16 inches long. The rifle weighs 2.5 pounds light enough for convenient backpacking. The rear sight is a peep sight, which comes on a flat metal blade with an aperture (in later production two different size apertures), and is adjustable for elevation (up-down). The front sight is adjustable for windage (side-to-side). Accuracy is sufficient for hunting small game at ranges to 50 yards.

Armalite sold the design to Charter Arms in 1973. According to some accounts posted by enthusiasts, this is when quality began to deteriorate.[6] Barrels were said to have a tendency to warp. Other sources state that the first production at Charter had problems which were corrected in later production runs.[2] Charter Arms sold the design and rights to Henry Repeating Arms in 1980 and the Henry AR-7 has since regained a reputation for reliability.

1959-1973: ArmaLite
1973-1990: Charter Arms
1990-1997: Survival Arms, Cocoa, Florida
1997–2007: Henry Repeating Arms Co., Brooklyn, New York
2007-present: Henry Repeating Arms Co., Bayonne, New Jersey
1998-2004: AR-7 Industries, LLC, Meriden, Connecticut (bought by ArmaLite in 2004)


  1. GrumpyTinashe on November 9, 2021 at 12:37 am

    can someone please tell me where can I buy the butt stock mine is buggered. I’m in southern Africa and they just aren’t available here

  2. Wasno on November 9, 2021 at 12:40 am

    It looks really nice and i like the idea! Got some heavy doubts when i did research on web tough, that its not reliable, feeding problems etc etc. The only benefit i can se in comparison with 10/22 is the lower weight and -maybe- it floats for a while (?) Otherwise i think the 10/22 TD seems to be superior to this one..

  3. David Reiner on November 9, 2021 at 12:43 am

    Ruger10/22 takedown is my favorite.22 rifle. The charter arms ar-7 is yet problematic. Best bet is use high velocity ammo and be sure to lube it well. There’s a shim you can make to wedge behind magazine top help it feed better, Google it, it worked for mine pretty well…

  4. TheHutchinson1985 on November 9, 2021 at 12:44 am

    round nose 22lc not hollow point or flat nose

  5. ba tran van on November 9, 2021 at 12:50 am


  6. BrianJ8 on November 9, 2021 at 1:01 am

    I’m not sure about the charter but I have a Henry ar7 and I have put a bunch of junk ammo through since I have had it without any failure I have also used good ammo round nose,hollow point. it is one of my favorite survival rifles I have and is very accurate. I like my 10-22 takedown also but the Henry is more compact and lighter.

  7. Rob Robinson on November 9, 2021 at 1:04 am

    Just ran across this video. Good stuff. I can tell you that the smaller magazine you had is an 8 round Henry magazine. You can tell because of the "hairpin" metal wire that slides vertically along the side. That was part of Henrys redesign to make the feed more reliable. I did track a lot of the feed problems down to ammo since it relies on blowback. I have great luck with 40 grain round nose that does over 1300fps. It has enough energy to make the Henry feed quite reliably and the round nose doesnt hang up on the transition from the feed ramp to the barrel. The charter arms version is more spotty and I found that if I hold the magazine in place a certain way it keep the magazine feed ramp in a better position. Its still quite fun once you get it rolling though.

  8. John Roberts on November 9, 2021 at 1:11 am

    The Henry AR-7 is an incredible gun and if you have the older CHARTER ARMS version, pack the Henry in your bugout bag and then shoot your CHARTER ARMS rifle. The Henry is completely redesigned and is very reliable if you’re using good ammo. Don’t depend on the CA model. Like all other CA products, it’s garbage. Actually, it just depends what day it was made on. Some work. Love the rain sound. Very relaxing.

  9. Marty Jewell on November 9, 2021 at 1:11 am

    Ah, the Charter Arms AR-7. Got mine ($87) in the early 1980’s after reading a review in "Popular .22’s" by Phil Engeldrum. The rifle looks (and feels) like cheap sheet metal. Micky Mouse sights, jams like a mother and has the most uncanny ability to go full auto after a few hundred rounds. Not fun when unexpected. But I gotta say that I still love this gun. My James Bond toy that is great for camping, hiking or any off road activity. Just find reliable ammo (I use Remington Thunderbolts) and clean after every 150 rounds or so. Fuhgeddaboudit!

  10. MrPacker25 on November 9, 2021 at 1:12 am

    outstanding view on a very creditable weapon, I would like more information

  11. Mario Martin on November 9, 2021 at 1:14 am

    your mag that doesn’t work and has a small spring looking thing on the side is for an original Armalite AR7,,that’s why it doesn’t work in your Charter Arms,

  12. g itsbeerthirty on November 9, 2021 at 1:22 am

    I have one and had it for 10 years before I put it  into a wood stock,,,with the foregrip being more user friendly I was able to make it a great shooter..good  job on this old gun

  13. TheDesertwalker on November 9, 2021 at 1:24 am

    Same jamming issues here….I do have an original magazine and a newer one……I will try both next outing with round nose.

  14. John Ko on November 9, 2021 at 1:29 am

    Ghost – thanks for the very thorough video. I have an Charter AR7 Explorer, which I bought back in the 80’s. Took it out a couple of times and was disappointed with the jamming issue. I thought it was just my rifle, but found out this was typical. I was going to sell it but couldn’t deny the cool-factor.

    I figured if I could solve the mag problem (find out which mag design worked consistently (the one with the holes in back, or the other one) and just use those I’d be okay.,

    I also figured if magazine A worked with my rifle, then magazine B should fit in the Henry rifles. At least that was the thinking. Unfortunately, I never had the time of disposition to pursue it. So I have  basically a single shot .22 (LOL). Cool, but meh.

    Other than the magazine issue, has Henry done something mechanically to the rifle to make it better? I took one apart next to my Charter and couldn’t see anything mechanically different. What did I miss?

    Again thanks for the cool vid.

  15. John Gonzo on November 9, 2021 at 1:29 am

    I have a charter arms ar7 and to be honest. It was my first firearm. Good stuff. I had problems with hollow points in the second mag, those would jam. the original mag fired anything though… yes my daughter loved to fire it when she was a kid.

  16. Gene Ladner on November 9, 2021 at 1:33 am

    How ’bout THIS for cool factor: I had problems with jamming from the first day, back in ’75. Fixed it by inserting a wedge-shaped flat-head screwdriver into the receiver of the barrel, and twisting it to create a minor chamfer so that the rim of the receiver wasn’t just a sharp edge all the way around. Worked like a champ since then, never jamming even ONCE for the next 40 years! Even when it ACCIDENTALLY went FULLY AUTOMATIC for a couple of years. Turns out the firing pin had gotten some slack in its track, and was slamming the rims of the cartridges EVERY TIME it auto-loaded! It would empty the 8-shot clip in less than a half second, like it was single shot!!! It would throw the empty casings ten feet or more, so that if someone was standing to my immediate right, they would get pelted by all 8 casings in less than a half second!! Naturally, I knew full well I would eventually have to repair it so that it would be somewhat safer (and legal) in semi-auto mode. I eventually bought new parts in 1980, and it has functioned PROPERLY and FLAWLESSLY since then. I have dispatched HUNDREDS of rattlesnakes with it in the Matagorda Bay area in Texas since 1975!