The ArmaLite AR-7 is a semiautomatic .22 LR takedown rifle based on technology developed for the AR-5 (USAF MA-1) air crew survival gun by the ArmaLite Division of Fairchild Engine & Airplane Corp.
The ArmaLite AR-7 Explorer was designed and marketed as a survival/backpack gun for campers and hunters due to its light weight (2.75 lbs or 1.25 kg) and compact size when broken down. The receiver, magazine, and barrel pack inside the buttstock. Like the AR-5, the AR-7 was designed to float if dropped in water. The basic sights are a peep rear adjustable for elevation and a front post adjustable for windage. The receiver is made of aluminum, the standard 8 round magazine of steel. Aftermarket magazines have been made in various capacities and of different materials.
ArmaLite began production of the AR-7 Explorer rifle in 1959 and later sold the rights to Charter Arms in 1973. Charter Arms produced the rifle and introduced a detachable 3/8-inch tip-off rail for scope mounts. Charter manufactured the Explorer II pistol version from 1980 to 1986. In 1990, Charter Arms sold the rights to Survival Arms who made the rifle up to 1997. Survival Arms then sold the rights to AR-7 Industries who continued production into the early 2000s.
When the patent expired in 1998, the Henry Repeating Arms Company reverse engineered the AR-7, maintaining backward compatibility, but with changes to the receiver and stock. Henry renamed their rifle the Henry U.S. Survival Rifle due to the changes. In 2007, Henry added a 3/8-inch tip-off rail integral with the receiver. The U.S. Survival stock holds the disassembled rifle with two magazines and a third optional in the receiver but is not as buoyant as the original. Henry's rifle is about 8 ounces (230 grams) heavier.
The ArmaLite AR-7 and variants can be seen in the following films, television series, video games, and anime used by the following actors:
|From Russia With Love||Sean Connery||James Bond||With scope, erroneously described as using .25 ACP ammo||1963|
|Pedro Armendariz||Kerim Bey||With scope, erroneously described as using .25 ACP ammo|
|Goldfinger||Tania Mallet||Tilly Masterson||With scope||1964|
|On Her Majesty's Secret Service||Seen in Bond's car||1969|
|Violent City||Charles Bronson||Jeff Heston||With scope and suppressor||1970|
|Rage||George C. Scott||Dan Logan||1972|
|The Killer Elite||Robert Duvall||Hansen||1975|
|Futureworld||Peter Fonda||Chuck Browning/clone||Pistol based on AR-7 rifle||1976|
|Colt 38 Special Squad (Quelli della calibro 38)||Ivan Rassimov||Marsigliese||With sniper scope and sound suppressor||1976|
|Umbrella Coup (Le Coup du parapluie)||Gordon Mitchell||Moskovitz||Custom short-barreled version||1980|
|Firestarter||George C. Scott||John Rainbird||Appears as a tranquilizer dart gun||1984|
|Malibu Express||A hitman||Two-toned with customized barrel cover, hand grip and synthetic stock||1985|
|Hard Ticket to Hawaii||Harold Diamond||Jade||Two-toned with customized barrel cover, hand grip and synthetic stock||1987|
|Ronn Moss||Rowdy Abilene|
|Night of the Sharks||A henchman||1988|
|Picasso Trigger||Roberta Vasquez||Pantera||Two-toned with customized barrel cover, hand grip and synthetic stock||1988|
|Savage Beach||Eric Chen||Erik||Two-toned with customized barrel cover, hand grip and synthetic stock||1989|
|Savage Beach||Al Leong||Fu||Two-toned with customized barrel cover, hand grip and synthetic stock||1989|
|Do or Die||An assassin||Two-toned with customized barrel cover, hand grip and synthetic stock||1991|
|Return to Savage Beach||Eric Chen||Erik||Two-toned customized; footage from Savage Beach||1998|
|Assassin in Love||Damian Lewis||Milo 'The Baker' Shakespeare||With scope and suppressor||2007|
|Get Smart (TV Series)||Don Adams||Maxwell Smart||Stocked like a "Tommy Gun" (modification from commercial T62 variant)||1965 - 1970|
|Kojak||Dan Hedaya||Dan Hudson||"A Hair-Trigger Away" (S4E7)||7 Nov 1976|
|Hawaii Five-O (1968) - Season 11||Rodney Philip Aiu||Assassin||"The Execution File" (S11E18)||1978-1979|
|Strike Force||David McCallum||ICE||1981|
|Magnum, P.I.||Juvenile Delinquent||"One More Summer" S02E17||1980 - 1988|
|Sledge Hammer!||Adam Ant||"Lionel Dasham"||Suppressed; "Icebreaker" (S02E12)||1986-1988|
|JAG - Season 2||Nanci Chambers||Meghan O'Hara||"Washington Holiday" (S2E09)||1997|
|Boston Legal||William Shatner||Denny Crane||"Hired Guns" (S01E10)||2004|
|Game Title||Appears As||Notes||Release Date|
|World of Guns: Gun Disassembly||U.S. Armalite AR-7||modern version||2014|
|Lupin III: Voyage to Danger||1993|
|Case Closed: The Private Eyes' Requiem||Assassin||w/ scope||2006|
Henry US Survival Rifle
|Lord of War||With stainless steel finish and M68 Aimpoint red dot scope, seen on a wall||2005|
|Law & Order: Criminal Intent||Assassin||"Assassin" (S7E14)||2008|
Hy Hunter Bolomauser
The Hy Hunter Bolomauser is a pistol version of ArmaLite AR-7 that was manufactured in the 1960s.
|Murderers' Row||Dean Martin||Matt Helm||1966|
|Karl Malden||Julian Wall|
Preetz Model 65
The Preetz Model 65 is a clone of AR-7 that was produced by West German company Josef G. Landmann-Preetz (also listed as J.G.L.) in 1965-1975. The rifle was chambered in .22 LR and .22 WMR, with a variety of stocks in both sporting and military styles. Originally Model 65 was made with a flat-sided zamack receiver, later production changed the material to aluminum. JGL did not duplicate the AR-7 self-contained component stock. Total production was in excess of 39,000 Model 65s of all versions.
|Angels of Terror||Günther Stoll||Dr. Ellis||With pistol grip, sniper scope and fake sound suppressor||1971|
|Hansjörg Felmy||Inspeсtor Craig|
Charter Arms Explorer
|Spy Hard||Alexandra Paul||Woman in murphy bed||Explorer II||1996|
|Game Title||Appears as||Mods||Notation||Release Date|
|Grand Theft Auto: Vice City||AR-7 Explorer; unusable||2002|
|Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas||AR-7 Explorer; unusable||2004|
|Hot Dogs, Horseshoes & Hand Grenades||"Explorer22"||Explorer II||2016|
T-62 Civilian Defense Weapon
The T-62 Civilian Defense Weapon is a "Tommy Gun"-styled version of Armalite AR-7.
|The Ambushers||Dean Martin||Matt Helm||1967|
|The Green Berets||Two Vietcong in assault||1968|
- ArmaLite - A list of all firearms manufactured by ArmaLite.
- Charter Arms - A list of all firearms manufactured by Charter Arms.