I first came across the Chiappa Little Badger survival rifle in a magazine a few months ago, and distinctly recall thinking to myself, “I’m not sure how useful that would be… but it sure looks cool,” as I kept flipping through the pages.  In that brief moment, I told myself that if I came across a cheap one, I’d have to buy it and try it out – if only because “it sure looks cool” has been excuse enough for me to do all sorts of foolish things over the years.

Not long ago, I stopped into my local gun shop (as I tend to do every time someone is foolish enough to deposit money in my account) and low and behold, there it was: that cool little folding rifle I’d seen in my magazine.  I’ve purchased a number of firearms and accessories from the quiet little shop in my small town, so after a bit of discussion, they let me take it home for well below the retail price, in part because none of us were really sure how useful the thing actually would be.

The rifle came chambered in .22WMR (also referred to as .22 magnum), though you can find ones chambered in .22LR and .17HMR in most places they’re sold.  It’s a breach loading, single shot rifle that, when folded, occupies a tiny space about 16.5 inches long and 8 inches across.  In firing position, the rifle has an overall length of about 31 inches, which makes it look downright silly in the hands of a 240-pound ape like me.  Its M1 Carbine style adjustable front and rear sights are easy to use and it comes standard with Picatinny rails for the folks that like using glass to spot their small game.  The rifle also comes with a shell holder on the buttstock that can hold 12 rounds and a coat or two of black paint; that’s it – no frills, just function.