The Manville Gun

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One of my favourite war films is the Dogs of War, an adaptation of the Frederick Forysthe novel of the same name. A most memorable scenes is the final assault, in which a monstrosity of a multi-shot grenade launcher is deployed to great effect.

The Dogs Of War – Trailer

It was called the XM-18E1R in the film but was actually called a the Manville Gun, in 25mm , a weapon with a fascinating history.

DogsOfWarManville

Charles Manville developed the original version in the mid 1930’s for use in public order control, built in 12 Gauge, 26.5mm and 37mm. Although it did not win any production contracts for WWII the three calibre variants were developed to include a number of ammunition types, flares and tear gas for example. After only limited sales because of its weight, production ceased in 1943.

The Patent is still available online, here and the Peashooter Blog has some good images of the original in Police hands.

A couple of videos…

Manville Gas Gun

Manville Machine Gun Flare Gun

After the film, Hawk Engineering in the USA produced a near copy called the Hawk MM1.

The Anti Riot Weapon ENfield (ARWEN), from the late seventies, is perhaps a similar weapon, certainly for the non lethal ammunition. Now owned and produced by Police Ordnance in the USA.

HAWK MM-1 GRENADE LAUNCHER 37MM

37mm rotary grenade launcher overview

 

 

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Brings to mind the Milkor MGL

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy

One of those books that were so much worse when filmed (except for the hard ware added on for excitement).

But then again most of you guys missed out on the real stories, watching “Mad” Mike Hoare mercenary footage on live TV… rather than in film recreations

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy

What I meant to say (but only saw what I had written, when I looked at the post after the dinner) was:

“One of those[very good] books that [then] were so much worse when filmed”

JohnHartley
JohnHartley

At defense-update.com they are going on about the Raytheon Pike precision guided missile fired out of a normal 40mm grenade launcher. 2.1 km range.

Observer
Observer

JH, was that the cost range or the weapon range? :P

JohnHartley
JohnHartley

Obs. I suspect the Raytheon Pike will be too expensive for general use, but might have a niche with special forces. It gives you 4 to 5 times the range (with precision) over a normal 40 mm grenade.

Peddle
Peddle

Yes you are correct similar in concept to the original MGL made in South Africa in 1987 and issued to SA Army. Still in use! The new medium velocity gun fires 6 shots in 3 sec all landing within 5 m of each other in 13 sec, 800m away. The modern 40mm ammo is lethal 10 away. 27 issued in an Inf Bn.

Peddle
Peddle

A Milkor 40mm MRGL – multiple range grenade launcher costs about ZAR 45,000. The US Army XM25 25 mm round costs $1,000. Each!

Observer
Observer

JH I would agree, but how often do you see a target 2km away? That being said, if you can do it, I would love the concept. I always thought of the M-203 as the near perfect ambush weapon, the only sign of it firing is a “thoonk!” sound and the visual of a small glittery sphere at the apogee of the arc before it accelerates beyond visual detection again. You literally can have no idea where the round came from.

Don’t think the Pike can fit into multi-launchers though, the round is too long. I suspect it would be for single shots and muzzle loaded as I can’t see how it could possibly fit from the back. Cock the M-203, muzzle load it, fire.

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy

Perfect for putting active defence systems in a spin “The new medium velocity gun fires 6 shots in 3 sec all landing within 5 m of each other in 13 sec, 800m away”

mr.fred
mr.fred

Travelling at an average of 60m/s, will they? Or will they be easily discriminated against and left for the passive armour?

Observer
Observer

And it is not like the Mk19/GMG/AGL can’t match that kind of performance already. It’s just in accuracy and range where they fall short.

ArmChairCivvy
ArmChairCivvy

mr. fred, I was wondering about the same as for the Israeli systems 70 km/h has been mentioned as the discriminator (and does anyone even know about the 3rd gen Russian systems?).

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