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Brunswick Rifleman's Assault Weapon


mestre
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These have always been one of my favorites and have been gathering information and items related to the RAW since the early 1980s. I'm sure there must have been some sort of user manual but I've never seen one, only promotional pamphlets and brochures.

 

The round and launcher shown are the late production type known as the RBM, the Rifleman's Breeching Munition. Brunswick tried selling this to the Marines since the early 1980s and perhaps the late 1970s and they continually improved and updated it through the late 1990s, changing the name several times along the way to keep the idea "fresh". Here are some photos of one of mine in the padded carrying case, which came with a standard M16 sheet metal bipod in the front pouch:

 

PICT0105.JPG

 

PICT0106.JPG

 

PICT0107.JPG

 

PICT0108.JPG

 

The two rounds on the left are earlier types made without the teardrop shape which added better aerodynamics and increased room for both the rocket motor and the payload. The launcher frames for the round rockets were much simpler than the later one shown and didn't have the quick release lock or gas-protective shield to keep dirt and sparks out of the gunner's eyes. The rocket was initiated with a normal ball round by tapping off some of the firing gasses at the muzzle and piping them to the rocket venturi. Once it was burning, the gasses flowed through the bent exit tubes and rotated the rocket and tubes like 4th of July pinwheel until it reached a pre-determined RPM and detached to fly forward.

 

PICT0109.JPG

 

When these things launched off a normal M16 rifle, they flew in a virtual straight line path to the target, so you didn't have to make corrections for an arching trajectory like most rifle grenades or 40mm rounds. But they never were able to perfect a "clean separation" from the launcher so it was difficult to know where it would go......straight ahead or off to one side or the other by several degrees. The early launch frames were reloadable but the late ones like these were a one-shot affair with a rocket pre-fitted at the factory and adjusted with little jack screws to improve accuracy.

 

I never met anyone very close to the project so I never heard why it ultimately failed to gain adoption by the DOD. Politics, cost, inaccuracy, company problems or several other factors are possibilities but I just don't know. Neat piece of ordnance though, and the irony never slipped past me that a company known for making bowling equipment managed to develop and market a munition that looked a hell of a lot like a bowling ball.

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Hey, Mr. Ordnance, how long have you been waiting to show of your collection of RAW gear? Do I get to see it in person next Friday?

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These have always been one of my favorites and have been gathering information and items related to the RAW since the early 1980s. I'm sure there must have been some sort of user manual but I've never seen one, only promotional pamphlets and brochures.

 

The round and launcher shown are the late production type known as the RBM, the Rifleman's Breeching Munition. Brunswick tried selling this to the Marines since the early 1980s and perhaps the late 1970s and they continually improved and updated it through the late 1990s, changing the name several times along the way to keep the idea "fresh". Here are some photos of one of mine in the padded carrying case, which came with a standard M16 sheet metal bipod in the front pouch:

 

PICT0105.JPG

 

PICT0106.JPG

 

PICT0107.JPG

 

PICT0108.JPG

 

The two rounds on the left are earlier types made without the teardrop shape which added better aerodynamics and increased room for both the rocket motor and the payload. The launcher frames for the round rockets were much simpler than the later one shown and didn't have the quick release lock or gas-protective shield to keep dirt and sparks out of the gunner's eyes. The rocket was initiated with a normal ball round by tapping off some of the firing gasses at the muzzle and piping them to the rocket venturi. Once it was burning, the gasses flowed through the bent exit tubes and rotated the rocket and tubes like 4th of July pinwheel until it reached a pre-determined RPM and detached to fly forward.

 

PICT0109.JPG

 

When these things launched off a normal M16 rifle, they flew in a virtual straight line path to the target, so you didn't have to make corrections for an arching trajectory like most rifle grenades or 40mm rounds. But they never were able to perfect a "clean separation" from the launcher so it was difficult to know where it would go......straight ahead or off to one side or the other by several degrees. The early launch frames were reloadable but the late ones like these were a one-shot affair with a rocket pre-fitted at the factory and adjusted with little jack screws to improve accuracy.

 

I never met anyone very close to the project so I never heard why it ultimately failed to gain adoption by the DOD. Politics, cost, inaccuracy, company problems or several other factors are possibilities but I just don't know. Neat piece of ordnance though, and the irony never slipped past me that a company known for making bowling equipment managed to develop and market a munition that looked a hell of a lot like a bowling ball.

 

...promotional pamphlets and brochures,do you have them?

Thank you.

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After reading this thread, I was reminded of a story I heard.

 

A friend of mine was a SEAL with ST6 (here we go again !!)

 

He mentioned during the Governor rescue/Radio Station mission during the Grenada Invasion/ "Urgent Fury", he carried rifle grenades and said the fired one and it took off in a crazy direction-so that didn't use them anymore.

 

Were these ever tested in Combat?

 

What other little ordnance gadgets are you holding out ?

 

Matt

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I cant remember where it was I saw this thing for the first time, but I remember the headline for the article like it was yesterday...

 

BOWLING FOR BUNKERS

 

I laughed then, and I'm chuckling now. A decent idea that never really came to fruition until many years later. I think the Israelis have something similar to this, but it is fired in a direct line from the barrel with live ammo.

 

Wayne

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Hey, Mr. Ordnance, how long have you been waiting to show of your collection of RAW gear? Do I get to see it in person next Friday?

 

Robin,

 

I took those photos for another forum but as long as the subject came up, I figured it wouldn't hurt to put them here as well. I don't think you will see this gear on Friday as there are more interesting ordnance trinkets to show. Please bring that M10 rocket and we'll compare notes since things were snowed in last month.

 

Regarding literature, I have the pamphlets and data sheet shown and I think one newer handout too. Not easy to find now but these paper items were giveaways at the AUSA show and other Defense Industry events while the system was being marketed.

 

 

Matt.....I'd really like to know if they were ever tested in combat but have no idea. And I'd sure like to know what type of rifle grenades your friend carried in Grenada as all types of U.S. rifle grenades other than the 40mm types were out of normal service at that time. Of course, SEALs and other special OPs troops use a lot of unusual gear, so anything is possible.

 

Regarding other ordnance gadgets, I have lots that will eventually get photographed and shown on the forum. Just need to find the time between working and looking for more new munitions to collect.

 

Finally, to Wayne's comment about a similar Israeli item. That would be the Simon door breaching rifle grenade, made by Rafael in Israel. It's a very large rifle grenade with a long standoff rod designed to blast through steel and wood doors. It is a VERY effective round that has been adopted by the U.S. Army as the M100 GREM (Grenade Rifle Entry Munition) and is in current use in Iraq. It is so highly thought of that it received a U.S. Army award as one of the 10 best inventions of 2005. And I just missed scoring an inert one for the collection last year. Grrrrrr.

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  • 8 months later...

I worked on this system at Brunswick in th early 80's...any questions? As far as actual field use...we supplied a dozen rounds to special forces to use in Greneda...but had some bad results...our fuzing systems wasn't mature so they hit the bunkers but didn't go boom...not a good thing. After that, they didn't want to use them anymore...we had several different warheads...squash, forged element, anti-personnel...also different HE...octol, pbx8...ln14...settled on PBX8 for the final version. I have some test VHS videos..someday I'll dump them to digital and share them...

 

Robin,

 

I took those photos for another forum but as long as the subject came up, I figured it wouldn't hurt to put them here as well. I don't think you will see this gear on Friday as there are more interesting ordnance trinkets to show. Please bring that M10 rocket and we'll compare notes since things were snowed in last month.

 

Regarding literature, I have the pamphlets and data sheet shown and I think one newer handout too. Not easy to find now but these paper items were giveaways at the AUSA show and other Defense Industry events while the system was being marketed.

Matt.....I'd really like to know if they were ever tested in combat but have no idea. And I'd sure like to know what type of rifle grenades your friend carried in Grenada as all types of U.S. rifle grenades other than the 40mm types were out of normal service at that time. Of course, SEALs and other special OPs troops use a lot of unusual gear, so anything is possible.

 

Regarding other ordnance gadgets, I have lots that will eventually get photographed and shown on the forum. Just need to find the time between working and looking for more new munitions to collect.

 

Finally, to Wayne's comment about a similar Israeli item. That would be the Simon door breaching rifle grenade, made by Rafael in Israel. It's a very large rifle grenade with a long standoff rod designed to blast through steel and wood doors. It is a VERY effective round that has been adopted by the U.S. Army as the M100 GREM (Grenade Rifle Entry Munition) and is in current use in Iraq. It is so highly thought of that it received a U.S. Army award as one of the 10 best inventions of 2005. And I just missed scoring an inert one for the collection last year. Grrrrrr.

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Misanthropic_Gods
I worked on this system at Brunswick in th early 80's...any questions? As far as actual field use...we supplied a dozen rounds to special forces to use in Greneda...but had some bad results...our fuzing systems wasn't mature so they hit the bunkers but didn't go boom...not a good thing. After that, they didn't want to use them anymore...we had several different warheads...squash, forged element, anti-personnel...also different HE...octol, pbx8...ln14...settled on PBX8 for the final version. I have some test VHS videos..someday I'll dump them to digital and share them...

 

Ha ha, this is a great thread! I didnt even know Bruinswick had a Defense Division! I would love to see those videos someday

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Hi rcope3051,

 

Welcome to the Forum and thanks for posting to this thread. Always nice to hear first hand information from the guys who made and used these kinds of things.

 

Any idea when Brunswick finally gave up on marketing this concept? I know my launcher with the padded case came from a small group of them that turned up at Knob Creek sometime around 1999 or 2000. They were pretty recent finds on a scrap pile back then and recall hearing they might have come from the Marines in SC, though nothing certain on that. It was the first time I'd seen one of the new style launch frames and just remember thinking how they were still working on selling these things after 20+ years.

 

I'm always looking for brochures, drawings, photos, or any other data on the RAW/RBM weapons. Please drop me a private message or email if you have anything else to share. Thanks.

 

Rick

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