The modernized M79 grenade launcher


The classic M79 blooper was fielded in 1961. That has been a while.

Over on there is this line:

While not manufacturers of the M79, Milcor and Denel Mechem of South Africa do re-manufacture M-79 grenade launchers to more modern standards. They replace the leaf sight with an optical one and replace the wooden stock with a modified R-4/R-5 stock.

M79 grenade launcher – Wikipedia

Over the years, I have looked for this almost mythical beast, and I’ve seen other people ask about it and the general consensus was that it did not exist.

Yesterday when I was surfing the internet I stumbled across this old picture.

Sure enough, that is a M79 with a side folding R-4/R-5 stock. Black furniture (including pistol grip), and an range adjustable Armson OEG combat sight.

It really loses the iconic profile of the M79 and looks ungainly.

I do really like the idea of having the folding stock. That would make it smaller for carrying and packing. I do wonder if that metal tubular stock would be uncomfortable to shoot. I also wonder if that OEG sight on that adjustable mount is really any faster or easier to use than the classic M79 leaf sight?

For those of you who don’t know, the OEG gunsight is occluded. You can not see through it, you have to keep both eyes open to transpose the dot one eye sees with the environment the other eye sees to give you the view of a dot over the target.

Still, given the choice, I think I would pick the classic M79.

M79 Grenade Launcher Primary function: Anti-personnel and light materiel targets. Length: 29 in. with 14 in. barrel. Weight: 6.4 lb. loaded. Caliber: 40 mm. Maximum effective range: Individual/point target: 150 meters, area target: 350 meters (50 percent casualty rate of exposed personnel within a 5-meter radius). Rate of fire: 5-7 rounds per minute. Wikipedia


  1. The Blooker was one of my favourite pieces of kit. Amazingly accurate for what it was, and that little grenade packed a lot more punch than you’d expect from its size.

  2. It’s just too bad they took a vacation from improving the round in order to justify the XM-25 and its toy grenade…

    We were bitching and moaning for a couple of decades about how piss-poor the standard HEDP round was, and they did nothing about it, excuse being that the XM-25 was on the way, and it would “solve all the problems” of the HEDP.

    Thing was, the friggin’ XM-25 wasn’t even in the same category of weapon, being a mostly flat-arc direct fire weapon, while the 40mm GL was more a classic “indirect” sort of affair, with a high, arcing trajectory. You’re not putting a 40mm into a bunker slit unless you’re incredibly close or incredibly lucky; likewise, you’re not going to be able to do squat with that itty-bitty 25mm warhead in terms of effect on something in a dead area your MG fires can’t quite reach…

    Ah, well. Not my worry, anymore.

    • What about that mg version that was being developed along with the xm25 that had a fire rate of about 200 rpm but was going to suppress better because it could explode behind barriers after. I still remember seeing on TV all these years later because it was that retarded.

      • You’re talking about the LW25 chain gun? The XM25 round had the same turn-counting fuze tech to allow you to range an obstacle and program the round to detonate +\- the distance.

        I never worked on the turn-counting fuze but built the first batch of HEDP fuzes on the same line that produces them for the Apache’s LW30 fuze. I always got the impression that the XM25/LW25 HEDP was reasonably effective but it was an impact fuze. The turn counting tech took up an awful lot of volume leading to sketchy payload limits on those rounds.

  3. It was me, who posted this picture of the moderzined M79 in the internet. This is the second version of the modernized M79, the first version had the stock reversed. I have also two or three pictures south african soldiers armed with this weapon.


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