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  • M1 (Bazooka) / (2.36-inch Rocket Launcher M1) Reusable, Shoulder-Fired, Anti-Tank Rocket Launcher

    The United States Army enjoyed considerable success with its simplistic Bazooka rocket launcher series.

     Updated: 5/9/2017; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ¬©www.MilitaryFactory.com

    The M1 "Bazooka" proved one of the stars of the Allied cause during World War 2 and eventually inspired the German "Panzerschreck" series. The Bazooka was a special weapon which promoted ease-of-use, simple maintenance/operation and could be produced in vast numbers to supplement a growing war effort. The Bazooka was cited by General Dwight D. Eisenhower as one of the major reasons the Allies won World War 2, proving effective in the field and popular amongst its many operators the world over until replacement weapons began to ebb its position during the 1960s. A true multi-role performer, the Bazooka was used to tackle tank threats and assail fortified positions. Her service life placed her at the heart of fighting. World War 2 (1939), the Chinese Civil War (1946-1950), the Korean War (1950-1953), the Vietnam War (1955-1975) and the Cambodian Civil War (1967-1975) were among her more notable engagements. The Bazooka proved revolutionary for its time when infantry held little to no portable anti-tank measure like the M1.

    The Bazooka Name

    The "Bazooka" nickname stems from its resemblance to the trombone-like wind instrument developed by radio comedian Bob Burns. Burns used the instrument in his skits and copyrighted the design as early as 1920 and, for whatever reason, granted it the name "Bazooka". When Brigadier General Gladeon M. Barnes of the Ordnance Department saw the weapon, he commented on how the weapon resembled Burns' "Bazooka" and this nickname was, unofficially and forever, attached to the M1 weapon and subsequent developments. The weapon was also known by troops in its shortened "Zooka" nickname form or simply called the "stovepipe" for its obvious resemblance to a stove's exhaust stack. "Shoulder 75" was a lesser-used term which likened the firepower of the simple little M1 to that of a larger 75mm artillery piece.

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    M1 (Bazooka) / (2.36-inch Rocket Launcher M1) Technical Specifications

    Service Year: 1942
    Type: Reusable, Shoulder-Fired, Anti-Tank Rocket Launcher
    National Origin: United States
    Manufacturer(s): General Electric / Cheney Bigelow Wire Works - USA

    Design (Internal, Dimensions and Weights)

    Firing Action: Electrically-Actuated; Single-Shot; Reusable
    Available Caliber(s): 60mm
    Ammunition Count / Feed: Single-Shot, Reusable Tube
    Overall Length: 1,371 mm (53.98 inches)
    Barrel Length: 1,371 mm (53.98 inches)
    Weight (Empty): 13.23 lb (6.00 kg)
    Sighting Assist: Integral Iron Sights and Optics


    Muzzle Velocity: 300 feet/sec (91 m/sec)
    Rate-of-Fire (RoF): 5 rounds-per-minute (rpm)
    Typical Range: 328 feet (100 meters; 109 yards)

    Global Operators / Customers

    Argentina; Austria; Brazil; Bolivia; Cambodia; Canada; China; Cyprus; France; Greece; Indonesia; India; Japan; Luxembourg; Malaysia; Mexico; Myanmar; Pakistan; Paraguay; Philippines; Portugal; Rhodesia; South Africa; Soviet Union; Spain; Sweden; Thailand; Tunisia; Turkey; United Kingdom; United States

    Model Variants

    M1 ("Bazooka") - Base series designation; 2.36" rocket projectile; solid wood furniture; ambidextrous sighting device; battery-actuated; M6 HEAT rocket support;13.1lb weight; 54.5" length; 250 yard range; 4-5rpm; 112,790 examples produced.

    M1A1 - Improved Bazooka; 2.36" rocket support (M6A1/M6A3); revised, simplified sighting device; face guard at face/hand position on launcher; revised safety; conical muzzle deflector; carrying strap; 13.2lb weight; 54.5" length; 250 yard range; 4-5rpm; 59,932 examples produced.

    M9 - Improved Bazooka; 2.36" rocket support; two-piece, "takedown" variant intended for airborne elements; increased tube length for improved range and accuracy; magneto actuation; 15.87lb weight; 61" length; 31.5" travel length; 300 yard range; 10rpm; 26,087 examples produced.

    M9A1 - Improved M9 Bazooka variant; barrel coupling redesign; same physical and performance qualities as M9.

    M18 - Aluminum body for reduced weight; 2.36" rocket support; 10.3lb weight; 60.5" length; 31.5" travel length; 300 yard range; 10rpm; 500 examples produced.

    M20 ("Super Bazooka") - Post-war Bazooka; adopted in 1952; 3.5" rocket support; revised launcher body; single-position shoulder support; single-action safety; carrying strap; conical muzzle and exhaust covers; rubber-padded optics.

    M20A1 - Improved M20 model

    M20B1 - Lightweight variant to supplement M20; manufactured of cast aluminum; simplified overall construction.

    M20A1B1 - M20B1 with M20A1 upgrades

    M25 - Three-shot launcher fitted unto heavy-duty tripod.