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Denel M4 Commando


Lightweight Infantry Field Mortar


South Africa | 1975



"The South African M4 Commando was designed as a lightweight mortar weapon useful to such units as paratroopers."



Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 02/04/2019 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
Modern infantry-level mortars come in several major standardized caliber forms - 60mm, 81mm, and 120mm. While all are functionally similar in offering indirect fire support, each plays a slightly different role on the battlefield. Lightweight types, such as the 60mm, are designed to be highly-portable, quick to deploy, and easy to operate and such weapons can outfit specialist troops like paratroopers. For the South African Army, this role is fulfilled by the M4 "Commando", a 60mm system built upon the stated attributes, providing squads with indirect firepower at short ranges against stubborn enemy forces. Due to its handy operation, it serves both airborne troopers and special forces operators.

The Commando series is manufactured by Denel Land Systems of South Africa.

The M4 can fire various "flavors" of projectiles such as High-Explosive (HE), illumination, smoke, and practice rounds out to ranges of 2,100 meters. A breech-based trigger operated by a lanyard replaces the traditional firing pin action common to most mortars and this allows the trooper to carry the weapon loaded and ready-to-fire. The Commando also lacks a bipod assembly and is set on the ground by its baseplate and leveled by hand. A sighting device and range table help the operator figure range to the target and the flight path of the exiting projectile. The launch tube measures 650mm long and muzzle velocity of the outgoing shell is 171 meters per second. Minimum engagement range is 100 meters.

A standard operating crew numbers two.

Beyond the South Africa Army, the army of Colombia is a known operator of the Commando. The M6 fulfills the more traditional 60mm mortar role and the M3 is the 81mm version for the South African Army while the M5 is the 120mm model.

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Physical
The physical qualities of the Denel M4 Commando. Information presented is strictly for general reference and should not be misconstrued as useful for hardware restoration or operation.
650 mm
25.59 in
O/A Length
650 mm
25.59 in
Barrel Length
15.87 lb
7.20 kg
Weight
Manually-Operated
Action
60mm
Caliber(s)
Single-Shot; Reusable Launch Tube
Feed
Integrated Optics.
Sights
Performance
Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Denel M4 Commando. Information presented is strictly for general reference and should not be misconstrued as useful for hardware restoration or operation.
5,000 ft
1,524.0 m | 1,666.7 yds
Max.Eff.Range
560 ft/sec
171 m/sec
Muzzle Velocity
Variants
Notable series variants as part of the Denel M4 Commando Lightweight Infantry Field Mortar family line.
M4 Commando - Base Series Name
Operators
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Denel M4 Commando. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national small arms listing.

Contractor(s): Denel Land Systems - South Africa
National flag of Colombia National flag of South Africa

[ Colombia; South Africa ]
Design Qualities
Some designs are single-minded in their approach while others offer a more versatile solution to requirements.
FIRE SUPPORT
Recognition
Some designs stand the test of time while others are doomed to never advance beyond the drawing board; let history be their judge.
Going Further...
The Denel M4 Commando Lightweight Infantry Field Mortar appears in the following collections:
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