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Hawk MM-1 MGL

Automatic Grenade Launcher

United States | 1980

"Multiple chambers of the Hawk MM-1 allow an operator to lay down considerable firepower upon target positions."

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 02/26/2018 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
During the Cold War decades, the automatic grenade launcher became a viable battlefield weapon system, replacing past reliance on rifle-launched grenade projectiles or squad-level field mortars. While most of the classic designs emerged from Milkor of South Africa, a few were also born in the Soviet Union and the United States. For the latter, one of the products became the Hawk MM-1 developed by Hawk Engineering Company. It was chambered for 40x46mm grenade projectiles, fired from a semi-automatic action, and fed from a 12-round rotating drum arrangement. The type is believed to have seen some military service with a few African forces and is rumored to have been operated by American special forces for a time.

The technical categorization of weapons such as the MM-1 is "Multiple Grenade Launcher" (MGL) due to their voluminous, repeat-fire nature as well as their relative portability. In the hands of an infantryman, such a weapon would replace a primary service rifle due to weight and size of the ammunition in use. Nevertheless, the lethality and firepower inherent in the MGL weapon system is a welcomed sight on modern battlefields where grenadiers can destroy light fortifications and vehicles, provide suppression fire, or dislodge dug-in enemy forces at range. Effective range (to a point target) for the MIM-1 was listed at 500 feet with a target area engagement range out to 1,150 feet. Chambered for the 40x46mm grenade - the same as featured in the Vietnam War-era M79 and the underslung M203 - the MM-1 could accept other grenade projectile rounds of the same caliber beyond the standard High-Explosive (HE) variety. Indeed, the weapon's roots were laid in a riot control tear gas-dispensing weapon of World War 2 vintage and not so much a weapon of war. The MM-1 was given some rifle-like qualities, particularly the stand-alone pistol grip at rear and the foregrip ahead of the cylinder.

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Internally, the MM-1 was given a clockwork spring mechanism which was manually wound up during the reloading process. The weapon was of a break-action arrangement and opened at the rear to expose the awaiting cylinder chambers. The weapon's semi-automatic action was used to rotate the cylinder (to present a grenade projectile to the striker) when firing. The lengthy reloading process, coupled to the weapon's cumbersome nature, made it a limited-value system for many frontline armies of the day. Many powers elected to coupled a single-shot grenade launcher as an under-barrel installment with their existing assault rifles (as in the M203 with M16 assault rifle).

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Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Hawk MM-1 MGL. Information presented is strictly for general reference and should not be misconstrued as useful for hardware restoration or operation.
740 ft
225.6 m | 246.7 yds
The physical qualities of the Hawk MM-1 MGL. Information presented is strictly for general reference and should not be misconstrued as useful for hardware restoration or operation.
635 mm
25.00 in
O/A Length
12.57 lb
5.70 kg
Semi-Automatic; Revolving Cylinder
12-Round Rotating Drum Magazine
Notable series variants as part of the Hawk MM-1 MGL Automatic Grenade Launcher family line.
MM-1 - Base Series Designation
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Hawk MM-1 MGL. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national small arms listing.

Contractor(s): Hawk Engineering Company - USA
National flag of Brazil National flag of Egypt National flag of South Africa National flag of the United States

[ Brazil; Egypt; El Salvador; South Africa; United States ]
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Image of the Hawk MM-1 MGL
Image from the Public Domain.

Going Further...
The Hawk MM-1 MGL Automatic Grenade Launcher appears in the following collections:
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