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Technical question regarding Kerry's M-79 grenade launcher (vanity)
self ^ | 8-9-04 | self

Posted on 08/09/2004 6:28:23 PM PDT by Atlas Sneezed

In Unfit for Command, chapter 3, it is said that Kerry got one wound because he fired an M-79 grenade that was mis-aimed, and exploded prematurely, causing a small fragment to "wound" him.

An acquaintance says that the story is not credible because such grenades are timed to be inert if they strike to close to the shooter.

May I assume that the impact was beyond the threshold distance, but that there is always the risk of a bit of shrapnel from a near-ish impact?


TOPICS: Your Opinion/Questions
KEYWORDS: banglist; kerry; medicalrecord; selfinflicted; unfitforcommand

1 posted on 08/09/2004 6:28:23 PM PDT by Atlas Sneezed
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To: Beelzebubba

I don't know, the gunner's mate said it hit a rock, and other Swiftboaters said it was a common wound (that they all got stung once or twice).


2 posted on 08/09/2004 6:29:49 PM PDT by gilliam
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To: Beelzebubba

Notice in the book it doesn't give an exact range, so you can't really tell. Shrapnel sure can fly.


3 posted on 08/09/2004 6:30:20 PM PDT by Mr.Clark (From the darkness....I shall come)
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To: Beelzebubba

They explode on impact

http://www.vietnam-war.info/weapons/m79_grenade_launcher.php


4 posted on 08/09/2004 6:32:00 PM PDT by federal
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To: Beelzebubba

Rotation of the grenade armed it after about 15 meters and the shrapnel tarveled at about 1500 meters/s.


5 posted on 08/09/2004 6:36:44 PM PDT by jwalsh07
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To: federal

They explode on impact if they have time to arm.


6 posted on 08/09/2004 6:41:32 PM PDT by jwalsh07
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To: gilliam

Yup, I got "stung" by a M-79 grenade frags(shrapnel)once.
I was on a Swift Boat. I fired at a "hotch" about 4 yards
away as we ran up a canal providing covering fire. The frag hit the nylon cover of my vest just below the protective material. That little frag was red hot and hurt like hell. I thought at first that I was dead! Time frame of my two trips on Swift Boats from the An Thoi Nest -- Three weeks before Kerry got there. I left about 1 Nov 68.


7 posted on 08/09/2004 6:46:41 PM PDT by TaMoDee
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To: gilliam
Stabilized in flight by the spin imparted on it by the rifled barrel the grenade rotated at 3,700rpm, this in turn, after approximately 15 meters of flight, armed the grenade.

Had a lethal radius of approximately 5 meters, fragments traveled at "1542" meters/sec, so yeah you could hit some rocks 50 feet away and get some "non-lethal" fragments back.

8 posted on 08/09/2004 6:46:46 PM PDT by Lonesome in Massachussets (Take Luca Brazzi, make him an offer he can't refuse.)
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To: jwalsh07

That only takes 15 yards they have a lethal range of 5 to 7 yards. 300 pcs. schrapnel traveling at 1500 ft per second.

If you were 25 to 30 yards maybe even farther it would be easy to get one piece of schrapnel.


9 posted on 08/09/2004 6:50:23 PM PDT by federal
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To: federal

Sure. You could be a lot farther away than 30 meters and still catch some shrapnel.


10 posted on 08/09/2004 6:51:38 PM PDT by jwalsh07
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To: Beelzebubba

I was wondering what the air speed velocity of unladen rice is.


11 posted on 08/09/2004 6:57:55 PM PDT by isthisnickcool (Strategery - "W" plays poker with one hand and chess with the other.)
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To: Lonesome in Massachussets

Thanks, thought so.


12 posted on 08/09/2004 6:59:35 PM PDT by gilliam
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To: isthisnickcool

Puffed, parboiled or raw?


13 posted on 08/09/2004 6:59:57 PM PDT by gilliam
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To: TaMoDee

Thank you for your service!!! Welcome home!

Swiftboat Vets for Truth book is coming out tomorrow:
http://www.swiftvets.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=1557


14 posted on 08/09/2004 7:01:49 PM PDT by gilliam
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To: Beelzebubba
I found this for what it's worth.

Link

"..My recollection is that the spin-setback arming sequence distance for all M-79 rounds was 33 meters..."

15 posted on 08/09/2004 7:08:58 PM PDT by Anti-Bubba182
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To: Anti-Bubba182
I used the M-79 quite a bit on the Mekong Delta, and became quite proficient with it. I never saw or heard of a GI getting shrapnel from from his own shot.

I did see a small Vietnamese child who was playing catch with a M-79 round get blown up by it. It was the one with the darts in it. She looked like hamburger.

Sorry to tell you that but I thought it was somewhat relevant to the discussion.

16 posted on 08/09/2004 7:15:33 PM PDT by Viet-Boat-Rider (KERRY IS A NARCISSISTIC LIAR, GOLDBRICKER, AND TRAITOR!)
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To: gilliam

I fired an M-79 a couple of times in training. Has a kick like a shotgun. One target was a building frame made up of steel pipes about 25 yards away, firing from a prone position. The idea is to get it in "window" and not hit a pipe. It was a live round, but it is not really very hard to hit the window. The other one was a long range shot, about 400 yards, the max range, fired from a standing position. The round looks like a small, fast, dark golf ball hit exceptionally well as it recedes into the distance.

I read the sKerry story, he was riding as an observer on this mission and he "picked up" the M-79 and fired it, although the crew said they were not under fire. He's such a klutz, judging from his baseball tossing and general carriage I'm sort of surprised he didn't hurt himself from the recoil. Might have done, but knew that wouldn't fly for a purple heart.


17 posted on 08/09/2004 7:16:51 PM PDT by Lonesome in Massachussets (Take Luca Brazzi, make him an offer he can't refuse.)
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To: Beelzebubba

I believe someone told me a long time back. that there are two types of projectiles. One
for use out in the field with a long arm time. And one for short close in door to door
fighting with a very short arm time. But I don’t remember for sure.


18 posted on 08/09/2004 7:24:49 PM PDT by quietolong
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To: federal

15 Meters is what I read, but that isn't very far for the power of the impace of one of these shells.


19 posted on 08/09/2004 7:39:07 PM PDT by dila813
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To: quietolong
Rounds for the M79 BLOOPER (for the sound it makes when fired)

HE - High Explosive

Flechette - little metal darts - I used these rounds when walking point

Shotgun - also good for walking point

at least two version of GAS - CS & CE(?)

the worst smelled sweet, like gardenias, then it clobbered you! The wind turned against us one day while we were gassing the NVA base camp - We were surprised why one NVA ran past us screaming ... I smelled the flowery smell, then started choking and then we had our entire team running down the mountain right behind the NVA soldier (we let him go).
20 posted on 08/09/2004 7:59:50 PM PDT by steplock ( www.spadata.com)
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To: jwalsh07

If you think about it, the doctor said the schrapnel didn't even get totally imbedded it was sticking out. He said the piece was 1/2 inch long and only about 1/8 inch was below the skin.

That right there will tell you he was a considerable distance from the detonation because it had to lose most of it momentum.


21 posted on 08/09/2004 8:05:32 PM PDT by federal
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To: federal
If you think about it, the doctor said the schrapnel didn't even get totally imbedded it was sticking out. He said the piece was 1/2 inch long and only about 1/8 inch was below the skin.

That right there will tell you he was a considerable distance from the detonation because it had to lose most of it momentum.

Sounds to me like he had a piece of jagged metal handy to push under his skin after firing the grenade launcher.

22 posted on 08/09/2004 8:38:03 PM PDT by Jim_Curtis
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To: Lonesome in Massachussets

Correct. Once had a guy prepping some nippa palm with his M-79. Piece of shrapnel came back and went right through his penis. Got him back to the forward aid station and we stood their trying to control our laughter as the medic cleaned it with a cotton swab. (Visualize a bass fiddle player)


23 posted on 08/10/2004 7:51:15 AM PDT by Infantry Grunt 1968-69
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To: gilliam

was hamster boy's a** snapped, crackled, or popped ?


24 posted on 08/10/2004 12:20:10 PM PDT by kingattax
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To: isthisnickcool
I was wondering what the air speed velocity of unladen rice is.

Balsamic, brown or long grain white?

25 posted on 08/10/2004 1:42:39 PM PDT by Lonesome in Massachussets (Take Luca Brazzi, make him an offer he can't refuse.)
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