We have an outdated program of 37 and 40mm launchers. There has been little focus on the program for years. 
As part of a modernization effort across the firearms unit at the Sheriff's Office, I am revisiting this. We have single barrel break open units (both 37 and 40 along with mixed munitions) from probably the early eighties. They work, but have no sights or provision for sights. We have munitions that are at least ten years old. The storage box smells like wheel guns, saps, and eight point covers.

As I restart this, what should I be looking at for launchers, munitions, munitions carriege options, schools, training tips, best practices, etc?
Ideally, I would like to standardize one size of launcher. Is there a reason to pick 37mm over 40mm? Or vice versa?

We want to employ these for LTL munitions, chem agent placement in structures and vehicles, and placement of smoke for concealment of movement. We have dedicated orangeshotguns that currently fill the LTL role, but I would like to swap those out for the more versatile 37/40 option.

Thanks for any insight.

Original Post

We went from 37 for SWAT to 40mm for everyone.  Single shot tubes in supervisor cars, most regular units have 870 LL simply because we already had them.  SWAT gets the multi shot option. Small BOB type bag with ammo, we use the Safariland ammo IIRC.

 

Not impressed with the 12ga version but it's better than none, the 40 has reportedly been very effective. 

We completely dumped our 12ga options and went 40mm for everything impact and chemical delivery. 

We switched from DefTec/Safariland impact rounds to I believe the Sage 40mm as the Sage can be reloaded so that your "duty" impact rounds are the same as your practice reloads.  

From what I remember 40mm had more options than 37mm.  I would check with whoever is local and see what's being used in the area.  In a large-scale event, it would be nice to have the same caliber as whatever support you have.  Or share in a pinch of one of you runs short and the order is en route.

There's an over-under launcher out there called "the Deuce"... aptly named because it's a piece of shit.  It's firing mechanics are strange; I'd recommend avoiding it.    The DefTec/Safariland quad pump is a welcome addition to our DefTec single-shots.   Luckily modern launchers and break-open units are now fitted with rails on the top rail to allow for lights and sights. 

Chem agent is all DefTec Ferret powder OC and CS.  We had limited amount of liquid, but not much and that was years ago when I ran things. 

Last edited by Community Member

Similar for us.  We currently outfit the sgt cars with a mix of single shots and the “deuce”.  We had similar issues with it so all future purchases will be single shots.  Nice concept; poor execution.

Patrol has 12ga and 40mm available to check-out.

Asst. Chief told me that he wants an expansion of the program; we are slowly convincing him that we should:

a: standardize on a single platform, and

b: that platform should be the Safariland/LMT single shot, outfitted with an optic.

Chief isn’t sure we shouldn’t go to the 12 gauge instead, but me and my team are adamant that 40mm is the way to go, and that we can outfit Patrol very well with fewer than we’d need to physically place a launcher in each car.  City Council also gave us a generous budget over the next 2 years to do just this.  

For those who have made the switch, are there any other arguments besides simplicity of operation, accuracy and performance, and lower likelihood of being mistaken for a lethal force option?  Also for those who field 40s, any argument for or against using the orange or lapd green stocks?

 

So my department has made a big push towards 40mm across the board. We have approximately 1k sworn and I would venture to say there are 500ish 40mm issued with the plan being one issued to everyone. These are steadily replacing the beanbag shotgun. 

We use def tec products and the launchers vary from the newer all black LMT launcher to the older orange launcher.  Each one is issued with a streamlight light that has a green laser.  The standard issue munition is the base exact impact round. The only persons authorized to use anything else, such as direct impact, marking, extended range, etc are some specialty units such as K9, SWAT, ERT, and some of the apprehension units.  Those units typically issue their launchers with an optic, usually an aimpoint. Field personnel can place an optic on theirs if they choose to however they have to pay.

 

In my opinion the 40 is a much better tool than the beanbag shotgun. It is more accurate, has a much shorter standoff, and can be used at greater distances than a beanbag. With a beanbag the minimum safe distance is 20 feet.  So unless the homes you regularly deal with people in are massive with 20 foot wide sections you shouldn’t even be deploying in that environment. The 40mm is 5 feet which is far more realistic.  We’ve seen a decrease in the number of projectiles fired to gain compliance as opposed to beanbags. Where we used to see 10 to 15 beanbags fired fairly regularly I seldom see more than 2 to 3 40mm needed.

 

As far as tactical specific stuff, I would recommend a dedicated launcher to chemical munitions and another to impact munitions. This is similar to what we all do with shotguns, as we don’t want to forget what’s in the tube.  It would likely be an expensive suit if a person was shot with an OC ferret round and we meant to shoot them with a direct impact.  

The best carry method I have found is a single point sling with a bungee, like used for a breaching shotgun.  With this it can be moved out of the way if I’m still running a rifle. I also took an elastic placard for 6 shotgun shells and modified it to hold 3 40mm rounds by cutting the stitching on every other slot. That was then velcroed to the tube and secured with zip ties.

 

sorry for the long winded post  

 

As I start to look at this, the prices are making my eyes bleed. The DefTec is nearly a grand, the LMT seems to be between $2-3K.
Am I missing something? I was thinking a simple single shot launcher with stock would be in the 3-500 range.

I was hoping to trade in our shotguns and use the funds to equip about half the guys with 37/40 LTL units.

I see the Spikes 203 style  launchers that fit my early budget.... But.... Spikes...

Doesn't LMT have a simple break open launcher that is about 500ish dollars?

Is a 203 style launcher in a M4 stock system workable? Or does round length become a problem for loading long specialty rounds?

Longeye posted:

As I start to look at this, the prices are making my eyes bleed. The DefTec is nearly a grand, the LMT seems to be between $2-3K.
Am I missing something? I was thinking a simple single shot launcher with stock would be in the 3-500 range.

I was hoping to trade in our shotguns and use the funds to equip about half the guys with 37/40 LTL units.

I see the Spikes 203 style  launchers that fit my early budget.... But.... Spikes...

Doesn't LMT have a simple break open launcher that is about 500ish dollars?

Is a 203 style launcher in a M4 stock system workable? Or does round length become a problem for loading long specialty rounds?

No surplus US military 40mm that LEO can tap into?

Shot a SANDF M79 that had a OEG RDS mounted instead of a foresight.

Might something like that meet your requirements?

pointblank4445 posted:

There's an over-under launcher out there called "the Deuce"... aptly named because it's a piece of shit.  It's firing mechanics are strange; I'd recommend avoiding it. 

A-Firm on The Deuce being a deuce. I deliberately assign it to someone else as: A- I can’t stand it, B- I have the authority to make someone else use it.

I’ll add that you have to expect to spend a good bit of dough on training. Not because it’s a complicated system, but because you’ll need to break guys’ preference for the LL 12 ga. based on preconceived misconceptions of the 40mm vs 12 ga. and familiarity with the pumper (ie- guys will choose comfort over capability).

Also, there’s the smooth vs rifled bore debate that I’ll stay out of and let more experienced guys here weigh-in. 

Single shot 40mm here, both for SWAT and Patrol. We have a few dedicated 12ga LL shotguns and they have their role, but 40mm has been far more effective and we have used a ton of it. All Safariland munitions. Just switched to the gel, BIP and vapor rounds. All in all, the launcher gas hasn't been that great for deploying chemical munition inside of structures for a deterrent or to dislodge. It takes WAY more 40mm rounds to achieve those ends than what is recommended our 'authorized" via the Safariland course. 3 powder and 2 liquid per room is about the standard for actual success and that gets expensive. However, the exact impact stuff has been pretty effective as long as the Officer can get good hits on a suspect. As for the structure, you saw our hot gas method when we were up there in your AO. We are recertifying on chem in November or December. You are welcome to attend and I can put you in touch with our LL guy if you want. Just hit me up on PM.

Linz posted:
Longeye posted:

As I start to look at this, the prices are making my eyes bleed. The DefTec is nearly a grand, the LMT seems to be between $2-3K.
Am I missing something? I was thinking a simple single shot launcher with stock would be in the 3-500 range.

I was hoping to trade in our shotguns and use the funds to equip about half the guys with 37/40 LTL units.

I see the Spikes 203 style  launchers that fit my early budget.... But.... Spikes...

Doesn't LMT have a simple break open launcher that is about 500ish dollars?

Is a 203 style launcher in a M4 stock system workable? Or does round length become a problem for loading long specialty rounds?

No surplus US military 40mm that LEO can tap into?

Shot a SANDF M79 that had a OEG RDS mounted instead of a foresight.

Might something like that meet your requirements?

In my first Def Tec class there was a guy that had an M79, but it was more like a show piece than anything.  I don't know but I would think that the straight line shot wouldn't feel good with that stock.  I also have the powerpoint where they consider the M203 for LL/Chem deployment use.  Though having a LL munition mounted to a live rifle would go over like a lead balloon with command.  

I'd check with LE distributors to see if they have any trade-in launchers in inventory.  I prefer the previous gen Def Tec launchers to the current LMT.

pointblank4445 posted:
Linz posted:
Longeye posted:

[stuff]

No surplus US military 40mm that LEO can tap into?

 

......Though having a LL munition mounted to a live rifle would go over like a lead balloon with command...

There are kits to make a 203 standalone. If you got the launcher +/- free, the kit might be worth it as they are also LMT IIRC, so will be priced accordingly. Some of the price is low demand. NOT a lot of these compared to say 5.56 carbines. And caliber so different, hardly a thing interchanges, at any level of manufacturing.  

 

ETA: LMT barrel mount (note, there's rail mount also) standalone conversion https://lmtdefense.com/parts/l2h1pg

Not listed, but when you look it up, c. $600 for the kit alone. No launcher. 

 

203 MAY be okay for your purposes. Like all the planning all threads say: figure out what sorts of munitions you want to employ. Find manufacturers of each of those. Make a spreadsheet, as you'll be comparing. And, you will want this later if say one changes, you get a better price etc. 

Then, check length. Many LL things are very long for good physics reasons, but maybe none you want now. Think hard though, as it's a big investment and if you go sliding, you are gonna be stuck with that cartridge length forever. 

 

Last edited by Community Member

Does anyone have an NSN for the M-203 or the standalone kit?

I am thinking of beating on DRMO or 1033 like a rented mule.

Also, how far open does the 203 slide? What length of round is the max that can be loaded?

Need an expert on M203s. I know of four NSNs at least, but don't have good descriptions of which is which. There are different lengths, different attachments (barrel vs QD barrel vs rail) and I sorta think new ones open further than old ones also. 

Not sure the USG ever type classified the standalone kit. Never seen it except advertised, foreign (KSA, Pakistan, IIRC), and for a couple LE agencies. 

For those who bemoan the current slower state of LF, it is in good hands. My post here resulted in several PMs and a direct call from SME types happy to help out. These were from guys who don't post much, but lurk and share as needed.

The network continues. 

Cross-posted in all three 40mm threads I could find:

Last week we had a failure of one of our 40mm eXact iMpact rounds. It was communicated to us that an officer attempted to fire, the primer ruptured, the foam projectile did not fire, and the brass casing ruptured. The officer suffered some hearing damage. The launcher was not damaged. The lot number was 02518. The lot number should be on a sticker on the base of the round, or printed directly on it.

Check your inventories. Stay safe.

I’ve worked with them all and in my book the LMT single shot is the cat’s meow.  A real pirate gun.  Reversible rail for rights, sling sockets, good stock, weighs less that the accessories you mount to it.  It weighs less stripped than my duty pistol loaded.  I don’t like EOTECH but I tend to mount them on 40mm.  The reticle provides more aiming references for the multitude of ammo options.  Zero them and make a note card on the side for chemical munitions.  A double round pouch can be mounted on the stock.  For patrol two points.  For swat guys who are likely to take it off and on a lot a single point with a faster release.  Zip tie the male end right to the gun.  Shoot it a lot.  Buy the $400 sims kit.  It’s well worth it for training.  It’s a very versatile system.  Much more so than the 12 ga

If possible, I bet everyone would love to see the setup you have. 

Is the spare ammo pouch an LMT thing or what? Never seen 40 pouches mounted to a stock and it's been a while since I saw even 5.56 mags there so not sure what is current. 

 

I'd love to give you all a line on an RDS that maybe has even more useful holdovers for stuff like this, but the US distributor is stupid, won't give the details in the onesheet, or answer their damned emails. 

Oh and 37 mm.  Not rifled so less accurate for direct impact stuff and way less accurate for chemical munitions.  A lot of folks imagine they are in the front yard shooting gas over the hood while the chief of detectives talks through a bullhorn.  That was the old days.  Your are more likely doing it from much greater distance now.  Practice with training rounds putting gas through the windows of your local fire training tower.  If you don’t have one the small door on the big dumpsters is another good option.  Work your way out to 150 yards.  It’s very doable with RDS 40mm.  Not so much with 37.  Remember almost all your old 37 is black powder.  Much louder and you have to clean the barrel with hot soapy water or It corrodes.  Some of the newer offerings have eliminated black powder.  

Cts offers the basic school but if you ask you can get the MFF grenadier school as well.  You want that.  It was taught by Ward Stanley for years.  You want at least one Ward Stanley class.  Ask for him by name.  He’s crusty but a wealth of knowledge that’s been lost through the years.

On 37 mm launchers, San Jose PD used to field 37mms with a ravioli-style beanbag that was about the size of a man's wallet when unfolded, loaded with lead shot.  Imagine getting smacked with a a wallet filled with lead.  In talking to guys who had used it, it was the Hammer of Thor when it went where it was aimed and usually knocked shitheads off their feet upon impact.  When it went where it was aimed.  Current assholes who need to be shot with LL seem to be unimpressed with 12 gauge DS beanbags and 40 mm foam rounds.  The wallet of lead might be something worth bringing back.  It's de-escalation, right?

Many years ago, Safariland offered to swap out 37mm for 40mm when no one was using them.  They are now offering to take 12 ga shotgun trade-ins towards a new 40mm.  I personally don't think it's worth it, but if you are not using a bunch of shotguns then it's a portion of the cost.  It hurt when we traded-in our MP-5s for nothing since our snipers needed new rifles.     

https://www.defense-technology.../ShotgunTradeIn.html

JF posted:

Many years ago, Safariland offered to swap out 37mm for 40mm when no one was using them.  They are now offering to take 12 ga shotgun trade-ins towards a new 40mm.  I personally don't think it's worth it, but if you are not using a bunch of shotguns then it's a portion of the cost.  It hurt when we traded-in our MP-5s for nothing since our snipers needed new rifles.     

https://www.defense-technology.../ShotgunTradeIn.html

This is still a cool program. We have junk shotguns in the armory that are non standard, but fit the trade-in program.  I am pitching the idea of trading those serial numbers in on a launcher. Win/Win. I don't have to worry about maintaining anything but 870 shotguns, and we get a modern launcher to replace the 1970's era Federal Signal 37mm that is in inventory.  And we would have a single caliber 40mm fleet instead of a mixed 37mm/40mm fleet like we have now. Cost to dept? Zero.

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