Original U.S. Gulf War Era M47 Dragon Anti-Tank Guided Missile Launcher - Inert

Item Description

Original item: Only One Available. Totally inert non-firing BATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) compliant M47 Dragon Anti-Tank Weapon offered in excellent condition. The launcher itself measures about 46 inches in length, with a 6 inch wide bore, and expands to around 8 inches wide at the base. It comes complete with the attached stand, which holds the muzzle about 28 inches above the ground, and the foam breech protector with muzzle protector.

Not Available For Export.

he M47 Dragon, known as the FGM-77 during development, is an American shoulder-fired, man-portable anti-tank guided missile system. It was phased out of U.S. military service in 2001, in favor of the newer FGM-148 Javelin system.

The M47 Dragon uses a wire-guidance system in concert with a high explosive anti-tank warhead and was capable of defeating armored vehicles, fortified bunkers, main battle tanks, and other hardened targets. While it was primarily created to defeat the Soviet Union's T-55, T-62, and T-72 tanks, it saw use well into the 1990s, seeing action in the Persian Gulf War. The U.S. military officially retired the weapon in 2001. The United States destroyed the last of its stocks of the missile in 2009. The weapon system remains in active service with other militaries around the world.

Used by the U.S. Army, the U.S. Marine Corps, as well as many foreign militaries, the M47 Dragon was first fielded in January 1975 to U.S. Army soldiers stationed in mainland Europe. The effective range of the Dragon was about 1,000 metres . This usually led to the operator tensing up in anticipation of the sudden explosion from the launcher that he knew was coming. The missile was discharged from the launcher tube by a "launch motor", which was a rocket motor that completely expended itself within the tube so as not to injure the operator with exhaust gas. The missile coasted away from the operator and a burning infrared flare was ignited at the rear of the missile.

After the missile was about 30 to 50 metres (100 to 160 ft) from the gunner, the missile was propelled forward and guided towards the target by three rows of thrusters aligned longitudinally along the missile body. It then was guided by the operator via a rapidly unraveling wire. Unfortunately the system worked better in theory than in actual use, and the problems increased with range. Even launching could be problematic, as the loss of 30 lbs of missile weight from the shoulder caused many soldiers to flinch badly enough to lose track of the target, resulting in a missile grounding.

The M47 Dragon was not particularly popular with U.S. soldiers. Because of the missile's relatively short range and signature 'popping' sound as the missile was propelled towards the target, M47 Dragon crews were expected to take heavy casualties in the event hostilities broke out between the United States and the Soviet Union in Europe.

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