The 37mm STZ-Havoc Flare Launcher features the latest in design and manufacturing technology. Parts are CAD designed and CNC machined from solid billet material rather than the typical stamped and welded construction of other launchers. The 6061 T-6 aircraft grade aluminum components are anodized in a non-glare matte black finishing for maximum durability and ease of maintenance. Additional components are built from 1018 cold rolled steel and plated with a mil-spec black oxide finish. The proprietary STZ push button cylindrical breech lock design is 3 times stronger than existing lever lock systems
There are a lot of comments that come up when you mention a 37mm launcher to people...
Typically they fall into two camps, and for those who have zero interest in a nondestructive launcher, you aren't hurting my feelings any. On the other hand, for those people who have ever fired less lethal munitions in a 37mm flavor, you and I both know that it has the ability to put a smile on your face.
For people who have never used less lethal munitions, keep your options open, its a good time for everyone. However, the 37mm launching systems can be used for a few things in the regular world aside from direct and indirect impact munitions. Smoke and flares tend to be the most popular items, and these can be reloaded legally. There are also obviously other things you can do which are less than legal, but I have no sympathy for anyone who creates an illegal load and blows their hand off. When in doubt, google for the pictures....
Shown below is the 37mm "Havoc" launcher wearing Magpul Back Up Sights (MBUS), along with an Aimpoint T-1 in an ADM mount. Not that I think there is a huge need for BUIS on a 37mm, but as long as I have MBUS floating around, I may as well drop them into some unusual pictures.
Here is another with an Eotech 553.....
Last edited by Stickman; 30 January 2009 at 22:19.
Think of the 37mm system as something similar to a cross between a pump and break open shotgun. Its a straight forward design which is similar to the M203 that many of us have carried, with a few differences.
Starting on the operators right side (when using the weapon), there is a cocking handle, and a safety lever. To cock the weapon, pull back on the handle, and you will hear an audible click. Once pulled to the rear, it will stay in that position which gives a clear visual reminder of the weapons status. The safety lever rotates from safe to fire, with the arrow pointing to the appropriate function.
In the picture below, the weapon is cocked, with the safety turned off.
With a round loaded into the chamber, this weapon will now fire when the trigger is pulled.
The breech is unlocked and opened by pressing the button/ catch on the left side of the launcher. With the catch depressed, push away while holding the barrel(towards the front of the barrel), and the breech will open. At this point the weapon is ready for loading. Once a 37mm casing has been dropped into the barrel, pull back AND press the button again to lock while pressing it into battery. If you don't depress the button, you will hit a mechanical block about 2 inches away from lockup, and you will quickly remember to engage the catch, and then you are back in business. I should point out that after you press the catch, it does not need to stay pressed in.
Overall, its intuitive, and if you don't figure it out on your own in 5 seconds you probably aren't the type of person to read this site anyway. No insult intended...
Last edited by Stickman; 30 January 2009 at 22:21.
The below shown casing is from a Defense Technology SAF SMOKE 37mm multiple projectile round. The length of the case is just shy of 5.5", and can be loaded without any trouble. Casings which are any longer will most likely push your luck, though the shown munition is about max length for any launcher system.
There are a few things that I really like about this 37mm launcher. The first is that it runs an extended rail that goes the entire length of the platform. As shown in some of the pictures, you can run standard AR15 BUIS, an optic, or both.
The next thing I like, and the most noticeable in my mind is the machining on the barrel. The work is fantastic, and really makes for a good looking launcher.
For people who are worried about trigger pull, its clean, but its almost a moot point because it isn't like a 37mm launcher is going to be shooting sub-moa at 500 yards.
I think this question becomes a matter of what you are looking for. Spikes Tactical makes rail mounted 37mm launchers, as well as the stand alone model. If you understand that you won't be shooting HEDP, or blowing up vehicles with this unit, it can be good entertainment. The ability to reload 37mm casings legally is a large plus, just remember that any black powder loads need to be taken seriously, and if you are reloading, you should have a good idea of what you are doing. There are websites devoted to 37mm reloading, so google it up and go from there.
This launcher made its way around a pretty diverse group of people. MIL guys liked it, and thought the concept was close enough to a modernized M79 to be high in style points. The LE guys, and instructors also had similar comments, and really liked the idea of a small optic like the T-1 on a less lethal platform.
The one thing that would be classed as a minor negative is the catch that locks the weapon into battery. Several LE/MIL pointed out that if the catch were tapered, it would be able to slide closed and lock into position without pressing/ holding the catch. This is the same thought that I had, but I can understand that a positive second step may be an asset when someone makes their own reloads, and seats a primer a little high, or loads a little hot. If the catch gives extra strength this way, I am all for it. If not, its worth thinking about the modification. If you've never run a M203, this most likely isn't something you will even care about. Only one person disliked the launcher out of the 15 or more guys who had a chance to handle it, and his reason was that he disliked 37mm in general. To each their own, everyone else had a smile.
Last edited by Stickman; 30 January 2009 at 22:25.