Designed in late 1944 the Rocket Launcher, M20 “Super Bazooka” used a 3.5-inch (88.9mm) shell to punch a hole in about 11 inches of armor, which made it very popular against later models of German tanks, especially when compared to the 2.36-inch M9 Bazooka more commonly seen in the war. When coupled with the M28A2 HEAT rocket, the system was capable of zipping through T-34s when encountered in Korea. Replaced in U.S. service in the 1960s by the M72 66mm LAW and various recoilless rifles, it was moved to the reserved until TOW came along in 1970 when even the National Guard ended their bazooka days.
The Argentines used M20s in the Falklands in 1982, where they most certainly would have caused a problem for the 4 lightly armored Scorpions and 4 Scimitars from 3 and 4 Troop, ‘B’ Sqn, The Blues and Royals if they encountered them.
The Spanish kept using the improved M20A1, built locally by Instalaza in the 1960s and 70s, as the M65, only retiring their stocks of these zooks after the end of the Cold War (hey, the Spanish had Mauser FR-8s and Destroyer carbines in the armory at the same time, Franco didn’t throw anything away).
Demilled, these Spanish M65 Instalazas have been popping up for years and it looks like Centerfire Systems has a “Bazooka Blowout” on over 30 of these tubes they have in stock ranging from $199-$299 for varying levels of niceness and completeness.
Your better specimens still have a trigger assembly, sling, bipods, optics, shields, etc, while the ones with more “character” are probably more like C3PO in the last half of Episode V.
The Spanish M65 used an improved ignition method and new ammunition types
The available ammunition used were the CHM65 (High-Explosive Anti-Tank), CHL-81 anti-tank, MB66 (Dual-Purpose), and FIM66 (Smoke) shells. With the CHM-81L the system had a maximum range of 600meters (1,968 ft) against fixed targets and 450meters (1,476 ft) against moving targets; comparable ranges for the MB-66 round were 1,000 and 300 meters (3,280 and 984 ft), respectively
Note the demilled and plugged tubes. Overall weight of the system is 6 kilograms (13.2 pounds) when functional and the zook used a electromagnetic firing mechanism with an electrical connection between the round and the launcher is established automatically during loading.
What would you call this scheme?
The optics are interesting though…The optics consisted of a two-power optical sight unit fitted with an adjustable battery-powered light source to illuminate the graticule for use at night or in low light conditions.
Tell me I don’t need one. Because seriously, I’ve kinda always wanted a bazooka.