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US M17 Rifle and Grenade Launcher


Well-Known Member
Hello Folks -

Thought I would share these photos from my collection. It is a US Model 1917 Eddystone rifle with the Mark III, VB style cup launcher, two VB grenades and a WW2 era carrying case. The chromed grenade is actually a 'souvenir' that was handed out by the Spacke Machine and Tool Company that manufactured the grenades during WW1. These were given as 'gifts' at a dinner for dignitaries.

Hope you find these to be of interest.

- Best Regards! Mike


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Nice items in great condition ! I especially like the chrome grenade, what a great dinner gift !
Are the US VB grenades exactly the same as the French ones ?
Thanks Guys!

This particular launcher is one of the early prototypes, as per the deep blue. The carrying case still has the inventory tag dated 1942. Supposedly these launchers were used early in WW2 by Marines in the Pacific Theatre.

roller63 -

At first there were minor differences (well, depending upon your situation) between the French and US made grenades. They had to do with the differet configurations of the French and American bullets which pass through the center of the grenade. There are recorded results of grenades 'hanging' in the tube with fatal results. These were eventually corrected, but led to the disposal of 3.5 million grenades that had been produced prior to the corrections.

- Best regards! Mike
There are differences between the French and US Grenades, the easiest way to tell is the striker, note the striker in the photo, that is a US grenade. Also the filling plug in a US grenade is a hex head, normally brass, the french may have brass, but never a hex head.

Unfortunately I don't seem to have a good photo of a French grenade to show the differences.

As for the US using them in the Second War, absolutely true, there have been a lot of VB Grenades recovered from Guadalcanal battlefields, indicating that the Marines had them, at least in the beginning of the campaign. Don't know of any other instances of use, but that doesn't mean they weren't.

Hope this is of some interest.


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ah, found a much better photo of the American produced VB grenade, note the shape of the striker and hex filling plug on the bottom


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I have a book coming out soon and am in need of photographs of a VB launcher and Grenade. The photographs would be attributed to you and the publisher would send you the book when it comes out. The book "Allied Rifle Contracts in America" can be found at www.fn-browning.com click on "what's new". Googling the title will also work. If you are interested please contact me as soon as possible as this is one of those last minute items we need to complete.
Thanks, Luke
Hi Luke -

It would be my pleasure to help out. I've sent a separate PM with my email, etc. in it. Let me know if there are any problems receiving it.

- Mike
Thanks Guys!

Interesting to see the 2008 Thread reborn! :top:

I was looking at Sgt.Lynn's photo. Take a look at the chromed Spacke made grenade and it looks like the Sergeant's is also Spacke made.

Best regards!
- Mike
ah, found a much better photo of the American produced VB grenade, note the shape of the striker and hex filling plug on the bottom

New member Don Weiler here. I now realize I have an American produced VB, thank you! Sorry I can't provide photo, away from the Arizona collection for the summer. I do recall it had the 'flaming bomb' ordinance stamp on it as well. It was a gift from a fellow Marine who served in the Pacific Campaign and later was Head of Marine Corps Ordinance, Washington D.C., with a natural interest in Marine ordinance employed in the Pacific. With it I have a stripper clip of 30.06 wooden rounds for training with the VB. Semper Fi, Don