This past weekend I was excited to find yet another producer of Less Lethal Alternatives that makes less lethal launchers. The name of the company is Scarab Arms based out of Las Vegas Nevada and they produce a less lethal launcher, the TGR2 which mimics a sleek semi automatic assault carbine. The TGR2 is used by military and police for real life training scenarios and less lethal applications, but is also available for civilian purchase. Their product seems well designed and is made of a durable light-weight T6 Aluminum alloy. It’s power source, CO2 or compressed gas tank, lies tucked away in the butt stock of the weapon and produces a claimed 300 fps muzzle velocity with a working tank pressures between 300 to 1000 PSI. The TGR2 accepts a variety of .68 caliber magazines from a variety of makers which all accommodate different less lethal loads from glass breaker, pava powder, rubber ball, and marking rounds. The unit also has the capability of firing fin-stabilized projectiles. The unit comes with high quality iron sights and rail mount system for the addition of targeting accessories.
This unit’s MSRP is $699.00 USD
Our next Less Lethal Weapon System comes to us from French hunting firearm manufacturer Verney Carron and their take on a civilian less lethal weapons platform. Now at first glance the Verney Carron Flash Ball launcher may look like a toy, a cross between Super Soaker and Nerf. But make no mistake, you DO NOT want to be on the business end of this 44 mm impact launcher. The civilian model has twin side by side barrels allowing for two shots, features a break open loading mechanism, and is made of composite materials. The most common round fired by this innocent looking beast is the 44 mm rubber ball which is projected using a pyrotechnic charge much like that of a real firearm. The impact is equivalent to that of a .38 special but the impact radius is more spread out thus not penetrating the target’s skin. Other types of ammunition loads available on this system are the soft rubber buck-shots, dye ball, and tear powder ball. Verney Carron has recently released a NEW CS gas round, but I believe this is strictly for law enforcement applications. All the test videos I have found and research that I have done would suggest that this is indeed an effective less lethal weapon system.
The system features double handles for easy control and handling by the user and external hammers for easy cocking. The Flash Ball launcher is just under 15 inches in length. I have contacted the U.S. distributer for Verney Carron in hopes that they can tell me if this system is available to the American consumer yet and if so how much the system is selling for. I will keep you posted when I find out.
PepperBall Technologies have come out with a Less Lethal Alternative known as the TAC 14 which is a semi-automatic gas powered less lethal carbine. This unit is nice because it resembles a real life tactical CQC weapon platform, so all those who are firearm enthusiasts will surely take a liking to the TAC 14. It’s “on-target” range is 60 feet and has a maximum reach of 100 feet for area saturation. The magazine houses a 33 gram disposable CO2 gas cartridge as well as 14 pepper ball projectiles. The hand guard has several tactical rails for mounting accessories such as flash lights or lasers and the unit features a collapsable M4-style stock. There are additional magazines available for purchase making this unit quicker and easier during reload. I have requested more technical information from PepperBall Technologies as well as information about how civilians can purchase this unit. I will keep you posted.
Ok folks, here we have a devastatingly beautiful less lethal weapon that hits like a hammer. The FN 303. This less lethal weapon system is designed by weapon manufacturer FN Herstal who is headquartered in Herstal Belgium and makes serious firepower for police and militaries around the world. The good people at FN Herstal realized a need for an effective less lethal option for civilians and police alike so they came up with the FN 303 and got in on the market while it’s still growing. The FN 303 looks like something out of a science-fiction movie, it’s sleek polymer design provides several handling options for it’s user. The weapon system is a bit bigger than the one’s we’ve talked about earlier, thus it is not ideal for concealed carry, but great for the application of in-home defense. The FN 303 utilizes a 15 shot drum magazine that can be loaded with four different .68 caliber impact loads to stop an intruder in his tracks. First we have the standard impact round which may break skin and severely bruise the attacker. Second we’ve got the impact plus indelible paint which is good for marking the intruder incase he gets away so that police can find him staggering down the street. Third we’ve got the impact plus irritant, this round contains a form of OC spray in it, so the intruder doesn’t only get beat up but suffers an inability to see or breath normally as well. And fourth, we’ve got the impact plus washable paint also used for marking targets. To top it all off the FN 303 spits its payload out at a nice 300 FPS ( feet per second) with semi-automatic fire. The over all length is 29 inches and it does come with iron sights as well as a top-mount accessory rail where you can mount a nice EOtech sight. The effective reach of the weapon system is approximately 50 meters and each CO2 bottle contains at 110 shots before needing to be refilled. The one draw back of this system, other than it’s size, is the cost of the unit and it’s ammunition. On a personal note I do not own this unit, but would love for FN Herstal to send me a unit so that I can properly test it and give my readers my direct results. Keep checking back to this post for further updates.
I’ve seen this unit sell at online vendors for $780.00
Tall structures, wine, and fine art are amongst the things France is known for, but they are also one of the world’s leaders in less lethal technology. SAFEGOM is a .38 caliber revolver that utilizes cylinders which are factory preloaded with less lethal rubber ammunition and is manufactured by Humbert CTTS. The projectile is fired using a standard pyrotechnic charge just like a regular firearm, but due to the safety precautions taken at the factory level this weapon will not fire lethal ammunition. Each replaceable cylinder has six round rubber .38 caliber shots which leave the muzzle at approximately 1,100 FPS (feet per second). The revolver frame is made from a light metal alloy and the unit features a double action firing mechanism which can also be used in single action. There are currently two variations, a short barrel and a magnum. This unit is for sale to civilians in Europe, but I have been unable to locate an American distributer for SAFEGOM. I will keep you posted on further updates regarding this Less Lethal Alternative.
The unit’s MSRP is around 250.00 Euros.
Gorilla Rounds are high-carbon military grade steel .68 caliber projectiles weighing in at 17 grams. At 300 FPS these rounds deliver approximately 71 joules and 52 foot pounds of energy. The proprietary silicone embedded coatings reduce friction (drag) resulting in increased velocity, distance, and less lethal stopping power. With the ability to deliver bone crushing self-protection-shock and awe without fully lethal potential of traditional firearms. Most effective in close quarters up to twenty feet. These may be reused indefinite number of times and fired from any .68 caliber gas-powered marker or launcher. Click on the banner above for additional info.
An American company called Sage International LTD produces a vast number of less lethal pyrotechnic launchers, including a design by the name of Deuce. This intimidating beast was developed for SWAT, private security, and military peace-keeping missions for use when less lethal force is applicable. The unit features an over/under double barrel configuration and comes in three variations; a 40MM (40x46MM NATO), a 37MM Sage Rifled/ARWEN 37®, and a 37MM Smooth Bore. The Deuce’s overall length measures 29.5 inches and it weighs 6.5 lbs. The Deuce has two flip up calibrated front-sights for 20/40 meters or 60/80 meters and flip-up calibrated rear-sight with ghost ring aperture. The Deuce features multiple safety features as well to prevent misfire; cross block trigger safety and striker lock safety as well as a drop safe, even in the “fire” position. The Deuce also has a nice tactical stock and tactical rails for mounting additional accessories. The Deuce has several great defensive load options such as the muzzle blast, smoke, irritant, and .60 cal rubber buck-shot just to name a few. I have contacted the manufacturer to see how the everyday Joe might get his hands on one of these less lethal cannons and to find out what the asking price is. Keep checking back for updates on this unit.
This next bit of less lethal technology comes to us from a German company called RECK INTERNATIONAL who develops sporting goods such as air rifles, paintball markers, as well as self defense products one of which is called the King Cobra. This fearsome snake sits on an intimidating revolver platform and features fix blade sights and a grooved rubber grip for recoil control. The King Cobra features a double loading fire mechanism; first one has to load six 9MM / .380 blank cartridges (so they fire using a pyrotechnic charge) in the revolver cylinder and then muzzle load each 18 MM round rubber projectile every time the gun is fired. The muzzle blast generates 20 joules of force and has an effective distance of five meters. So far I’ve only been able to find European retailers selling this less lethal device, but some of them will ship to the U.S.
I’ve seen this product retailing for around 200 Euros.
A double barreled Italian menace called the GC-54 SAPL is up next for our Less Lethal Alternative review. This impact launcher is produced by Italian sporting arms manufacturer Kimar and features an over/under double barrel configuration. This beast was originally designed for law enforcement use, to provide officers with a less lethal solution, but has since then been adopted by civilians in Europe for self defense application as well. It packs a nice 12×50 SAPL rubber buck shot round, each round containing 12 rubber projectiles that will put a not so nice hurt on whoever is on the business end of this thing when it goes off. The effective range of the GC 54 SAPL is 49 feet or 15 meters, which is more than doubled the average effective range of most consumer ECD weapons such as Tasers. The unit features a double action trigger, has fixed blade sights, and is loaded via break barrel. There is no tactical rail for mounting accessories like lasers or tactical lights. The length of the upper barrel is 6 inches. I have contacted the manufacturer to see how the American consumer may buy one of these. I will let you know what I find out.
For additional info visit: http://www.sapl-sas.com/en/produits/index/id:4/
Our next impact launcher is a new platform from Indiana based Tippmann who has been manufacturing quality paintball gear and markers right here in the U.S. since 1986. The NEW TCR or Tactical Compact Rifle, is a .68 caliber paintball platform which accepts the First Strike projectiles which are enhanced fin-stabilized projectiles that offer significantly improved accuracy down range. There are companies other than FNH (FN Herstal) that produce fin-stabilized less lethal projectiles that can be used in the TCR. The TCR has many features reminiscent of the HK MP7. The TCR is both a mag-fed as well as hopper fed platform allowing both max capacity or maneuverability in CQC style situations such as in home defense. The unit ships out with two magazines a 12 round extended mag and a standard 7 round mag. The TCR has a tactical/ adjustable stock which can hold a spare mag for quick reload. For less lethal application this unit can have one magazine loaded with impact munitions such as glass breakers or hard rubber balls, while the other is loaded with chemical agents such as pepper powder or pava irritant which causes an assailant’s eyes to close and mucus membranes to cause difficulty in breathing. The TCR platform is VERY customizable with various barrels, optics , and a frame lined with piccatiny rails. The TCR can use CO2 or HPA as a power source. The unit delivers projectiles down range at 330+ fps or 33 joules of energy.