Directory of U.S. Military Rockets and Missiles
Appendix 4: Undesignated Vehicles
Copyright © 2005-2024 Andreas Parsch

66 mm Incendiary Rocket M74

The 66 mm TPA (Thickened Pyrotechnic Agent) Incendiary Rocket M74 was developed in the mid-1960s. It was a derivative of the M72 LAW rocket, which used the latter's rocket motor and fin assembly. The M74 rocket replaced the M72's anti-armour head with an M235 warhead and an M434 impact fuze. The M235 was filled with TEA (triethyl aluminum), which ignites spontaneously in contact with air.

Drawing: via ORDATA Website

XM74 rounds were tested with LAW launchers, but the rocket was operationally used with the M202A1 Flash (Flame Assault Shoulder Weapon). The M202A1 was a portable rocket launcher, which was developed to replace conventional flame throwers in the U.S. Army. The M74 was deployed in disposable clips of four rockets each, and the M202A1 could fire one to four rockets semi-automatically in one-second intervals. Maximum range of the M74 was about 750 m (820 yds), but effective range greatly depended on the actual nature and size of the target. Minimum safe range was 20 m (22 yds) because of the splash radius of the TPA on impact. The M202A1 could be fired from standing, kneeling or prone positions, but had a considerable danger zone behind the operator (about 15x15 m) because of rocket backblast.

The 35 mm Subcaliber Practice Rocket XM128 was a modification of the M73 rocket, the practice round for the M72 LAW. It had an additional weight between rocket head and motor, to match its ballistics to the XM74.

In the 1968/69 time frame, a derivative of the M74 was developed as the 66 mm Riot Control Rocket XM96. It replaced the TPA warhead with one filled with CS gas (tear gas), and was intended to be used for riot control in south-east asia.

Drawing: via ORDATA Website


Note: Data given by several sources show slight variations. Figures given below may therefore be inaccurate!

Data for M74 rocket:

Length53 cm (21 in)
Diameter66 mm (2.6 in)
Speed115 m/s (375 fps)
Range750 m (820 yds)
PropulsionM54 solid-fueled rocket
WarheadM235 TPA Incendiary

Main Sources

[1] Website
[2] Gary W. Cooke: Gary's U.S. Infantry Weapons Reference Guide
[3] ORDATA Online Website

Back to Directory of U.S. Military Rockets and Missiles, Appendix 4

Last Updated: 11 June 2024