Military Review

RPG-29 "Vampire" anti-tank rocket launcher

In the seventies and eighties of the last century, the Soviet defense industry created several types of reactive anti-tank grenades with different characteristics. it weapon allowed the infantry to effectively deal with enemy armored vehicles, but had a serious drawback. Reactive anti-tank grenades were disposable, which accordingly affected their use. As for hand-held anti-tank rocket launchers, for several decades the newest system of this class in the ground forces was the RPG-7, and the Airborne Forces had an RPG-16 grenade launcher. Over time, this weapon is outdated, which is why the development of new anti-tank grenade launchers began.

RPG-29 "Vampire" anti-tank rocket launcher

In the mid-eighties, the Bazalt State Research and Production Enterprise, which was engaged in the creation of anti-tank weapons for infantry, began the development of the RPG-29 Vampire project. The work on the project, named after the bat, was headed by V.S. Tokarev. As part of the new project, it was supposed to create an anti-tank grenade launcher that could hit modern and promising Tanks probable adversary. The main task of the designers was the creation of a rocket-propelled grenade, which could effectively destroy armored vehicles with dynamic defense systems. The solution to this problem significantly increased the firepower of rifle units armed with a new grenade launcher.

RPG-29 "Vampire" grenade launcher is a starting device with sights and fire control devices mounted on it. In a combat position, the grenade launcher has a length of 1,85 meter. For the convenience of the grenade thrower, the weapon is collapsible. In the stowed position, the Vampire grenade launcher is divided into two blocks, connected with a special coupling. In addition, for convenience of carrying with a grenade launcher is removed sight. When disassembled, the RPG-29 grenade launcher has a length of no more than 1 meters. The total weight of the assembled weapon is equal to 11,5 kg, after installing the 1П38 sight, the weapon becomes heavier by about 0,6 kg.

In the middle part of the grenade launcher, on its lower surface, there is a trigger mechanism with a fire control handle and a trigger hook. On the upper surface of the starting device there are auxiliary sights - the rear sight and the front sight. If necessary, they can be used instead of the standard sight. When disassembling a grenade launcher, the trigger and sight remain on the "front" half of the grenade launcher. On the "back" part there is a folding bipod.

The standard aiming device of the Vampire RPG-29 grenade launcher is the 1P38 telescopic sight. A device with a field of view of 13 ° width and an increase in 2,7x makes it possible to direct weapons when firing at a distance of up to 500 meters. At the request of the customer, the Vampire anti-tank grenade launcher can be equipped with the 1PN51-2 night-sight. In this case, the weapon receives a supplemented index RPG-29Н.

The RPG-29 grenade launcher uses a PG-29B rocket grenade as ammunition. An interesting fact is that some features of this shot had a serious impact on the appearance of the grenade launcher. For example, a large barrel length (1,85 m) is directly related to the engine used on the grenade.

PG-29V grenade caliber 105 mm was created taking into account the need to hit targets equipped with dynamic protection systems. For this reason, the ammunition carries a tandem cumulative warhead. The leading cumulative charge, located in front of the grenade, when hit the target should initiate an explosion of the dynamic protection unit. The latter spends its energy on the destruction of a cumulative jet of a leading charge. Thus, the unprotected armor of the attacked vehicle remains in front of the main charge of the warhead. According to reports, the combat part of the PG-29В grenade is capable of penetrating more than 600 mm of homogeneous armor, covered with dynamic protection.

PG-29B shot (above) is unified on the warhead with PG-7BP (below)

In the tail of the grenade there is a jet engine. An interesting feature of the PG-29В ammunition, which distinguishes it from other rounds for domestic anti-tank systems, is the absence of a propellant charge. To disperse a grenade to the required speed, only a jet engine is used. The ignition of a solid-fuel charge occurs by means of an electrical system: the grenade launcher trigger mechanism and the ammunition igniter are connected through a slip ring in the tail of the grenade.

The project provides for the manufacture of engine from fiberglass or steel. The body material of the engine directly affects the characteristics of the grenade: ammunition with fiberglass parts leaves the barrel at speeds up to 255 m / s, from steel - to 230 m / s. In flight, the grenade is stabilized by rotation, for which a folding stabilizer with 8 blades is installed in its tail section. Also, the grenade is equipped with a tracer for tracking its flight.

The charge of pyroxylin powder, which accelerates the grenade in the barrel, is calculated in such a way that its burning is completed before the release of the ammunition from the grenade launcher. Such measures can reduce the impact of powder gases on the arrow, simplify the design of the ammunition and the grenade launcher, as well as simplify aiming, since the PG-29В grenade does not have an active segment in flight.

RPG-29 in the stowed position

The calculation of the RPG-29 "Vampire" consists of two people. For carrying weapons and ammunition, the calculation has two packs. In one of them, a grenade launcher is transferred, in the other - 3 grenades. Experienced calculation can fire at a rate of up to 4 shots per minute.

The RPG-29 “Vampire” anti-tank rocket launcher and PG-29B shot were put into service in the 1989 year. However, as far as is known, the mass production of these weapons has not begun to this day. Because of this, even a quarter of a century after the adoption of the new system, the main anti-tank grenade launcher remains the time-tested RPG-7.

In 1993, the Vampire grenade launcher was first shown to a foreign public. During the first exhibition of weapons IDEX-1993 in Abu Dhabi (UAE), demonstration shooting took place, during which the new domestic development made a big impression on potential customers. As a conditional target for a grenade launcher on these firing, an armor plate 300 mm thick was used, installed at an angle 60 ° to the vertical and additionally closed by a dynamic protection unit. The RPG-29 grenade launcher successfully overcame the dynamic defenses and pierced the armor by making a through hole in it with a depth of about 600 mm.

RPG-29 on the machine and with the installed fire control device. Photo

Experienced options for the 2C35 fire control unit on the RPG-29. Photo

At the beginning of the two thousand years, there was a project to upgrade the RPG-29 “Vampire” grenade launcher, designed to improve its performance. TsKB "Tochpribor" engaged in the development of various electronic systems, presented a grenade-mounted optical-electronic sight 2Ц35. This device allows you to detect and identify enemy tanks at a distance of about 1000 meters and calculate the necessary corrections for firing. The 2Ц35 sight is equipped with a laser range finder capable of measuring the range within 1200 meters. The RPG-29, attached to the machine and equipped with the 2Ц35 sight, can supplement or, under certain conditions, replace anti-tank missile systems with guided munitions.

The production and supply of the RPG-29 “Vampire” grenade launcher and ammunition raise certain questions for it. As far as we know, domestic armed forces never received a single grenade launcher of the new model. Nevertheless, there is information about the supply of these weapons to foreign countries. For example, in the middle of the last decade, the Israeli media reported that a large part of the Israeli armored vehicles that participated in the Second Lebanon War (2006 year) were damaged or destroyed using RPG-29 grenade launchers. A number of such grenade launchers were captured by Israel as trophies during the fighting.

Calculation of machine RPG-29 on the position. The grenade launcher is equipped with PUU 2Ц35. Photo

New assumptions about the possible export of Vampire grenade launchers appeared at the end of 2012 and the beginning of 2013. The reason for them was the video recording of the combat use of grenade launchers by militants during the civil war in Syria. From this we can conclude that the Russian defense industry has produced a certain number of RPG-29 grenade launchers by request of foreign countries. Judging by the conflicts in which this weapon was used, it was delivered to Iraq, Iran or Syria. There is no exact information on this.

A number of RPG-29 “Vampire” grenade launchers are available to the Mexican armed forces, as evidenced by photos from military parades. At such events several years ago, fighters with Russian grenade launchers and ammunition were spotted for them. The origin of this weapon also raises questions. It is still unknown whether Mexico acquired Russian weapons directly from the manufacturer or whether the grenade launchers were purchased from a third country, which, in turn, received them from Russia.

Regardless of these facts, the RPG-29 “Vampire” anti-tank rocket-propelled grenade launcher, although adopted by the Russian army, has not yet entered the army. For some not entirely understandable reasons, promising weapons were adopted only on paper, which is why fighters have to use old RPG-7 grenade launchers.

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  1. Turik
    Turik 27 March 2014 09: 13
    Dangerous thing. Those who watch Anna News are aware that these devices, kindly provided by Saudi Arabia, are actively using local basmachi.

    And unfortunately, it’s very successful (the effectiveness could have been better if it weren’t for the frank curvature of the terrorig).
    1. Papakiko
      Papakiko 27 March 2014 09: 59
      Quote: Turik
      kindly provided by Saudi Arabia, actively use local basmachi.

      Saudis are all leash laying between the customer and the consumer.
      Kirill thanks for the matter !!! good
      Quote: Turik
      not frank curvature of the terrorug).

      This "nuance" directly depends on the unwillingness of the crews to die and actively opposing the bearded men with fire and maneuver. The bottom of the latter is not cast iron.
    2. Professor
      Professor 27 March 2014 11: 00
      Quote: Turik
      Those who watch Anna News are aware that these devices, kindly provided by Saudi Arabia, are actively using local basmachi.

      Assad personally supplies RPG-29s to the rebels by dropping armament depots and the Saudis have nothing to do with it. Here are the captured Syrian RPG-29s in 2006.

      1. just exp
        just exp 27 March 2014 12: 24
        and who were these trophies if in 2006 there was no war?
        1. Professor
          Professor 27 March 2014 12: 41
          Quote: just explo
          and who were these trophies if in 2006 there was no war?

          Tsahalu trophies.
          1. just exp
            just exp 28 March 2014 07: 56
            So is the dodger delivering RPGs to terrorists?
    3. Mister X
      Mister X 27 March 2014 21: 13
      Quote: Turik
      Dangerous thing.

      I agree. But either I did not understand, or a typo in the text:
      As a conditional target for the grenade launcher at these firing, an armor plate with a thickness of 300 mm was used, mounted at an angle of 60 ° to the vertical and additionally closed by a dynamic protection unit.
      The RPG-29 grenade launcher successfully overcame the dynamic defense and pierced the armor, making a through hole in it with a depth of about 600 mm.

      That is, a hole with a depth of 300 mm was made in a plate with a thickness of 600 mm.
      300 mm more where?
      1. Turik
        Turik 27 March 2014 21: 24
        Geometry was badly taught at school.

        The ratio of the lengths of the hypotenuse and cathetus at an angle between them of 60 degrees is exactly 2/1. Draw a drawing or something to make sure of this personally.
        1. Mister X
          Mister X 27 March 2014 21: 36
          Quote: Turik
          at an angle between them in 60 degrees it is exactly 2 / 1

          That is, 600 mm along the cumulative jet?
          I was lucky with a Russian teacher, and geometry was taught uninteresting winked
          1. Turik
            Turik 27 March 2014 22: 14
            Our teacher was Babusya of the Stalinist quenching, under 60 years old and maybe all 70.

            But the physics department graduated; 0)
      2. badger1974
        badger1974 28 March 2014 14: 42
        Yes, everything is simple. put a 300 mm plate, tilt it at an angle of 60 degrees, measure and add the thickness of the dynamo protection, it ranges from 250 mm to 500 mm, and in this whole set of holes there is 600 mm, so everything is correct
  2. ispaniard
    ispaniard 27 March 2014 09: 35
    Not only "Bad terrorists" in Syria use our "Shaitan pipe", but also "Peaceful rebels" in Iraq use RPG-29 against Abrams tanks ... What remains of Abrams with his vaunted armor you can ask yourself on YouTube. Personally, I was impressed)))
    1. Turik
      Turik 27 March 2014 09: 49
      You will be even more surprised to learn that 2/3 of Abrasov are not even fired with a "Vampire", but an RPG-7 of forty years old age.

      To the credit of the Yankees, I’ll still say that the armor in front of the tower is powerful, but like any modern tank it’s practically impenetrable. But no one has yet canceled the weak booking of boards and ham.
    2. The comment was deleted.
    3. GRANATE-19
      GRANATE-19 28 March 2014 23: 33
      Quote: ispaniard
      Not only "Bad terrorists" in Syria use our "Shaitan pipe", but also "Peaceful rebels" in Iraq use RPG-29 against Abrams tanks ... What remains of Abrams with his vaunted armor you can ask yourself on YouTube. Personally, I was impressed)))

      There, unfortunately, there are shots of how a tank of Syrian government forces is being knocked down from the roof by these weapons. Sincerely, I express my humble opinion.
    4. The comment was deleted.
  3. Romanychby
    Romanychby 27 March 2014 09: 44
    A powerful argument for Americans and geyrops.
  4. Afinogen
    Afinogen 27 March 2014 10: 05
    American tanks are burning from our grenade launchers. laughing

    1. Val_y
      Val_y 27 March 2014 16: 11
      Interestingly, how many abrams from the "shaitan-pipe" are piled in total, there seems to be not a lot of information (all the more true) I read somewhere that there are about a hundred irrecoverable soldier
  5. The comment was deleted.
    1. Wedmak
      Wedmak 27 March 2014 10: 28
      Then, that the power of ammunition is higher.
      1. inkass_98
        inkass_98 28 March 2014 07: 18
        Quote: Wedmak
        Then, that the power of ammunition is higher.

        We read from the author: "The PG-29V shot (above) is unified in terms of the warhead with the PG-7VR (below)"
        So b / h they have a similar, 105 mm tandem.
    2. Ostwind
      Ostwind April 17 2014 21: 10
      in addition, as for RPG 7 there is a tandem ammunition.
      And RPG 29 looks more like an easel grenade launcher.
  6. Owl
    Owl 27 March 2014 10: 54
    A more modern replacement for the SPG-9 veteran, using anti-tank and thermobaric (they had to be developed on the basis of TBG-7), ammunition could be fought with extremists and members of the illegal armed forces, a weapon for the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation, but it was relevant in the years 80-90 century. Now, according to such characteristics as the range of targeted shooting, the range of ammunition (only the tandem type anti-tank grenade), this weapon does not meet the requirements of today.
  7. The comment was deleted.
  8. Bongo
    Bongo 27 March 2014 11: 22
    the system of this class in the ground forces was the RPG-7, and the Airborne Forces had an RPG-16 grenade launcher. Over time, this weapon became outdated, which is why the development of new hand-held anti-tank grenade launchers began.

    To compare these rather light grenade launchers with RPG-29 in my opinion is not quite correct.
    RPG-29 "Vampire" is rather a replacement for SPG-9.
    1. Russkiy53
      Russkiy53 27 March 2014 11: 40
      But what, well ... oh, replacement with such a range ?!
  9. Hort
    Hort 27 March 2014 11: 22
    yes 600mm of armor burns through. Though the marsh cruisers
  10. Gagarin
    Gagarin 27 March 2014 11: 36
    An amazing invention, the infantryman can now talk with the tank at YOU.
  11. just exp
    just exp 27 March 2014 12: 35
    but they say that in American tanks the BC does not detonate, watch from 5.20, there it shows how the abrash burns and is slowly blown up, and then it is severely blown up, though the tower does not demolish.
  12. Krilion
    Krilion 27 March 2014 13: 47
    Quote: just explo
    but they say that in American tanks the BC does not detonate, watch from 5.20, there it shows how the abrash burns and is slowly blown up, and then it is severely blown up, though the tower does not demolish.

    you actually distinguish between detonation of BC from the hit of a projectile from detonation of BC as a result of a fire .. like different things ...
  13. Leshka
    Leshka 27 March 2014 16: 37
    it is a pity that they were not brought Abrams against them will not stand
  14. misham1978
    misham1978 27 March 2014 16: 42
    Is there a need for such a grenade launcher. Too bulky. Ptur is much more efficient (and if necessary it will fly into the hatch from above), but for the infantry there will be enough Flies and Bumblebees, and RPG-7 will fight
    1. Russkiy53
      Russkiy53 27 March 2014 17: 58
      Misha :))) and I wrote about what :)) ??? they took an RPG tandem, stuck another engine, made a super-cyber pipe-cheers !!! killer Abramsov :))) !!! and the range is 500m.a length- 1,85m. The plus machine should be dragged:))) ... most importantly, no one has read that the two foremen of the calculation, except for the shaitan pipe, carry-3 (THREE!) Shots:))) !!! what. ... he replaces RPG-7:))) ??? with whom we don’t spit, an expert on finances; what’s not a spit-killer of aircraft carriers .... well, you stumble drunk, one g ... ovno :) )) !!!
  15. Gray 43
    Gray 43 27 March 2014 18: 45
    Such ammunition will cope with dynamic protection, but what about active protection? About installing it on modern armored vehicles, it is often mentioned, then the rocket will not reach the target at all, so the principle of its action is conceived
    1. badger1974
      badger1974 28 March 2014 15: 01
      AZ systems like Arena and Trophy have one unpleasant drawback: a detection station sticking out from the top, which is absolutely unarmored, and fails when fired by small arms, the AZ is effective only at long distances over a kilometer of the alleged PTS shelling, and even that, an increase shelling of more than 2 vehicles with one target will result in BT’s defeat, and in close contact, such a system is dangerous for one’s own military guard. so that DZ is more effective than AZ
  16. Russkiy53
    Russkiy53 27 March 2014 18: 52
    She, firstly, costs other money, and secondly, after a mortar, artillery ... yes, just after a heavy shelling with arrows, it's worthless for her :)))) !!!
  17. loki565
    loki565 27 March 2014 22: 47
    Vampire vs Abrams

  18. Greenhorn
    Greenhorn 28 March 2014 13: 02
    It’s bulky. Maybe immediately take ATGM?
  19. badger1974
    badger1974 28 March 2014 15: 09
    I also tend to the cumbersomeness of the 29s, the more it will be more important to have 4 "sevenfighters" in the squad than two calculations of "vampires", although we have to admit that the range and effectiveness of the latter are much higher, here, as they say, on the commander
  20. GRANATE-19
    GRANATE-19 29 March 2014 00: 32
    A good thing is the RPG-29, it does not differ much from the RPG-7, as I do not see an obvious replacement for the SPG-9M, because the range is too small. I had to work with the last SPG-9m, but here's the thing: armor penetration (SPG) is less than that of RPG-29, the mass is 4 times greater. and although the RPG-29 is not new, the LNG-9 is generally the end of the 60s. Yes, the 9 hits further, but try to drag it to the place (I dragged it over the mountains, I know! ...), i.e. h. everything is relative. In place of RPG-29 - ATGM, and whoever remembers (or knows) a lot of missiles, but how much does it cost ?! So: everything is fine when you work with everything and shoot everything! 7 is a classic and her average is the best! In fact - "the pipe of the early 60s", but it is being improved, and I hope it will be improved further, but I think that there will be no major changes, I think it will affect ergonomics and materials! Well, as for the shots, you can do anything with modern technologies (push the telegraph pole into the pipe even if the charge power would be enough to push and carry it to the target) .In other words: the grenades will do different purposes and powers (also the aerodynamics of the grenade stabilizers and all sorts of such things will be improved), and a powder (and in the near future may not be a powder) charge will make it more powerful, safer, can reduce the volume of fuel, etc. But once again about the fact that each weapon has its own range of goals and its own tasks, how the RPG-7 can bring to mind and upgrade the RPG-29 (in terms of charges, range, armor penetration, etc.)! I hope our country will use its formidable weapon only on training grounds !!! Respectfully, I express my humble opinion.
  21. Alex 1977
    Alex 1977 April 18 2014 21: 55
    I agree with the critics.
    With the seven I climbed into the trench, leaned out, the bedroom and hid again, hiding behind a pebble, behind a tree, if it was very tight with shelters. Lying again, you can shoot, if completely rescued.
    And I’ll change my position quickly.
    What about this easel fool?
    Dig a trench under it every time?
    I mean a fossa knee-deep with a parapet?
    So the firing line is low, and the exhaust, shelter is not in fact.
    Sit in the open field like a target.
    Once fired and hi, combed from a machine gun.
    This is not a Vampire, this is Goodbye Homeland Milenium. Reincarnation.
    No, they’re not accepting it properly.
    We do not need such a football.
  22. gross kaput
    gross kaput 11 July 2014 18: 33
    Quote: Alexey 1977
    No, they’re not accepting it properly.

    Well, they just adopted it back in 1989, only they did not register in the staffs from here and did not produce it except for export (according to some reports, about a batch of about 500 pieces was made, which was sold back in the 90s). Regarding ammunition - there has been a thermobaric grenade for a vampire for a long time (the first time was officially shown in 2008). The machine and the sight are fresh proactive development of "basalt" in order to somehow tighten up the performance characteristics and make it more attractive (by the way, according to those who tested the new sight, this is a very advanced thing, but its advantages can only be realized from the machine).