Is The MK19 Grenade Launcher Appropriate For Home Defense?

MK19 Automatic Grenade Launcher

Suitable for Home Defense? The MK19 Automatic Grenade Launcher

In today’s edition of He Said / She Said, we examine the relative pros and cons of using the MK19 Automatic Grenade Launcher as a primary home defense weapon. Much has been said about the merits of pistols, revolvers, shotguns, and AR platform rifles for home defense, but little serious consideration has been given to suitability of larger and more powerful crew-served weapons.

First, some basic specifications:

  • 350 round per minute cyclic rate
  • 40 x 53mm high-explosive grenade rounds
  • Battle-proven
  • ‘Moderate’ stopping power
  • Tripod and vehicle mount options


He said She said
I’ve been looking into other options for our primary home defense gun. I’m thinking we need something crew-served – like the MK19 Automatic Grenade Launcher.
Hmmm. Not bad. I like the stopping power, but you do realize it has an effective blast radius of about 15 meters right? That’s way bigger than our family room. 

I think the collateral damage might be a bit excessive. And we just got a new wide screen TV, remember?

Yeah but at least we wouldn’t have to worry about complex things like range estimation. I think it would be pretty much point and shoot since it would be indoors.
Ummm. Have you considered that the MK19 grenades require at least 30 meters of flight time to arm? Our hallway is definitely not that long.
Well, we have been talking about getting a bigger house. Why not kill two birds with one grenade, so to speak? Maybe we can design in a longer hallway to the master bedroom and a larger family room at the other end to contain the blast radius.
I’m not sure that we can count on bad guys only breaking in through the main hallway. What if someone tries to come in through a window? Have you thought of that?
But honey, those rounds will penetrate up to 2 inches of rolled armor! Awesome!
Right. Have you even thought about ammo costs? We certainly don’t have room in our budget for 40x53mm high explosive rounds, or even practice rounds for that matter. 

And last time I looked, you don’t have reloading dies for the MK19…

No problem, I’ll check and see if Midway USA has some!
And last I checked, the tripod mount only comes in black. And you know I’ve been wanting to re-do the master bedroom in a tangerine, turquoise, and aubergine palette

I do like the vehicle mount option though. I would feel a lot safer on those long drives to Florida…

So what do you think, is it a plan?
How about let’s talk after you get me my new computer and come up with an extra 20 grand?


  1. says

    Depending on the size of your property, I would like to propose an alternative. There is a choice that would not completely sacrifice manueverability and provide ample stopping power. Also, you would gain the advantage of using indirect fire. The 81mm mortar weighs in under 100 lbs. In addition to indirect fire you would have additional ammo options with white and red phospherous and illumination. (A great help for any low light situations that could develop in your backyard)

  2. says

    Being a person with an irrational fetish, errr, overriding love for the 20mm M163 Vulcan Air Defense System, I approve and applaud this attempt to make the “peace dividend” a bit more personal than just a few random airbase shutdowns and cheap surplus BDU’s.

    But what does a Mk19 offer you that a few well-placed Claymores don’t?

    Aside from full-auto, that is.

    • says

      I hadn’t considered the Vulcan system. And that’s fully automated as I recall, which could be a plus for late night intrusions…

  3. Braden Lynch says

    You might want to try the automatic perimeter defense guns from the extended version of “Aliens” which can target, track, and splatter aliens

    Since it is works on them, I would think zombies and home-invasion gremlins would be vulnerable.

  4. Mike says

    Loaded up with multiple projectile rounds, this would be a good Home Defense choice.
    Besides, all you would have to do is pull back on the charging handle and the bad guys will run from the house right?

Legal disclosures about our review policies.


Got something to say?