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M274 Mule at March Airfield...
The AFV ASSOCIATION was formed in 1964 to support the thoughts and research of all those interested in Armored Fighting Vehicles and related topics, such as AFV drawings. The emphasis has always been on sharing information and communicating with other members of similar interests; e.g. German armor, Japanese AFVs, or whatever.
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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 04, 2006 12:01 am
Post subject: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

[img][/img]
I took this picture 5 June 2005 down at March Airfield Museum, while down there researching and taking pictures of the two F-105's they have there. This Mule was assisting in the movement of a B-29, (note the portable generator on the back). The B-29 was impressive because we stood under its wing as it was towed to a new location/pad for display. The B29 was being towed by two Duece and a halfs linked together by tow-bars. When they tried to stop, the tow bar snapped and the second Deuce nearly rammed the first duece trying to stop with the B29 being towed behind. The B29 rolled off the small concrete pads that were under each set of landing gear. How they got it back on them, I don't know. March its self is pretty much just a reserve post, but they did have two F16's on stand-by as part of Homeland defense in case a jet were hi-jacked in the area. Anyway.... here is some info on the M274 Mule;
The M274 Mechanical Mule is essentially a platform mounted on two axles and four wheels, with a 17 hp air-cooled flat opposed type gasoline under the platform at the rear. The light weight vehicle is designed to carry cargo over rough terrain at slow speeds with an extremely low silhouette and keep pace with rifle men at foot speeds in combat. The unit has four wheel drive, with three speeds forward and one reverse in the transmission. and a two speed transfer case. Some early models had four wheel steering. There is no suspension system, shock being absorbed by the low pressure tires. The steering gear is so constructed that the driver can dismount, disconnect the brace and hold the steering column in a horizontal position, and walk along side the vehicle. It was built originally by Willys, weighs 900 lbs., and has a top speed of 13 mph. An unusual feature is that it can carry more than it weighs.

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Doug_Kibbey
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 04, 2006 12:13 am
Post subject: Re: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

...and would you believe, more than one M274 "mule" (or "nano-Lingle" as it was sometimes known Laughing ) has been equipped with a 106mm Recoilless Rifle?! Usually for perimeter defense purposes, but it's been done and actually works.
We had a couple in my Cav unit up north, but they were just used for hauling ammo and parts around. I didn't find it at all rewarding to drive.
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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 12:06 am
Post subject: Re: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

[img][/img][img][/img] I found this with a TOW system mounted. I found some pics with the recoiless rifle but now cant find them again. Were any other systems mounted on this platform? I've seen it carrying 81mm mortar system and ammo crates before.

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Roy_A_Lingle
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 2:40 am
Post subject: Re: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

Hi Folks!

I remember seeing a lot of M274 Mules during my first tour in Vietnam. I don't know the number, but it seams like each Marine Infantry Battalion had a lot of them and used them to carry just about everything the riflemen needed.

I know they used them to CARRY heavy weapons, but until I saw that photo of the TOW system, the only weapon that I knew of that was mounted and fired from a Mule was the M40 106m RR. Wonder if that TOW version is a production vehicle or a test?

Let me see now, AFV M274 cargo mule and AFVs modern AT weapons set with a TOW system.....mmmmmmmmmmmm. O-no, another idea for a kit conversion!

Sgt, Scouts Out! Smile

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Robert_A_Mosher
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 2:26 pm
Post subject: Re: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

Roy -
During the April 29, 1975 evacuation of Embassy Saigon, the Marines unloaded a Mule with the RR onboard from one of the helos that landed at Ton Son Nhut airfield (in the DAO compound). I remember the surprise of seeing it roll off after the Marines had disembarked - I knew what it was just never expected to see one in action!

Robert A. Mosher
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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 9:22 pm
Post subject: Re: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

[img][/img]
Would it have appeared to look something like this?

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Doug_Kibbey
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 9:39 pm
Post subject: Re: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

Here is all the stuff you need to build your own. Seen a couple of complete units on eBay from time-to-time..

www.mechanicalmulesofa...SORIES.htm
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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 10:01 pm
Post subject: Re: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

I know what I want for Christmas now!!! I 'll have to win the lottery first though, for that kind of money I'll find something bigger and street legal as well!

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Doug_Kibbey
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 10:04 pm
Post subject: Re: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

- SFC_Jeff_Button
I know what I want for Christmas now!!! I 'll have to win the lottery first though, for that kind of money I'll find something bigger and street legal as well!


I'm pretty sure I know where you can get an M151A1C with 106mm RR mounted ($12,000...last time I checked in...). Wink

Keep in mind, that's a good 400 lb's over and above the weight of an unladen M151...and the engine ain't no bigger, either. I've driven these, and they're worse than an M151 gunjeep, in case you didn't think that was possible...
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Robert_A_Mosher
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 7:22 am
Post subject: Re: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

Jeff -
Yep - that's pretty much it. I can't remember if it was carrying anything else such as ammo cans, etc. and unfortunately I had put my brand new 35mm SLR camera away as I was a bit busy at the time so I didn't get a picture of it.

Robert A. Mosher
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bsmart
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 7:58 am
Post subject: Re: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

I remember seeing Mules running around Ft Bragg when I was there on a ROTC trip back in 1972. Saw one turn over there too. Several of them were racing around near the Jumpmaster school(?) [Right next to the Pope AFB ramp where they had platforms set up to do PLFs and such]. I think they were hauling cargo parachutes (or other stuff in big green bags). One tried to pass another going around a curve and I guess had the cargo stacked too high. It rolled, the driver bailed out and the other Mule drivers stopped, flipped it back up and they all took off before the Jumpmaster that was 'briefing' us could run over there and get names.

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SFC_Jeff_Button
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 7:52 pm
Post subject: Re: M274 Mule at March Airfield...

When I went through Air Assault school at Fort Campbell back in Nov-Dec 1986, we were still being taught how to slingload the M151, M274 Mule, and Gamma Goat. We were told that we were the last class to learn these, as the next class was going to learn the Hummer in their place.

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