MythBusters to test RPG-7

In the upcoming season of MythBusters, the team will be seeing what happens when an RPG hits a bullet midair.

Most (all?) RPG warheads are detonated by a piezoelectric sensor/fuse in the nose of the round. If a bullet/warhead collision can transfer enough energy in the piezoelectric fuse, causing it to generate enough electricity to detonate the explosive, then the round will explode. In Mybusters style, if a .22 LR does not blow up an RPG, they will just upgrade to an 18th century cannon or 20th century howitzer 🙂

Firing an RPG is very high on my bucket list. I am hoping I do not have to go all the way to Vietnam to try some out.

Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


  • Andrew Racek


  • GeoffH

    Now everyone will want their own RPG.

  • Does a AT-4 count as an “RPG”
    I need to know for my bucket list….

  • gorn

    It’s a thermobaric charge ??!
    Why it’s explode like that ?

  • Lance

    Someone watched Red too much have to use a .500 S&W not a .22.

  • Jeff

    Hottest redhead on TV.

  • Ahh, so you want to fire a “RPG” not just any anti-tank rocket.

    Sorta like I want to drive a Viper, not just any sports car.

  • howlingcoyote

    Where did they get the RPG and who okayed it for them to use?
    When they are done testing it, they could use it for wild hog hunting!

    • howlingcoyote, you can own RPG rounds with proper licensing (each individual round is considered a destructive device).

  • Likvid

    Steve, besides fact that AT-4 isn’t rocket launcher at all, as it’s recoilless weapon using Davis gun (counterweight) principle and projectile isn’t propelled*, there is basically no difference between terms “rocket propelled grenade” and “rocket launcher”. “Rocket Propelled Grenade” is just fabricated english “backronym” from russian acronym RPG (РПГ), it’s not “official” technical description, nor specific design category. RPG-7 can be easily described as rocket launcher as weapon itself is recoilless rifle, but projectile is rocket.
    It’s just that russians call their anti-tank portables “grenade launcher” (reactive anti-tank grenade launcher to be exact), but other countries may use different terminology, like LAW (Light Antitank Weapon) in US etc.

    * Unless by “AT-4” you mean 9K111 Fagot, which is anti-tank guided missile with NATO code name AT-4 Spigot, but judged by context, I don’t think it’s the case, this is more note for nitpickers 😉

  • Nooky

    I have fired some Panzerfaust 3 myself, but never with a war warhead thought.

  • Tinkerer


    Actually, the AT4 is a recoilless rifle that shoots a rocket-assisted warhead -the rocket starting several meters after the round is fired from the weapon-, just like the RPG-7.

  • Chucky

    I dunno about Vietnam, but if you go to the Cambodian border some military bases there specifically cater to tourists. Got to fire an AK, but the RPG as they say was too beaucoup; $500 a pop. I’ve heard rumors that $1000 will let you fire it at a cow, not sure if you can take home what’s left of it and make burgers.

  • Lance

    Its a rocket launcher and is classified by the Army as such. So is the M-72 LAW and Dragon/Javelin weapons. RPGs and AT series of Russian AT weapons are the same classification.

  • ThomasD

    Kari is high on my bucket list.

    I’ve got a better chance at firing an RPG, even though I’m passed enlistment age.

  • Netforce

    One of the better TV shows out there. And Man! That trailer IS gone. I can still see the door knob somewhere among the wreckage.

  • I had to go all the way to Ft Lewis, WA, to fire an RPG. Ft Ord, CA, too.

    More importantly, ditto @ThomasD re: Kari Byron. Always the best part of any Mythbusters episode.

  • Cool. They do seem to “bust” myths too easily, but who cares when they are blowing stuff up.