smoke signals and pyrotechnic pistols currently in use.
These include the
Mk 2 marine illumination signal,
Mk 5 pyrotechnic pistol,
AN-M37A2 through AN-M39A2 series, double-
star illumination signal,
Mk 1 marine illumination signal, and
the AN-M8 pyrotechnic pistol.
MK 2 Marine Illumination Signals
The Mk 2 marine illumination signal is available in
three colors: red, green, and white. Each cartridge has
a percussion primer and a propelling or expelling charge
of 10 grains of black powder, which projects the burning
star to a height of about 200 feet. The star charge is a
tightly packed cylinder wrapped with a quick match (a
fast-burning fuse), which ignites it when fired. The star
charge is separated from the expelling charge by a
shock-absorbing wad of hard felt. The cartridge is
closed by a wad that is so marked that the color of the
star can be determined at night by feeling the wad, as
shown in figure 6-8.
The red star may be identified by its corrugated
closing wad; the green star has a smooth closing wad;
and the white has a small conical boss on its closing wad.
Each of the three colors may also be identified by the
corresponding color of the paper on the cartridge.
The burning time for each of the stars is approxi-
mately 6 seconds.
The illumination signals are available in 10-round
metal or cardboard containers. The containers are
packaged in wooden boxes that hold 40, 45, or 100
Mk 5 Pyrotechnic Pistol
Marine illumination signals are fired from the Mk 5
pyrotechnic pistol. This pistol is a breech-loaded,
double-action, single-shot device, 11 inches long. Metal
parts are mounted on a plastic frame. The operating
instructions for the Mk 5 pistol are as follows:
1. To load the pistol, depress the latch button below
the barrel. At the same time, pull the barrel downward,
as in view A of figure 6-9. Insert the signal shell (view
B). Push the barrel upward until it latches closed. The
pistol is now ready to fire.
Figure 6-8.The Mk 2 marine illumination signal.
Figure 6-9.Operation of the Mk 5 pyrotechnic pistol.
2. To fire the pistol, aim it upward at the desired
angle, normally 60 degrees, but clear of other ships or
personnel. Bull the trigger, as shown in figure 6-9, view
C. Keep your elbow slightly bent when firing, to absorb
the shock of recoil and to prevent the pistol from
knocking itself out of your hand.
3. To extract the expended shell, break the pistol
open again (view A), and pull the shell out of the
chamber (view D).