Ripsaw MS1


The Ripsaw MS1 is an unmanned ground vehicle built by two brothers in Maine. The tracked vehicle can go 0-60 in 3.5 seconds with an 80mph top speed. In its current form, it has a 2000 pound capacity, which opens the possibility for many different types of weapon systems. Control is provided by two people: one driver and one gunner. They work in independent remote stations. The Ripsaw could potentially be used in any application normally reserved for a tank. It could lead a charge without putting soldiers at risk.

We’ve been watching this project mature since 2005 when it was being marketed as a Grand Challenge competitor. This week it’s being demoed at the Army Science Conference. Check out footage of it in motion below.


[via BotJunkie]

44 thoughts on “Ripsaw MS1

  1. I wonder how the internal cameras are stabilised for remote control? Otherwise it’d be nearly impossible to drive with the amount of bumping and shaking it;s intended to go through.

  2. I guess since it’s “2 brothers in maine” that made it instead of a large company, it’s more hack-ish than say the stryker…

    Wasn’t this thing making the rounds of teh interweb a while back in a rideable version? the shape and handling characteristics look really familiar, but last time there was a guy inside…

  3. @jose

    if you look at related videos there are some of the ride on ones in there. one of them mentions rip saw 2 which was meant to be HUGE, but it doesnt look like thats materialised. theres a video of it pulling a hummer from a hole though. looks effortless. hahaha.

  4. I wonder what it has for a powerplant in there to do 0-60 that fast? It would be pretty lightweight with that tube frame and no need for extra thick armor to protect armor inside.

  5. Some people have alarm systems installed in their house and stick a flag in the lawn to indicate that they have the alarm system. I think parking this in your driveway would have a better effect, no one would bother you.

    Better yet the gun turret should track movement on the property. :)

  6. @tony: It must be nice to live in candyland, where all disputes are settled with pillow fights. Say hi to your unicorn buddies for me.

    In all seriousness, though, wouldn’t a strong enough signal jammer make this thing into a 10-ton paperweight?

  7. @matthew don’t run away from such a monster, run at right angles

    This indeed would be a good sentry platform, but i don’t think I would trust my programing not to mention someone else’s to make it autonomous and hence wouldn’t be too effective for 24/7 defense of a small domicile.

    But it would be a fun new twist for robot wars: 10 square mile arena constructed for these battle bots to compete until their destruction, the winners move on to the semifinals which take place on a foreign battle field.

  8. @coderer, signal jamming is pretty darn easy to find. it’ll work for a little while but i’m sure the air force/navy/army know all about dealing with that.
    conversely, it would slow the adoption or solitary use of this sort of rc vehicle.

  9. coderer: Yes, if you could jam the signal then you would turn it into a paperweight. OTOH, if there is one org that is really, really good at dealing with EM jamming it is the military. I would imagine that a decent ultra-wideband comm system would make jamming this beast a very difficult task.

  10. yay. More exciting and interesting ways of killing people we don’t like.

    In what way is this a hack? Isn’t developing machines to kill people counted as normal business?

    Posted at 4:39 am on Dec 5th, 2008 by AS

    Co-sign that.

    A cowards ultimate killing machine.
    What a cold, heartless way to kill people. Disassociates the game player from the murder.

    They do that shit in Iraq with the drones.

  11. @matthew: “nd 0-60 in 3.5 seconds beats most sports cars, unbelievable.”

    I’ll wager that it’s easy to design a vehicle to accelerate at break-neck speed when there are no necks to break.

  12. Waste of US money.
    This can not right itself.
    A small explosive would detroy it.
    A RF jammer would cripple it.

    Hey military, pull your head out. If you don’t want your convoys getting attached stop sending troops into areas where they are not needed or wanted.


  13. “A small explosive would detroy it.” An explosive would do the same to any other personnel carrier, better to have this destroyed than people no?

    Amazing, congrats to the guys who built it.

  14. yay. More exciting and interesting ways of killing people we don’t like.

    Voting Democrat has killed more people
    then robots have.

    I don’t see anyone protesting that.

  15. Better than making another ‘shoot-em-up’ gadget would be to have a foreign policy that does not infuriate non-US people and countries enough to attack us.

    If democracy is so great, lets demonstrate that works well for us. Lets stop trying to force democracy upon non-US peoples. If non-US peoples see democracy works well for us, they will copy and probably modify it in ways that suit them. What’s wrong with that?

    Democracy as a principle does not incite violence. However, the US form of democracy certainly does.

    It seems as if Howe & Howe could learn a bit from Robert LeTourneau. Get away from ‘skid-steer’, a huge waste of power and desecrator of terrain.

    Look into the drive system of military M8E2, for example.

    Could we some movies of the Howe & Howe machines doing non-military, non-testosterone stimulated things? Do the Howe & Howe machines have non-violent uses?

  16. Funny that you guys mention ripsaw because I just spent a couple of days seting up at the Army of Science show in Orlando, FL at first glance standing next to RipSaw looks mean as hell, I even snapped a couple of phone pics right as they were showing up. Enjoy

  17. god this is some disturbing shit. Even more disturbing is comments like these that is completely disconnected from reality.

    “Makes you wonder when we will have soldier less war. If you think about it, then you could just solve conflicts with a game of chess. No one gets killed.”

    Are you crazy? Where do you think these things are going to be deployed? On the moon? They’re going to be ripping apart cities with people in them.

  18. kender,

    You seem to have missed the point of my comment.

    My attempt to clarify…

    My point is not whether our way of life is a democracy, a republic, a kingdom — or anything else, for that matter.

    My point is that it is our own way of life.

    My point is, it is not up to us to force our way of life on anyone else.

    My point is if ‘others’ think our ‘way of life’ will suit them, or with modifications it will suit them, they will use it. They may even ask for help in using it.

    My point is that if we try to force our way of life on others, they will rebel, and will not adopt what they might have adopted if they had not been forced. They will rebel because they are forced — it matters not why they were forced.

    My point is, I am describing the behavior of our own (American) ancestors.

    My point is, I am describing human nature.

    The US failure to take human nature into account in our foreign policy is a huge part of what has come back to bite us in the butt — not only in the form of terrorist acts.

  19. Seems a lot of people are crapping on this because it is made for war.

    Seriously, war has been a part of life since civilization began. I don’t know how to say this any other way than: “tough shit, get over it.” It’s not going to change.

    Evil doesn’t lay down its arms when a powerful nation turns into a bunch of peace-loving pacifists, it picks them up. If you value your way of life you better be willing to defend it or at least support those who do. Otherwise you better get used to a government a la the USSR or Third Reich because it’s people like you who give them power through non-aggression.

    “Peace through superior firepower”

  20. looks to me like a perfect platform for Metalstorm.
    add in a 7.62 mini-gun with all the bells and whistles. then add to the lan warrior. slave in the predator and phoenix drone. ability to laser paint targets and forward target positions to air assets. like fighter bombers and ac130 specter’s. and if you want to get real crazy have be able to call in artilary and calculate all time on target for maximum damage.

  21. yea currently c4 or rpg would destroy it, however, with a 2000lb capacity you could carry some nice Armour. Would have to be light weight but it dosent have to be like a full blown tank because there is no driver

  22. its not going in to theater like that it’s a proof of concept, besides it whole ton of testing before it’s approved for deployment. It took several years before the predator was approved for use.

    History is wrote by the victor, what would you rather be the author or be wiped out by the guy with the bigger gun. Oh don’t forget here you have the choice if you don’t like in the US please feel free to GET OUT!!!

    I second Dan completly.

    Like R Lee Ermey said “Walk softly but carry a big can of whoop ass”

Leave a Reply

Please be kind and respectful to help make the comments section excellent. (Comment Policy)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.