Arnold Defense is the world’s leading designer and manufacturer of 2.75-inch (70mm) rocket launcher systems. Arnold Defense has been supplying rocket launchers to satisfied customers across the globe for over 60 years.
Industry leading facility
Arnold Defense serves a variety of markets beyond the military, including medical, transportation and original equipment manufacturers. We have extraordinary capabilities in our production facility that allows us to deliver multi-conductor cables, wire harness assemblies, junction boxes, customized through-hole and circuit boards with extensive in-house quality, testing and calibration.
From Sprockets to rockets:
Our diverse manufacturing history
1945 - The start of our journey
It may surprise you to learn that our company originally manufactured trendy dinette sets and household furniture in a large factory on Semple Avenue in St. Louis, beginning in 1945 under the name of Chromcraft, a division of the American Fixture Corporation. The legacy company manufactured a wide range of popular furniture and commercial goods, ranging from desks and record racks to ammunition containers to skateboards and even a few carousel horses through the late 1960s.
1961 - Relocation to Mississippi
In 1961, the dinette business was relocated to Mississippi, and Chromcraft also began producing rocket launchers for the government at the St. Louis facility. By 1967, the company had changed its name to Techfab and had upwards of 800 employees who produced 3,000 chairs, 250 case goods, 600 cardboard-tubed rocket launchers, and up to 100 aluminum-tubed rocket launchers every day.
1969 - Purchased by Harvard Industries
In 1969, the company was purchased by Harvard Industries, and the business expanded into electronics during the 1970s. They began renting additional manufacturing space in Arnold, Mo., approximately 20 miles south of St. Louis, so the electronics business could take root. In 1976, the rental site was purchased outright and had expanded four times by the mid-1980s. During this time, the company had approximately 150 employees who designed and produced many handy everyday items such as smoke detectors, security systems, hospital bed switches, CB monitors, circuit boards, fuel primer pumps, and remote automobile starters.
1970 - Defense contracts
Over the next decade, the company earned more defense contracts for rocket launchers and decided to divest the furniture business. The St. Louis facility was closed in 1998, and the rocket launcher business moved to the Arnold location. In that same timeframe, an 8,000-square foot warehouse was constructed to house production materials and the die-cast fuel pump business also moved to the Arnold facility. In 2000, the fireworks business, Pyrocraft, was developed and added to the portfolio. Using military-grade electronic firing systems in the commercial pyrotechnics industry, Pyrocraft provided a safer and more reliable launch system for fireworks demonstrations across the world.
2002 - Purchased by Durable Metal
In August 2002, the company was purchased by Durable Metal Enterprises (DME) and changed its name to Arnold Defense & Electronics. In 2005, the company was bought by its current owners, Gateway Defense Holdings, LLC. Throughout the last decade, the company has focused on listening intently to the needs of the warfighter and becoming an award-winning defense supplier. Today, Arnold Defense works closely with the U.S. Department of Defense and dozens of NATO customers and almost exclusively manufactures rocket launchers and related electronic components such as the intervalometer.
2010 - The world’s preeminent manufacturer
Arnold Defense is a privately-held small company that employs professional fabricators, welders, electronic engineers and quality control experts who manufacture more than 1,000 launchers every year. Arnold Defense remains the world’s preeminent manufacturer of 2.75-inch rocket launchers and has produced more than 1.1 million units since 1961.
We are safe
and fully certified
Arnold Defense maintains the highest standards of production quality by using extensive testing, calibration and inspection processes. Our employees’ focus on quality earned Arnold Defense the prestigious ISO-9001 certiﬁcation from the International Organization for Standardization in Quality Management, and we have maintained annual recertiﬁcation consecutively since 2003. The company, located just south of St. Louis, employs professional fabricators, welders, electronic engineers and quality control experts who manufacture thousands of rocket launchers annually.
Award winning & fully certified.
Arnold Defense is proud of the countless memberships, citations, certifications, and awards earned over the past 60 years. Most recently, we’d like to highlight:
ISO-9001 Certification, 2003 – present
Letter of Commendation, U.S. Navy PMA-242 – 2014
Small Business of the Year, Lockheed-Martin Missiles
and Fire Control – 2013
Association of U.S. Army – Corporate Member
U.S. Navy League – Corporate Member
U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Missouri Water Environmental Association – Gold Award
Missouri Show Me Heroes
Jefferson County Growth and Development Association
Arnold Chamber of Commerce