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Old February 1st, 2017, 12:11 PM   #1
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L85A1


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Old February 2nd, 2017, 05:44 AM   #2
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I remember the problems they had with this weapon during Desert Storm. The rifles were literally breaking, falling apart and some reports of them blowing up! So, they had to rush older stores of FALs & ammo to their frontline troops, I remember seeing them, most of the rear troops were still stuck with L85's and had to pray they didn't have to use them. After seeing this video I understand it better and why he references back to the AR-180, I've had a few of those and the design is much the same, stamped steel receiver & parts, crude rotating bolt & carrier, like a joining of the AR & AK design with the AK probably being the better weapon.

I got to handle some of these weapons, the most impressive for me was the FAMAS, I ran into a French Foreign Legion guy during a convoy rest stop, He gave me a rundown of his weapon, one of the cool features is it can launch rifle grenades, he was fascinated by the M16A2 I carried as well...

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Old February 2nd, 2017, 06:00 AM   #3
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maybe there is a good reason they are forgotten weapons?

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Old February 2nd, 2017, 10:05 AM   #4
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I spent a lot of time with British Army soldiers during Desert Shield/Storm. Their EOD teams carried L85s. Their main complaint was that if you leaned on the rifle, fell on it, sat on it, etc. the receiver stamping would literally bend at the magazine well. Bent rifle.

The Brit engineers OTOH carried SLRs with SUIT scopes.

BTW when I was shooting in the Eastern Division match at Camp LeJeuene in 1989, the British Royal Marines sent over a squad of guys to compete with us. They had L85s with the carry handle optic, we had fairly new M16A2s with iron sights. The Royal Marines kicked our butts pretty soundly, as in IIRC they took the top 4 places in rifle, and something like 6 of the top 10. We did get even with pistols though, they had well worn out Hipower P35s and we had new Beretta 92s.

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Old February 2nd, 2017, 10:17 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by 2336USMC View Post
I spent a lot of time with British Army soldiers during Desert Shield/Storm. Their EOD teams carried L85s. Their main complaint was that if you leaned on the rifle, fell on it, sat on it, etc. the receiver stamping would literally bend at the magazine well. Bent rifle.

The Brit engineers OTOH carried SLRs with SUIT scopes.

BTW when I was shooting in the Eastern Division match at Camp LeJeuene in 1989, the British Royal Marines sent over a squad of guys to compete with us. They had L85s with the carry handle optic, we had fairly new M16A2s with iron sights. The Royal Marines kicked our butts pretty soundly, as in IIRC they took the top 4 places in rifle, and something like 6 of the top 10. We did get even with pistols though, they had well worn out Hipower P35s and we had new Beretta 92s.
From what I recall, the L85 was considered a pretty good bench rifle for accuracy of its type. Having said that, it seems to be held in almost universal disdain for poor reliability and ergonomics. Unfortunate beta is what it sounds like. I understand that H&K really rebuilt to the A2 standard and it is... adequate.

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Old February 3rd, 2017, 12:43 PM   #6
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I did hear that the L85A1 was sent to HK in Germany to eh-hem "un-f#*k" it for the Brits.
What HK sent back was a far more reliable rifle than before it was worked on, but British politics got involved and because the HK modified rifle was a larger percentage German made/designed - this was a problem and so it was reworked to be what it is today.
So in a nutshell...
L85A1 - crap.
L85 HK - pretty good.
L85A2 politics involved - fairly mediocre.
And while all of this goes on, the troops suffer.
I have personally shot the L85 rifle and although reliability and ergonomics is..... rubbish - it is extremely accurate for an assault rifle.

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Old February 3rd, 2017, 02:05 PM   #7
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This was very informative. I have never been a big fan of the bullpup style rifle but I always thought these Brit rifles were kinda cool looking. Guess looks don't mean anything after all!!

If the Brits would part these out I'll bet someone could make a fortune here in the US developing a semi receiver. Get rid of the dumb ban on barrels, the complete kits would be a big seller.

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Old February 27th, 2017, 04:51 PM   #8
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Didn't help that Radway Green 5.56 is pretty much crap ammo, either.

Great Britain is undoubtedly has the most disciplined yet poorest equipped military in Europe.

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