It’s a well known fact that the L85, the UK’s service bullpup, is not a well regarded rifle. It had a more fraught early adoption than the M16 and had unresolved problems for all of its A1 variant history, ending in 1994. The rifles then sat for about 6 years, still with a very poor reputation, until H&K set about fixing this with the A2 variant in the 2000’s.
The fixing and modernization would continue into 2007, 08, and 09 when the RIS systems and upgraded modular optic suites were added… a full decade behind the M16A4 with it’s rigid rail system and optics compatible suite.
So what are operators like the SAS to do?
Get an AR. Everyone else had them.
We can flip, and then back up and flop, over between a direct impingement gas system or a short stroke piston operated one, both are running strong here in 2022, but the AR is the king of rifles right now. Most major militaries and more special units are running an AR variant. M4A1, HK416, C7, C8, M16A4, or specialty variant thereof are all out there in the wild and doing good things as fighting rifles.
The UK went with the L119A1 which was a Colt Canada, formerly Diemaco, variant of the C8 rifle. Specifically the C8SFW which was essentially a 16.1″ barreled M4A1 variance. The A2, like the SOPMOD Block II and URGI, takes the things we have learned about making the AR run better and more accurately into account.
Ian has the scoop of this little known C8 variant. Hit play. Cloners, do your thing.