When Bullpups Went Wrong: The L85/SA80

When bullpups were the wave sweeping Western Europe in the theorized mechanized conflict, the British company Enfield made many terrible decisions.

The SA80 was a bureaucratic nightmare on a level that rivals and perhaps even surpasses the F35 Joint Strike Fighter. The F35 is just a more expensive example. QC for the SA80 was nearly non-existent.

As the video mentions, the German H&K (British owned at the time) had to remake the entire rifle into the A2 configuration. While it is honestly a passable service rifle now, its evolution made the AR-15/M-16’s problems in Vietnam look like a rifle that acted up here and there.