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Falklands era British Army L1A1 Fitted with Trilux L2A2 Scope and mount
This is an excellent example of a Falkland period British Army L1A1 fitted with a
Trilux L2A2 scope.
This L1A1 was manufactured at the BSA Company, Birmingham in 1961 and is a 7.62 NATO calibre British Army Service rifle.
During the L1A1 service life from 1958-1992 this was by far the best Service rifle the British Army has ever had, very relible in every condidion thrown at it.
Its 7.62 calibre could easly out shoot the Soveit Union AK47 and the US made M16 .556 on the battlefield.
It was used from Jungle warfare's in the far east to the deserts of North Africa, from the damp misty conditions in Northern Ireland to the freezing cold tempertures of the Falklands.
After it was withdrawn from service in 1985 and replaced by the SA80 (L85A1), the L1A1 was withdrawn from all front line services and sent to British Army War Reserve for deep storage as War Reserve stock.
However in 1991 the when the SA80 (L85A1) were sent into its first major combat during the Gulf War, individual performance was appalling. The L85A1 proved unreliable in semi-automatic mode, and slightly better in fully automatic mode, while the opposite was true of the L86A1.
Specific complaints included: the poor quality plastic furniture fell apart and the gun was damaged easily; the magazine release catch was easily knocked accidentally and dropped the magazine; the catch on the top cover over the gas mechanism was too weak and constantly popped open, so it had to be taped down; only 26–28 rounds could be loaded in a magazine because the springs were weak and due know what was really bad , the plastic furniture was melted by insect repellent.
The sand of the Iraq desert just filled up the SA80, so they were unworkably when the British troops need them the most.
You had to strip it down in battle condition , empty the sand out of the gun then put it back together before the enemy shot you first.
Back in London the MOD in Whitehall were in a panic, British troops were reportly dumping their SA80's and picking up the Iraq Army's AK47's just to stay alive !
Within a week the L1A1 were on there way to Iraq and quickly replaced the SA80 as the main British Army battle rifle. The L1A1 stayed in service in Iraq until the Iraq Gulf war was over then sent back into UK and back into War Reserve.
There was a bit of commotion when British troops had to hand back there L1A1's in 1992 as the L1A1 (9.5 lb) is lighter than the SA80 (at 11lb) and by that time all confidence in the SA80 had long gone. It was reported at the time (1992) that British troops were openly asking officers why they could not keep there L1A1 rather than hand them back.
A Royal Marine from 7th Platoon, 1st Force Reconnaissance Company, fires a British L1A1 RIFLE during weapons training with British soldiers of the Queen's Dragoon Guards at Abu Hydra Range during Gulf War Operation Desert Shield.
By time this photo was taken all SA80 (L85A1) had been withdrawn from Iraq and replaced with L1A1's
The L1A1 is truely a world class Service rifle and used by 60 countries around the world.
Yomping across the Falkland to retake Port Stanley
We now have a limited stock of L1A1's left