L1A1 Self Loading Rifle

Unit Australian Army
Place Asia: Vietnam
Accession Number REL35170
Collection type Technology
Object type Firearm
Physical description Plastic, Steel
Maker Small Arms Factory, Lithgow
Place made Australia: New South Wales, Lithgow
Date made 1969
Conflict Vietnam, 1962-1975

The L1A1 is a gas operated, semi-automatic only, magazine fed rifle. It functions using a short stroke gas piston located above the barrel. After the shot is fired, the gas piston makes a quick tap to the bolt carrier and then returns back to battery and the rest of the reloading cycle is commenced by the inertia of the bolt group. The gas system is has an adjustable gas regulator. The locking system uses a bolt carrier with a separate bolt that locks into the receiver by tipping its rear part section into the recess in the receiver floor. The receiver is machined from a forged steel block. The trigger housing with pistol grip is hinged to the receiver assembly behind the magazine well and is hinged downward for maintenance and disassembly. The recoil spring is housed in the butt of the rifle. The folding cocking handle is located at the left side of the receiver and is stationary when the rifle is fired. The safety, fire selector switch is located on the trigger housing, above the triggerguard. The firing mechanism is hammer fired and has a single sear engagement for semi-automatic fire. The barrel is equipped with long flash hider which also serves as a rifle grenade launcher. There is a post front sight and a folding graduated peep rear sight. A folding carry handle with a green plastic grip is attached to the rear of the gas cylinder. A cast alloy butt plate with a trap is attached to the butt stock which has provision for an oil bottle and pull through rope. The rifle has a detachable 20 round magazine. The rifle has a blued and parkerised finish. Markings - Left side of the receiver engraved RIFLE 7.62 MM L1.A1. Lithgow proof marks; DP INOC.

History / Summary

The L1A1 SLR was the standard rifle of the Australian Army from 1960 to 1992. The L1A1 is a local adoption of the British L1A1 SLR (a development of the Belgian FN FAL). It is a reliable weapon which has proved itself in all environmental conditions and is regarded as one of the most successful battle rifles ever produced.

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