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Old October 20, 2018, 22:01   #1
lockjaw
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Comparing a pair of NOS L1A1 lowers...

I recently purchased a NOS C1A1 stripped lower from Marstar.

I found it interesting that it was identical to a NOS inch lower that I had purchased about a year ago, advertised to be as Aussie... it is identical, all the way down to the selector lettering font.

I recently purchased an L1A1 lot of parts off of Gunbroker. It came with a NOS "L1A1" lower with no assertion of origin, which was purchased from Sarco some time ago for $59.99. It is identical to the above lowers, again, all the way down to the selector lettering font.

None of the lowers had an "AD" on them.

Just an observation that I found interesting... and no, not concerned that the NOS receiver that was sold to me as "Aussie" might be Canuk (or both?)... the receiver was an awesome addition to my last inch build.
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Old October 21, 2018, 01:07   #2
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Countries bought parts from same vendor/manufacture/production line??????

Need 5000 units, who can provide 5000 at the lowest price, or the lowest kickbacks on the order.

Kinda like AR lowers, 100 brand names, only four or five producers for all of them???
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Old October 21, 2018, 05:52   #3
lockjaw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowhand View Post
Countries bought parts from same vendor/manufacture/production line??????

Need 5000 units, who can provide 5000 at the lowest price, or the lowest kickbacks on the order.

Kinda like AR lowers, 100 brand names, only four or five producers for all of them???
No speculation from my end, but your suggestion is what makes the most sense to me.

That said, I simply posted an observation.....
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Old October 21, 2018, 08:23   #4
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IIRC Lithgow supplied Canada with a large quantity of stripped lowers.
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Old October 21, 2018, 08:36   #5
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The more I think about it.....IIRC the grip bushing on Canadian and Lithgow lowers are different lengths...if that is the case you should be able to tell if it's a true Canadian manufacture.
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Old October 21, 2018, 08:47   #6
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While there was sharing of components, CAL, BSA, Enfield and Lithgow all produced the TMH (lower). The FAL Primer compares UK against Lithgow and the differences are obvious. CAL vs Lithgow would make an interesting study but provenance would have to be preconfirmed.
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Old October 21, 2018, 09:28   #7
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Well,

I have several NOS Aussie and Canadian lowers. They are different. The lettering for the selector is of a different style, and the Aussie lowers have an A as well as the S and R.

I look tonight and see what the other differences are.

Thorack
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Old October 21, 2018, 11:56   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thorack View Post
Well,

I have several NOS Aussie and Canadian lowers. They are different. The lettering for the selector is of a different style, and the Aussie lowers have an A as well as the S and R.

I look tonight and see what the other differences are.

Thorack

SOME Lithgow lowers have A some do not.
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Old October 21, 2018, 21:53   #9
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Skennerton's SLR has many photos of early Aussie lowers with no A. The later ones including Poyers have the A. This change isn't mentioned in the book. The Poyers also have no AD on the right side. So it may not confirm Aussie origin. Some of the NOS lowers I've seen have straight horizontal portions of the R and S while others are curved. Is the alternative font Aussie or Canadian? Both of these lowers had no AD.
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Old October 21, 2018, 22:19   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thorack View Post
Well,

I have several NOS Aussie and Canadian lowers. They are different. The lettering for the selector is of a different style, and the Aussie lowers have an A as well as the S and R.

I look tonight and see what the other differences are.

Thorack
Please post pictures for reference. Will help us gain better understanding of difference.
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Old October 22, 2018, 08:33   #11
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The AUS "A" vs. "No A" is discussed in The FN FAL Primer, page 82.

While not addressing the C1A1, the differences in the TMH (lower) between UK and AUS are on pages 86 and 87. Hope that helps.
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Old October 22, 2018, 22:04   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kysjck View Post
Skennerton's SLR has many photos of early Aussie lowers with no A. The later ones including Poyers have the A. This change isn't mentioned in the book. The Poyers also have no AD on the right side. So it may not confirm Aussie origin. Some of the NOS lowers I've seen have straight horizontal portions of the R and S while others are curved. Is the alternative font Aussie or Canadian? Both of these lowers had no AD.
Some NOS and almost-complete lowers came from the Lithgow buy-out with no AD engraved.
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Old October 22, 2018, 23:55   #13
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So we're still left with no definitive observable difference.
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Old October 23, 2018, 10:01   #14
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We need to remember that there is no hard "They ONLY EVER Did such & such" when it comes to FALs, whether metric or inch

YH's statement was accurate
There was a degree of contracting out of components between member commonwealth nations whenever it was expedient to do so
This was primarily a factor between Canada & Australia and there were subtle changes during the overall production runs in both nations.

Years ago I handled a fair number of original C1s, seen up close and personal a degree of variation in the Canadian pattern.

My own view is that the Canadians developed the finest of all FAL variants however their was an evolution to reach what Filers commonly see as the C1

Allegedly Canada supplied the barrels, bipods and top cover assms for early L2 HBARs. It was a stop gap measure by Lithgowe until they tooled up on their own. That little nugget came from a retired Canuck arsenal engineer.
The initial run of C2s utilized the tangent sight mounted top cover, shortly later the diopter C2 rear was developed.

Those early C2 top covers used to crop up at Canadian shows all the way back in the 70s
Other odd shit too
one vendor in Manitoba had NOS stripped lowers in a curious green park that were largely metric EX1 but Canadian manufacture. Guy also had Canadian Black Walnut grips for them, other odd arsenal bits for this pattern. I recall him commenting that the Arsenal had initially geared up to produce a licensed knock off of the metric gun however the project was scrapped in favor of the then standardized UK inch gun and everything sold to the public.

Canada was a bit odd, while they mostly adopted the UK pattern the sights were loathed in evaluation which led to the creation of the diopters
Another example was the fantastic Lietz optic that Canada came up with for marksmen usage
Unlike the Brits, even the Aussies...at the time Canada was still a nation of Hunters and they endeavored to make their rifle as potentially capable as possible.

They did the same with their rendition of the Sterling SMG
while the C5 looks very similar to the UK gun the Canucks found the English design problematic in arctic climates and thus slightly redesigned it.

Part of the issue was that superbly smooth roller follower Sterling magazine tended to gum up in Canadian weather so that feature was eliminated among others.

Big part of the problem is that there has been no real solid study of Canuck built anything in their military small arms. They have always been seen as some isolated colonial outpost
The much maligned Ross is a hell of a rifle particularly in it's original .280 chambering
Another odd deal was many Dominion issued Sniders are deeply scalloped in the cheek weld area of the butt
Why ?
Again it's all about climate
they were armory scalloped out so one could aquire a proper sight picture while in a heavy militia parka with hood.
Canucks tend to be extremely practical people in small arms development, rather like the Israelis.

Anyways most of what went on north of the 49th has been largely ignored and now mostly forgotten even by Canadians themselves
We have a far better handle even on Indian variants than our 51st State...
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Old October 23, 2018, 14:06   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Riversidesports View Post
Allegedly Canada supplied the barrels, bipods and top cover assms for early L2 HBARs. It was a stop gap measure by Lithgowe until they tooled up on their own. That little nugget came from a retired Canuck arsenal engineer.
....no allegedly about it they most certainly did, there were a number of Canadian sourced parts utilised on the L2 throughout it's production. I have not looked in a bit but Skennerton covered some of it in his book, by memory alone, gas blocks and tangent sight components were always Canadian. I am not sure if it is recorded but I would have been shocked if early barrels were not as well.
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Old October 23, 2018, 17:58   #16
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....no allegedly about it they most certainly did, there were a number of Canadian sourced parts utilised on the L2 throughout it's production. I have not looked in a bit but Skennerton covered some of it in his book, by memory alone, gas blocks and tangent sight components were always Canadian. I am not sure if it is recorded but I would have been shocked if early barrels were not as well.
Thanks Andy
I knew folks in Canada who kind of disliked Skinnerton
They sort of felt he like everyone else mostly downplayed or ignored them

Old farts were adamant about shipments to OZ
pods were sent in the white, no wood and finished by Lithgowe with coach wood slabs
Canuck bbls were match grade compared to those turned out elsewhere
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Old October 23, 2018, 23:15   #17
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Early Lithgow L1A1 had the same "curious green phosphate". Most likely a zinc phosphate finish before switching to manganese phosphate finish.


[QUOTE=Riversidesports;4649050]We need to remember that there is no hard "They ONLY EVER Did such & such" when it comes to FALs, whether metric or inch

Other odd shit too
one vendor in Manitoba had NOS stripped lowers in a curious green park that were largely metric EX1 but Canadian manufacture.
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Old Yesterday, 16:09   #18
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I purchased a NOS "L1A1 Lower" as advertised by Sarco in their ad in SGN in 1994. IIRC, the lowers and other parts they had (to include NOS walnut handguards) were listed as Canadian.

A few months later, I purchased a NIW Aussie L1A1 lower from Bill at WME, LTD in Las Vegas-a wonderful gentleman to buy from although I'm sure he's long gone. I think they were $45.00 back then. Lord, those were the days.

The C1A1 lower is parked a dark gray, while the Lithgow lower is black lacquer paint (suncorite?) over park with an upside down "AD" marked (in the white) on the right side after the paint was heat cured. The font of the roll markings on the Aussie are more "square", while the C1A1 lower has more rounded font. The Aussie has an "A", while the C1A1 lower does not.

The cuts that are milled for the safety selector (or whatever the proper Commonwealth nomenclature is) look identical between the C1A1 and Lithgow product.

As an aside, the level of interchangeability between components made in different countries is impressive to me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lockjaw View Post
I recently purchased a NOS C1A1 stripped lower from Marstar.

I found it interesting that it was identical to a NOS inch lower that I had purchased about a year ago, advertised to be as Aussie... it is identical, all the way down to the selector lettering font.

I recently purchased an L1A1 lot of parts off of Gunbroker. It came with a NOS "L1A1" lower with no assertion of origin, which was purchased from Sarco some time ago for $59.99. It is identical to the above lowers, again, all the way down to the selector lettering font.

None of the lowers had an "AD" on them.

Just an observation that I found interesting... and no, not concerned that the NOS receiver that was sold to me as "Aussie" might be Canuk (or both?)... the receiver was an awesome addition to my last inch build.
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