L85A1 (Elle, Eru, or L) is a character appearing in the Upotte anime and manga.
AppearanceEditL85A1/Elle has short blonde hair and blue eyes, two features common to foreigners in anime and manga. In the manga, her eyes have slitted pupils reminiscent of the view from a SUSAT scope. She is shorter than her fellow students, due to the compact nature of the gun. In the anime, she is often seen carrying an umbrella, to prevent the sun from corroding her plastic parts. Due to the gun's weight (over 11 lbs when fully loaded and outfitted with optics), she has the largest breasts out of any assault rifle shown in the series L's Gag Boobs refer to the L85 being rather heavy and having a larger handguard, compared to other assault rifles; also, according to the Gun Girl anatomy book, the handguard is the bustline. (Now consider where a guy's hands usually end up...) A statement to this, she wears quite plain shoes unlike many other more agile and maneveurable guns who wear sneakers or running shoes
In the manga, Elle never speaks, and rarely shows any emotion. This was changed for the anime, where she is much more expressive, and actually speaks in Episode 5. Due to the L85A1's notorious lack of reliability, Elle regularly breaks down and must be hospitalized. However, she has learned to exploit this perception, by getting back up and counterattacking after her enemies assumed she was out of commission. She idolizes FAL and views her as an older sister, due to her role as Elle's predecessor as a British service rifle.
She also has financial problems and is called penniless girl by Ichiroku
In Real LifeEdit
The L85A1 was deisgned as part of the SA80 program in Britain in the 1980s, in order to replace the L1A1 SLR. While the initial design, a bullpup version of the AR18, was sound, it was plagued by production problems. The original design called for machined parts, but when it came time to manufacture them, stamped parts were used instead, which could not be manufactured with anywhere near the same level of strength and precision. Additionally, the factory workers who made it were told they would be laid off once they were finished, due to the privatization of the Royal Armory. As a result, most of the first batch of L85s were poorly made, or even actively sabotaged by the makers.
Britain continued to use the weapon for over a decade, until they commissioned Heckler and Koch to fix the original design. H&K engineered out the reliability issues and many of the design drawbacks, resulting in the L85A2.
The L85A1 was used by the British army, but was plagued by reliability issues, and was eventually upgraded to the L85A2
The L85A1 was plagued by numerous performance issues, all fixed when it was upgraded, including but not limited to:
- Frequent jamming
- The locking pins could puncture the stamped metal when reinserted after field stripping, rendering the weapon useless
- The magazine fit too snugly in the mag well, and it was easy to accidentally push the mag release, resulting in the perception that the magazine fell out
- The firing pin was too weak, and would break after roughly 100 rounds of sustained automatic fire
- The plastic parts would freeze and shatter in cold weather
The bullpup design resulted in several other drawbacks. The weapon cannot be fired left-handed, because doing so would require the user to put their face too close to the ejection port. Most of the weight is concentrated toward the back, resulting in poor balance and increased muzzle climb, though this can be alleviated by attaching a bayonet or grenade launcher. Due to its mostly metal construction (most other bullpups of note, such as the Steyr AUG and F2000, make heavy use of plastic parts), the gun is very heavy.
At only 31", the gun is very compact, making the weight and recoil less of a problem, because it can be held close to the body. This also allows for a longer barrel. It is one of the most accurate assault rifles available.
There is no standard civilian model of the L85. An available version exists in the form of the weapon's semi-automatic training variant, the L98A2, but there are only around 10 in the United States, and they can sell for over $20,000.