List of equipment of the Royal Marines
of the British Armed Forces
|History and future|
This is a list of equipment of the Royal Marines currently in use. It includes personal equipment, small arms, combat vehicles and watercraft. The Royal Marines are a highly specialised and adaptable light infantry force, a part of Her Majesty's Naval Service. The equipment of the Royal Marines has a high degree of commonality with other arms of the British Armed Forces - particularly the British Army - but includes some unique items.
To meet their commitments, the equipment of the armed forces is periodically updated and modified. Programs exist to ensure the Royal Marines are suitably equipped for both current conflicts and expected future conflicts, with any shortcomings in equipment addressed as Urgent Operational Requirements (UOR), which supplements planned equipment programmes.
Combat Body Armour
|L131A1||Austria||Semi-automatic pistol||9×19mm||Adopted as the new standard issue sidearm to replace the L9A1, L47A1, and SIG Sauer pistols. The L131A1 is a single action sidearm used for close combat with a magazine capacity of 17 rounds; where deemed appropriate, it is the primary weapon of personnel working in operational staff appointments and vehicle commanders and carried as a backup weapon by frontline personnel. Over 25,000 were purchased for use by all branches of the British Armed Forces.|
|L119A1, L119A2|| Canada
|Assault rifle||5.56×45mm||Initially used by 43 Commando Royal Marines before being declared as the replacement for the SA80 family of weapons in all Royal Marine units. Both A1 and A2 variants are used.|
|L85A2, L85A3, L22A2||United Kingdom||Assault rifle||5.56×45mm||Formerly the standard issue assault rifle, currently being phased out in favour of the L119 series. Can be fitted with SUSAT, ACOG, Elcan SpecterOS 4X or Thermal Viper 2 sights. The LLM-Vario Ray laser aiming module and the L123 Underslung Grenade Launcher (UGL) can also be attached.|
|L129A1||United States||Designated marksman rifle||7.62×51mm||The primary designated marksman rifle, equipped with an ACOG optical sight for long-range engagements. There is also a Sniper Support Weapon version fitted with a 12x Schmidt & Bender scope and a suppressor for use by the second man in each sniper team.|
|L3A1||United Kingdom||Socket bayonet||The L3A1 bayonet has a hollow handle that fits onto the muzzle of the L85 rifle. The blade is offset to the side of the handle to allow the rifle to be fired while the bayonet is fitted; it is shaped to produce good penetration when thrust and to part a person's ribs without embedding into bone, and features blood channel recesses to enable clean withdrawal from a body and a ribbed section for rope cutting. The bayonet handle is shaped so as to allow the bayonet to be used as a multi-purpose knife when needed. The L3A1's scabbard features a saw blade for use on wood, a sharpening stone to hone the bayonet, and a bottle opener; when combined with the bayonet, it also forms a wire cutter. A rail-mounted adaptor was developed to allow the bayonet to be used with the L129A1 Sharpshooter Rifle.|
|L115A3||United Kingdom||Precision rifle||8.59mm||Now regarded as the primary precision rifle for all British military trained snipers. It is equipped with a 25x scope, a suppressor, a folding stock, a five-round .338 Lapua Magnum magazine and has an effective range in excess of 1,100 m (3,600 ft). Corporal of Horse Craig Harrison currently holds the record for the 3rd longest recorded sniper shot in history at 2,475 meters (2,707 yd) with this rifle.|
|L108A1, L110A2, L110A3
|Belgium||Light machine gun||5.56×45mm
|The 5.56mm FN Minimi is belt-fed and equipped with a fixed, folding bipod, with the L110A1-A3 being capable of sustained suppressive fire out to 300 metres. The L110A2 and L110A3 are no longer in service with regular British Army platoons, and their continued usage by the Royal Marines is also questionable.|
|L7A2||Belgium||General-purpose machine gun||7.62×51mm||The designated GPMG for sustained fire out to 1,800 m.|
|L111A1||United States||Heavy machine gun||12.7mm||The L111A1 is the British version of the American M2 Browning. It can be attached to both armoured and soft-skin vehicles, or a ground-mount tripod. The weapon has an effective range of 2,200 m.|
|L123A2, L123A3, L17A1||Germany||Underslung grenade launcher||40×46mm||Variant of the AG36 grenade launcher introduced during the SA80A2 upgrade and issued on a scale of two per infantry section. Compared to the preceding Rifle Grenade General Service, the underslung grenade launcher offers low recoil, ease of use, reduced ammunition weight and the ability to have a chambered grenade at the ready without affecting the ability to fire the L85 rifle. Ammunition natures used include fragmentation, HEDP, white illuminating parachute, infra-red illuminating parachute, and red phosphorus. The L17A1 version is used with the L119A1/A2 rifles.|
|L109A2||Switzerland||HE grenade||Fuse||British version of the Swiss HG 85 Grenade. It differs from the original in that it has a matte black safety clip similar to the American M67 grenade. It has a 3-5 second fuse (climate dependent), contains 155g of high explosive and has a lethal range of 10 m (33 ft).|
|L16A2|| United Kingdom
|MBT LAW|| Sweden
|Anti-tank weapon||150mm||Man-portable, short range fire-and-forget anti-tank guided missile system designed for non-expert use. It is designed to "rapidly knock out any main battle tank in just one shot by striking it from above".|
|FGM-148 Javelin||United States||Anti-tank weapon||127mm||Man-portable medium range anti-tank missile system. It fires a High Explosive Anti Tank (HEAT) warhead and is capable of penetrating explosive-reactive armour. Compared to the American original, the version in British service has a more effective sight system and a tripod for improved firing and observation.|
|Island-class patrol boat||United Kingdom||Patrol boat||3||15 tonnes (15 long tons; 17 short tons)||The Island-class patrol boat is used for force protection duties|
|Landing Craft, Utility Mk 10||United Kingdom||Landing craft||10 ||240 tonnes (240 long tons; 260 short tons)||The LCU is the Royal Marines' largest landing craft, carried by the Albion-class and Bay-class landing ship|
|Landing Craft, Vehicle Personnel Mk 5||United Kingdom||Landing craft||19 ||24 tonnes (24 long tons; 26 short tons)||The LCVP is carried by the Albion-class.|
|Landing Craft, Air Cushion Mk 5||United Kingdom||Hovercraft||4 ||6.8 tonnes (6.7 long tons; 7.5 short tons)|
|Offshore Raiding Craft||United Kingdom||RHIB||6 tonnes (5.9 long tons; 6.6 short tons)|
|Inflatable Raiding Craft||Inflatable boat||1.25 tonnes (1.23 long tons; 1.38 short tons)|
|Rigid Raider||United Kingdom||Boat||2.5 tonnes (2.5 long tons; 2.8 short tons)|
|Mk 8 SDV||United States||Submersible||3||2.5 tonnes (2.5 long tons; 2.8 short tons)||The Mk 8 SEAL Delivery Vehicle is used by the Special Boat Service.|
|BAE Fast Interceptor Craft||United Kingdom||Special forces boat||The Fast Interceptor Craft is a stealthy boat used by the Special Boat Service|
The Royal Marines maintain no heavy armoured units, instead, they operate a fleet of lightly armoured and highly mobile vehicles intended for amphibious landings or rapid deployment. The primary armoured fighting vehicle operated by the Armoured Support Group is the BvS 10 Viking All Terrain Armoured Vehicle. Other, lighter vehicles include the Land Rover Wolf Armoured Patrol Vehicle, the Jackal (MWMIK) Armoured Vehicle and the Pinzgauer High Mobility All-Terrain Vehicle.
|Viking||Sweden||Amphibious armoured fighting vehicle||99||The UK currently operates four variants of the vehicle: The Troop Carrying Variant (TCV) capable of carrying 2 crew plus 10 passengers; the Command Variant (CV), which carries 2 crew plus up to 8 passengers with the rear cab being designed as an enhanced digital communications platform, the Repair and Recovery Variant (RRV), carrying 4 specialist maintenance vehicle mechanic crewmen and the Ambulance Variant (AV). The rear cab of the RRV carries a HIAB crane, a fully mobile workshop, an air compressor and a 9 tonne capacity capstan winch, together with hydraulic anchors. All three variants are fully air-portable under a CH-47 Chinook helicopter, either complete or in two separate front and rear component parts and are also fully amphibious; being capable of swimming in varying sea-states with a full load of passengers and stores.|
|Pinzgauer||Austria||All-terrain truck||The Pinzgauer is a 4×4 and 6×6 tactical support vehicle used by the Royal Artillery to tow artillery pieces, such as the Rapier and L118 Light gun.|
|Land Rover Wolf||United Kingdom||Utility vehicle||The Land Rover Wolf is a militarised version of the Land Rover Defender. They can be found in service with British forces worldwide, and can be armed with one 12.7mm Heavy Machine Gun and a 7.62mm General Purpose Machine Gun. The Land Rover Wolf is designated as a Truck Utility Light (TUL - Defender 90) and Medium (TUM - Defender 110).|
|United Kingdom||Protected mobility vehicle|
|Hippo BRV|| United Kingdom/
|Armoured recovery vehicle||4||The Hippo is a conversion by Alvis Moelv of a Leopard 1A5 tank. As with earlier generations of BARV, the main alteration has been the replacement of the turret with a raised superstructure which, in this case, resembles the bridge or wheelhouse of a small ship. The original 830-horsepower (620 kW) diesel engine has been retained but the gearing of the transmission had been lowered; this has reduced the vehicle's road speed from 65 to 20 kilometres per hour (40 to 12 mph), but its tractive force has been increased to 250 kilonewtons (56,000 lbf). Other modifications include the addition of working platforms, a nosing block, raised air intakes and an auxiliary power unit; this has raised the weight of the vehicle from 42.5 tonnes to 50 tonnes. The Hippo has a fording depth of 2.95 metres (9 ft 8 in) and can pull vehicles up to 50 tonnes weight or push off from the beach a 240 tonne displacement landing craft.|
- "Defence Factsheet: Urgent Operational Requirements (UOR)". Ministry of Defence. Archived from the original on 27 March 2010. Retrieved 7 February 2010.
- "309,228! Final respirator is handed over in £52 million contract" (PDF). DESider. No. 80. Ministry of Defence. 9 January 2015. Retrieved 9 January 2015.
- "Service Inquiry - Death of a Soldier from a Gunshot Wound at Camp Taji, Iraq 2 January 2017" (PDF). assets.publishing.service.gov.uk. 2019-06-19. p. 58.
- "Glock 17". Ministry of Defence. Archived from the original on 1 July 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
- Ministry of Defence (United Kingdom) (2014). Army Code No. 71996, DCC Training Volume II, Skill at Arms (Personal Weapons), General Service Pistol L131A1.
- "Service Inquiry Death of a Soldier from a Gunshot Wound at Camp Taji, Iraq 2 January 2017" (PDF). assets.publishing.service.gov.uk. 2019-06-19. p. 25.
- "New pistols for UK Armed Forces". Government of the United Kingdom and the Ministry of Defence. 11 January 2013.
- "UK Royal Marine unit ditches the SA80 for Colt C8". Pakistan Defence. 4 March 2016. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
- Lye, Harry (2019-11-07). "Royal Navy limits commitment to Littoral Strike Ship development". Naval-technology.com. Retrieved 2019-12-13.
- "L119A2 - Colt Canada C8 Upgrade". Think Defence. 24 June 2014. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
- "SA80 individual weapon". Army.mod.uk. Archived from the original on 2015-12-10. Retrieved 2009-04-22.
- "L129A1 sharpshooter rifle". Ministry of Defence. Archived from the original on 20 June 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
- "L129A1 (SSW) Rifle". RAF. Ministry of Defence. Archived from the original on 15 August 2017. Retrieved 14 October 2017.
- admin. "Are We Forever Stuck with the Bayonet?". Small Arms Defense Journal. Retrieved 2020-02-16.
- Ministry of Defence (United Kingdom) (2004). Army Code No. 71807, Infantry Training Volume II, Pamphlet No. 5 The SA80 A2 (5.56 mm) System (Rifle, Light Support Weapon and Carbine) and Associated Equipment.
- Ministry of Defence (United Kingdom) (2011). Army Code No. 71807, Infantry Training Volume II, Pamphlet No. 5 The SA80 A2 (5.56 mm) System (Rifle, Light Support Weapon and Carbine) and Associated Equipment.
- Ministry of Defence (United Kingdom) (2015). Army Code No. 71807, Infantry Training Volume II, Pamphlet No. 5 The SA80 A2 (5.56 mm) System (Rifle, Light Support Weapon and Carbine) and Associated Equipment.
- ISTEC Services. "Bayonet Adaptor". Retrieved 2020-04-07.
- "L115A3 Long range 'sniper' rifle". Ministry of Defence. Archived from the original on 29 June 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
- "Light Machine Gun (LMG)". Ministry of Defence. Archived from the original on 27 January 2013. Retrieved 28 January 2010.
- "Out with old for infantry weapons". Soldier. British Army. August 2018. p. 16. Retrieved 26 June 2020.
- "Heavy machine gun". Ministry of Defence. Archived from the original on 27 January 2013. Retrieved 28 January 2010.
- Ministry of Defence (United Kingdom) (2009). Army Code No. 71882, Infantry Tactical Doctrine Volume 1, Pamphlet No. 3 Infantry Platoon Tactics.
- "Soldier Magazine September 2018". British Army. Retrieved 8 September 2018.
- "Leading system supplier of 40mm weapons, ammunition and fire control technology" (PDF). Rheinmetall Defence. 13 September 2011.
- "L119A1/A2 Special Forces Individual Weapon (SFIW)". Elite UK Forces. Retrieved 7 May 2014.
- "NLAW". Ministry of Defence. Archived from the original on 28 June 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
- "Javelin Medium Range Anti-tank Guided Weapon". Ministry of Defence. Archived from the original on 17 February 2013. Retrieved 28 January 2010.
- "The Military Balance 2012", International Institute for Strategic Studies, pp. 170–171
- The Royal Navy Handbook, page 106
- Jim Dorschner (27 May 2009). "Special Delivery". Jane's Defence Weekly. 46 (21): 28.
- IISS 2010, p. 168.
- Joint Committees On Transportation Holds Public Hearing Re: Trans 123 Archived 5 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine
- The International Institute for Strategic Studies (2018). The Military Balance: The Annual Assessment of Global Military Capabilities and Defence Economics. The International Institute for Strategic Studies. p. 163.