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Colt Canada / Diemaco C8

Assault Carbine [ 1988 ]

The Canadian C8 Assault Carbine is nothing more than a compact version of the Army C7 Rifle.

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 06/14/2021 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.

The Diemaco (now Colt Canada) C8 is the "assault carbine" form of the C7 - the C7 being the standard-issue assault rifle of the Canadian military - equivalent to the American M4 carbine series. The C7 began life in 1984 as a modified version of the American Colt M16A2 Assault Rifle and has since been improved into several viable forms to suit Canadian Army requirements. The key differentiating feature between the C7 and the M16A2 was its use of a full-automatic fire mode. The C8, therefore, shares the same internal working components as the C7 before but sports a shortened forestock and barrel as well as a telescoping butt for use in more confined spaces or close-in combat. The C8 was originally intended for issue to vehicle crews but has since been branched out to include issue to special forces elements, paratroopers and the like - soldiers requiring the facilities of a more compact weapon. Like the C7 family, the C8 also makes use of the 5.56x45mm NATO standard cartridge and this is also from a 30-round curved detachable box magazine. The barrel measures in at 14.5 inches.

The original C8 carbine line has since been broadened to fulfill a variety of Canadian military requirements. The C8A1 is an improved version of the original with a detachable carrying handle and upper receiver utilizing a C79 optical sight. The C8SWF (Special Forces Weapon) has a longer, heavier barrel for assault rifle-type functionality in-the-field. Support for an underslung 40mm grenade launcher is also noted. This version sees service in the British special forces as the "L119A1". The C8FTHB (Flat Top Heavy Barrel) is another version improving upon the basic C8 design featuring a heavy barrel and standard C79 optical sight support. The C8CQB (Close Quarter Battle) is a refined short-range weapon. The Diemaco PDW (Personal Defense Weapon) is similar in scope though a much more compact C8 carbine form.

Diemaco operated under its own label under a Colt production license up until 2005 to which then it was absorbed under the Colt Firearms banner to become "Colt Canada Corporation".©MilitaryFactory.com
Note: The above text is EXCLUSIVE to the site www.MilitaryFactory.com. It is the product of many hours of research and work made possible with the help of contributors, veterans, insiders, and topic specialists. If you happen upon this text anywhere else on the internet or in print, please let us know at MilitaryFactory AT gmail DOT com so that we may take appropriate action against the offender / offending site and continue to protect this original work.


Basics [+]
Diemaco / Colt Canada - Canada
Canada; United Kingdom National flag of Canada National flag of the United Kingdom
Service Year
National Origin

Overall Length
840 mm / 33.07 in
Barrel Length
370 mm / 14.57 in
Weight (Empty)
5.95 lb / 2.70 kg
Gas-Operated; Rotating Bolt
System utilizes internal mechanism to lock the breech or rear barrel assembly prior to firing.
Gas-operated system is featured, typically involving a gas cylinder and rear-driven piston directing energy to the bolt component.
5.56x45mm NATO
*May not represent an exhuastive list; Calibers may be model-specific dependent; Always consult official manufacturer sources.
30-round detachable box magazine
Adjustable Iron; Optional Optics.

Material presented above is for historical and entertainment value and should not be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation - always consult official manufacturer sources for such information.

900 rpm
Muzzle Velocity
2,953 ft/sec / 900 m/sec

C8 - Carbine Form; base model.
C8A1 - Improved model; C7A1 upper receiver; 14.5" barrel assembly; C79 series sight.
C8A2 - Based on the C8 model; cold-hammer forged heavy-duty 14.5" barrel assembly.
C8A3 - Abidexrous functionality.
C8SFW ("Special Forces Weapon") - C8 Carbine modified for use specifically by Special Forces elements; mounting for underslung grenade launcher.
C8FTHB ("Flat Top Heavy Barrel")
C8CT - Designated Marksman
L119A1 - British Designation of C8SFW

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Image of the Colt Canada / Diemaco C8
An operator with his fully-laden C8 Carbine assault weapon

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