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Colt Canada / Diemaco C8

Assault Carbine

Canada | 1988

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

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 05/30/2024 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
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".

Content ©MilitaryFactory.com; No Reproduction Permitted.
The physical qualities of the Colt Canada / Diemaco C8. Information presented is strictly for general reference and should not be misconstrued as useful for hardware restoration or operation.
840 mm
33.07 in
O/A Length
370 mm
14.57 in
Barrel Length
5.95 lb
2.70 kg
Gas-Operated; Rotating Bolt
5.56x45mm NATO
30-round detachable box magazine
Adjustable Iron; Optional Optics.
Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Colt Canada / Diemaco C8. Information presented is strictly for general reference and should not be misconstrued as useful for hardware restoration or operation.
2,953 ft/sec
900 m/sec
Muzzle Velocity
Notable series variants as part of the Colt Canada / Diemaco C8 Assault Carbine family line.
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
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Colt Canada / Diemaco C8. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national small arms listing.

Contractor(s): Diemaco / Colt Canada - Canada
National flag of Canada National flag of the United Kingdom

[ Canada; United Kingdom ]
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Image of the Colt Canada / Diemaco C8
An operator with his fully-laden C8 Carbine assault weapon

Design Qualities
Some designs are single-minded in their approach while others offer a more versatile solution to requirements.
Some designs stand the test of time while others are doomed to never advance beyond the drawing board; let history be their judge.
Going Further...
The Colt Canada / Diemaco C8 Assault Carbine appears in the following collections:
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