Words and Pics: John Danter
At last I have my long awaited baby – the HAO Monolithic L119A2 Systema PTW.
This comprises the limited edition HAO L119A2 Beta Integrated Upper Receiver (IUR) which was released summer 2018 and built by Tackleberry; and the company’s new L119A2 lower which was released in summer 2019.
My friend Elmo (Edwin Murphy) built my lower – including all internal work – over an afternoon. After a few final tweaks to the ambi gearbox, he had it purring like my much missed cat, Cymba. More about him later.
The Amplifier Build Doctrine
If you didn’t see the recent Reptile House article about Blaster Build Doctrines, read it now!
I’ve very much followed the ‘Amplification’ route.
This involves utilising influences which, while potentially idiosyncratic, have had a paradigm-shifting (and probably long lasting) impact on the L119A2 scene.
After all, the Obi Wan Nairobi photoset brought new blood and new ideas into a scene which was in desperate need of fresh perspectives.
Indeed, by using some of the widely acknowledged hallmarks of the Nairobi blaster, I’ve aimed to make this build instantly recognisable as an L119A2 – even outside the scene.
These two pics were key to my build – Obi Wan’s L119A2 and a Kryptek UKSF HK417:
How I painted the Kryptek pattern is covered on The Reptile House, here.
Make sure you spray lightly, as the trades on the HAO lower are finer than the average engraved airsoft ones. HAO uses roll marks – like the RS – and these are of variable depth, due the the stamping process. Therefore they could get clogged with paint if you overdo it.
I had to revise part of the paint job this week (long story), but cleaning off the paint really made the trades pop and I almost left it like this:
The serial number I chose for upper and lower is a sentimental touch.
It was the due date of my daughter Méabh (it’s an Irish name, pronounced ‘Maeve‘ in English), although she arrived early! I arranged with HAO for the serial to be added to the lower and JTac Custom added the serial to my upper.
You can read about the latter on The Reptile House, here.
I added extra touches, like an engraved trigger.
The Geissele triggers used on the L119A2 have an embossed G on the shaft, so this is as close as I could get.
Again, this was done by JTac Custom and there’s an article on The Reptile House, here.
I also paid attention to the Geissele trigger pins, which have a concave appearance. I made these from old jean popper nipples, sawn off and inverted.
The next step was testing the ergonomics, which I did at a recent weekender. Afterwards I made some changes.
1. Surefire Dual Switch
I swapped out the Surefire dual switch in favour of a thumb end cap for the M620 Scout Light.
This enables constant ‘on’ with a solid thumb click, vs. the momentary action available with the dual switch.
The PEQ takes care of itself, with two rapid clicks for constant on.
Keen eyed readers will note that the M620 obscures the IR light on the LA5. For me that’s allowable, because I never use the LA5’s IR light; instead switching my Surefire head to IR.
With all that said, the orientation of the M620 bugs me a bit now. So, I’ve decided to order an Inforce WMLx. It’s a legit option and you can read more about it in the wild on The Reptile House, here.
2. SIG Romeo 4T and LaRue RISR
I really like the Sig Sauer Romeo 4T. Since its perceived UKSF debut in January 2019 with Obi Wan Nairobi, it’s been a breath of fresh air.
The circle-dot reticule is so easy to acquire, but it’s not bulky like an EOTech – exhibiting a form factor like that of an Aimpoint Micro T1 or T2. In addition, its NV settings are a godsend for not giving yourself away at night, instead of using your IR laser.
I trialed the 4T for a month or two, previously, but never in conjunction with the LaRue RISR. The RISR had to go as it just doesn’t fit me – even with the 4T raised up to lower third level like Obi Wan has.
3. Way of the Gun Sling
Since the milsim, I’ve also added an Obi Wan Nairobi-inspired Way of the Gun sling and there’s an article about that on The Reptile House, here.
The handling of the rifle – which is quite front heavy due to the steel barrel – is aided by Bruno Carvalho’s 3D printed suppressor.
It’s lighter than a flash hider!
It is very robust and whilst some may be put off by the fact it is plastic, it can withstand a serious clout. I fell in the dark, dived to the floor a few times, crept on my belly and it stood up fine.
If it breaks it’s only €25EU anyway.
It also does 100% alter the sound of your rifle. Tests with and without offered a clear as day difference in timbre and amplitude down range.
Lastly, I will get the name of my cat Cymba engraved on the trigger guard, in his memory. He was with us in the room when this PTW was built, but passed away a few days later.
He had a good long life, but I miss him dearly.
HAO Monolithic L119A2 ‘Amplified’ Systema PTW Parts List
- The Comprehensive UKSF (SAS/SBS) L119A2 Parts and Accessories List
- Systema PTW Value Kit 3, cylinder and barrel/hop group
- HAO Beta L119A2 IUR kit – Tackleberried
- HAO L119A2 lower – built by Elmo
- HAO Colt Canada ambi mag catch
- HAO Colt Canada receiver extension
- HAO Colt Canada receiver extension nut
- HAO Colt Canada ambi fire control levers
- Systema Geissele engraved trigger
- Bruno Carvalho old gen Surefire FA556SA 3D printed suppressor
- Element LA5 with Jay Taranis’ UKSF spec stickers
- RS Ergo Original grip
- RS Manta 6″ very low profile rail guard – FDE
- RS Magpul CTR stock – FDE
- RS Magpul ASAP sling plate
- RS Surefire M620 Scout Light – Tan
- RS Surefire RM45L Scout Mount – Tan
- RS Sig Sauer Romeo 4T optic – FDE
- RS BCM vertical grip – FDE
- RS Frank Proctor Way of the Gun sling – Multicam