The Gear Box.
Upon breaking the R85 I was impressed with how simple it was and also by the layout of the internal parts. Just the look of the gearbox was slightly reassuring that the internals were going to be of a descent quality.
To fully remove the gearbox you will first need to remove the upper half, this is very easy to do and only requires you to remove a single pin and then lift off the top half. This might sound that it’s weak but it’s remarkably strong and withstood my initial prying at it with a screw driver.
The break down of the top half of the R85 is very easy and just requires you to remove the four Philips head screws, allowing you to split the gearbox in half. One of the first things I notice was that this gearbox comes standard with a rotary spring guide with thrust bearing; these will set you back around $12 to $15 USD depending on brand.
The air nozzle, cylinder and piston have a very good seal and I couldn’t detect any major air leakages when operating, unfortunately the piston has 18 teeth just like the G&G version rather than 16 teeth that everyone was hoping for. But like I said this has caused any problems so far with the operation of the R85, time will tell.
The lower half of the gear box will need you to remove some more of the pins and also another Philips head screw located under the rubber stock of the R85. Again I was impressed with the build of the gear box. The visible gears are well made and made of quality materials rather than cheap pot metal like many of the other brands on the market for the same price.
The layout of this gearbox and design is great, although I didn’t open the lower half I did push the gears around and gave it a good inspection; the gears have either metal bushings or actually have axle bearings. Once I have stripped the lower gearbox I can verify this.
The wiring of the R85 is excellent and is much better quality than that of Tokyo Marui’s which I tend to find to be on the rather thin side. All in all I’m very impressed with the gear box, but as I said before only time will tell.
Looking through the ejection port at the hop unit you’ll see a lot of similarities between the R85 and the classic M16/M4 hop unit. In fact the hop design is a plastic version of the G&P metal Hop units and for players wishing to you could switch them over with little or no modifications at all.
The hop is pretty consistent and was able to hit the standard Tokyo Marui target with pretty good groupings at 15 meters; I was unable to test further than that due to weather conditions and lack of space. But the first modification I will do is switch over the hop unit to a Tokyo Marui and change the hop rubber, for no other reason than that I’m spoilt due to the cheapness of parts out here.
To be perfectly honest with you I wished I had waited for the R85 rather than paying the huge amount for the STAR L85A2, the ARMY™ ARMAMENT R85 has to be one of the best quality ACM clone replicas I have seen. The finish of the weapon shows that ARMY™ ARMAMENT has a very good QA system in place (although this again can only be verified once the masses have this product in their hands). If I was faced with the decision again on which Enfield L85 replica to purchase my money would be on the ARMY™ ARMAMENT R85.
Even if this replica does have the same problems as its original counterpart for $119.00 USD or £59.99 GBP you can’t go wrong and with the huge savings over the original you will have enough left over in your wallet to correct any mechanical faults. The battery was utter rubbish and the soldering came away very easily rendering the battery useless. Also its a real shame that the Star SUSAT doesn\\'t fit without modifying the rail.
The ARMY™ ARMAMENT R85 has to be the best bang for buck on the market and is not only one of the best ACM’s on the market but also a serious contender in the industry. A serious recommendation for both players on a budget and also the serious enthusiasts wanting an excellent rendition of the L85A1.
Get a high quality battery and away you go!
For those interested here is a comparison between the Army™ Armament and the star, here’s a photo: