Warwick Firearms WFA1-L Review

The WFA1 has been on the Australian market for a few years now. Lucky for me, I was able to get some trigger time behind the WFA1-L.


The WFA1-L is manufactured by Warwick Firearms in Victoria, Australia. Handling an Australian designed and manufactured rifle does give you a good feeling, as there aren’t too many Aussie firearm manufacturers operating.

It is listed as a category B firearm in VIC, QLD, SA and the NT. Unfortunately, it doesn’t make it past NSW’s strict appearance laws and isn’t available there as a Category B firearm.

The L in ‘WFA1-L’ stands for Light. The company listened to suggestions that users had about the original WFA1 being a bit on the heavy side and have since released the light model.

The rifle itself is aimed more towards a hunting application, as the straight pull mechanism allows for quick follow up shots, especially on fast moving game. I had a Trijicon ACOG mounted on top, which offers 3.5 x magnification.

WFA1

Calibers

The rifle is made in both 223 Remington and 300 Blackout. 223 is a very popular caliber which goes without saying when you see how many variants of ammunition there are for it.

223 makes a great entry level round for shooters as the recoil is minimal and the muzzle blast isn’t going to upset as many people.

Another great factor is the price of ammunition for 223 being cheaper than the larger calibers. 223 is a great choice for small to medium size game up to around 300 meters.

300 Blackout came about to give the M4/AR15 more power but with the same sound output. The result is a short hard-hitting round which is perfect for up to 300 meters.

223 Remington

223 or 300 Blackout? If you are mostly looking at plinking with the rifle or hunting small game or mid sized game go for 223. If you are hunting pigs or deer go for 300 Blackout.

Weight

The rifle is balanced really well and comes in at around 3.4kg’s. The heavier and longer barrel models will add more weight so keep that in mind when handling them, especially if you are after a hunting rifle.

However, if you are mostly using it bench rest, or hunting from a vehicle, the extra weight shouldn’t be a problem.

Accessories can really start to add weight to the rifle so be aware when choosing bipods, scope rings and your scope selection. It all adds up to the total weight of the rifle, it might not seems like much now but if you are carrying it all day in the field it could slow you down.

WFA1

Straight Pull

Cycling the straight pull action is extremely satisfying and a testament to the quality of the machining on the WFA1-L. It is important to remember when cocking the rifle that it works just like an MG’s cocking handle. You need to release the handle at the rear and let it drive forward on its own power to avoid rounds not chambering properly.

A straight pull action feels quicker than a traditional bolt action. With some practice you can become pretty quick with follow up shots.

 Having been a bolt shooter for so long, the straight pull action does have a novelty to it that is refreshing.

FABA Kit

Ignition Custom Engineering make the Forward Action Bolt Assist kit (FABA) for the WFA1. The FABA kit adds the ability to cycle the action from the fore grip, similar to a pump action.

FABA Kit for WFA1
FABA Kit

The kit attached easily enough without the need for a gunsmith. The FABA kit is made from billet aluminium and feels very sturdy once attached to the rifle.

It’s important to remember that with the FABA kit attached, it does not change the action type of the firearm and it remains a bolt action.

The FABA kit worked very similar to the cocking handle, where you have to release the fore-grip as it travels forward to avoid rounds not chambering correctly. This isn’t ideal, but with some practice it soon becomes muscle memory.

WFA1

Trigger

The trigger on the WFA1-L is great, it does have a heavy pull but that is expected on a hunting orientated firearm. There are aftermarket triggers available also if you prefer a lighter trigger pull or you are going to be mostly plinking or bench rest shooting the rifle.

Barrel

All the barrels on the WFA1’s are 1/8 twist. The barrels come in sizes between 14” and 20” and include light or heavy options.

The flash hider on the rifle is a military style with a solid bottom to prevent dust kicking up when shooting from the prone position.

Chassis

The chassis surrounding the barrel comes with M-LOK slots along the sides and bottom. On top is a full length Picatinny rail, providing plenty of room for day and night optics.

WFA1 Magpul

Both the buttstock and the grip on the rifle are Magpul. These can be easily swapped out for other colours or styles.

Magazines

The WFA-1 is compatible with Magpul style magazines. This makes buying extra magazines more affordable and they are easily accessible as almost all gun dealers stock them.

Cleaning

Field stripping the rifle is a breeze. Simply press a button near the rear of the receiver and it breaks open like a shotgun.

WFA1 ACOG

Accuracy

The ammunition used for testing the accuracy was the OSA Blitz King 55 grain polymer tip ammo. The polymer 55 grains proved to be a great match and the rifle had no problems shooting sub MOA at 100 meters.

The accuracy being achieved with the rifle really tied it off well with the other impressive features.

Conclusion

If you are interested in the WFA-1, I recommend getting your hands on one. They are very well made and have great accuracy. The ability to quickly get follow up shots on game at closer ranges is a feature of a firearm that shouldn’t be forgotten when searching for your next hunting rifle.

Pros

  • Well made
  • Accurate
  • Look amazing cerekoted
  • Customizable
  • Full length rail

Cons

  • Pricey