The L25A1 Flare is one of a number of handheld ‘Schermuly’ type flares in use with the British Army. In the past we have looked at the L24A1 here, that model has a range of 300m. Today we are looking at the next model in the series, the L25A1 which is virtually identical from the outside, but has a range of 600m:
The range, model number and the type of flare are all printed on the tube in white lettering. Here we can see that this is an Infra Red flare, rather than a usual flare that illuminates in the visible light range:
The IR light is not visible to the enemy unless they have IR equipment, but allows British troops with IR equipment to get a good view of the battlefield at night. On the back of the tube are instructions on how to use it:
The safety button is at one end of the tube:
When compared to the L24, it can be seen that both have the letter ‘P’ moulded into them to show they are parachute flares, but the L24 has a single dot and the L25 has a wavy line:
This allows the type of flare to be determined in the dark by feel alone, as the markings on the side of the tube would of course be unreadable and one would not want to give away a tactical advantage by sending up the wrong flare! The actual difference in designation is printed on the tubes:
There seem to be quite a variety of different hand launched flare tubes out there form the collector to track down and as well as these two examples from the early 2010s, I also have a 1980s example in my collection.