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Posted 07 December 2006 - 07:50 PM
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Posted 05 January 2007 - 07:32 AM
Posted 04 February 2012 - 05:23 PM
Posted 04 February 2012 - 05:40 PM
Great thread. I recently purchased a 1916 and was wondering why it was marked "SHTLE" and this has cleared that up. What is great is all the serial numbers match, it has the markings to indicate it was made in Great Britain and owned by the British military. I had the bore checked out and it's in fantastic shape with no rust or pitting and the sights are right on the money. The wood is not cracked, but it is a bit beat up and has someones initials carved in the left side of the forestock. As usual it's missing the oiler, etc and the brass regiment disc. Also the magazine block has been removed. This rifle has turned out to be the best shooter I own at this point and love to shoot it. The only drawback is the ammo is hard to find and expensive when you do. I did score some ammo from a local guy and got 110 rounds for $75. The action is silky smooth and has never failed on me. I also found that the rifle had been imported from Eastern Europe in 2009, but I have no idea where it's been since then. I found it in a small saddle and blanket shop that sells a few guns. I was absolutely amazed to see it on his rack among the Saiga's, AK's and AR-15 and knew I had to give it a home.
Posted 05 February 2012 - 04:24 AM
So do we get to see pictures?
Out of interest, how do you know it came from E.Europe? That would be a relatively unusual source for Enfields - might be interesting.
One word of warning: regarding the ammunition - if it is military surplus it is quite likely to be corrosive (not necessarily but likely) and that will make a mess of your bore if you do not clean it correctly. You need to make sure you get all of the corrosive salts out after firing - leave them in for any length of time and corrosion starts quickly. Although there are a number of potions and concotions that can be purchased for this - probably the simplest way is to pour a kettleful of boiling water through the bore after shooting then dry and clean as normal.
I only mention this as I have seen otherwise mint condition Enfields that have had their bores reduced to sewer-pipe status in this manner.
Posted 14 February 2012 - 05:25 AM
I agree, it really shocked me to learn it was out of East Europe. What I did was contact the importer for this information and this was what they sent back. They refused to provide anything further stating it was "proprietary". I know all about the corrosive ammo as I've been shooting an AK-47 and a lot of that ammo is corrosive. My policy is to clean as soon as I get done, even if it's not corrosive. That comes from many years as a cop and always cleaning my service weapons. Not to mention that's also how I was brought up. I use a commercial spray followed up with a good bore scrubbing with a brush, then a cleaning patch following by clean ones and then a thin coating of gun oil. This procedure has worked well for me for many years.
I'll try and attach a photo, but the ones I have at the moment are poor. Working to get some better ones as I keep a photo record of all my guns. 100_0424_opt.jpg 45KB 0 downloads
Posted 14 February 2012 - 08:53 AM
Posted 15 February 2012 - 01:38 AM
I suspect you really mean that the nosecap has been replaced, which is not unusual. That serves to protect the foresight but is quite independent of it as the foresight block is attached to the barrel and is not numbered.
Also, since all the British WWI SMLE sniper rifles had side mounted scopes (to allow chargers to be still used) I would be interested to hear why a change of nosecap would indicate the rifle was fitted for a scope.
Are you sure it is actually a Mark III and not a Mark III*? It would not be particularly unusual to find a 1916 III* still with a cut-off slot but with high wall woodwork.
With regard to the Eastern European origins, it might be using the term a little loosely, but there were plenty of Pattern '14 rifles and some SMLEs sent to the Baltic states post WWI and these and their ammunition have been surfacing over the past few years.
Posted 15 February 2012 - 02:53 AM
Stopped by my favorite gunshop today and too it in as the owner of the shop is very good on military weapons. It seems it was re-furbished between WWI and WWII according to the markings etc on it. It's had the forestock replaced apparently for service in WWII, it has a WWII MIII style magazine in it so I'll need to replace that in order to install a mag cutoff plate. The stock needs to be modified abit as the WWII stock just covers the pivot point. Also, it's had the front sight replaced and it has a different serial number on it indicating it should have had a scope, but the there are no indications one was ever attached to it. Just adds more mystery to the life and times of this great old firearm. I fear I'm getting the fever to look for more of them to add to my growing collection of military and police firearms.
Posted 15 February 2012 - 07:39 PM
I may be misunderstanding but it looks to me as though almost all of this is inaccurate
1) there is no such thing as a WWII style magazine (unless you mean a magazine for a No4 rifle -which can be made to fit it jammed in hard enough) look at the rear spine if it has a rib all the way down it is for a MkIII if it stops half way it is for a No4
2) the style of magazine has no relationship to the cut-off
3) front sights are not numbered apart from the blade height on some. Do you mean the REAR sight (these are numbered to the rifle on the underside) but these were not removed when scopes were fitted. They are however, often mismatched as a result of rebuilds but this has nothing to do with telescopic sights, it is indicative of a rebuild (official or unofficial - although official ones are often renumbered) but not of fitting of telescopic sights
Fitting on MkIII* wood to MkIII bodies is not unusual in my experience (especially in the changeover of 1916 or with a later refinish)
Posted 15 February 2012 - 09:03 PM
Ok, with the current magazine in place you can not slide the mag cutoff through the slot in the receiver. I've see 2 different magazines, mine which has 2 what look like "stops" on the rear of the mag, and one I found at a parts site that only has one of the "stops" on it. The front sight does, in fact, have a serial number and not to be sarcastic, but, I trust the guy I'm working with as, like I said, is considered THE man to go to with a military rifle of any kind. The rear site has the same serial number as the rest of the rifle. The only different one is found on the front site along with markings indicating it's been replaced and reseated. But, you know what, none of this matters as the rifle is in about as good of shape as you'd want from something built in 1916 and having more than likely gone through at least 2 world wars and who knows what other conflicts it may have see action. The only things I've found missing are the cut off wing, oiler, sling, bayonet and regiment disc, all of which I've located at a decent price except for the bayonet. Too expensive as I can't see paying almost as much for a bayonet as I did the rifle. Either way, once I get the cutoff we'll see if it fits or not with the MarkIII magazine as it does have a spine that goes all the way down. Still my favorite firearm to shoot.
Posted 15 February 2012 - 10:23 PM
Posted 16 February 2012 - 01:14 AM
Posted 16 February 2012 - 02:09 AM
Thanks for the pics, and yes, they will help. First, the sight issue. It is the first photo that was replaced and has a serial number on it that is different than anything else found on this rifle. I spoke with my expert and he still says that when they scoped a rifle a new front site was usually added with the same serial number as the scope.
Now, having said that, there is no indications a scope was ever put on this rifle.
On to the mag, mine looks like the MarkIII with the exception of the spine. It does appear to be different, but I can't say for sure until I get the gun back. As I stated, I have it in being checked over for a reason for something jamming the trigger and then falling out. I wish I could have found it, but if you've never been in the Southern Arizona desert, things can be very hard to spot, even when picking up your spent brass. Anyway, we both agree it was probably an old piece of primer that broke of and landed in the mechanism where it stayed until it came loose and fell in to the thing and jammed it. My playing around with it obviously jarred it loose. after looking it over he found no damage to the trigger mechanism. He still has it because the butt stock is a little loose and the screw used to secure it is in as far as it will go. He's going to remove the stock and put a thin leather washer on it to tighten it up so it doesn't continue to loosen.
Now, as soon as I get it back, I'll try and get some good shots of the front site to see if we can figure out what is going on. Oh,the marks, the are what you would expect to see when a gunsmith seated the new site. Had to use a good magnifier to find them. Again, it's a great shooter and I look forward to getting back to the range with it.
Also, decided to leave the current wood on it and not attempt to put a mag cutoff back on, since it really would serve no purpose other than to put it back to WWI look, which makes no sense to me. It still has a great history and it gets better the longer I research it.
Posted 16 February 2012 - 03:36 AM
Posted 16 February 2012 - 04:25 AM
Quite right - my error
Chris, just a bit of trivia to add regarding the markings on your front sights (if you don't know this already) - and I've probably mentioned this before.?
Australia used a system of lettered codes to indicate the source of the various parts for the SMLE rifles produced at Lithgow and its smaller feeder factories.
The two letters form a code and are not an abbreviation of two words - so the common OA is not Orange Arsenal but indicates Orange Small Arms Factory.
Likewise the sight on the left is marked WA, and this does not mean Western Australia but stands for production from the small feeder factory at Wellington.
Posted 16 February 2012 - 06:13 AM
Yes likewise the BA code stands for the feeder factory at Bathurst while the MA code indicates production from the main factory at Lithgow.
Remind me, BA and MA =
Posted 16 February 2012 - 06:18 AM
I assume your gunsmith will have had the rifle out of the furniture and checked the drawers of the stock - these can sometimes get damaged. It is really really important to have the forend off the rifle when tightening the butt/installing the washer (I am sure your chap knows this but it is a quirk of enfields) because the stock bolt (if original) has a squared end that fits into a recess in the back of the forend and if you tighten the butt with the forend in situ then you run a real risk of splitting the forend. DOn't mean to teach my granny to suck eggs but better safe than sorry. The wood behind the trigger is relatively fragile - if all is tightened down then it is fine but as things work loose any movement here can lead to damage (and innaccuracy)
Posted 16 February 2012 - 01:19 PM
Ok, I'm a bit confused here. Are you saying the bolt/screw (as it has a slotted screw head on it inside the butt stock) screws into a square head nut located in the forestock? Not having the rifle here it's a bit tough to visualize it.
Greg aka: Virgil Earp/Mayor John Clum in the OK Corral gunfight at the real OK Corral in Tombstone, AZ
Posted 16 February 2012 - 02:22 PM