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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
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    Ft. Riley, KS
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    1,130

    Default No longer relevant, but still a great rifle...

    So I'm not huge into modern firearms... Don't get me wrong, I have my AK's and AR-15's for practical use, but my heart is with the old WWI and WWII milsurp rifles. There's just something about an old wood stocked military rifle.

    Anyway, a couple years ago I bought a beat up 1942 Longbranch Lee Enfield No4. The stock was shrunk and the barrel turned out to be shot out but I got it cheap so no worries there. I decided that since the barrel and stock couldn't be saved I would salvage the reciever and get it turnbed into a repro sniper to go along with my 1903a4 and Mosin PU repros. I already had a spare stock sitting in the closet and Criterion Barrels makes a .303 military profile, so I just needed to source quality pads, bracket and a cheek riser. I contacted Fulton of Bisley in England and got the pads through them. The bracket I got from Roger Payne, a former British armorer who built L42 sniper rifles that were based on the WWII Lee Enfield No4 (T), back in the day. The cheek riser was sourced from DS Solutions also in the UK. Yes, you can find cheaper knockoffs, but they have a checkered track record for quality.

    I contacted Brian Dick who is the gunsmith for the Lee Enfield in the States. He's the one who every Lee Enfield enthusiast recommends. He doesn't do reproductions so he recommended Bruce Dow for the conversion work. Dow isn't a big name, but he has a good reputation within the precision shooting community. He rebarreld the receiver, mounted the pads, and collminated the bracket. He also refinished the metal parts with duracoat to match the original sunkote coloring before sending it to Brian Dick who restocked the rifle to MOD 1 standards. This is the end result...

    C0632CCB-E525-4DD0-BB44-1E20073F7281_jpeg.jpg

    By the time it arrived I had finally managed to track down an original kingscrew/target sling swivel. This was not a cheap project by any means and honestly I put more money into it than I could ever hope to recover, but it still cost less than I expected once I shipped it to get done. In the end I'm happy and think it was worth it considering it was essentially hand built and still a fraction of the cost of an original (T). Iím hoping to get it out to the range this weekend to break it in and do some preliminary groups. I may still get a repro scope (currently has a vintage K3 on it) but they have a mixed track record.


    "If you find yourself in a fair fight you failed to properly prepare..."

    "History is the autobiography of a madman..."

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    4,882
    Now you need one of these:

    rberet.jpg
    Warrior for the working day.

    Es una cosa muy seria. --Robert Capa

    "...I rode the range in a Ford V8...Yippy Yi Yo Ki Yay." --Johnny Mercer (as modified)

    "What cannot be remedied must be endured."

    Vale et omnia quae.

    P:20

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Posts
    1,313
    Very nice!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Beyond The Wall
    Posts
    47,743
    Way ahead of it's time. This is what the 1903 Springfield could have been. Imagine a magazine fed 30-06
    Gabriel Suarez

    Turning Lambs into Lions Since 1995

    Suarez International USA Headquarters

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    1,091
    Sights on target, press trigger, boom. Target eliminated. What’s irrelevant about that? Great project well done.
    Lord of harvest, grant that we wholesome grain and pure may be. Hymn, Come Ye Thankful People Come

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    NWFL
    Posts
    16,498
    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel Suarez View Post
    Way ahead of it's time. This is what the 1903 Springfield could have been. Imagine a magazine fed 30-06
    The british usually is my understanding only issued one magazine per soldier, but the british tommy did have 10 shots before he needed to reload in what was very fast bolt gun.

    The US military did have some 25 round non-detachable magazine springfields also. The capability was there to make a detachable magazine, but the forward thinking was not and that explains the enbloc 8 round clip for the garand rifle.
    While the exact reasons for the ďAir ServiceĒ 1903 remain a mystery, it can be deduced through the large-capacity magazine (for the time!) of 25 rounds was set up for pilots who would not have easy access to reloads. The magazine was not detachable, the stock and forearm modified, and the sights greatly simplified.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Arizona's Desert
    Posts
    426
    The Enfield is the fastest bolt action made as the Brits demonstrated with the Mad Minute drill. The drill consist of firing as many rounds as possible into a 48" target from a distance of 300 yards in one minute; it's a hit or miss drill. The first Mad Minute drill record was set in 1908, by Sgt. Major Walford scoring 36 hits on a 48 inch target at 300 yards". That comes to a a hit every 1.67 seconds. This time includes time spent reloading.

    But, the Brits didn't reload via the magazine change, they used charging clips. Charging clips held five rounds. That means that within that one minute, Sgt Major Walingford performed six reloads and still got a hit every 1.67 seconds!

    Last edited by Cacti Rat; 12-20-2019 at 11:31 AM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Ft. Riley, KS
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    1,130
    Quote Originally Posted by barnetmill View Post
    The british usually is my understanding only issued one magazine per soldier, but the british tommy did have 10 shots before he needed to reload in what was very fast bolt gun.

    The US military did have some 25 round non-detachable magazine springfields also. The capability was there to make a detachable magazine, but the forward thinking was not and that explains the enbloc 8 round clip for the garand rifle.
    One magazine per soldier and they generally had to be fitted to feed correctly.

    The magazines on the 1903 'Air Service' model are both rare and finicky. They just aren't very reliable. Beyond that they made prone firing all but impossible. But the biggest reason magazines were not more of a thing was contemporary military thinking... Most rifles, even the Lee Enfield in WWI, were designed with a magazine cut off. Soldiers were expected to fire and reload one round at a time with the magazine held in reserve in case of emergencies.


    "If you find yourself in a fair fight you failed to properly prepare..."

    "History is the autobiography of a madman..."

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Ft. Riley, KS
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    1,130
    Quote Originally Posted by Cacti Rat View Post
    The Enfield is the fastest bolt action made as the Brits demonstrated with the Mad Minute drill. The drill consist of firing as many rounds as possible into a 48" target from a distance of 300 yards in one minute; it's a hit or miss drill. The first Mad Minute drill record was set in 1908, by Sgt. Major Walford scoring 36 hits on a 48 inch target at 300 yards". That comes to a a hit every 1.67 seconds. This time includes time spent reloading.

    But, the Brits didn't reload via the magazine change, they used charging clips. Charging clips held five rounds. That means that within that one minute, Sgt Major Walingford performed six reloads and still got a hit every 1.67 seconds!



    The Schmidt-Ruben and K31 actions are actually mechanically faster. However, the straight pull design doesn't lend itself to rapid fire the way a cock on close action like the LE does. The Mauser 93 (also a cock on close design) is equally as fast.



    "If you find yourself in a fair fight you failed to properly prepare..."

    "History is the autobiography of a madman..."

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Beyond The Wall
    Posts
    47,743
    In esence, that is what my 700 CP project becomes.
    Gabriel Suarez

    Turning Lambs into Lions Since 1995

    Suarez International USA Headquarters

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