I've always wanted one, but there are so many marks and mods. Can any of you guys advise me on which would be a.nice one to start with? They are in my top 5 of bolt guns ever, and have wanted one since the first time I handled on when I was 10 or 12. The three rifles I told myself I would get the very first time I went shooting was the Enfield, an FN FAL, and a Winchester 1894. I got the Winny, a pre 64 model in 30-30 and it is absolute beautiful. I can see why so many were made, and why they have an extremely loyal following from anyone who has ever fired one. I have found a friend that has a version of the FAL, an STG 58, and I'm really hoping to have it in my hands in a few weeks. Keep your fingers crossed about my buddy selling it. That just leaves the Enfield. Any info would be really appreciated. Thanks guys.
I've built half a dozen STG-58s from parts kits for friends. I have a cherry one waiting patiently in the basement for the zombie apocalypse. Mine shoots cigarette pack groups at 100 yds with NATO Argentine surplus and factory sights. I got some good deals on this ammo so I stocked up on it. If you have questions on the STG, feel free to contact me. They're pretty simple to work on. DSA has kept them alive with a great amount of aftermarket parts.
As far as the Enfield of choice, I think I'd opt for an Ishapore No. 4 SMLE in 7.62x51. Re-designated as the L8, it was one of the latest offerings and was some of the strongest of the actions. The .308 is cheaper to shoot with more bullet choices. Having an STG-58 would make a good reason to choose an Enfield in .308 too, so they could share ammo. I always wanted a DeLisle carbine.
Don't dismiss the possibility of a 1903-A3 as well. Also battle proven and accurate. The USMC was still using them in Vietnam as sniper rifles. They're starting to get pricey though.
The L8, converted to 308 from the 303 No. 4, wasn't to my knowledge done at the Ishapore arsenal. They're somewhat rare and expensive because they were not made in large quantities.
The Ishapore 2A was designed for 308 from the ground up with a stronger receiver, better steel, etc. They can be had for reasonable prices (at least they could ~10 years ago) because they're fairly common.
Wasn't the L8 built as a sniper rifle? I guess I combined that with the 308 chambering and things went sour from there. Brits converted No.4s and made L8A- series and Ishapore made the L2A and A1 from scratch.
I was alternating between fine tequila and Apple Pie (the drink) when I posted. Notice the time stamp. I could've Googled first but that's what a sober guy would've done. Who needs Google when you have tequila?
It was my father's full bore rifle which shot many possibles at 300, 500 and 600 yards with issue ammunition and Central peep sight from the 1930s to about 1960. 8 shots to count with iron sights and Service ammunition on a 7 1/2" bull at 300 yards prone was not to be sneezed at those days.
Last time I shot it was over a sandbag at 409 yards with the peep sight and it put the three shots into a triangle that I could span with my thumb, first and 4th fingers. It was just a few years ago and the ammunition was marked 1944. ... WW 1 rifle made in Lithgow NSW Australia as was the WW 2 ammunition and heavy barrel.
The WW 2 Mk 4 was more favoured as a range rifle in the last years of the .303 Service rifle era here in OZ.
Thank you so much for the information guys. I gained.exactly what I needed to, and then some. I have loved the Jungle Carbines since the first time I held one. How bad is this wandering zero and can it be fixed? I would have loved an 03 Springfield but they are just so expensive now. Absolutely fantastic guns. Again, thanks for any info guys, I really appreciate it.
Jungle Carbines will really beat you up if you are recoil sensitive...
July 11 2012, 1:51 PM
sames true of the Mosin Nagant M44s
the wandering zero isn't that great an issue so long as you remember the realistic ranges in the Burmese Jungle these carbines were designed to be used at
simply put they are not long range rifles
another point is the vast majority of #5 Jungle Carbines are sheer utter fakes often built on substandard Ishapore SMLEs...don't get taken
even of #5s that look right many are cut down #4s
SARCO, Century, Gibs and many others have done this for decades
today you can even purchase kits to convert a bubba'd #4 to a faux Jungle carbine
the lightening cuts tell the tale of the real deal as generally does the condition of the pad
original pads have aged poorly...if it looks like a new pad most likely it is
don't you mean M2? The M3 was fitted with the Infared "Snooperscope" and a Cone FS...
July 11 2012, 5:07 PM
though by Vietnam the Snooperscope had been retired and many M3 actions had been refitted into M2 potbelly stocks.
I agree the M2 is quite a handy little gun
always said the military should have just rebarreled the carbine to 5.7 Johnson which is the .30 carbine necked down to 5.7
ballistics can be made close to the 5.56 Nato plus it was a lighter and many ways stronger design
Sorry to be the poo poooer here,.... On the Enfield or SMLE
July 11 2012, 11:50 AM
For god sakes get or borrow a set of head-space gauges. Check the rifle before you buy. The Enfield group on gunboards have a loaner set you can request you just have to send in a security check or mo. Most are just this side of safe. Also if you want your brass to last longer than 4 reloads your gonna have to learn this trick to Not have brass stretch ridiculously, or split on first firing due to excess chamber length. Get yourself a package of those very small dental rubber bands for braces at your local med supply store, or go to a dentist. place one around the very base of the rim. what this does is force the rim back against the bolt face when firing in long chambers, worn chambers just short of excessive head-space. I have witnessed case stretch in the .015 range on one firing. The Long Branch Canadian's are really great finds at reasonable price. U.S. property marked rifles are cool but raise the price. You can still find the Arsenal 1950's refit rifle from Maltby or Farhzakly(SP) or Burmingham Small Arms though they are the premium right now and run over 750.00: I'm talking new in Arsenal wrapping paper rifles. Yes Enfield's have nice bolt travel but it's one of those things that get's touted but after a little experience you find that's all they have. There are much more accurate surplus rifles out there and that won't cost you nearly as much to run. You need to do your research to make sure your gettting a true or complete rifle. alot of rifle out there have parts from various design mods that don't go with the rifle. Ishapore's are crap, but very cheap. You find out why if you buy one.
All this being said:
You would be better off buying and better made Swedish Mauser M96, M38, Husky or Swiss K31, or Schmidt & Rubin. FOR WHAT YOU'LL PAY FOR AN ENFIELD you will lose at a match to a cheaper Fin marked / Winter war collected or Fin Mosin Nagant rifle. Walther USA will build you a replacement barrel for Swedish Mauser. They won't for your Enfield.
303 is not that great a round.
From time to time Everyone should squish some mudd between their toe's!!!!!!
Thank you for your advice man, I really appreciate it. I would definitely have the head spacing checked before I bought any rifle. I had bought a 1916 Spanish Mauser and shot it a few times before I had the HS checked. The thing was a dangerous no go, and I'm real lucky man. I love the K31 rifles and I'm thinking about getting one of those as well, along with a Mosin carbine. I'm not a reloader, but I should definitely get into that whole side of the shooting sports. I know its a decent amount of money to start with, but it winds up paying for itself and then some in the long haul. Thanks again Art, hope you and your family are well.
I went another direction choosing instead to build a range rifle from new old stock No1 Mk3 wood, hardware and barrel on a pre 1899 manufactured Long Lee action with the superb Parker Hale rear sight
best of the barrels were the ones that came in years ago from South Africa which is what I used. These were new in the grease manufactured as spares for the South Africans by PH and BSA and used to be sold by Springfield Sporters for twenty odd bucks
had the plain sence to buy up a few back in the day
my Lee Enfield Range Rifle was built to match specs anbd using the vintage Greek .303 ammo will run quarter sized groups at a 100 yards with vintage iron target sights
bear in mind this is still an antique and requires no 4473 or Brady check
the pre WWI Lee Enfields are extremely high quality, nearly commercial grade of polish and blue as well as overall fit
later you go in Lees the junkier they get
Yrrah, an older gent at work once loaned be a book on long-range shooting
July 11 2012, 4:06 PM
It was circa 1900 - 1910 and by an English officer. Creedmore-style shooting with the Enfield, including prone with detachable aperture sight for the buttplate. Your father most likely studied it. Sure wish I could find a copy. (This fellow had a marvelous gun book collection, many of which were autographed by the authors.)
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