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Looking for SMLE advice

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by meef, Nov 28, 2004.

  1. meef

    meef Well-Known Member

    About 25 years ago I bought a "beater" rifle at a garage sale for $35. Didn't really know what it was or care at the time. A couple of years later I sold it to my brother and he promptly put it in a case behind the seat of his pickup where it stayed, not seeing the light of day or even any range time for as long as he owned it.

    I recently got bitten by the milsurp bug (pesky damn thing, persistent and constantly itching) and remembered this little gem. I proceeded to contact my brother and since he never used it, consented to sell it back to me for the $50 bucks he paid for it (along with a couple of boxes of Winchester ammo). Whee!

    This thing ain't purty, but it shore can cook (sung vaguely to the tune of "Never make a pretty woman your wife"). Makes nice tight little groups at 100 yds. using only the iron sights. I'm looking forward to trying it with a scope. And.... since I can't see that it has a lot of value to make keeping it stock a compelling option, I plan to "scout rifle" it.

    I recently asked for advice concerning the Mosin M44 I got at Big 5 and got a really helpful response. I only recently discovered THR and found the members to be a virtual treasure trove of knowledge and assistance. So guys... I'm way new at milsurp (but learning as fast as I can) and would appreciate any guidance you might care to offer on this piece.

    Also.. are Enfield magazines interchangable or are they specific to a given model rifle?

    Added a couple of pics for reference:
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2004
  2. MrMurphy

    MrMurphy Well-Known Member

    You have a Short Magazine Lee-Enfield, No.1 MkIII*, the wartime-expedient rifle. Unfortunately, it's already been sporterized, because that is a WW1 rifle (the 1918 marking). It's missing the brass ID disc on the right side of the stock (the black hole depression).

    There is a no-tap no-drill scope mount out there, can't remember who makes it.

    The SMLE and the later No.4 Mk1 (WW2 variant, though both were used in WW2), use the same 10 shot .303 magazine and stripper clips (which is how it's normally loaded, you don't detach the mag every time). There is only one mag per rifle, you recharge it through the action with the stripper clips.

    The similar but not quite the same Ishapore 2A rifle (.308 Enfield) uses a different 12 shot square magazine that doesn't interchange as far as I know.
  3. rust collector

    rust collector Well-Known Member

    A good place for basic care-and-feeding information is surplusrifle.com

    I just got a no3mk1 from AIM, and am having fun getting acquainted. Hunting ammo is still available commercially. I have been warned to steer clear of the Pakistani surplus, but hope that some other low-cost fodder will become available.

    Enjoy your new old Enfield.
  4. rbernie

    rbernie Well-Known Member

    I've been told that the No1Mk3 and the No4Mk1/2 magazines do NOT interchange.
  5. Dave Markowitz

    Dave Markowitz Well-Known Member

    Not quite. Magazines are NOT interchangeable between the No.1 and No.4s/5s. You should be able to get a couple spare No.1 mags but they may need minor fitting in order to be easily swappable. The Brits did not issue spare magazines with the rifle. Rather, ammo was issued in 5-round stripper clips ("chargers" in British parlance), from which it was loaded into the magazine while it was still in the rifle.
  6. Gewehr98

    Gewehr98 Well-Known Member

    Not all NoIMkIII rifles have the brass ID disks...

    Especially the NoIMkIII*, which was the later WWI variant, simplified for production by removal of such items as the volley sights, magazine cut-off, rear sight windage adjustment, and switch to the narrow cocking piece on the striker.

    No4Mk1 mags don't work with the earlier NoIMkIII rifles. However, it is fairly easy to find a good NoIMkIII magazine, try Springfield Sporters, who recently opened up their business again.

    It wouldn't take much in work or parts to get your NoIMkIII* looking like this one, especially since the barrel on your rifle is uncut:

    Last edited: Nov 28, 2004

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