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Enfield jungle carbine

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Stauble, Jul 27, 2006.

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  1. Stauble

    Stauble Member

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    i cant afford 500$ for a commercial hunting gun so i thought id go mil-surp.
    has anyone used these enfield carbines for hunting? would it be better to get one of these for hunting, or buy the regular enfield, and sporterize it?
    any info would be appreciated
     
  2. rockstar.esq

    rockstar.esq Member

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    I'm sure others will chime in soon but here are a few points to ponder.
    The Enfield you're talking about will likely be chambered in either 303 British or 7.62x51. Generally these are chopped down models of less than excellent rifles. This is not to say that they are unsafe. However the 7.62x51 models shouldn't fire 308 Win ammo as they might cause unsafe pressures. From what I have seen, the jungle carbines are pretty rough around the edges. In comparison, the M44 , m38, mosin nagants are not only typically under $100.00, they can be restocked with an ATI plastic monte carlo type stock for under $70.00. At this point you'd have an iron sighted rifle capable of decent hunting accuracy that has commercial ammo loaded for it in addition to milsurp all of which is profoundly cheaper than most 30-06 loadings. Additionally the 7.62x54R is a fine hunting cartridge approximating the performance of the 30-06 (possibly the most popular hunting cartridge ever). The Enfields are not without their charm. I for one haven't gotten a satisfactory answer as to why so few bolt action rifles sport a cock on close type action. From handling them at the store, the cock on close feels much easier to operate especially when in a hurry. Plus it's nice to be able to remove the bolt without having it cocked in storage. Another Enfield benifit is that it typically has good quality iron sights. The accuracy of a given rifle depends to a large extent on quality sights, this might help to offest some of the less refined aspects of the Enfield. What I wrote about the ATI stock applies to the Enfield as well, however the military stock on the Enfield is less aggregious to the shooter as the buttplate isn't made of a flat sharp edged piece of steel A LA the Mosin.
     
  3. kfranz

    kfranz Member

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    Why would you sporterize it? Not like it kills big game worse in it's original condition. You could get the JC, but if all you're looking to do is plunk critters, the Mosin will do you right for less than half the cost on the rifle, and do you even better on ammo cost
     
  4. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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    If you look around, you can find an Enfield for only a bit more than a Mosin.

    "Less than excellent?" "Less refined?" Compared to a surplus Mosin Carbine?:rolleyes:

    Whatever. I happen to be fond of both, but this just isn't how I or anyone else who has ever lined a bunch of them up on a table would put it.

    The Mosin is a brutal block of steel, made by monkeys. The action requires brute force to operate, and the safety is downright funny, since you have to wrestle with the full force of the striker spring to engage it! In return, though, you get a rifle that shoots well come hell or high water. It will fire. And it will feed, if you give it enough muscle. Hell, I was afraid I'd break one of mine the first time I used it; people here said that was normal and it won't hurt the action.

    The Enfield is a precision piece of machinery, made by anal-retentive Brits in navy blue and khaki. It is an old-school military battle rifle, though, made as a bayonet platform as well as a rifle, so it's plenty durable. The safety is a quick thumb flip, the action works FAST with no undue effort, and the gun is just a nice piece.

    I wouldn't get a real JC because they're known for accuracy problems (actually a "wandering zero", meaning that they might group fine but somewhere other than where they were sighted in). Leave the genuine Mk5 JC to collectors. They don't shoot it, either. The rifles are shooters, though.

    A replica JC, though, has some appeal. See http://www.e-gunparts.com/ and search for Jungle Carbine. Get an ugly No4Mk1 surplus rifle that's too beat-looking, with a trashed stock and surface rust, to have real collector value, and turn it into a JC clone. It won't have the wandering zero, because you will leave the receiver alone. Effectively, you will be sporterizing it but keeping the spirit of the military Enfield alive. Re-blue it.

    Or just shoot the Enfield rifle as-is. The deer/pigs/whatever won't know whether they were shot with a fullstock gun or a halfstock gun.:)

    Or get a Mosin M-38, but be advised that accuracy won't be all that great. They were made in wartime, by the millions, for a massive army that won by sheer numbers, not by being skilled riflemen. There are a bunch of numbers-matching M-38s coming into the US again. Get a numbers-matching one with a nice tight bolt that doesn't lift up when you press down on the handle.

    Don't get an M-44 unless you plan to do some work sporterizing it. They don't shoot straight with the bayonet folded; some bayonets are very hard to remove, and with the bayonet they're heavy beasts.

    The Mosin rifles (91/30) shoot best, but they're LOOOOOONG.

    One way or another, the 7.62x54R may be a powerful round, but the range limitations of the Mosin Carbine render that pretty moot, unless you're thinking of hunting bigger-than-deer game at closer ranges.

    I love Mosins. And Enfields.
     
  5. BCHunter

    BCHunter Member

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    The Lee Enfield 303 British has accounted for more game around the world, up to and including Elephants, than any other cartridge and rifle. I remember hearing the 303 British killed more moose in Canada than all other cartridges combined and I don’t doubt it. Lee Enfields were manufactured around the world in Commonwealth countries for well over ¾ of a century and I saw guards at airports in India in the late 1990s still carrying them.

    When I was young every hardware store in Canada sold “sporterized” versions of the 303 for about $12 and the Jungle carbine sold for about $14. The only comment I ever heard bad about the Jungle Carbine is that it really kicked.

    It’s fairly easy to mount a scope on a Lee Enfield if I remember correctly.
     
  6. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Member

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    The "real" Jungle Carbines (not the cut down butcher jobs) are fine rifles. The "wandering zero" isn't a problem with mine, and I have read some information stating that this was a figment of the imagination in order to get post-WW2 Britain to adopt a semi-auto rifle.

    I load some 115 grain bullets that do wonders on coyotes, as well as some 150 that would be just right for deer. The military issue 180 grainers are a bit stout in the recoil department in these light carbines, but will do the job on just about anything in North America.
     
  7. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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    "Real" Jungle Carbines are also cut-down butcher jobs.:)

    But they were cut down and butchered by a British arsenal.

    Interesting about the zero thing. And good to hear.

    I'll just have to buy a few and test them all! How else could I know for sure?

    That's what I'm doing, Mrs. Bear. I'm collecting information. Hence that closet full of rifles...;)
     
  8. BCHunter

    BCHunter Member

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    Last edited: Jul 27, 2006
  9. Stauble

    Stauble Member

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    i like the idea of being a beat up enfield, and then buy a sport-stock, and re-blue the metal. i started searching for sporterized enfield stocks, but all of them are made out of synthetics, or some other non-wood materials, does anyone know where i can get wooden sporterized stocks?
     
  10. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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  11. rockstar.esq

    rockstar.esq Member

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    ArmedBear I didn't mean to imply that the Enfield is an unrefined rifle. My intent was to point out that "Jungle Carbines" are frequently made from rifles that had already taken a beating as opposed to being built from the ground up as a carbine. Take it for what it's worth but after inspecting a few on the shelves around here, I've seen flash suppressors that weren't mounted straight, stock bands that stood proud of the stock, bolts that were seized to the action, and last but not least rifles with stocks and actions that looked as though they had been placed in a rock crusher's discharge chute. In general the mosins & variants coming to market currently are refinished and exhibit better fit and finish than the Jungle Carbines that I see on shelves currently. As for the "Anal Retentive Brits" thing, please note that things got pretty desperate for them in the final days of WWII and many shortcuts were made in manufacture. I submit as my opinion that the majority of the JC's I've seen were made out of the Enfields built towards the end of WWII, not during shiny happy times. To that end, most of the JC's I've seen were being sold as milsurps, not collector rifles.
     
  12. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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    Ah.

    That makes more sense.

    I have a No4Mk1 that's a well-made rifle, but I think it's from the middle of the war, 42 or 43. And it's quite true that the Ishapore sitting next to it is more perfectly fitted, as it was made during peaceful times when its makers probably weren't being bombed and were getting some sleep.:)

    One of my favorite short surplus pieces is the Steyr M1895 Carbine. Very light for its era, straight-pull bolt action, and the Austrian culture of precision devices is obvious.
    [​IMG]
    The only problem is that it shoots the 8x56 Hungarian round. Hornady makes good hunting ammo in 8x56, if you can find it, but it's not something you find at the corner sporting good store.

    Still, it's something to consider...

    Numrich sells the en bloc clips for it, too.
     
  13. Kymasabe

    Kymasabe Member

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    I own a few Mosins and think they're great guns...cheap, reliable, virtually indestructable, though not terribly attractive. However, I think the Enfield Jungle Carbine is one of the best looking WW2 rifles ever produced but plagued with "wandering zero" problems because of all the lightening cuts.

    I like both rounds, the 7.62x54R and the Brit .303. Recently, I've seen some Enfields converted to look like Jungle Carbines and I'd grab one of them up in a minute. A little heavier than the real thing but should also solve the "zero" problems they had. Shhot them both and see which one you like best.
     
  14. Clipper

    Clipper Member

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    I once had a real JC...

    ...And it was the worst P.O.S. It's ever been my misfortune to own. Not only did it suffer from the wandering zero, but the abysmal design of the stock allowed it to slam my cheekbone black & blue, while the buttpad design hammered my shoulder into uselessness before I would finish a full magazine. All this for an anemic round not much different ballistically than a .32 Winchester Special. I actually got so disgusted with it after several weeks of trying to fix it that I hacksawed it into four pieces and threw it out, one piece per week...Good Riddance! OTH, I had a Half-Octagon receiver Mosin with a wood sporter stock, Williams guide sights, turn-down bolt and 22" shortened barrel that was a joy to shoot, and shot 3/4" groups with the 180gr Norma loads @ the 80-yard range at Williams Gunsight. However, I don't know what kind of powder Norma uses, but that thing boomed like an artillery piece!
     
  15. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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    LOL

    Why do that? It's still an attractive wallhanger.
     
  16. Vairochana

    Vairochana Member

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    "sporterised" Enfield

    they don't have to be butchered
     
  17. rockstar.esq

    rockstar.esq Member

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    "I actually got so disgusted with it after several weeks of trying to fix it that I hacksawed it into four pieces and threw it out, one piece per week..."

    Now I for one have thought about doing something like this (with my car), I think it's hillarious that you actually did! Extreem as it sounds, at least you didn't pawn off your problem child on some unexpecting buyer. Still and all I think I'd have "mounted" the four pieces on a plaque in the gun room to make sure all the other rifles in there stay in line!
     
  18. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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  19. Clipper

    Clipper Member

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    Every gun I own is a shooter...

    ...And I have no use for junk guns. That JC was a festering, puss-filled boil on the butt of the world of legitimate firearms everywhere, and deserved to die an ignominious death. I wish I had kept that Mosin, though, now that there are other producers of (reasonably priced) sporting ammo for it. I've even thought of getting another, so I'll have something to take out on misserable days when I'd really rather not expose my new M-70 featherweight...
     
  20. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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    Boyds even makes a nice stock for it.

    There's little financial reason to put off buying a Mosin. The gun costs less than 100 rounds of hunting ammo.:)
     
  21. Iggy

    Iggy Member

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    Gads!! I can remember JC's for sale in gun magazines and Popular Mechanics for $29.95

    Course that was 50 years ago, and I didn't have the bucks..:rolleyes:
     
  22. jonnyc

    jonnyc Member

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    To each his own. I recently got a nice Jungle Carb and I love it. I get 4-ish inch groups at 100yds. and it's a pleasure to shoot. Ten times more fun to shoot than my M38 Mosin. I'm even starting to load .303 just so I can keep using the piece economically. Let me know if you ever think about cutting up anymore "bad" guns!
     
  23. Oldnamvet

    Oldnamvet Member

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    If price is your criteria, you can get a new NEF Handi-rifle for about $200. Single shot but they are accurate and reliable. Use the rest of the money to put nice glass on it.
     
  24. Gewehr98

    Gewehr98 Member

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    Bovine Excrement.

    I've owned this particular 1945 BSA Shirley No5Mk1 since it was imported from Malaysia around 2000. It's the real thing, with all of the proper lightening cuts, not a conversion from a No4Mk1 as alluded to by another poster here. The finish needed some help, particularly the thick layer of varnish that the gun had been covered in. Regardless, the only "wandering zero" problem I found was a loose king screw, also known as the front action screw. Snugging that down for proper bedding and making sure the forend was clear of the barrel in the barrel channel ensured my particular Jungle Carbine shot repeatable groups, day to day, month to month.

    [​IMG]

    Does the gun recoil more than the typical No4Mk1? Oh, heck yes. Especially with my handloads, made to duplicate original MkVII ball ammo. (Hardly anemic or .32 Winchester Special grade)

    Will I take it deer hunting? In a heartbeat. The Brits needed a maneuverable, lightweight battle rifle based on their existing No4Mk1 design. They hit a bullseye with the No5Mk1 Jungle Carbine, and I'm quite happy to have an original in my collection, both to own and to shoot. :D
     
  25. jonnyc

    jonnyc Member

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    I like mine a lot, but yours is real purty.
     
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