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TheOldPro

Enfield .303 Questions, Part 2

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The more I look at it, the more I believe that it can't be replaced. There's no wiggle-room to get it on. It may come down to finding another receiver or hanging this one on the wall as a conversation piece. It might shoot okay without it, but it's a long bolt moving backwards toward the eye if the receiver gave way without the brace in place.

 

Jerry

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OP, I can say with reasonable certainty that your rifle has been the victim of a "Bubba" sporterizing job. The forend should have a straight underline, also the clip guide has been removed, hence the holes where they are. You have a heck of a clean-up job ahead, but the gun is definitely salvagable. Personally I would use electrolytic rust removal as it removes ALL the rust, even down in the pits. 4/0 steel wool with a little oil works well also, but won't get down in the pits. Here's an addy to read up on electrolytic rust removal, it's really easier than you might think: www.antiqueautoranch.com/montana500/adrian/rust.html. Well, the whole addy didn't highlight, but no matter. Luck with your project. Archie

 

Edit: when I use this process, I pull the parts out of the solution every 5 or 10 minutes and scrub with 4/0 steel wool, seems to give a better end result.

 

Edit again: the part that you were speaking of that loops over the top of the receiver attaches to the holes on each side. It is not a action brace, it is the stripper clip guide. Not necessary.

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OP I talked to a old retired gunsmith friend of mine in Missouri last night He used to build sporters out of enfields and Japs back in the 60 .he said clip bridge missing is no problem they used to remove them and plug up the holes.

Mark

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OP I talked to a old retired gunsmith friend of mine in Missouri last night He used to build sporters out of enfields and Japs back in the 60 .he said clip bridge missing is no problem they used to remove them and plug up the holes.

Mark

Thanks, Mark. That is good news. Allows me to proceed. I need to at least get the inner barrel band, spring, and screw to hold the fore-end in place, but I am going to have to figure out how to get the front sight band off, if it will come off. Pretty rusty up front of the sight. If I can't get it off, no use for the barrel band. I have a slight idea about how it comes off by looking at the parts list, but I'm open to suggestions if you have ever had to do the same.

 

Jerry

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The front sight just has a small steel pin thru it .You need to get barrel slicked up remove rust and crud then mine came off with a brass punch . When you go to put the band on make sure the taper goes the right way its hard to tell not much taper to it .

Mark

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The front sight just has a small steel pin thru it .

I've got to go get an actual punch....small nails with the points ground off don't work too well so far. I think the size is 1/16" or maybe 3/32"...hard to tell. So for now I'm in a holding pattern.

Update: Just checked the size of the nail that would just fit, and it is slightly larger than 1/16", so I need the 1/16" size punch. I hope the heck those punches are strong....I've got a feeling it's going to take more than a gentle tap to loosen that pin.

 

 

FORGET ALL THE ABOVE!!!!! SEE MY NEXT POST. A DAY WASTED.

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Well, Mark and Archie, I just found out why the retaining pin on the front sight was so hard to remove with my punch made out of nails. There was no retaining pin, because there was no keeper pin inside the front sight. Someone 50 or so years ago apparently could not get the needed parts, and simply drove a nail into the slot the keeper pin is supposed to occupy to hold the front sight in place. Did a good job of it, too. When I finally figured out that none of the keeper pins had a pointed end to them, I took another nail and drove that nail out. Sight came off pretty easy then. Hope it goes back in pretty easy. I then placed an order with Springfield Sporters for the barrel band, spring, and screw, and also the keeper pin and retaining pin. What worries me is that Numrich lists the keeper pin also, but it looks different from the one I just ordered from Springfield Sporters, and both are supposed to be for the No.1 Mk3 front sight. I didn't order from Numrich because they did not have the retaining pin that goes through the sight to hold the keeper pin in place. If it doesn't fit, JB Weld does, though. I doubt if that nail was factory issue. On the plus side, I can now get to the end of the barrel easier to clean off the rust there, and may not have to buy that punch mentioned earlier. This gun had better shoot after all this....I spent half a day trying to drive through the center of a 50 year old nail with a 3 year old nail.

 

OP

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Update:

 

I finally got all the parts in (sights, forearm support band, ammo, etc.) a couple of days ago, got them more or less installed, and decided to fire, or try to fire, the old gun for the first time it has been fired in over 50 years. My wife declining the offer of allowing her the honor of firing the first round, I fell back on what GonHuntin suggested: jamming the butt of the gun into an old tire. Since all of my tires are old, finding one was no problem. A few modifications were necessary. Let me just say that the .303 does not exactly have a hair trigger. I had to tie the front of the rifle to the tire to keep from raising it completely out of the tire while pulling via a string tied to the trigger and a 50' extension cord (I couldn't find a 100' one or I would have used it). That not being enough to keep everything in place, I then had to stake the tire to keep from pulling it backwards while trying to pull the trigger. With all that done, I loaded a round into the chamber, got as far back as the extension cord would allow, and gave it a pull. To my surprise, the gun fired as hoped for, and the barrel, or pieces thereof, did not try to go into earth orbit. After examining the workings of the gun, and the fired case, I did the same with a couple more rounds before removing everything attached to the gun and getting up the nerve to fire it from the shoulder. I only took 25 yard shots this time to make sure I didn't kill any cows in the neighboring pasture, and was fairly pleased with what I saw. After adjusting the front sight some, it shot pretty consistently 1" low of the bullseye. Next round of sighting in will be from 50 yards, and I'll work on elevation then. With the open sights, that is probably going to be about the limit of my shots, and probably only at hogs. I've got a few more tweaks to do, but not many. It's an old gun, and that's about how it's going to stay, but at least a usable one now. I do appreciate those of you who have offered suggestions and information along the way. I doubt I would have continued this project had it not been for you. Thanks again,

 

OP

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I figured that you wouldn't have any problems with firing it . From the ones Ive seen over the years there kinda like a Timex . Some have been really nasty looking and shot just fine.

Mark

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OP - I'm reasonably sure your gun started life as a No1 Mk III. I definitely agree with the opinion that it has been sporterized by Bubba or one of his cousins but that's half the fun isn't it. The second Enfield I have is also a 1942 Mk III which has been sporterized, albeit a touch more gracefully than yours. Part or the reason I wanted to stick with the Mk III was to minimize my parts inventory. Enjoy popping hogs and anything else you get to shoot with it.

 

PS - I really wish I could have been there to witness the test firing

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The second Enfield I have is also a 1942 Mk III which has been sporterized, albeit a touch more gracefully than yours.

 

PS - I really wish I could have been there to witness the test firing

Methinks you are suggesting that my little Enfield #4 Mark 1 Mark 111 Mark V and possibly #6 is lacking in aesthetics somewhat. You could be on to something. It has so many stampings on it I think the only reason they quit was that they were running out of metal to work with. It does, however, go bang when I pull the trigger, difficult tho' that may be. If they ever have a Miss Transylvania contest, I may enter her, but until then, I'll just line her up alongside my other classics and allow onlookers to drool if they like.

As to being a witness to the test firing, you don't really want to wake up with nightmares at your age, so it's probably best you missed that event. I wish I could have missed it, but the extension cord was not long enough. Now I'm looking for the world's unluckiest hog to try it out on. Wish me luck, not that I need it. Perhaps wish me a miracle.

 

OP

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OP - Are the holes on the left and right of the receiver, where the charger bridge used to be, treaded? Ir they are then I am wondering how difficult it would be to manufacture a bracket to mount a red dot sight on. A thought from a curious, but essentially red neck, mind.

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OP - Are the holes on the left and right of the receiver, where the charger bridge used to be, treaded?

Unfortunately, no, and the metal there is so thin I doubt it could be threaded now, if it ever could be. And since the bolt slides right by the holes, there's no wiggle room. Believe me, I've thought about them, but it won't work, not without the original "bridge" to support the back end of a mount.

 

OP

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