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Old April 4, 2013, 01:38 PM   #1
Magnum Wheel Man
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looking for Enfield Martini questions answered...

a while back, I bought an Enfield Martini carbine switched to 303 British...

... or so I thought... in fact it was so good, it fooled my buddy who is very knowledgeable on the subject...

when we pulled the gun apart, the threads are not standard, & are in fact metric

the receiver has all the correct stampings & proof marks...

he was wondering if anyone knows if Enfield ever licensed rifles to be made in India or ??? the crown stamp is of perfect proportion, & it has all the right marks, in all the right places, but the innards are probably not Enfield, & the barrel threads are wrong... the gun is pretty pitted, but repairable to function, just was curious on the licensing, since the stamps all seem accurate ???
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Old April 4, 2013, 02:03 PM   #2
BillM
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Might be a Kyber Pass gun---some of them are really close on the
markings.

Here is a site with some info. Scroll down a bit and they do
a markings analysis on the Kyber guns:

http://www.martinihenry.com/faq.htm
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Old April 4, 2013, 02:19 PM   #3
Magnum Wheel Man
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Thanks for the links... better info than I found on my own so far...

problem is, the markings are genuinely better than those shown as fakes ( crown is perfect shape, no typo's or miss matched letters, or fonts, ect. )

the guy I bought if from, said it was authenticated at ( I don't remember exactly ) but something like at the "South Dakota Arms Auction", or some such...

It may still be a copy, ( most likely in fact ), but it was good enough to fool my retired builder buddy until he got inside it ( & he's built & rebuilt lots of Martini's & has drawers of spare parts )

from the markings, he's still wondering if Enfield ever licensed some India company to produce them before they released them from "ownership" ???
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Old April 4, 2013, 02:28 PM   #4
Jim Watson
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Licensed to some Hindoo? Not a chance.
Copied all over, you bet.
Maybe Belgian, but sounds like a frank copy not a licensed version.
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Old April 4, 2013, 02:37 PM   #5
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so I'm grasping at straws here I know,

... but did Enfield license guns to be built anywhere that may have not used the standard Enfield barrel threads ???
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Old April 4, 2013, 03:38 PM   #6
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Double check the thread form as well as the pitch. Some of the older Enfield threads were so close to metric that there was some (sloppy) interchangability.
I'm NOT suggesting you booger fit a metric pipe in there, just that you eliminate the possiblity of there being a coincidental overlap. I've had this once or twice with things like ejector & safety screws being almost metric, close enough that a casual "run a bolt in" test looks good at first.
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Old April 4, 2013, 03:43 PM   #7
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as per my buddy...

standard thread for the Martini is 1" 14 threads per inch

this gun is .975" 13 threads per inch... or close to 25mm 2mm pitch...
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Old April 8, 2013, 06:48 AM   #8
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with the gun fully apart, it actually looks like it was put together from a collection of parts... the receiver looks very well made & if it weren't for the odd thread size, with the stamps, you would think it an Enfield part, however the Enfield script was stamped with individual letter stamps, rather than a single "word" stamp... trigger guard & breach block look Enfield, most of the other internals look hand made, the pins are awful ... the stock retaining bolt is the most crudely constructed part I think I've ever seen... the shank is barely round, & it doesn't screw in straight, it swings a pretty wide orbit when screwing in, & is also the same thread pitch as the barrel... the wood looks to be either a very good copy, or Enfield parts, as well as the front barrel band / bayonet lug...

the barrel that was on the rifle has a proof mark stamped into it, though my buddy has no idea... I'll likely add some pics later...

I think we're going to go ahead & make the needed parts, rechamber it in 30-30, & proof fire it with a couple warm loads, to make sure the receiver & breach block can handle the pressures... it's going to suck to stick a couple $100.00 into the gun to get it into condition that it can be proofed, should it break, but it's the only thing I can think of short of the scrap pile... & when put back together, it's a nice looking rifle... so I'd like to shoot it...

will probably stamp the receiver "not British" if it survives proof testing...

my buddy is still convinced that the receiver is likely made from a different "craftsman" than the ones that made the internals... maybe the barrel proof mark will provide some details???
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Old April 8, 2013, 10:17 PM   #9
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I think it safe to say that the "proof" marks have no more validity than the other markings. The rifle sounds like a Khyber pass special and my recommendation is that it be considered a wall hanger. The .303 British (and the .30-30) are somewhat objects of scorn by those who like "hot" cartridges with higher pressures, but neither is anything to toy with and both are fully capable of suddenly disassembling a rifle made from unknown material by an unknown person in an unknown location at an unknown time.

The threads, I suspect, are neither English nor Metric. They are "what looked right" when the craftsman made his receiver tap and set up his foot powered lathe.

I may sound like I have no respect for those guns, but in fact I have a great deal of respect and admiration for people who are so determined to remain free that they can and do manufacture their own weapons, and even if they look odd and have funny markings, they shoot, often very well.

Jim
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Old April 9, 2013, 06:10 AM   #10
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Well... I'm 95% sure were are going to do the minimum needed to proof the gun in 30-30, will load a couple hot 30-30 proof loads...if it survives proofing we'll put sights & such on it & shoot it... if it cracks, I know a guy that can make it into a floor lamp
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Old April 10, 2013, 10:43 AM   #11
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A floor lamp to read by won't be much good if you have no eyes.

Jim
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Old April 10, 2013, 10:53 AM   #12
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I can use a rifle rest & a string ( the one eye shooter )
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Old April 11, 2013, 07:26 AM   #13
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parts being made & fitted right now... receiver will be stamped "not brit" at the back, by the thumb rest, plainly visible, cartridge chambering stamp on the barrel will be 7.62 X 52 R

30-30 metric designation ( all of this is being done, so after I'm gone, provided the gun survives proofing, & I'll be loading only medium 30-30 loads, specifically for this rifle, that someone doesn't load some hot 30-30 for the gun assuming the Martini is a strong action )

hope it survives proofing, which is still a couple weeks out yet

my buddy talked me into proofing it with factory loads, but lightly greasing the brass & chamber, for the 1st couple cartridges, so the breach block gets the full thrust of the case, rather than allowing it to friction bind in the chamber, during expansion, as a way of proofing the action, & then running another 12-15 factory rounds through the gun, inspecting after each round, if there are no visible cracks, etc. the head space, which will be measured prior to firing, will be checked again, if it loosens up at all, it'll be regulated to lighting duties, if it's still good, the sights & other finishing details will be completed...

( buddy is very cautious )
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Old April 11, 2013, 10:58 AM   #14
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All I'll say is as your mind is made up, proceed very, very carefully. The Khyber Pass guns in addition to poor or hand done machine work were made of whatever bits of metal came to hand, including the receiver and barrel. You don't know what you have, the next shot might be the one that makes it let go, kinda like the spanish revolvers back in the early 1900's. There are enough actions available that I would wait till I could get one to build on and make a lamp or a tomato stake out of that one. GW
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Old April 11, 2013, 11:16 AM   #15
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well... the barrel is a US take off, so I know the barrel is good... all the pins will be oversized new tool steel... several new springs, & a new firing pin, the breach block will be bushed to clean up & center the firing pin on the new bore... I'm sure this rifle fired many 303 British, though quite possibly black powder, & whom ever cleaned it up & re-blued it, ground a lot of thickness off the sides of the receiver, to get the bulk of the pitting off the gun, so that is my main concern... how bad is the receiver steel ( carbon deposits ??? ) & did it get thinned beyond service ???
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Old April 11, 2013, 07:22 PM   #16
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The result will be a rifle that even at best won't be worth anywhere near the amount of time and money invested in it. But it's what floats your boat, I guess.

Jim
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Old April 12, 2013, 08:30 AM   #17
Magnum Wheel Man
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more like...

a) I have a hard time cutting my losses...

b) I like how it looks, & think it would be fun to shoot...

c) love the Martini's, I have several, & they are getting much harder to get
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Old April 12, 2013, 10:07 AM   #18
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I am not knocking Martinis (though I don't care for the liquid kind). The action is derived from the Peabody, but vastly improved. I like the guns and have owned a couple; I consider it the best of the single shot military rifles, much faster to fire and easier to maintain than the various bolt actions and a lot better than the American "trap door" Springfield.

A GOOD Martini action would be well worth converting into a neat sporting rifle, and those .310's by Greener were hard to beat. But I still am not sure a Martini clone from an unknown source is a good basis for an investment.

Jim
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Old April 12, 2013, 10:08 AM   #19
Magnum Wheel Man
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I knew you weren't knocking the "real" Martinis...

notice reason "a" above...

I had an RG target revolver, that was just so ugly I couldn't look at it... wasn't worth anything to sell, so I put a couple $100.00 into it, & still didn't like it... ended up selling it for twice what it was worth before I put anything into it, but a far cry from what I spent trying to put lipstick on that sow...

guess it's just my nature... I'm confident, because of the amount & level of new parts going into this "clone", it will shoot true... uhhh... provided it proofs without cracking
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Old April 12, 2013, 09:19 PM   #20
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Have you seen some of the hand machine work coming out of Syrian basements right now?

Even so, a long string recommended.
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Old April 15, 2013, 05:56 AM   #21
Magnum Wheel Man
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Gun got proofed on Sunday... no cracking, no stretching... my buddy is pretty conservative, & he's sure if I keep the loads mild to mid as far as pressures, it'll shoot a long time

now needs to be pulled apart again, & the extractor fit to the barrel( & the extractor modified to fit the 30-30 cartridge ), & a couple parts made, as my buddy didn't do any more than needed to proof the action...
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Old April 18, 2013, 03:23 PM   #22
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I guess it's a good thing for me, the weather has been so bad lately...

I just got off the phone with my buddy... we discussed the drift adjustable front sight's position... he's ready to cut dovetails for the front sight, & the gun will be complete, all new machined internals, the stainless take-off, 30 caliber barrel I bought from another shop, is chambered shaped & fit to the action with that goofy thread pitch & size

I should be able to post pics next week

I already handload for my Contender in 30-30... I wasn't counting on this getting done so fast... I'm gonna have to get going on some mid pressure level, single shot, reloads
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