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Old January 22, 2013, 01:00 PM   #1
Polinese
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Sell my SMLE?

I bought a No 4 Mk 1 (1943) date a while back and it was in pretty rough shape, metal finish compeltely gone, wood all very dark and gouged in a few places, and the buttstock won't screw in all the way. I had the idea of cleaning it up (yes i know its frowned upon) but never got around to it and have kinda lost interest. Do you folk think it'd be worth it to try and sell it towards something else, or am I going to get next to nothing for it on account of the shape it's in.
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Old January 22, 2013, 02:14 PM   #2
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If a gun doesn't float your boat and really isn't an 'investment' that will greatly appreciate, sell it.
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Old January 22, 2013, 05:18 PM   #3
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I agree with chris, if you don't like it and don't want to risk time and money if it definitely wont fix your reservations about it then just cut it loose, if you do decide to sell it PM me, I might be interested in it.
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Old January 22, 2013, 06:01 PM   #4
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Give you $50 for it.....
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Old January 22, 2013, 08:50 PM   #5
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Polinese, I also have a 1943 No. 4 Mk I Lee Enfield. From your description, however, mine is in better shape. Pity that you are considering getting rid of yours. I took a couple deer with mine using the factory iron sights and she performed beautifully. I always enjoyed the idea that my rifle was used to kill both NAZIs and deer.
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Old January 24, 2013, 03:38 PM   #6
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Quote:
Polinese, I also have a 1943 No. 4 Mk I Lee Enfield. From your description, however, mine is in better shape. Pity that you are considering getting rid of yours. I took a couple deer with mine using the factory iron sights and she performed beautifully. I always enjoyed the idea that my rifle was used to kill both NAZIs and deer.
Sadly, most Germans were either servings their country as best they though was right, forced to serve and or had been brainwashed by the Regime and propaganda.

Most were not Nazis, just some poor schmuck dying for his country right or wrong.

It might not hurt to keep in mind the US put something like 110,000 of our own citizens of Japanese ancestry into so called Internment (I think were concentration Camps) in WWII who were never compensated for the property that was seized.

I can't say that I think any gun I own was used to kill someone adds to its luster, however necessary the killing may have been.
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Old January 24, 2013, 04:47 PM   #7
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How does it shoot???
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Old January 24, 2013, 07:21 PM   #8
Polinese
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Actually never shot it. The headspace on it is abysmal and I never picked up other bolt heads to try and fix it. The shop in question turned it down for that reason so looks like for the time being I'll be holding onto it and putting it back on the project list.
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Old January 24, 2013, 09:00 PM   #9
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How did they measure headspace?

TK
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Old January 24, 2013, 09:46 PM   #10
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I was kidding about the $50, but if the price is right, I may be interested. I have been thinking about a basket case SMLE for a project for a while. I have my C&R FFL so you could ship it right to me.

If you are thinking about selling, feel free to PM me.
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Old January 24, 2013, 10:03 PM   #11
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The owner of the shop is a gunsmith, said he put the go no go guages in.
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Old January 25, 2013, 03:04 AM   #12
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I love projects...If I had it..I would make a tanker gun out of it....
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Old January 25, 2013, 12:52 PM   #13
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I thought about doing a heavy barreled 303 british with some nice walnut made for it.
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Old January 25, 2013, 10:39 PM   #14
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Sadly, most Germans were either servings their country as best they though was right, forced to serve and or had been brainwashed by the Regime and propaganda.

Most were not Nazis, just some poor schmuck dying for his country right or wrong.
For a bunch of schmuck's they did a good job of stiring the pot.

I have some milsurps I would like to know the history of. I have a Russian Capture K98 I'm pretty sure shot at some Russians.

I have a Danish return M1 Garand I'm pretty sure shot at Germans.
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Old January 26, 2013, 10:02 PM   #15
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Well you can forget getting a replacement barrel for the No 4 to the military spec but you can get something like a Douglas barrel and had it put on and kind of sporterize it.

I have rebarreled several with a custom made reamer that does not allow the big expansions the military chamber allow. Big chambers reduce brass life tremendously.

They are not that hard to rebarrel but I can understand why a lot of gunsmiths won't mess with them as the barrels can be extremely hard to remove as they are very tight.

The buttstock can be tightened up with Marinetex.

With a new barrel it would be headspaced to the bolt head you have.
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Old February 1, 2013, 03:03 PM   #16
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The OP sent me some photos of his rifle (posted with his permission), it really doesn't look that bad to me. Probably fixable with a new bolt head.








As is, I would think it would be worth a couple hundred bucks, more if the headspace is corrected.
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Old February 1, 2013, 03:21 PM   #17
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Commercial sporting rifle .303 headspace gauges are for SAAMI limits, the Milspec headspace limits are more generous. The rifle may be safe to fire with milspec ammunition, and possibly safe with most sporting ammo.
Since the .303 headspaces on the rim milspec ammo with thicker rims than commonly found on sporting ammo takes up the slack.

If headspace is on the loose side, over .068 but under .074, it should be safe to fire but cases likely won't be suited to reloading.

A milsurp rifle isn't easily judged by commercial specifications.
When the Lee Enfields left the factory headspace would have been no more than .067 but wear , sandy environments, and degraded milspec ammo increased the headspace over time.

That said the rod under the upper band ID's this as a Turkish Drill rifle, and it may not have been in good condition when passed on to the Turks.

Anything over .074 headspace is taking a chance, and a wallowed out chamber coupled with loose headspace could make one dangerous to fire.

I'd strap it to a tire and fire several rounds of both milspec and sporting ammo, then check the fired cases for bulges.

As for bolt heads, a good condition bolthead with a low number may be longer than a hard used bolthead with a higher number.

Unless you want to put some work in the rifle you may as well sell it off at a reasonable price, then look around for one in better shape.
Or you could look for a sporterized No.4 with unaltered barrel and strip this one for parts to restore that rifle to milspec.

PS
From the look of the bolt track this is a No.4 MkI as opposed to the MkI*, which is a point in its favor.
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Old February 1, 2013, 05:26 PM   #18
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If you are not planing on reloading the brass it can be shot as is. Though the brass will be trash afterwards. You will see a shining ring around the case head about a half to three quarters on an inch above the rim. If you plan on reloading the brass you can get some rubber plumbing washers. (O-Rings) Place them on the case up to the rim. It will take a slight effort to close the bolt. After firing set a full length sizing die to just barely kiss the shoulder, or use a neck sizing die. You will get about 3 to 5 reloads before they need to be full length resized, and fired with the washer again if the primer pockets are not loose.


The gun is shooter grade condition.
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Old February 1, 2013, 08:13 PM   #19
Polinese
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I'm still looking to sell it to pay for something else. What would a fair price be for it?
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Old February 1, 2013, 09:47 PM   #20
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You have an Ex Turkish BSA Shirley No4, I'd have that Enfield in my collection in a NY minute ... nothing wrong with it at all. You can clean up a rifle like that with a BLO scrub and fine steel wool, it would bring it back to life in a day. I've taken on some very rough rifles, cosmetically and turned them around in a day. Example ... first image was my 1942 Longbranch when I bought from store ... the following is the same rifle now.





No sand paper, just BLO and #000 steel wool, no steaming dings or dents - strip the entire rifle and clean it, then reassemble, done. See my tutorial on stock care here (http://www.surplusrifleforum.com/vie...?f=120&t=85775) - you can do exactly what I did ... there are options for the metalwork if it bothers you, but we call that character. Look out for spare boltheads, easy to find and just determine what length you need to get it in spec again.

Think about where this rifle may have been and the service it has seen ... if you knew this rifles story, you probably wouldn't think twice about getting her up an running again. Get to it mate.



Cheers, Tiki.
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Old February 1, 2013, 09:54 PM   #21
Polinese
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Is being a Turkish rifle anything special or just where it ended up historically
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Old February 1, 2013, 09:58 PM   #22
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Pol,

Nothing special mate, just where this particular rifle saw ownership after it was sold by the Commonwealth. Britain supplied No4's to more than 30 countries in the years subsequent to WW2 ... Turkey was one of many. A key indentifier for the Turk No4's is their penchant for adding that little post swivel to the upper band.

P.S The Op's rifle also has a Savage made safety ...

Cheers, Tiki.
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Old February 1, 2013, 10:03 PM   #23
Polinese
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Interesting. I didn't realize no4's made it to so many countries after the war but makes sense I suppose. Doesn't sound like it'd take much to make her all pretty and working again. Still trying to decide if I should sell. I'd almost feel better that she go to someone who will appreciate her more than I have.
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Old February 2, 2013, 12:35 AM   #24
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If you mean to sell it, you'll likely find a buyer at my forums link below ... we have a for sale forum which requires 11 posts to access. You will certainly find someone who would appreciate it and restore it there.

Cheers, Tiki
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Old February 3, 2013, 01:55 AM   #25
Polinese
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Tiki what would you say is a fair price for the rifle given its condition.
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