View Full Version : Lee-Enfield Conversion to .45/70

July 27, 2005, 12:32 AM
I have a serious "jones" for a #4 mk 1 in .45/70...

It cannot be explained on any rational level...suffice it to say, I've had a #4 for 25 years that some ham-fisted jerk sporterized (oh wait, it was me...), I love it, it is imbued with my manna, but it would be PERFECT if it were in .45/70...I know I should just buy a Gibbs, if they still make them, or a Marlin...but I want mine. I know the .303 is a fine, powerful round, but I just want a sexy smooth, light, fast, cut-down Lee-Enfield, big gooey recoil pad, 18" barrel, all black and dark wood, 2, maybe 3 stubby rounds in the mag...whoa, getting excited, there...

So much for "why"; on to the "How?":

-How can I locate a gunsmith who will rebarrel, chamber and headspace my stripped action? What can I expect to pay?

-I feel like I can take on the rest of the project: Magazine/feedramp/adding a floorplate maybe, refinishing, stocking, scoping, etc.; the safety-critical work being the chambering and headspace, right?

Jim Watson
July 27, 2005, 08:38 AM
I recently saw a magazine advertisement for an economical conversion of a SMLE to look like a Remington-Lee sporter in various calibers. Unfortunately, I can't find it this morning. If it turns up, I will let you know.

January 15, 2006, 02:28 AM
Try this link
The story is sorta corny but gives the basic info on what is needed to do the conversion. Greg;)

January 19, 2006, 09:58 PM
That's exactly what I want to do. Project's been on hold because I've been busy (work, holidays, etc.), but I will definitely do it.

Jim Watson
January 19, 2006, 11:18 PM
You're back!
And I found the ad I was thinking about in July.

1879 Sharps Lee Sporting Rifle
Original Lee patent rifles were built by the Sharps Manufacturing Company in 1879.
Now you can re-create this rare rifle using common available components. Calibers .45-70, .42-60, .405 (short), or .303.
Rifles can be built for $300 or less.
Detailed plans with photographs for builiding, as well as parts sources are available for $20, ppd.
Tom Jackson
PO Box 332
Davenport, IA 52805

What in the world is a .42-60? I don't know.
I bet a .405 (short) is a .405 Winchester shortened enough to go in the magazine of a common SMLE donor action.

January 19, 2006, 11:45 PM
.42-60? Really? Beats me. There are 3 40-60's I can find, the Marlin, the Maynard 1882, and the Winchester. .40-65 Winchester comes close to a good conversion, with a 2.1" case that is .425 just behind the bullet. But who knows?